Top 5 Hotel Stays

One of my favorite things about traveling is finding boutique type hotels to stay at. I try to avoid staying in chain hotels (Hampton, Marriott, Holiday Inn) unless it’s the only option, the only safe option, or if I’m trying to save $ to splurge on something else on the trip. The following are my top 5 from the past year or so. Enjoy!

#1 – Stay Amigo – Salida, Colorado

My trip to Colorado was the first time I ever stayed in an Airstream. I was nervous at first I didn’t know how to lock the door properly and it was still kind of cold and I didn’t want to burn down the Airstream with the space heater. I checked in, went and got dinner, and came back to turn on a record, and work on planning my next day’s adventures. They have both rooms in the motel and a few different air stream set ups; both of which are incredible. I still dream about the vibes of this place. It’s a great spot between Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, and the Great Sand Dunes National Park. I would detour my next trip in Colorado just to stay here. It is that great.

#2 – Graduate Oxford – Oxford, Mississippi

When I was on my Midwest trip, and traveling the last leg alone, I met someone in Little Rock, Arkansas that recommended I stay in Oxford, Mississippi for the night. I looked online and found “The Graduate” listed at a great price and decided why not? When walking in, I fell in love with the pink floors, the bookshelves, and the HUGE desk. My bed was incredibly comfortable, and they have a little cafe where you can grab breakfast and coffee in the morning. I was so excited about the long desk, I worked on some things at my computer for a few hours that morning before heading out. I’ve also stayed in another Graduate Hotel in Georgia since this initial trip. Their hotels are decorated in based on the local history and the college campus it’s near. They continue to grow and while it is a chain, it’s so great to stay in because no two hotels are the same.

#3 – Izaak Walton Inn – Essex, Montana

We stayed at the Izaak Walton for 2 night on our trip to Glacier National Park. There’s no cell service and almost no Wifi there. You can load 1 web page about every 10 minutes or so. But it’s wonderful. There is a restaurant on site that serves 3 meals a day and has coffee. It’s right in between the East and West entrance to Glacier National Park. You can stay in the Inn (which is what we did), one of the train cars, a family cabin, or the school house that’s across the train tracks. All are great options though I’d probably pick the Green Caboose or a school house room with a patio. Enjoy an evening by the fireplace with one of the travel books, or eat your blackberry cobbler in the dining room. Any evening spent here is peaceful and cozy.

#4 – Amicalola Falls Lodge – Dawsonville, Georgia

The Lodge is on top of a mountain in North Georgia. It’s right off the Appalachian Trail and a few minutes walk from a 729 foot waterfall. There is wonderful hiking nearby, a large dining room and patio that overlook the mountains, and rooms that give a beautiful mountain view. They have suites, lofts, and cabins, and many adventure options for kids and adults. Cozy, affordable, and picturesque place to stay.

#5 – Garden of the Gods Resort – Colorado Springs, Colorado

This resort is a little fancy for me, but the view from the hotel room was INCREDIBLE. One of the best hotel views I’ve ever had. I decided to splurge on my Colorado trip on this hotel which means I stayed at some low budget options days prior. The resort has views of the Garden of the Gods, as well as the Manitou Incline, and Pike’s Peak. The room had a fireplace, queen bed, enormous closet, sitting area, and a little patio. I spent more of the time I was there on the patio reading or writing, and the time in bed resting my legs from my crazy hike up the Manitou Incline.