Budget hotels roll out the carpet for business travelers
Amenities of the 90s: dataports and desks at a reasonable price
April 21, 1997
Web posted at: 5:23 p.m. EDT (2123 GMT)
(CNN) -- In days past, the words 'business travel' conjured images of golf clubs, expensive meals, and executive hotel suites. Its humbler brethren, 'budget travel,' brought forth visions of frugal family and student forays. As times have tightened (along with expense accounts), the two concepts have merged under one reasonably-priced roof: the budget business hotel.
New budget brands such as Budgetel and Fairfield Inn are tailoring their offerings to business travelers. Microtel is the latest player in this growing hotel segment. The company incorporated many successful ideas from other budget chains, and came up with a few of its own.
"You get a full-size closet, a great TV system, dataports, the best mattress money can buy," said Rickey Hleap of Microtel Inn & Suites.
Plus, Hleap pointed out, you get consistency -- a feature valued by many weary road-warriors.
"You are going to find the same thing whether you stay in an Alaska Microtel, or the Lawrenceville Microtel, or one up in Rochester, New York," said Hleap.
Budget hotels now offer much more than a bed. For about $40 a night, you can expect medium-sized desk areas, phones with dataports and in-room entertainment. Spend $10 to $20 more and you'll get a mini-suite: A room nearly twice as large, with a coffee maker, refrigerator and microwave.
Some Microtel properties offer same-day laundry service or passes to nearby health clubs. And most budget hotels offer free continental breakfasts, saving time and money for business travelers.
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