It’s quite something to be staying in a hotel room in Barstow, California, on the 4th floor, and gazing out across the street at a desert scene that looks more like Morocco or Egypt than a small California town – with a Tanger Outlet Mall right next door!
Our view was of sandy scrubland that climbed away towards low desert hills. Who would have thought that we were just off I-15 and a short drive from the Mother Road, Route 66.
All Photos (c) Donna Dailey
We were taking Route 66 to meet the Pacific Coast Highway, and an essential stop had to be in Barstow, home of a Route 66 Museum and the last remaining stretch of a Main Street that’s still on Route 66 – all 10 miles of it.
We were here for two nights, to give us a full day visiting the museum and the Main Street, enjoying the Main Street Murals, touring Barstow’s Historic Harvey House, and seeing The Western American Railroad Museum. It was a long day!
Our room (#403, above) was large enough to have a Jacuzzi bath in one corner, and still feel spacious enough for a game of basketball - if only we'd brought a basketball with us. We restricted ourselves to enjoying the view through the window, as the weather was freezing and that put the balcony out of bounds.
There was also a very comfy sofa, a huge bed, and a business desk with free wifi. Down in the lobby were free newspapers, cookies, coffee, and fruit. They were available 24/7 and were very welcome when we arrived, feeling a bit thirsty and peckish. Parking was free, and there was also the use of an exercise room and a very generous breakfast.
The two people behind the reception desk were very helpful, and knowledgeable in helping us choose a place to eat, producing sample menus to help us decide. We went for Quigley’s Food and Spirits, not only because it was close and it was raining, but we were in need of a spirit - well, I actually had a Sierra Pale Ale. We also got 10% off the bill with our room card, which was a nice little bonus.
The Hampton Inn in Barstow also had a great location. It was on a quiet street but just off I-40 and not too far from where I-40 meets I-15 - very easy to get to. It was also a simple 10-minute drive to several of the places we wanted to see – that Route 66 Museum, the Main Street Murals, Historic Harvey House, and Western American Railroad Museum. And did we mention the Tanger Outlet Mall next door?
As the weather had suddenly turned colder, Donna was delighted to walk right out of the hotel and almost immediately find a warm $200 Calvin Klein jacket for just $50. Now that was an unexpected bargain!
Although the Hampton Inn was a chain hotel it was a cut above the usual chain hotel experience, and we loved it. It was clean, friendly, efficient, with great services, lots of free extras, a friendly and helpful staff, and a perfect location.
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