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For me to review flights to and from Hawai’i I sometimes spend the night at a hotel near an airport and this time brought me to the Fairfield Inn & Suites Seattle Sea-Tac Airport.
I chose this hotel because it had 3 things I was looking for, a good price, free airport shuttle, and breakfast included. I learned a lot about this property during my stay and found out some interesting things that I think you should know about.
I booked this hotel directly through the Marriott Bonvoy website and it was smooth sailing until I got an email on December 9th, 2 days before my stay with the following statement.
“Important Notice: Elevator Modernization at Our Hotel Exciting changes are coming to enhance your experience at our hotel! Starting December 4, 2023, we’ll be conducting a scheduled modernization of our elevators during normal working hours. During this time, please note that only one elevator will be operational at a time. Guests staying on upper levels are encouraged to plan for potential increased wait times and allow for extra travel time within our premises.”
I appreciate timely communication and clearly, that was not the case here. For this stay it was really not important for me since I just needed one night and I was traveling alone. But if you know the work is going to be started on December 4th you should communicate that with guest as early as possible, not 5 days into it.
Here are the details for the free airport shuttle:
“Airport Shuttle Service
Our Hotel offers 24-hour shuttle service to and from SeaTac Airport in our 12-passenger van.
For Pick Ups from the SeaTac Airport:
Per Airport Policy, we are only allowed to pick up guests from the Airport Courtesy Vehicle Islands. To get to these islands from Baggage claim go up one floor, then across the sky walk to the parking garage, and then down one floor to the 3rd floor. To the side, you will see Pillars with numbers and letters on them and other shuttles going by. You will need to go to either islands 1 (A-D) or 3 (A-C), as these are the only islands we are allowed to go to. Once at an Island please call the hotel at 206.824.9909. And request a shuttle. Shuttle Wait times may vary.
For Drop-Offs to the SeaTac Airport:
In the Morning from 3 am to 12 pm, our shuttle performs an airport direct run every 30 minutes on the top and bottom of the hour. Please come down to the lobby 5 to 7 minutes prior to the shuttle departure time you want to take and inform the front desk that you are waiting for the shuttle. The Morning shuttles are on a first come first serve basis. The shuttle may be up to 5 minutes late for pick-up times.”
Getting to the shuttle area was simple and easy once I left the baggage claim area of the airport. The instructions above were spot on and finding the shuttle pickup area was quite easy.
My wait time was about 20 minutes so make sure you have your jacket out and ready since the area is open with no enclosed waiting area. I was traveling in December and it was in the low 40s while I waited.
Also Read: Best time of year to visit Seattle.
The shuttle bus itself has 2 hotels listed on the side, Fairfield and Holiday Inn Express so keep an eye out. The driver actually passed me before I read the name and flagged him down before he got too far. When I called in I told them I would be at pickup 3B so not sure why he didn’t pull over in this area.
The driver did not greet me, did not get up to help with my bag and when I asked him for any good local places to eat he pointed at the Jack-In-The-Box as we drove by. I just chuckled but clearly some room for improvement for this part of the operation.
For the return to the airport the next day it was straightforward with the shuttle leaving every 30 minutes from 3 am to 11:30 am as noted below.
The drive time was about 7-10 minutes coming and going.
The shuttle is also available to take you to select nearby locations, check with guest services for an up-to-date list, and note that they will prioritize airport runs. Consider a day trip to Mt. Rainier if you have time, you will see it on most days coming in and out of the airport.
Parking was complimentary and on a first come first serve basis. There seemed to be quite a few open stalls during my stay as I think most are using the airport shuttle and not driving.
I checked in via the mobile app and declined the mobile key option since I like to go to the desk and talk about any details for my stay. I got an early 11:30 am check-in along with a bottle of water and the option for points or a snack. I opted for the 500 points and reviewed the shuttle schedule for the return run.
The hotel is open 24 Hours a day, 7 days a week but from the Hours of 11 pm to 7 am the main lobby door is locked and will only open with a guest room key for access into the hotel. Use the intercom to the right of the door to check in after this time.
If you do opt for the snacks or just want to purchase them they are located near the front desk area and have limited offerings but the main ones are available.
Before arriving, they sent me an email about the current cleaning protocol and it stated that a refresh would be done after the first night and full cleaning every other day after the 3rd day. At check-in, they gave me a slip of paper that said full service would be done every other day after the 2nd night. I only stayed one night so did not get to experience any type of cleaning.
The room itself was clean and spacious, on point for the Fairfield brand, and delivered as promised. The bed was comfortable with ample charging points on both sides and lighting that was in reach directly from the bed.
There was an extra large space near the left side of the bed with various coat hooks, it almost felt like a chair was supposed to be here but if you think about several wet rain/snow jackets it makes more sense.
A simple desk with a lamp made for a workspace along with a small pull-out drawer unit below the TV. There was also a closet area with the usual items like a microwave, small fridge, coffee pot, and ironing board.
The bathroom is small but functional, I did like the shower handle not being directly under the shower head, unique for me. There is not sink in the shower room, it is just inside from the entrance.
I thought this breakfast was great. The area was clean, well-stocked, and laid out so access was easy and quick.
I tried quite a few of the options, for you the reader :), and thought it was all on point. If you are looking for something really filling go with the breakfast burrito for sure but be aware it was a bit spicy. The egg fritata was my favorite but I would get the salsa to go along with it for more flavor.
Drinks were coffee as expected and a nice juice machine that pumped out orange juice, apple juice, and cranberry juice. Oatmeal, bagels, cereal, and fruits were also offered.
When I peeked in it was empty and seemed to have the basics one would expect from a fitness center but it definitely had room for a few more pieces of equipment. Maybe they are saving the floor space for yoga or fitness ball exercises. Clean and well stocked with towels and water cups.
I plan to do some additional flight reviews to Hawai’i from Seattle and will keep this location on my list as a good option based on this stay. I hope to visit some other locations to make a better comparison, of course, maybe even one of the best luxury hotels in Seattle if I stay long enough.