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Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

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Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

Anything at a driving distance to the Xcel Center and not have to struggle thru traffic, that isn't too expensive, clean and safe for the whole family. A nice pool would be nice too.

What I mean by not too far is if it takes an hour thru traffic or more to get to Xcel Center with the evening traffic, including find a place to park, then it is probably not worth it.

Where do families usually go and feel safe and have lots of fun?

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1. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

It might be helpful to share your nightly budget, rather than guess what "too expensive" means. I would have 2 angles for options. First, why not consider staying downtown and looking at Hotwire/Priceline for a bid? You need to do your research, but there are helpful websites to look at options to make a wise bid. Second, if you really want to work your way "out" of downtown, then I'd look near the airport or near Eagan/Mendota Heights. There are a wide range of airport options and routes into downtown are fairly painless, even during rush hour traffic.

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2. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

A popular choice for people visiting the Xcel Center is the Holiday Inn. It's right across the street from the Center, and prices are fairly reasonable although they do hit you with a parking fee. There are lots of restaurants close by, as well as the Liffey, an Irish pub, right there.

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3. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

Holiday Inn is, by far, the easiest choice being across the street. You probably will pay a bit of a premium for that convenience, but I would still check it out. You will have to decide if there is value to you in having that convenience of being across the street. In any case, good hotel and certainly family friendly. On top of the Liffey right there will be other restaurants choices nearby including Cosetta's - very good but casual Italian.

Otherwise, there is a Best Western either somewhat near the Capitol (Kelly Inn) or the one in Bandana Square (in St. Paul). Those would seem to be more moderately priced and your drive will still be very manageable.

If you decide to stay more towards Mall of America/Airport area, there is absolutely no shortage of hotel rooms, and as mentioned the drive still shouldn't be terrible. Actual driving time would be approximately 25 minutes under most circumstances, plus time to find parking and walk to the arena.

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4. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

I would also suggest the Crown Plaza. Nice hotel about 5 blocks from the X and comparable rates to the Holiday Inn.

The Children's Museum is very nice and about 4 blocks from the X & the Science Museum is across the street from the X. The Minnesota History Museum is just a short walk up the hill from the X and always has interesting exhibits. I'd also suggest touring the capitol building and the St. Paul Cathedral - both are very interesting buildings.

When are you planning to be in town? The MN high school hockey tournament is the weekend of March 7-10 and the WCHA (college hockey) is the next weekend. Downtown St. Paul will be very busy and if you're able to get a room at that time expect to pay a premium.

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5. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

I like the choice of Holiday Inn, right across the street or Crown Plaza, just a few blocks away. I know for sure the Crown Plaza has a pool. Another hotel within walking distance of the Xcel is the Embassay Suites which also has a pool. Downtown St. Paul is quite safe and family friendly and I wouldn't hesitate to walk anywhere using common sense, of course. I would at all costs avoid the Best Western Kelly near the capitol. That hotel is on the opposite side of the Freeway but more importantly is located in a not-so-nice area.

Besides the Science Museum of MN (very close to eXcel) and the Children's Museum there is the MN History Center downtown which is a lot more interesting than the name implies.

But if you have a car and would like to get out into the "real" area I'd suggest you try Como Park. Yes, their little free zoo is cheesy but I've always adored their magnificent conservatory. The little lake has a walking trail and you'll see plenty of park land surrounding it. Como is in a very historic part of St. Paul.

Also, not far from the eXcel, as you head out of the downtown area is Summit Avenue. Hint: Just look for the magnificent dome of the Cathedral of St. Paul. Head down that boulevard for three miles of impeccible 1800's victorian mansions, including the Governor's mansion and also some beautiful churches and colleges. One block south of Summit Avenue is Grand Avenue - full of independent shops and wonderful restaurants, so many to choose from!

Again, using the eXcel Center as a landmark, there is another place you might want to take a look at. It is by no means an attraction or something that would occupy a lot of time. But nice to see. It is Irvine Park, the oldest park and neighborhood in St. Paul. It is just a square city block with a gazeebo and the most gorgeous cast iron waterfountain you've ever seen surrounded by some of St. Paul's oldest homes. The original Governor's mansion is one block away.

So I think downtown is good choice, but by all means avoid the Best Western Kelly and the University Avenue area.

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6. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

I have stayed at the Crown Plaza a few times , always with positive resuts. It has a pool and fronts the Mississippi river. It is a good valued hotel. There is a parking garage a couple blocks north of the hotel.

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7. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

The Holiday Inn by 3M on I-94 could also work. There's a pool, no charge parking, GreenMill nearby.

If you didn't want to drive and park by Xcel, it's close enough to taxi there/back.

8. Re: Good not too expensive hotels short distance to Xcel Center

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