Yes, it has been a busy travel summer. I have not been able to provide reviews on all of the hotels I visited simply because of time. I will try to catch up / keep up as time permits. I do want to mention that these reviews represent my observations and opinions and are not reflective of the views of any other party. Why do I take the time to write them? There are many reasons but let me summarize briefly:
1. There are > 450 million business trips taken annually in the US and I am sure this number has grown since this reference I used from January 2016. It is important for the business travel industry to understand that they can play an important role in helping business travelers (and all travelers) eat healthy and engage in physical activity while on the road.
2. I try to select my hotels based on reviews I find on TripAdvisor and taking a look at the hotel gym on their website. It has become clear to me that what a hotel or hotel chain posts on their website and what you find in reality sometimes are not aligned :-( My goal is to provide objective feedback from someone who travels frequently and works out regularly on the quality of the facilities as I find them at that point in time.
3. I am not writing these reviews to be punitive, but hopefully they might provide motivation for the hotel owners/managers to take an objective look at the facilities they provide and make some much needed investment in ensuring they are clean, safe and continue meet the needs of travelers worldwide.
4. I like to write :-)
Hotel: Courtyard Sandestin Marriott
Location: Miramar Beach, FL
Overall Assessment: 17 out of 25
Grading System (my own): 1 = Unacceptable, 2 = Marginal, 3 = Acceptable, 4 = Good, 5 = Excellent (best possible score = 25)
The hotel gym is located near the main elevators. There is card key access for security. The facility is open 24 x 7 x 365. There is no charge to use the facility.
Overall, the hotel gym was clean. There were wipes available to clean the equipment. There was not a bathroom, shower or changing area in the hotel gym. The floors and equipment were relatively clean.
As you can see by the pictures, although the hotel gym was not large there was a nice mix of cardio equipment and weight training equipment. I always give high marks for facilities that have a pull-up bar available.
The hotel overall had a very reasonable ambiance in terms of temperature. This is unusual during the summer (imo). The hotel gym was not too hot nor too cold. The lighting was reasonable even during the early morning when it was dark and rainy.
I should consider taking this category out of the assessment because very few facilities provide anything other than a water fountain or water cooler. This hotel did not offer free coffee or have any fruit in the hotel gym or lobby. I had to depart before breakfast so I cannot comment on the quality of the food provided.
Exercise(s) Completed / Closing Comments
I had an early, early morning start so I only did 20 min of cardio and two circuits of body weight exercises: pull ups, squats and push ups. I have been doing these on a regular basis to help with my overall improvement in strength and endurance.