For our one night in Cleveland during Red, White, and Plucky we stayed at a really grand place, the Hyatt Regency Cleveland at the Arcade.
The Arcade was built in 1890 and is recognized as the first indoor shopping mall in the United States. Hyatt turned the property into a hotel a few years ago but retained many of the shops and boutiques, which line the first two floors of a multi-tiered atrium under a 300 foot long glass skylight. Itís not only gorgeous but completely unique, a focal point that most hotels, especially newer ones, lack.
Some rooms are in twin nine-story towers on each side of the gallery - that's where Mary and Steve are staying, but the second, third, and fourth floors of the former mall have been converted into hotel rooms as well.
Rick's room is here and features windows that look out to the atrium, a small nook with a writing desk, and a decent size bedroom with a very comfy bed, a big TV, coffee service, a safe, and more. The furnishings are modern without being out of place in such a historic building and everything is as well-kept as you would expect from the Hyatt brand.
Downstairs, in addition to the shops and restaurants in The Arcade, is a fitness center with exercise machines and weights, a full-service spa, a bar, a restaurant, and a whole bunch of other amenities that are too numerous to list here.
There are a few niggles. The wireless Internet, which was free in many of the places in which we stayed, not only cost money here but service was spotty at best. If you depend on good connections like we do, have a back-up plan in place. Also, like most of the other big city hotels, the only real parking option is valet and costs way too much money.
We also think itís worth noting that while staying in one of the rooms along The Arcade is unbearably cool, it is a working shopping mall and food court so noise could be an issue. We happened to be there when the place was shut down for Labor Day so there were no people to speak of, therefore we canít say for sure, but itís something to be aware of.
Service was terrific from start to finish and the prices are more than reasonable for a hotel of this caliber. Room in the towers start just north of $100 per night (and go up from there depending on the season) with rooms in the Arcade going for an extra $30 or so per night.
With all they have to offer and its location within walking distance to the bulk of the major tourist attractions in Cleveland it makes this a perfect choice for visitors even before you factor in the notion of how cool of a structure it is. In a time when many companies would rather knock down the old building and put up something new and soulless, we salute anyone who wants to rescue a historic building and put it to good use.
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