This year for KJ’s 8th Birthday he requested to visit Sea World. This was a great choice in my eyes because it’s a short distance away from home which meant that no flights were needed. It was also a bonus that their water park, Aquatica, was open because the last time we went it was closed and much colder. After securing our tickets it was just one thing left to do and that was to book accommodations for our stay!
I’m a big fan of using Hotwire to book our hotels for short stays. It’s something about going all in blind that makes the process so exciting and the savings are real! After doing some research, I placed my bid. We ended up with the Holiday Inn – Northwest/SeaWorld Area. I must admit, I wasn’t the happiest at first but as I dug deeper I saw that the hotel was quite nice.
My Favorite Amenities:
- Kid’s eat free
- Free WiFi
- Free Parking
- Free Shuttle to SeaWorld
- Complimentary laundry
- Keurig, Microwave and Refrigerator in room
- Kiddie Pool
This hotel is perfectly situated in San Antonio’s hill country. It’s a resort style hotel just minutes away from SeaWorld San Antonio. The area is clean, crisp and easy on the eyes. There are a ton of things to do in the area. However, nothing is within walking distance.
This smoke free facility is really nice. It’s cool neutral tones create a relaxing environment. While no pets are allowed, they do offer a pet walking area. There is a grill that offers a variety of options and is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner along with room service. In addition, their lobby host a convenience store, ATM machine, Gift shop, business center and baggage hold options. There are 3 pools on site, a fitness center and 2 pool tables if you want to try your luck. There are only 2 elevators and at certain points of our visit they did take a while to come.
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The rooms are neutral and cozy. The beds are comfortable and the bathroom is spacious. We selected a double bed room. Our room came with a desk, a 32 inch flat screen television atop a dresser with plenty of drawer space, a long closet adjacent the bed, an over sized chair, a nice floor length mirror, personal cooling options, and a wet bar. I like that the lamps on the night stand between the 2 beds provide a lamp with reading lights for either bed as well as a plugging option. This is perfect because I like to charge my phone at night and want it next to me just in case it rings so I don’t have to jump out of bed.
My favorite part of the room was the wet bar. It boasted a Keurig for brewing tea and coffee. This allowed me to continue my morning tradition of sipping a cup of green tea. It also had a microwave which heated up our leftover lasagna from Maggiano’s perfectly. Lastly, the refrigerator kept our beverages nice and cool which was much-needed after spending all day outdoors at SeaWorld.
The bathroom was spacious. It offered a vanity style sink and a bathtub/shower combo. It was cleaned and stocked with the proper grooming necessities.
My only con is that the room was pretty cramped compared to what we are used to. We had to say “excuse me” to get from one side of the room to the other if someone was standing in front of the beds. But this was not enough to keep me from staying here again!
Our floor also had an ice machine and vending machines just a short walk away.
There is one restaurant on-site. It is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The grill also has a bar inside and many flat screen televisions throughout.
We ate there once for breakfast. Our kid’s did eat free. For breakfast you had your choice of selecting form a menu or choosing the buffet. I chose to order pancakes from the menu and they were just average. As I sampled from my family’s plates I realized that all of the breakfast we selected was just average.
The service felt a bit rushed. I was not even in my seat before the waitress asked me what we wanted to drink. That could be a good or bad thing but I would have liked to have gotten seated and looked at the menu first. On the flip side, after placing our orders it took the food a long time to come out.
The restaurant environment was nice and clean. It offered a variety of tables and booths.
There is a ton to do! If you like laying by the pool, take your pick! There are 3 pools to choose from. There is one indoor lap pool with showers. Then there is one pool outdoors with a hot tub and one kiddie pool with mini fountains shooting water.
If you’re a reader. I’m sure you will find comfort in the comfortable, resort style seating with cushions. There is plenty of seating along the path from the indoor pool to the outdoor pools.
If you are a fitness buff you will find the fitness center to fit the bill. The television, towels and water are complimentary. The pool and fitness center access is key access only so don’t forget your key!!
There is a bar if you like to sip on adult beverages all while watching sports on the big flat screens. If you like billiards they offer that too.
The hotel also offers on-site children’s activities.
If you want to surf the internet or have work to do there is a business center.
If you have free time, grab some tickets to SeaWorld and take advantage of the free shuttle they offer which will save you twenty dollars and the hassle of walking a great a distance for parking.
The atmosphere was quiet and peaceful. It was really family friendly which I liked. There was a great deal of diversity amongst the hotel guests and you could tell that everyone was enjoying their stay.
The service was amazing. We were granted a late check-out for free. This increased our check out time by an hour. Instead of checking out at 11 am we were allowed to check out at noon. This helped create happy kids because after breakfast they still had time to take a dip in the pool.
We also purchased cupcakes to sing KJ happy birthday but we didn’t have matches to light the candle. One quick call to the front desk resulted in room service bringing us something to light the candle with and a giant Happy Birthday to KJ which he loved. I offered our delivery guy a cupcake but he declined, some will power he must have!
At check-in we were asked whether we would be patronizing SeaWorld and taking advantage of the free shuttle before I had to ask. She took her time explaining how it all worked and added our name to the list with our time preference which was really nice. She also explained where everything was located on the property.
The shuttle driver was pleasant, efficient and timely.
The price we paid for the convenience we experienced is unmatched. As a result of bidding via Hotwire our stay was just $73 per night. The con of bidding blind is that you must pay up-front before you know where you are staying but the savings are amazing. This was a savings for us of over $30 per night. Yes, and thank you very much!!
Holiday Inn – Northwest/SeaWorld Area along with SeaWorld San Antonio played a major part in making KJ’s 8th birthday very memorable and for that I am forever grateful! He even gave us the awesome parents award, shouting “This was the best birthday ever”! Well, until next year that is!
So the next time you are heading to SeaWorld San Antonio with your family, I highly suggest this property. It is under the IHG Brand which offers a free rewards club. And if you’re heading some place different I suggest you consider the IHG Brand in hopes of an impeccable family getaway….
Note: This post is not sponsored. All opinions are my own and this stay was paid for out-of-pocket.