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I just stayed at a hotel where I got if not the best hotel upgrade I’ve ever gotten, certainly the most unexpected hotel upgrade I think I’ve ever gotten. I am not a road warrior nor a huge manufactured spending person, so I have not typically traveled with a ton of hotel elite statuses. Most hotel status I’ve gotten has come from credit cards and/or status matches. Still, I have had a variety of top-tier statuses throughout the years, mostly Hilton Diamond from the Hilton Aspire card then status matched into Hyatt Globalist and a variety of other statuses.

Best hotel upgrade ever?

I was trying to think of the absolute BEST hotel upgrade I’ve ever gotten and I was having trouble thinking of any truly amazing upgrades. There was the time my wife and I stayed at the Comfort Hotel Roma Airport Fiumicino where we had a 2-story room, though I

(SEE ALSO: Comfort Hotel Roma Airport Fiumicino review: The cheapest hotel turns out to be the best)

My daughter and I were upgraded to a connecting family suite at the Sheraton Suites Times Square, but that was part of a media trip so I don’t think that really counts. Maybe it’s just been when I call and get upgraded to 2BR suites at Homewood Suites or Residence Inns? That seems pretty sad… I just can’t think of many truly amazing hotel upgrades I’ve gotten. I know I get annoyed when I DON’T get upgraded (when I have top-tier status) though.

Or at least the most unexpected hotel upgrade I’ve ever gotten

Certain hotel chains have a bit more consistency between different individual hotels. In fact, this is one of the things that I like about hotels vs. Airbnb. When I stay at a Holiday Inn Express, Hyatt House or Hampton Inn, I know completely what I going to get, and I personally have zero hesitation about staying in any of these brands. With other chains however, you do have to be a bit more careful before booking the hotel. This includes brands like Rodeway Inn, Super 8, Quality Inn, etc.

(SEE ALSO: A tale of two Super 8s – true budget traveling)

(SEE ALSO: Okay – I stayed at a Rodeway Inn (and lived to tell the tale!))

You can absolutely have an excellent stay at some of these brands, but you can also find yourself at a drug hotel.

I usually try to read the recent reviews just to get a feel for what a stay here would be like. I had read good reviews about the Days Inn Coeur D’Alene so had no qualms about booking it. In fact, prices for the hotel (and most of the hotels in the area) were pushing $200 / night. I used 13,500 Wyndham Rewards points which I thought provided outstanding value. Maybe not the 3+ cents per point I got using Wyndham Rewards points for Vacasa vacation rentals, but still quite solid. It’s 13,500 points / night instead of 15,000 points / night thanks to my having the Wyndham Business credit card

(SEE ALSO: Top credit card offers)

I mentioned a few weeks ago that I was booking 5 random hotels in the middle of nowhere as part of a combined county trip / work conference. So after a long day of driving, I pulled into the Days Inn Coeur D’Alene in Coeur D’Alene Idaho around 9pm after a full day of driving, the front desk agent mentioned that I was a Wyndham Diamond member (again, thank you Wyndham credit card). I didn’t feel like I really “needed” an upgrade since I was traveling alone, and I was a bit skeptical about the kind of upgrade I might get at a Days Inn, but said “sure”.

She directed me to Room 220 which was on the 2nd floor. She gave me directions on how to get there, but I didn’t really listen because cmon how hard can it be to find a hotel room? Turns out I should have listened because I got lost :-). When I got to the top of the stairs, I went both ways before realizing Room 220 was in neither direction

It turns out you have to make a U-turn after the stairs, which some part of the back of my mind recognized as what the front desk agent was trying to tell me. This is the door to the room as viewed from the lobby below

When I opened the door, I was greeted with a full-on apartment! It had a full-on kitchen (including stovetop and fire extinguisher!) as well as a full dining room and living room.

It wasn’t a true “suite” in that it didn’t have a door separating the bedroom, but it still felt more like an apartment than a hotel. The hotel website advertises it as a “studio suite” which I suppose is fair.

Here’s a look at the suite from the corner of the bedroom to give you a sense of scale.

For one person arriving late and leaving early, I didn’t get a whole lot of use out of this upgrade suite, but for a couple or a small family, this could be a great way to stay.

Again, this is not a Presidential Suite or probably the BEST or BIGGEST hotel upgrade ever possible, but you just don’t expect this kind of room to even be an OPTION when you’re staying at a Days Inn.

Days Inn Coeur D’Alene pricing

As I mentioned before, most hotels in the area were going for nearly $200 / night, making using points an outstanding value. If we look at some random dates for the actual studio suite that I stayed in was only about $20 more than a regular room.

You could easily save that much just by being able to cook meals in your hotel room. You wouldn’t even have to resort to some of my hotel room cooking tips that I’ve used.

When you include taxes and fees, the price for the studio suite that I stayed at was pushing $300

That means for the 13,500 points I used, I got 2.08 cents per point in value.

Days Inn Coeur D’Alene food wifi and amenities

The wifi speed was outstanding – I had no problems doing everything I wanted to do online.

There is also a (paid) washer and dryer, but no swimming pool. I did not see a fitness center though it probably has a small one. There is also a complimentary continental breakfast from 5:30 to 9:30. It is truly a continental breakfast with no hot items (other than coffee and tea).

Still, this was truly an outstanding stay and definitely my most unexpected hotel upgrade.

What was your best (and/or most unexpected) hotel upgrade? Leave it in the comments


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