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need hotel advice

kentucky
Level Contributor
508 posts
144 reviews
need hotel advice

We are planning on coming to Altanta by car for approx 4 days with 2 kids (5, 8). We are palnning on doing aquarium, stone mtn, six flags during spring break in April. We would mostly be there during weekdays, not weekend. Also, we have to go a American girl doll store/ cafe in the mall in Alpharetta. Everything we want to do seems so spread out.. Can you recommend a kids friendly hotel with suites, not "downtown". We understand we will have to take the freeway/ interstate where ever we want to go. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Road Trips
Level Contributor
34,736 posts
505 reviews
1. Re: need hotel advice

The Atlanta experts can chime in on this one. I would much prefer the Perimeter Mall area or something on the outskirts of Atlanta. The area around the mall in Alpharetta and GA. 400 has heavy traffic. The Atlanta TA's can give you their picks for Atlanta. I would go with something maybe that had suites and came with a breakfast. That seems to be best with kids. Enjoy your trip.

Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta
Level Contributor
3,509 posts
110 reviews
2. Re: need hotel advice

The traffic around Alpharetta is better than at Perimeter, but staying there would put you much too far north for your other options when you'll be at North Point for only a couple of hours.

Have you considered staying at Stone Mountain? That's a great experience for that age.

When I was planning an in-town getaway last month, I found that Regency Suites in Midtown had a good combination of price and the amenities that you need with kids. We had to cancel it, so I can't tell you if the hotel is any good. There were enough good reviews on TA to outweigh the bad.

Edited: 05 January 2010, 12:40
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
1,299 posts
29 reviews
3. Re: need hotel advice

In your situation, I'd look for something in the Perimeter Mall area -- there are a number of hotels with suite-style rooms that should work for you (Embassy Suites, Hilton Suites, Homewood Suites, Residence Inn, Staybridge Suites, etc.) in that area. They're typically a bit less expensive than comparable hotels in Downtown, Midtown, or Buckhead, though weekday rates are higher than weekends because of the substantial business concentration in the area.

You'd be near the interchange between I-285 (the Perimeter Highway that makes a circle around the Atlanta area) and GA 400 (the primary north-south freeway that runs from Midtown up to Alpharetta and beyond), making it pretty straightforward to take 285 around to the east side to pick up US Hwy 78 (Stone Mountain Freeway) out to Stone Mountain, as well as to take 285 around to the west to I-20 to hit Six Flags, or GA 400 to head south into the city or north up to North Point Mall for the American Girl store. You also have ready access to three MARTA stations in the area (Medical Center, Dunwoody, and Sandy Springs) if you decide to take the train into town for some of your activities. There are plenty of family-friendly restaurants in the area (mostly chains) along with tons of shopping.

If you don't care about access to MARTA, the Cumberland Mall/Galleria area at I-285 and I-75 on the northwest side offers many of the same advantages, albeit without MARTA access, with slightly older/slightly less "nice" base of stores/restaurants, and farther from GA 400 and thus from the American Girl store.

Traffic is an issue around either area, but it's not impossible, and there's no real advantage for either one over the other. Staying at Perimeter at least gives you the choice of taking MARTA into town (most of the hotels are either within walking distance of a station or offer free shuttles to the stations, or both). And if you wait until just after rush hour before heading to Stone Mountain and Six Flags, you typically won't have to deal with any delays -- there'll be lots of other cars on the road, but they'll be moving at or above the speed limit.

kentucky
Level Contributor
508 posts
144 reviews
4. Re: need hotel advice

Thanks for all the info. I think I have decided on Embassy suites at Perimeter. AAA rate is $89 for the nights I need. I figure for that price how could I go wrong, esp with breakfast and reception, and indoor pool. As suggested, no problem to hop on freeway to our destinations. What about marta to aquarium? kids love that "big city" sort of thing. Aparently there is a station near hotel. How about a station near aquarium?

atlanta ga
Level Contributor
3,158 posts
17 reviews
5. Re: need hotel advice

go to www.itsmarta.com to see train stations and routes, but to answer your question there is a marta station close to all of those downtown activities.

Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
1,299 posts
29 reviews
6. Re: need hotel advice

The Sandy Springs MARTA station is within walking distance (~1/4 mile) of the Embassy Suites, on the same side of the street. There has been a fair amount of construction going on in that area, and at times the sidewalk has been closed recently; however, worst case, the Embassy Suites courtesy shuttle will drop you off and/or pick you up.

I had a colleague staying every week at that Embassy Suites last year this time when we were working at a company across the street, and he was very happy with it. They completed a renovation of the common areas during that time. $89 is an excellent rate -- I think you'll be very pleased. I find the Embassy Suites room layouts work very well when we travel with our three kids.

You can take MARTA from the Sandy Springs station near the hotel to either of a couple of stations downtown for the Aquarium. Most directions you'll see will direct you to the Georgia Dome/GWCC/CNN Center station on the East/West line, which works fine, but it means having to change trains at Five Points station, and doesn't really get you any closer to the Aquarium than getting off at the Peachtree Center station. The Peachtree Center station is also closer to the ImagineIt! Children's Museum, which is across Centennial Olympic Park from the Aquarium, in the event you decide to visit that before or after your time at the Aquarium. The only reasons for preferring the Dome/GWCC/CNN Center station would be if the weather is bad (you can cut through the CNN Center complex and stay indoors for much of the distance) or if you're planning to spend time at CNN Center. Otherwise, you'd just spend several minutes waiting around to change to the Westbound train to go one stop and then still have the same distance to walk as from Peachtree Center.

kentucky
Level Contributor
508 posts
144 reviews
7. Re: need hotel advice

Thanks, Peachtree station looks like the way to go. I was wonderig why most posts say get off at GWCC. On the map it looks to be about the same distance without changing trains.

8. Re: need hotel advice

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