During another one of my essential work trips, I had to go to Florida for a project and decided to stay at the Hampton Inn Melbourne. Normally I don’t stay much at Hilton properties but as it was just a short stay of 4 nights. There was also an Amex offer for staying at selected Hilton properties and therefore this would work out in my favor. I arrived at around 7 p.m. after a two-hour drive from Miami.
The Hampton Inn Melbourne is conveniently located next to the I-95 at the intersection of I-95 and U.S. Route 192. Really easy to get to while traveling on the interstate. It’s located on a small side road and away from all the traffic noise. In the immediate vicinity, you can find multiple gas stations beside a few other hotels. There is a Denny’s within walking distance of the hotel.
The parking lot wraps around the whole building and there are 3 additional entrances, on either side of the building.
There is not much to mention about the check-in experience. I walked into the front desk and got checked in quickly after showing my I.D. and swiping my credit card. I requested a room on the ground floor which I got as well.
The lobby and front desk are Covid-prepared with plexiglass windows at the front desk and stickers on the floor to mark the distance between guests. The receptionist wore a mask and the whole staff was always masked throughout the whole stay.
I got upgraded to a 1 King Bed Study from the regular 1 King Bedroom. The only difference I can see between the two is, that the Study comes with a sofabed while the regular king bed just has a sofa chair where the sofabed would be.
1 King Bed Study with Sofabed Nonsmoking (Room 119)
My room was just down the hallway on the left side, past the elevator. This hotel features Hilton’s touchless keys or you can use the Digital Key through the Hilton app. The door also had the “Clean Stay” seal on the door, indicating that the room was thoroughly cleaned. The room has a decent size. When you walk in you have a tiled floor before it transitions over to carpet around the rest of the room. The bathroom is to the right as you walk in. It features a shower-bath combination and a big vanity with one sink. Stickers on the mirror indicate that the whole room has been disinfected for your safety.
The sliding door for the bathroom also doubles as the door for the full-size closet right next to the bathroom entrance. A full-size mirror is mounted onto the sliding door.
The rest of the room features a king-sized bed with a nightstand and lamps on either side. Next to the bed, in the corner of the room is a sofabed which sleeps, additional guests. Opposite of the bed is a 50″ flatscreen TV on a closet. The closet also holds a mini-fridge, coffee maker, ice bucket, and extra storage space. Interesting is that the website mentions the screen-size of the TV to be 32″ and 49″ on their website. However, Samsung specs show it is a 50″ screen. Just something I noticed. The TV remote was wrapped in a clear plastic bag, which looks like one of the small garbage bags they use as well in the rooms.
On either side of the center closet with the TV is a desk attached to it. The left part has two sitting-cubes underneath it, while the right side, doubles as a work desk with a nice chair. However, this hotel has one of my most hated setups. The work desk is close to the window, which is awesome, but the A/C unit is mounted directly underneath the window and will blow cold air onto you all the time. You either have to turn it off and have the room get hot or use something to divert the airflow. I used my pants and put them over the vents in a way that the air coming out would divert downward instead of straight onto me while sitting at the desk.
There are plenty of power outlets on each of the desks and the nightstands. They all have USB-Ports as well to charge your mobile devices.
The lobby area itself also doubles as a breakfast area with plenty of seating. After breakfast, the hotel puts the chairs up to discourage people from hanging out in the lobby as we are still in the Covid19 pandemic. Next to the front desk, you find an ATM and a stand with flyers for local attractions.
Part of the breakfast area doubles as the “business center” which is basically just a desk and a PC with a printer. This one is free to use all day.
The hotel also features a well-sized laundry facility that offers two washers and two dryers. A fitness center is located along the main hallway close to the front desk. It’s a smaller fitness center but has everything for a good workout. Signs on the door require people to limit the time of use and also to not overcrowd the fitness center because of the Covid19 pandemic.
On the north side of the building, you find the outside swimming pool. Which was unfortunately located right in front of my room. Normally this is not bad, but there was a kid’s sports team staying at the hotel and they were pretty loud while in the pool area and even overstayed the pool hours which would end at 9 pm.
Breakfast at the Hampton Inn Melbourne is every day from 6 a.m. until 9 p.m. The offerings are actually pretty good to what I have seen at other places so far. They offer about 80% of the regular breakfast buffet. The room with the breakfast buffet is now separated by a desk and food will be given out by a staff member rather than browsing the buffet yourself. They still offer hot breakfast with eggs, sausage, potatoes as well as other breakfast items like cereals, bagels, toast, and more. Single packed items like the small milk boxes, yogurt, and spreads like peanut butter and jelly were laid out on the table. Napkins and plastic utensils in a plastic bag were also set up on the table. To get the attention of the staff working the breakfast buffet, you had to ring a small bell set on top of the table. I didn’t notice it at first.
During my first three breakfasts, people were allowed to eat in the lobby with keeping their distance. The breakfast was never crowded and most people took their food back to the room anyway. On my last morning, they posted a new sign at the breakfast table to encourage people to eat their food in the guest room rather than the lobby. I don’t know if anything happened but when I came for breakfast it was just me and usually one or two more persons. Coffee is served 24/7 in the lobby and the toaster and microwave in the breakfast area are free to use all day long, even after breakfast hours.
Next to the front desk, there is a small snack market where you can buy different kinds of candies, chips, and drinks.
Just in case you are looking for something other than that to eat, there is a Denny’s within walking distance from the hotel. They are open 24 hours a day.
Overall a great stay even in times of a pandemic. To minimize my time in public indoor spaces, I decided to go with a ground-floor room. This would avoid possible sharing of the elevator and it’s just a short walk from the north entrance door, which also has parking right next to it. The hotel was pretty empty in general besides the kid’s sports team which stayed at the hotel.
Also, every one of the staff was wearing masks when I encountered them. Guests as well mostly complied with masks but this is Florida. It’s like a completely different world and the restrictions are in general very lax in this state. Overall, I was not afraid of staying here because of health reasons. If you are somewhat smart about the whole situation, travel can be relatively safe.
It was great to see, that the breakfast buffet was served by a staff member and not everyone could walk up to the open buffet items. Unfortunately, if you don’t know about the bell, you have to wait a long time before someone comes out and sees you standing there. The plastic utensils were pre-packed in a plastic bag and not sitting there open. Unfortunately, I didn’t see anyone cleaning and disinfecting the tables where people ate their breakfast after they left. They might do it at the end of the breakfast hours and/or at the beginning. Maybe that’s why they added the sign to eat breakfast in the room. However, there were no tablets to actually get your breakfast to the room easily. Either you have a super small breakfast or you have to do multiple trips, which could have you standing in line to get your other items.
If you completely want to avoid this, you can order delivery or do pick up from the Denny’s down the street from the hotel. They are open 24/7.
Peter has a passion for Traveling, Photography, and Geocaching. These are the best ingredients for amazing adventures all over the globe. “Traveling is fun, no matter if you stay in a luxury hotel or travel like a backpacker.” Peter shares his experiences on his Blog www.gatetoadventures.com
Some of Peter’s photos are published on corporate websites, in-flight magazines, travel guides, and much more.