Six Months of Travel

During the first 6 months of 2014, I have spent a lot of time traveling and visiting some great Red Roof Inns all around the country. I have been to 13 states this year and visited a ton of cities I have never been to before like San Antonio and Boston. I thought I’d share with you some of the places I have been and maybe it will spark some wanderlust in you for summer travel!
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1.Listened to live music on the San Antonio Riverwalk
2.Biked the National Mall with a sorority sister
3.Walked through gardens of tulips in Boston
4.Played Putt-Putt in Omaha
5.Visited my parents new house in Florida for the first time
6.Got snowed in during my trip to Atlanta
7.Saw the track at Churchill Downs
8.Ate deep dish pizza in Chicago
9.Taught my Grandma to FaceTime in Cleveland
10.Gloated in Pittsburgh, when the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Pittsburgh Penguins in game three of the NHL Playoffs
11.Went white water rafting in North Carolina

I have had a ton of fun this passed 6 months and will continue my travels by visiting the city of brotherly love, Philadelphia, at the end of the month. Check out some of my previous blogs to see more stories about my travels!

Take advantage of Red Roof Inns summer promotion Stay 2 Get 1! Check out some of the places I have been or make your own adventure!

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Instagramming in Boston

I find that I am somewhere between a laidback and a spontaneous person. There are times I am definitely fine just laying low and would much rather stay home then go out. However sometimes I can’t wait to get out and want to try something or see something new. I was in Boston last week visiting a few of our properties there. The first day I was in Boston it was beautiful, 80’s and Sunny. I went to where I thought the train station was and I couldn’t park, so I decided to skip it and take a nap instead. Later that week, as I was driving home from a property, I saw the train station and I thought might as well… So I found myself pulling off on the exit buying tickets and before I knew it I was on a train to downtown Boston. I am happy I have the spontaneity to just go, an iPhone to get me around the streets of downtown Boston, however next time I feel the urge to walk around a city for a few hours I hope I have tennis shoes in my car. Since I left straight from a property visit, I was wearing flats. I got to see most of the city but missed a few things because my feet could not take it anymore
I use a lot of my social networks to show the people back home the new places I am at and what I am doing while I travel. So I might as well show all of you! While in Boston, I visited the Quincy Market and Faneuil Hall. I also walked around the Boston Commons and saw all the beautiful flowers in the Public Market. I started walking the Freedom Trail until my feet and blisters could not take it anymore! Later in the week, I also drove to Cambridge to see Harvard, I didn’t realize how hard it would be to park so I didn’t stop and walk around. Something to see next time! Here are a few of the pictures of Boston I shared -

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This was a picture inside the Quincy Market

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A few pictures inside the Boston Public Gardens
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This squirrel jumped on me right after I took this picture
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The only picture I got of the Cambridge/Harvard Area

If you love to travel – Travel Social with us! We have a contest running through May 30, 2014! Post a picture of where you would like to travel this summer on Instagram and use #redroofwow. Find out all the detail here. After seeing all these pictures, Boston might be where you want to go – Check out our Boston area properties.

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Out with the Old and in with the New: Summer Travel

When I was younger, my family took several trips to Orlando, Florida. The first couple years we went we drove the 16 long hours to Florida. Most of our road trips were to Disney World and as a young girl I couldn’t wait to be there and didn’t have much patience for the long ride. We had a 13 inch television with a VHS player in the back of our big blue van. Before every long road trip my parents would hide a new VHS tape in the van for my sister and I to find. We watched the new VHS on repeat till we got to our destination. We traveled down to Florida with my Aunt and Uncle. We had a CB radio (before cell phones were a thing). It was a lot of fun to talk to them throughout the trip. We all had fun code names to talk to each other on the radio. I think I changed my code name every trip according to my favorite fairytale princess!
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Technology has made traveling so much easier with smart phones and tablets. You can have play games, watch movies, and figure out where you are going all from one device.

Red Roof Inn is preparing to launch our new mobile app. This will be a one stop shop while you’re traveling this summer! You can look for an inn and make a reservation when you need a break in the road trip and there are tons of travel games to keep the kids or “big kids” entertained. Check out a sneak peak of the images below.
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#100daysofhappy

As we head in to spring, I am looking forward to sunshine, pretty pastel colors, and spending much more time outside. They say that more Vitamin D (from the sun) makes you happier. This winter has been terrible in Ohio with lots of snow and several days under 0 degrees. I have been looking forward to spring since December. I find myself so much happier sitting on my porch rather than inside.

This year I have seen tons of post on Social Media with the hashtag “100daysofhappy.” I looked up what all this is about. 100daysofhappy challenges participants to share a happy moment in their day every day for 100 days. It doesn’t have to be a huge life changing moment, it can be as small as taking a picture of a great dessert you had or spending time with a friend or taking your dog for a walk. Reading about the challenge I thought about my life, my typical day involves 8 hours at work then coming home and heading to the gym to make it to a spinning class, scarfing down some dinner and cleaning or relaxing before I go to be to do it all over again. Even though my days are pretty busy and routine I can think of moments where I smiled or enjoyed being in the moment. Whether that is laughing about something with coworkers or friends, spending time relaxing on my porch on a nice evening, or playing with my cat before bed. Participating in the 100daysofhappy will make me stop in those moments and appreciate the things around me, the people I am with, or the things I am doing. I challenge you as well to 100daysofhappy. Even if you don’t post in Social Media, you could write it in a journal or discuss your happy moments at dinner as a family. Find out more info here #100daysofhappy.

Red Roof Inn will even get you started on your day 1 of 100. We are having some extra savings during the weekend of April. Enjoy 20% off select Red Roof Properties and RediCard members will receive 250 bonus points on your first stay April 17-20th. We also have a contest going on enter to win a Grand prize trip to the Country Music Awards! 4 Second place prize of 1 $500 Visa gift card. Find the hidden eggs on Red Roof Inn’s Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube and Website and enter to win! Find more info about the contest below and a link to book your stay!
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Biking the Capital

Last week, I was visiting some of our properties in the Baltimore/Washington DC area. (Red Roof Inn Baltimore North – Timonium, Red Roof PLUS+ Baltimore-Washington DC/BWI Airport, Red Roof PLUA+ Baltimore-Washington DC/BW Parkway, Red Roof PLUS+ Washington DC – Rockville) This trip was especially fun because I was able to stay with a good friend from college over the weekend. We spent a lot of the weekend catching up and on Saturday we went in to the Washington DC. We rented bikes and road them all around the National Mall and saw most of the monuments.
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This was a really fun way to see the city. It was a beautiful day outside and really makes me look forward to the spring!
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I have been to DC several times when I was younger but biking around was a fun way to see everything. There are several bike rental companies but we chose Capital Bikeshare. They have a ton of drop off and pick up locations around the city.

It was nice visiting the city with someone who lives there. I didn’t have to worry about looking at a map and she knew different places to view the monuments and great places to stop along the way.

Here are some of the pictures I took while on the ride

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We saw a ton of monuments including the Capital and White House. We rode over to the eastern market, which was similar to a flea market. They had everything there; produce, art, furniture, and hot food. My friend bought some neat earrings while we were there. We ended our day by getting lunch at DC-3. They have every type of hot dog you could imagine and you can even get cotton candy as a side!

During this trip, I stayed at my first Red Roof PLUS+. Look at the new sign! It looks awesome at night!
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Let’s PLUS+ it!

Yesterday, Red Roof Inn officially launched Red Roof Plus. We are building on the elevated experience our guests received at our NextGen renovated properties. Our successful NextGen renovations were driven by listening to what our guests need and want with flat screen TVs, additional outlets, and wood-like floors just to name a few of the additions. We are taking it another step by adding 31 PLUS+ hotels offering an enhanced experience.

NextGen renovations include modern furniture, flat screen TVs with 36 HD channels, vessel sinks, additional outlets, a 100% smoke-free designation, Serta beds, high end bedding, and a red accent wall in guest rooms. The renovated properties also have a beautiful stone accent walls in the lobby. Guests have loved our renovations by awarding properties high scores like “Very Likely to Recommend” and “Very Likely to Return.”

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Red Roof PLUS+ hotels will be taking it one step further with the addition of Premium room type, new landscaping, outdoor signage, and red LED lighting on the exterior of the inn. The Premium room types will be have the modern NextGen design and a special snack box containing a bottle of water, orange juice, popcorn, trail mix and two granola bars. The rooms will also have in-room coffee/tea, an extra pillow, an iron and ironing board, refrigerator and microwave. Guests will also feel at ease with elevated guest service training and more outlets to get issues resolved with a 24-hour guest service line that they will be able for guests to reach via phone, text, or email.

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Some of the properties launched this week include Naples, FL, Columbus Downtown – Convention Center, San Antonio Downtown – Riverwalk, and Boston –Logan. Check out all the properties that will be a PLUS+ inn and more information about you can expect at your next stay at a Red Roof PLUS+!

Red Roof Inn was also awarded the winner in the Top 10 Best budget Hotel Brand from USA Today!

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It’s Derby Day

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Last week, I visited a few of our properties in Louisville, Kentucky. My trip was during times of extreme cold temperatures however I did really want to make it to visit Churchill Downs. I have a small confession to make I have never seen the Kentucky Derby or know anything about horse racing yet I really was interested in going!

Although there were not any horses at Churchill Downs, I was able to take a tour of the race track and walk through the museum. I learned a ton at the museum and from the tour guides. Did you know that there was over 130 million dollars bet at the Kentucky Derby last year? It was interesting hearing about the derby from the guides at the museum because they had all grown up around the track and have been going to derbies since they were young. Not only did we learn about the derby and horse racing, we also heard about the atmosphere of the track on derby day.

For only 13 dollars, I was able see the race track and learn a ton about the history of the Kentucky Derby. It was a fun place to spend the afternoon however next time I hope I’ll be able to see a race! Below are a few of the pictures I took at the museum and track.

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Of course, being a girl the hats and fashion of the derby interest me!
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I visited our three properties in Louisville. They are all close to Churchill Downs and downtown Louisville.Louisville Fair and Expo, Louisville Expo Airport, and Louisville East – Hurstbourne.

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Juice Clense Failure

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Like many Americans, my New Year’s resolution was to get healthier in 2014. I have been eating clean and working out about 6 days a week. I actually started my resolution in November doing a 12-week exercise program and have 2 weeks left! I have been doing well other than a few slip-ups around the holidays. It is just hard to resist all those sweets and you got to enjoy life a little too, right?

I also have been looking into and wanting to try a juice cleanse for about a month. I did some research on doing a juice cleanse. With original high hopes of doing a 5 day juice cleanse I settled on doing a 1 day juice cleanse (if you read the title of this blog you can see why I am happy now I didn’t try a 5 day cleanse). I choose to do my Juice cleanse after I got back from San Antonio. I had been eating out a lot and I thought it would a great time to flush all that processed food out of my system.
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I bought six Suja Juices from Whole Foods. Suja Juices have a one day, three day, and five day juice cleanse program. Here is a fair warning juice cleanses are not the most budget friendly activities in the book. The juices I bought were about seven dollars a bottle but they are full of organic vegetables and some fruits. The juices are full of flavor and range from drinking a salad to drinking the milk at the bottom of your bowl of Cinnamon Toast Crunch once the cereal is all gone.

So why did I fail? I got four juices in and it was about 5 pm. I had two juices left to drink. Truthfully, I wasn’t hungry. The juices are full of veggies, which means a bunch of nutrients that did fill me up. I honestly think I just missed chewing. The worst part about the whole adventure is what I failed with. I ate a piece of toast…that’s it. To be honest, I do really love toast but I still feel like I should have made it worth it and eaten a pizza or something.
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Even though I did fail, I did feel great the next day. I felt a less bloated and felt like I had a little more energy. I am happy I did it and what makes me feel better about the juice cleanse was that I started with one day and didn’t shoot for the moon right away with a 5 day cleanse. Even though my first juice cleanse didn’t go as planned I would definitely try again. I am not going to run out and buy a juicer or the whole organic produce section at the grocery store but I would give it a go again. This time I might try to do it on a weekday while I am at work and a little bit more distracted from my love of toast.

What are your resolutions?

Do you have a resolution to relax more? Spend more time with your family? Visit loved ones who don’t live close? Let Red Roof Inn help you be successful! There are plenty of great places in the United States where we have inns that you can relax and make awesome memories with your family!

I Want to Be a Cowboy Sweatheart: My Trip to San Antonio

Last week, I took a trip to the Lone Star State. I was able to visit some of our great properties in San Antonio and hang out with the front desk guest service representative and talk to some of our awesome guests. It was my first time visiting Texas and the weather was absolutely great especially living in snowy Ohio.

I stayed at the Red Roof Inn San Antonio Downtown River Walk property. It was in a great location and it took me less than 5 minutes to walk to the River Walk. I walked down there a few nights for dinner and to just walk in to see the sights. There is a mall right by the River Walk with a ton of national stores as well as some local tourist souvenirs. Once you walk out of the mall the River Walk begins. There are so many different kinds of restaurants anything from Mexican, Irish Pub, TexMex, barbeque and so many more. There are also very peaceful areas to walk around the river. I ate a Mexican restaurant and they had a mariachi band that played music along the river.

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If you know me you know I spent time in that store with the large red Mickey Mouse ears!
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Here is a video of the mariachi band during dinner.
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I went up and looked at the Alamo which is just at the start of the river. Across from the Alamo there are tons of tourist attractions like Guinness Book of World Records Museum and Ripley’s Believe it or not.
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They also had these pretty horse drawn carriages that you could pay to go around the square.

On my last night in San Antonio I stayed at our Airport location which was great since I had an early flight out and I was able to sleep in till 4:20am. Hahah! The Red Roof Inn San Antonio Airport location is about 5 miles from the North Star Mall. I went there for dinner and got some cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory for dessert. The North Star Mall has these huge pair of cowboy boots outside of the mall! They are even bigger than the trees around the area!
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I had a great experience in San Antonio and it was a fun first visit to Texas. I can’t wait to visit again soon and hopefully it will be a little warmer and I can get a tan! Unfortunately, I didn’t find a Cowboy or acquire a southern accent which were my ultimate goals. Hahah! Thank you to Bryan, Darlene, Linda, Roger, Maribel, Jessica, and Alex for being so nice during my visit! See y’all next time!- Sarah

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Travel Apps I’ll be using in 2014

During 2014, I will be traveling a lot, visiting quite a few Red Roof Inn’s from San Antonio to Chicago to Naples. I will also be traveling to visit my family in Charlotte, NC and Venice, FL as well as taking a vacation to one of my favorite places in the United States also known as the place “Where Dreams Come True”. With all the traveling I’ll be doing, these apps will help keep me on track.

Waze
This is a GPS app that helps you beat the traffic. It will show you the best ways to get to your destination and avoid current traffic. People using the app can report traffic jams, accidents, police on the side of the road, gas prices, and road closures. It is nice when you are in an area you are not familiar with because it helps you avoid being stopped by traffic.
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Yahoo Weather
This is app is similar to most weather app; I just really like it because it shows really pretty pictures of the city you are in from flickr. It also shares the current temperature and temperatures for the next couple days. You can track storms using the radar map and perception through out the day. Checking the weather before traveling is super important to make sure I am packing the right clothes. It is really chilly in Columbus today so I decided not to screen shot our temperatures(Maybe if I don’t see it is not really 11 degrees)!
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LocalEats
This app shows local restaurants in the area, no national chains. When I am visiting a city, I always like to ask locals where they like to go to eat. As much as I might like Applebee’s or Chili’s are really like to try local food when I am in a new city. LocalEats recommends great local restaurants. It will also tell you what kind of food they serve, if they have received any awards, and the price range.
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Gate Guru
This app is awesome for airport travel. You can are able to see all the amenities in any airport and what gate they are located in. This is awesome when you are looking for a good meal during a layover. They also have a map and all up to date flight information.
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Instagram
They say “a picture is worth a thousand words” and when I am traveling I really like to share what cool things I am doing with my friends back home with my pictures on Instagram. I also love seeing what everyone else is doing! This is not technically a travel app, I just like to document my adventures! These are pictures some of our guests have shared with the hash tag Red Roof Inn.
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I hope some of these apps will help you when you travel, too! Do you have any exciting travel plans for 2014? Red Roof Inn has a lot of exciting things in store for 2014. They will certainly “wow” you! Happy Travels! – Sarah

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