I had earned a category 1-5 certificate with Marriott that was going to expire soon. I had originally planned to use it in Texas to stay at the Casa De Palmas. But then we changed plans and went back to South Padre Island so Daughter could surf one more day. Then I was going to use the certificate for our anniversary, a nice night away somewhere. While throwing nearby cities out to Husband he requested the long weekend we took in Charleston and Savannah instead. So I was going to use it there on a nice hotel and he instead asked for a Bed and Breakfast. More on that here: https://stretchingittotravel.wordpress.com/2014/06/03/foley-house-inn-romantic-savannah-b-b-for-our-anniversary-trip/ I tried but this certificate kept getting pushed aside.
We had until the first of June to use the Marriott certificate and I was not going to lose a free hotel night because our plans kept changing. So we looked at our options and chose to take Daughter to the Fairfield Inn Watervliet in southwest Michigan. On short notice she was able to take a friend along so they could play in the little attached Safari Joe’s Waterpark.
I would say the water park is really for those 12 and under. The last time we stayed Daughter was ten and she had a riot, at thirteen the girls still had fun but stuck to the slides. The water park offers a tube slide, a body slide, small lazy river, splash pool and the low depth little kids area with the dump bucket. The adult hot tub was not working while we visited and we missed being able to relax in the hot water while watching the girls.
Upstairs is the watering hole and several tables for dining or birthday parties. We were able to sit upstairs and sip on a fruity drink while watching the girls ride the slides. They offer a limited menu that would be fine for kids. They offered pizzas, nachos, hot dogs, wings and other fried foods upstairs. Nachos are $8, large deluxe pizza $17 and hot dog is $1.50. Pepsi is $2, beer is $4 and the fruity drink of the day was $5.
Now on to the hotel review! When we had stayed prior it was an independently owned hotel and lets just say the reviews were not consistent. Marriott picked up the hotel in February and made several changes! All the animal heads that used to be in the lobby are gone and the rooms have all been redone. It was nice to see everything freshly painted and new!
Upon check in we were asked what floor we would rather be on and wishing to sleep in chose the third floor. The elevators ran great and I think there was only one other family on the third floor. It was a great choice!
The room was the standard Fairfield look with two queen beds.
The bath was decent sized and standard as well.
The hotel either overlooks the parking lot on the front or the highway on the backside. We had a parking lot view of the Subway sandwich shop across the way. As usual free breakfast was offered on the main floor with waffles, eggs, bacon, cereal and fruit. Breakfast was not super crowded and there is a large seating area.
The hotel offers the option to book with water park tickets but since we were using a certificate I had to pay for the water park. They offer an all day pass or a session pass. Day passes are $25 and session passes are $15. Since we were coming after dinner we chose to purchase a session pass for everyone. I found coupons here for $3 off a session pass. http://surfarijoes.com/promos/
The girls swam and rode slides from 6:30 until 10pm. By then they were waterlogged and ready to eat some subway before bed! It worked for a cheap getaway but I think with a teen now this was our last visit.
The Safari Joe’s Waterpark is open Fridays 3-10, Saturdays 11-10pm and Sunday 11-6pm. And their address is 8258 Arnt Blvd, 140 & I-94; exit 41, Watervliet, MI 49098. Phone Number: 269-463-7946
The Fairfield Inn and Suites runs $199 plus tax on the weekend or $139 during the week. Its a category 2 hotel for those using rewards certificates.
And if you are wondering how you earn free night stay certificates I will fill you in. Register at the Marriott link I provide on the hotel promos tab at the top right on my blog. I registered and stayed two separate times at a Marriott hotel in the promo time period. Marriott then places a rewards certificate in your account that you can use for a free stay in the category you earned. Generally its a category 1-4 or 1-5 depending on the promo.