Saturday, December 01, 2007

Hampton Inn -- Bloomsburg

Hampton Inn
255 Paper Mill Road
USA 17815

Tel: +1-570-380-1020
Fax: +1-570-380-1035

I have traveled frequently with my old friend and business partner, Dr. A. It seems as if he has a principle that he applies whenever he stays at a hotel: If he doesn't like it, he complains a lot. If he likes it, he complains a little. There is a rumor that hotel owners across the world have him on a watch-out list! I remember him once warning a hotel manager that he was about to instruct the head of travel of the North American division (of our then twenty-eight person) company to blacklist the entire hotel chain and expressly forbid all our (two) sales representatives from staying there!

His usual complaint used to be a lament for the basics. "Just give me a decent bed, a clean room, and an adequate bathroom, and I'll be happy," was his usual cry as we would leave a hotel. Added to his list of basics was a morning banana without which he would growl for the rest of the day.

I used to find this refrain somewhat unconvincing coming from a man whose agonies tend to be making up his mind between the Four Seasons and the Ritz-Carlton. I often used to wonder how the basics would really sit with this Lexus-driving, Perignon-drinking, foie-gras eating consumer of luxury goods and services while listening to his plea for "just the basics" typically made while sitting in Seat 2A on a British Airways transatlantic flight.

Anyway, we spent the better part of this week at a Hampton Inn in Bloomsburg Pennsylvania, and Hampton Inn really is a chain that just gets the basics right with few loftier ambitions or pretensions. And while I had some minor complaints (shower not warm enough, no signs of recognition for a Hilton Diamond member, a room with two queen beds when I really wanted a king, a rather noisy window-situated heating system), Dr. A was ecstatically happy. "Perhaps the tables have turned, and now you are the complainer," he commented as he cheerfully munched his way through his second banana.

To summarize, the Hampton Inn in Bloomsburg is an excellent basic hotel with a few minor flaws. An adequate breakfast is provided by an extremely friendly English server in the morning on, alas, disposable plates.

But for only $114 a night, you can hardly complain! In general, I really do like this chain, and I appreciate being able to get Hilton points when I stay there.

This is an enthusiastic recommendation.  My employer reimbursed me for my expenses. I do not have any connections, sponsorship, or freebies from Hampton Inn or Hilton Hotels except for those associated with my HHonors account.

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