We like the Hampton Inn in Hadley, just a 10 minute drive away. The rooms are bright, clean, and the staff is always friendly. They offer an adequate continental breakfast and free wireless Internet.
The Autumn Inn is like a combo motel and B&B, with small, older bathrooms. The staff is extremely friendly, but the rooms are overpriced, IMO, although you do get breakfast. You can't beat the location -- right across from the Quad.
The Clarion is just . . . weird. It can't decide whether it is a ski lodge or a low end hotel. Hotel Northampton costs a bundle, and we've never thought it worth the splurge. When all the above have been booked, we've booked the Marriott (I think) in Amherst, another 5-10 minutes down Route 9 from the Hampton Inn.
MWFN captures it pretty well. We're big fans of the Autumn Inn; I've stayed there seven times and am a member of their "Golden Pineapple Club" (???!) that got me advance notice of specials, etc. I figure the free breakfast and the proximity to campus breaks even vesus a few extra bucks for the room. They have a nice "service" attitude, too.
I just can't see spending the money for the Hotel Northampton unless you have extra that you don't know what to do with...we spent the difference on really nice meals. And, yeah, the Clarion is just weird. Two of D's aunts stayed there and we stayed there once, I think.
Hi - Does anyone know anything about the UNiversity Lodge in Amherst? we are coming with our dog for Parents Weekend- I think our D wants to see the dog more than us - and it seems to be one of the few pet friendly hotels. We will also have a 13 year old and mostly want somewhere relatively quite and clean.
Another vote for the Hampton Inn. We've stayed there twice and found the staff very friendly and helpful, the rooms comfortable and the breakfast reasonable. It is very convenient to Smith, not walking distance, but not much of a drive.
We stayed at the Country Inns and Suites in Holyoke recently. Decent room and lovely gardens. Just a short, straight (~ 4mi) drive into Noho. If you are looking for a B&B, the Ivory Creek in Hadley was uniquely interesting and serves a fabulous breakfast..be warned, you may have to forgo any visiting and sleep off the calories
The sink looked like it had fallen off the wall at one point and had been re-installed at an angle, so everything rolled off the surface and onto the floor. And the walls were thin -- heard lots of noise all night long. Most bizarrely, a bunch of guys had a barbecue in the back parking lot. The staff was friendly, though.
The Hampton Inn is much cleaner and fresher, without the worn paper signs about security precautions. If I hadn't know how safe in general the Pioneer Valley was, I would've thought I was in a dangerous area. In fact, one woman saw the notices and asked the front desk if she should be worried staying there alone with her daughter, with her daughter's college stuff left overnight in the car.
As for allowing pets, that might have explained why we were sneezing!
The price we paid was higher than I usually pay at the Hampton, although it all depends on which day you book and how far in advance.
without the worn paper signs about security precautions
Are you referring to the sign at the front desk that says something to the effect about not being responsible for valuables left in the car, especially a portable GPS on the dash? That sign is for insurance purposes. I believe all hotels post that disclaimer. I recently stayed at a higher end Inn in Bar Harbor and the same disclaimer was prominently displayed.
As safe as the area is, I never leave my GPS on the dash when parking in Amherst or Northampton. Nor do I ever leave beer in plain sight when parking around UMass. I trust the UMass kids but there is no sense in creating undue temptation.
I'm not trying to be an apologist for the Comfort Inn, but since it's the only hotel in town that allows pets, I refer it often.
Sorry about the tilted sink though. The Happy Valley does lean hard to the left but still.............