I was invited to go on a FAM trip a couple months ago to explore the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Byway in Maryland. The trip had a strong impact on me and I haven’t been fully able to put it all into words yet. I have several pieces written but I haven’t sent them off for publication. I need to chew on everything some more. I want to make sure that the picture I paint is full of all the emotions I felt during the experience. It’s a history we all should know and a reality that none of us should gloss over or forget.
The first night we stayed at the Hyatt Regency Baltimore, right across from the Inner Harbor. The second night was spent at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay. Both hotels were very different in their location and atmosphere but both were well-appointed and places I would happily stay again. In fact, I would like to go back to the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay with our whole family for a weekend this year.
Hyatt Regency Baltimore
First off, the location can’t be beat. If you stay at the Hyatt Regency Baltimore, you’re right around the corner from all the excitement of the Inner Harbor. From my room on the 8th floor I could clearly see the National Aquarium, Hard Rock Cafe, and the tall ships. The hotel was easy to find from the highway and the parking lot is just around the block. Pick up the water taxi nearby and from there you can explore much of the area, like Fells Point (check out Max’s Taphouse) and Federal Hill.
The service here was outstanding. Check-in was fast and friendly. I crossed the foyer to the glass elevator and went up, up, up to my floor. I stepped out, reached into my purse for the room card … and got a sinking feeling.
Cue rambling thoughts.
Did I seriously leave my room card at the front desk? Please tell me I didn’t do something so dumb. It has to be in here somewhere. Now I have to go back down and look like an idiot. Oh brother. I can’t even blame this on the kids distracting me!
Then the other elevator door opened and the kindly gentleman who was greeting guests in the foyer walked toward me, huge smile on his face, and handed my room card to me. I thanked him profusely, blushed madly, and felt so very grateful he followed me up with the room card.
I am used to doing these types of things. I can kind of be a birdbrain sometimes and now you all know it. Go ahead, revel in your knowledge.
My room was clean, comfortably appointed, and had a killer view. There was a bottle of wine waiting for me along with a plate of deliciously sharp cheese, crackers and sweet, chewy dates. There was also a plate with fresh, local apples as well as a tray with two bars of chocolate.
The chocolate was also pretty amazing and I actually shared it with my kids. What a mama, right?!
The bathroom toiletries smelled nice (the scent was white ginger), the water pressure was strong, and it was clean.
Clean hotel rooms are always welcome, after some of the joints I’ve stayed at in the past. Yeesh.
The hotel has many amenities which I didn’t get to enjoy because my time there was so brief. I’ll also mention my other embarrassing moment involving the Hyatt Regency Baltimore.. because I’m a glutton for punishment, obviously. I forgot my toiletry bag in my room as I was rushing out to join the group the next morning. I didn’t realize it until I was at the next hotel and called right away to see if it was found. It was. I was given a ticket number and when I got back to Baltimore, collection of my belongings was easy and pain-free. I gave a receptionist at the front desk my ticket number and they brought my toiletry bag down promptly.
See? My birdbrainedness may help someone somewhere sometime. Now you know how easy it is to get your forgotten goods back.
Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay
Serenity. That is the one word I would use to describe this hotel if I only had one word to use. Luckily, I have more so I can tell you more about it. The foyer is grand and has desks on either side where one can check-in. It was decorated for the holidays when we were there and the tree was resplendent with its many shiny balls. My room had a small standing-room balcony and felt like a reception area for a fine spa. The office chair was leather, as was the reading chair that I made use of. The bed was possibly the softest and most comfortable bed ever. I woke up feeling not just rested but rejuvenated.
When you live with a 3 and 4 year old, that rarely happens.
The bed was like a cloud. A soft, cradling cloud. I would go back just to sleep in that bed again, no lie. The bathroom was equipped with eucalyptus-scented products, which I adored. I fancy that invigorating, medicinal scent. As I was on the phone with the Hyatt Regency Baltimore (remember the toiletry bag incident?), I heard a knock on the door from room service. Puzzled, I answered the door and I was given a brown paper bag with all the fixins for smores along with a skewer! The gent also came with a plate of desserts, which I wasted no time in consuming. There was a pumpkin whoopie pie and a chocolate tart. Delicious.
I wasn’t able to use the kit to make smores because of time constraints but if you stay here you definitely should. The view out my window was peaceful. The property is situated right on the water and it’s still and lovely.
I had a couple drinks at the bar in the evening with two ladies on the trip with me. The bar had a couple craft beers but the selection wasn’t impressive. They did have a decent selection of whiskeys, though.
My only criticism for both hotels is that the coffee in the rooms wasn’t outstanding. I did like that there was a choice of tea, though!
I would happily stay at either hotels again and hope to do so in the future.
Hyatt Regency Baltimore
Address: 300 Light Street, Baltimore, MD 21202
Special Guest Amenities: iHome stereo with iPod/iPhone docking station, fitness facility, seasonal outside pool
Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay
Address: 100 Heron Blvd. at Route 50, Cambridge, MD 21613
Special Guest Amenities: Sago Spa & Salon, golf, indoor and outdoor pools, game room, nature trails, Camp Hyatt at Pirate’s Cove for kids, fitness center, frisbee golf, marina with water adventures, tennis, robes (I love me a hotel that has comfy robes)
Disclaimer: Visit Maryland and Visit Baltimore arranged this trip and provided all food and lodging. All thoughts and opinions are my own.