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January 14, 2011

American Inn - Bethesda, MD

The American Inn in Bethesda, MD is conveniently located on Wisconsin Avenue just off 495 and located near Bethesda Navy Medical Center.  Having it located right downtown works well, a CVS drugstore is right across the street, great restaurants abound and many places are within walking distance. 

The American Inn is a small, boutique hotel that prides itself on reviving the lost art of hospitality. I have to say that they did do a great job at that. When I checked in parking (which is difficult because the lot is very small) was not there for me.  They solved this problem fast. The manager moved his car and parked on the street so I could have his spot in the lot.  I checked in quickly and found the lobby which was renovated in the last few years to be up to date and a bit on the chic and classy side.  A small business center is right off the lobby too.  Coffee and tea are always available there as well. 

Upon entering my room (a queen bed) I couldn't help but notice how small it was.  Like New York City hotel room small. I didn't need to turn to find a rod to hang my clothes on and the bathroom was right there next to me too.  It was probably ten paces to cover the length of the room.  However, the room was very clean, modern and fresh.  There was a sleek black refrigerator and a nice flat screen TV.  My desk was small and the bed took up most of the room but it was comfortable.  I didn't like how my window looked upon a brick wall or that the walls were so thin that I could easily hear the toilet flushing next door but it was clean and I wasn't going to be in the room much. 

I stayed in the American Inn for two nights.  During that time I had breakfast there once.  It was lacking.  If you want yogurt cups and an apple or orange then you can eat here. If you want protein and don't mind a cold hard-boiled egg as your only option then you will be fine. I require a bit more than that.  I wanted more than a doughnut.  I also had a bit of a fire alarm issue while staying here.  I needed to iron a shirt and since the only room I had to set up the ironing board was in the small space between the bathroom and clothing rod I did so.  Right under the smoke detector.  The iron was on no more than a few minutes and the alarm went off in my room.  I freaked out and opened my room door and nothing else happened. Eventually the detector went off. No one from the hotel ever came to check things out.  Upon leaving that day I notified them of this issue.  They seemed concerned but who knows if that issue can be fixed.

Overall, my stay at the American Inn was pleasant. It is a good value if you need stay in the Bethesda area as it is not as expensive as the nearby Hyatt.  It is close to many different types of restaurants and some shopping as well.  The NIH and Naval Medical Center are also a minute away.  The rooms and building were clean and the staff was accommodating.  Children under 18 can stay free with parents, making that a nice deal, but I would be concerned about having enough room for a family.  Nothing stood out as exceptional at the American Inn of Bethesda and I probably would not stay here again.

MPR Rating: Two Stars.

Disclaimer: MPR was not paid for this post. MPR stayed here for business purposes and opinions are MPR's only. 

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