Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A “working inn” where Johnson and Wales University students learn the ropes
This isn’t a luxury property, so guests will have to curb their expectations a bit. Located in a commercial strip of a busy street, the hotel is a bit odd looking from outside, as three buildings have been built into one building over the years. But on the inside, it’s a dependable hotel with clean rooms and modern features, such as flat-screen TVs and free Wi-Fi. The lobby is a grand, high-ceilinged space with a formal sitting area in front of a large fireplace. And the fine dining restaurant, Audrey's, has a moody, rustic New England-style atmosphere. But though both spaces are formal, they're still clearly in the mid-range category.
Owned by Johnson and Wales University, it’s not uncommon to encounter Johnson and Wales students working at the inn, learning in the inner workings of the hospitality industry. Perhaps because of this format, the student staff is eager and accommodating -- and guests may feel as if they're contributing to an overall greater purpose (in helping to mold the future hospitality industry, that is).
Located a short drive from Providence on a commercial street
The hotel isn't in the most exciting location -- on a commercial street just off Route 44 in Seekonk, MA -- but it's only a short drive from downtown Providence. If you’re staying here, having a car is a necessity.
Spacious rooms, but dated decor
Like so many New England inns, the decor hasn’t caught up with modern times, looking more like something out of the 1950s or ‘60s with mustard-colored carpeting and drab patterned wallpaper. There are plenty of antique-looking furnishings in the rooms, as well, some of which are oddly placed without much thought for design. Some of the bathrooms are enormous (though a huge empty space with a lone toilet sitting there can seem a bit odd to some), and the rooms are a good size, too. There aren’t any scenic views from the rooms (mostly parking lots or busy commercial street), but you’re not paying for a view at these rates.
No pool, but there is a fitness center
For rates that are only marginally higher than those of the budget chain hotels in Seekonk, Johnson & Wales gives more for your money. The on-site restaurant serves delicious local steak and seafood, and the large rooms are a step up from those at the nearby Comfort Inn and Hampton Inn, with flat-screen TVs, higher quality decor and bedding, and enormous bathrooms (though the extra space isn't always used well). Sure, the decor is dated in typical New England fashion (mustard-colored carpeting, antique-style furnishings), but this is a surprisingly affordable hotel.