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BEST WESTERN PLUS Windjammer Inn & Conference Center 3.0

South Burlington, Vermont, United States

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Heated indoor pool and seasonal outdoor pool 
  • Casual guest rooms with microwaves and mini-fridges 
  • Steak and seafood restaurant popular with locals 
  • Sports bar with pub food 
  • Free breakfast buffet, along with daily cookies and coffee 
  • Small fitness center 
  • Meeting rooms and a 24-hour business center 
  • Free airport shuttle 
  • Free on-site parking 
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout
  • Pet-friendly (fee) 

Cons

  • Not within walking distance of downtown Burlington
  • Some interior noise from lack of soundproofing 
  • No whirlpool tub 

Bottom Line

The BEST WESTERN PLUS Windjammer Inn & Conference Center is an older hotel that distinguishes itself with a popular local restaurant and bar, along with indoor and outdoor pools. The 158 guest rooms have conveniences like microwaves and mini-fridges, and they have managed to keep pace with its three-pearl rating, but soundproofing issues and a slightly dated look are notable downsides. Rates are usually comparable across the road at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Burlington, which has more modern rooms, but also smaller flat-screen TVs. 

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Scene

Updated 1970s chain hotel with a popular local eatery

Opened in 1977, the BEST WESTERN PLUS Windjammer Inn & Conference Center is a locally-owned hotel that's popular with families and business travelers. The on-site restaurant and pub is a local institution, with tufted booths in a wood-paneled dining room, and a salad bar housed in the hull of an old sailboat. On the hotel side, the lobby is less inviting than the restaurant and pub -- the space is oddly arranged and the high reception desk looks as much like a defensive fortification as a place to check in -- but milk and cookies are served every evening around the corner in the lounge. This was the first Energy Star-rated hotel in the state -- it recycles all of its toiletries and bottles, composts kitchen scraps, and follows eco-friendly water and lighting practices.  

Location

Near the airport, surrounded by business hotels and big box retailers  

Map of BEST WESTERN PLUS Windjammer Inn & Conference Center

The hotel is located on busy US Highway 2, surrounded by fast-food chains and big box retailers. The area isn't attractive, but it's safe and convenient for getting across town along Williston Road/US Highway 2. It's also within walking distance of the all-ages Higher Ground music venue, and many of the nearby business-friendly hotels have their own event facilities. It's about a 10-minute drive to downtown Burlington where the University of Vermont and Champlain College dominate the scene. The Flynn Center for the Performing Arts is a seven-minute drive, and it's 15 minutes by car to Waterfront Park on Lake Champlain. Burlington International Airport is just a five-minute drive away.

Rooms

Casual and comfortable, with flat-screen TVs, microwaves, and mini-fridges

The hotel's 158 guest rooms are furnished in familiar chain property decor, with an earth-tone color scheme. The dark tan walls are somewhat atypical, and not all units have carpeting; first-floor rooms were updated with laminate flooring, so guests can avoid or opt for them accordingly. Standard rooms have either two double beds, or single queen, or king beds. The only significant difference is that doubles all have tables with two chairs, while other rooms have single roller chairs. Suites add separate living areas with sofa beds. Standard amenities include free Wi-Fi, 37-inch flat-screen TVs (with free HBO), mini-fridges, microwaves, and Keurig coffeemakers. Due to ongoing updates, the bathrooms have shower/tub combos in one of two types; either old, plastic built-in varieties, or newer tiled ones. Soundproofing could be better, as past guests have noted that children running down the halls can be heard on floors above.

Features

Indoor and outdoor pools, popular restaurant and pub, and gym, plus free breakfast

The hotel has a seasonal outdoor pool with a sundeck, and a heated indoor pool in a handsome space with wood walls and a vaulted wood ceiling that has two skylights. There's no hot tub or sauna, but there is a small fitness center with a few cardio machines and weight-training equipment. 

The Windjammer Restaurant and Upper Deck Pub sit in a separate building at the center of the property. The restaurant has a salad bar made from an old wooden sailboat and serves American standards with an emphasis on steak, seafood, and New England specialties, while the pub offers common bar grub amid sports memorabilia and TVs mounted on wood-paneled walls. 

Free breakfast is served in a breakfast room adjacent to the lobby, with a spread of yogurt, muffins, cereal, and hot options like scrambled eggs, french toast, bacon, and oatmeal. Free coffee and tea are available throughout the day. The 24-hour business center has a pair of computers and a printer next to the front desk, and there is a partition wall making it semi-private from the rest of the lobby. There are also four meeting rooms, the largest of which can accommodate up to 110 people, and the restaurant has two private dining rooms that can be booked for events. On-site parking is included, the hotel provides free shuttle service to the airport, and Wi-Fi is free throughout. 

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Address

1076 Williston Rd, South Burlington, Vermont 05403-5718, United States

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