Recently, my husband and I decided to take a quick trip to celebrate his birthday. We decided to go to Indianapolis and stay at the Conrad. Under normal circumstances, one might say, why would you select Indianapolis, and this particular hotel?
We selected Indianapolis because it is a nearby city and we thought that it would be a fun place to go for an overnight stay. There is shopping, jazz clubs, and great dining. Since we were celebrating his birthday, I selected the Conrad, because I thought it would be a different experience from the other box hotels. I had no idea what we were in for.
There are only four (4) Conrad hotels in the US, Ft. Lauderdale, Indianapolis, Chicago, and New York. All the others are in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East. When you stay at the Conrad, you quickly realize why the hotel brand has such an “exclusive” aura. The properties are beautiful, even sumptuous, and they take service and execution to its highest level.
When making our reservation, I had included an email note that said that we were celebrating my husband’s birthday and requested that they have a little “snack” in the room. Upon arrival, when we drove up and exited our vehicle, the valet asked for our name, and when I gave it, he said “Happy Birthday, sir.” The same thing happened at the Front Desk. My husband couldn’t believe it. The staff was certainly on point.
The hotel lobby is open and modern, yet inviting and relaxing. When you are at the Conrad, you feel transformed. I couldn’t believe that we were in a mid-western city. Somehow, it has a European feel, and even though it has over 200 rooms, it still intimate, like a boutique hotel at its best. You can tell that a lot of thinking went into the design of this hotel. The hotel has beautiful art collections in the lobby and on the second floor, that more than catch your eye, they cause you to want to browse and discover more. This is not your busy business hotel. This is a hotel that is committed to the “guest experience.” In fact, my husband and I didn’t want to leave it. There’s something interesting for you around each corner, something that will make you want more, whether it is the spa, fitness center, or the adjoining restaurant and bistro.
The hotel capitalizes on the fact that today’s traveler likes to keep it simple, and so they have made it so. Adjoined to the hotel is the Capital Grille, known for its exquisite upscale dining, and a Wine and Bistro, called Tastings, which has one of the largest wine collections by the glass, or bottle, in the world. The Capital Grille has a gorgeous bar that offers all types of drinks and cocktails in a relaxed atmosphere. Surrounded by dark wood, you will find locals at the Capital Grille Bar, nattily attired and sipping on their favorite drink, while discussing politics or sports. The more energetic Wine and Bistro, Tastings, offers small plates to go along with all that wine that you drink. Music plays, while you hear people laughing and talking as they drink flights of wine. Tastings is clearly “meeting” place. Depending upon what you prefer, both places provide a wonderful opportunity to have a great experience without ever having to leave the hotel premises.
But now it is time to relax in your room. Rooms are large with spectacularly comfortable furnishings. If you are interested in in-room dining, you will love the staff that appear at your door dawning white coats as they carry in your tray. It is all quite spectacular! The staff are warm and friendly and make you feel “at home” at your residence at the Conrad. Yes, you can dream of living the high life, as you go down to the lobby and watch beautiful cars pull up in front of the hotel. Everyone is given “red carpet” treatment.
So, what happened with the snack in the room you ask? When we arrived, there it was on a tray. Nuts, candies, chocolate covered strawberries, and the best part, a card signed by the staff to my husband. He said that he “felt like a rock star.” What a lovely way to execute the request, and how wonderful it made him feel.
Many hotels can provide a nice stay, and even be friendly to you upon arrival. Ask the right questions, but few know how to treat guests with a level of importance that lets them know that it is a guest centered hotel. From the design, to the training of its staff, this is a hotel that thinks and cares about every aspect of what the guest will experience, and they want to make sure that they get it right.
So, if you only have one night to stay, my recommendation is to select wisely. Select a place that you know has phenomenal service, a great location, can provide every amenity, and make you feel special. I would say, select the Conrad.