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Where to Stay in Montgomery
When it comes to choosing a hotel in Montgomery, the most important question is whether or not you want to stay in historic Downtown Montgomery. Sites of interest in this scenic and pedestrian-friendly neighborhood include the Alabama State Capitol, the First White House of the Confederacy and the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church. While the attractions are plentiful, neighborhood hotels are not, so you’ll want to make your reservation far in advance to ensure you get one of the better rooms.
If you’ll have a car and don’t mind staying outside of the city’s core, you’ll enjoy a much greater variety of rooms and some seriously cheap hotel deals in Montgomery. A huge collection of hotels is located just east of the city near the Eastern Blvd. exits of I-85, and another cluster can be found south of the city around I-65 and W. South Blvd. Easy access to the interstates will definitely come in handy, as there are must-see attractions spread all over the metro area.
Montgomery Hotel Tips
Upscale hospitality chains including Embassy Suites, Renaissance and Hampton Inn dominate the Downtown Montgomery lodging market, but you can also find a nice historic bed and breakfast inn and, a little farther away, a few affordable independent hotels.
The hotels located off the highway exits in any direction consist mostly of familiar national hoteliers ranging from discount chains to those that rival the elegant Downtown hotels. These are mostly family-friendly options that include a few extended-stay and all-suite properties.
Many of the chain hotels fail to fully embody the local Southern charm for which Montgomery is well-known, but what they may lack in individuality is made up for in great value. For steeper nightly rates, you can live large in a mansion B&B, but it’s crucial that you make reservations for these rooms. For major events like Jubilee CityFest, the most appealing hotels may get booked up to a year in advance.
Montgomery Hotel Recommendations
One of Montgomery’s all-around best bets is the Embassy Suites Hotel Montgomery-Conference Center, which boasts an extensive host of amenities and an ideal downtown location. The State Capitol Building, the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church and several other landmarks are within easy walking distance, and after a long day of sightseeing, you can relax in the hotel’s indoor swimming pool or recharge in its fitness center. Complimentary breakfasts are cooked to order, and a small on-site café serves a diverse lunch and dinner menu.
If you prefer a historic B&B, the Red Bluff Cottage Bed and Breakfast is another great choice. Its four Victorian-style rooms, which include a two-bedroom suite, are individually appointed with antique furnishings and private baths. The daily breakfast is an elegant affair, and a huge list of guest perks includes complimentary snacks and beverages, fresh flowers, designer toiletries and plush robes. There’s a common area stocked with games and videos, and the sprawling wrap-around porch is the perfect place to relax and mingle with other guests.
For a comfortable mid-range hotel, the Wingate by Wyndham in Montgomery is a smart pick. Its rooms are outfitted with Tempur-Pedic mattresses, and guest amenities include a complimentary daily breakfast, an outdoor swimming pool, a fitness center and a whirlpool. If you don’t mind staying a little farther out of town, you may enjoy the luxury of the Montgomery Marriott Prattville Hotel and Conference Center at Capitol Hill. The hotel has a relaxing retreat atmosphere and excellent views of the Capitol Hill Golf Course, a favorite stop along the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail. Traditional Southern fare is served up at its Oak Tavern, and guests are free to enjoy swimming, volleyball and tennis on the hotel grounds.
Renting a car after your flight to Montgomery is a wise move, particularly if you plan on visiting attractions outside of the historic downtown area. The Montgomery Zoo, the Alabama Shakespeare Festival and several other noteworthy sights are on the outskirts of town, and they aren’t cheap or easy to reach via taxi or public transportation.
Downtown Montgomery is easy to tour on foot, but buses also circuit through the neighborhood and connect it to a few key outlying districts. The Montgomery Area Transit System, or MATS, operates all of the city’s buses, including the Lightning Route Trolley that runs from Union Station to several downtown-area attractions. Up-to-date route maps, schedules and rate information is posted in Union Station and on the MATS website.
Taxi companies operate within the city, but taxis do not patrol for fares. If you expect to need a ride, write down the number of one or two local taxi companies to carry with you, or just ask the front desk to call you a cab if you’re in your hotel.
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