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“Nice hotel, best location”

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Carolina University Inn
Ranked #76 of 94 Hotels in Columbia
Nashville, Tennessee
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Nice hotel, best location”
Reviewed 7 October 2013

I was in town for a night, and had visits in West Columbia and at USC, this hotel was perfectly located on the main street in town (Gervais St).

The hotel itself was just fine. The room was nice, not terribly noisy inside despite being on the Gervais side, bathroom was clean. The front desk staff was friendly enough - nothing to write home about, but very pleasant. Plenty of parking, although it was a bit odd to have to walk to the main door (which was along the driveway without a sidewalk) after 10pm. I understand the security issue, there's just no sidewalk to get to the main door from the parking lot.

I never understand why hotels under $100 offer free continental breakfast, and anything above has to charge, but whatever. (I booked through hotels.com, so I still paid less than $100.) I didn't pay for the breakfast buffet, but I'm sure it was nice. The wifi was still free, so that was good.

Again, I was just here for a night, and for a cheap hotel that's walking distance to USC, the Statehouse, and the little historic district, this is where to stay.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank tnmusikherr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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183 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
Oceanside, California
Level 2 Contributor
9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 29 September 2013

I hate spending 5 more minutes of my time on this hotel but I owe it to others to share my experience.

First the good. The front desk people are very friendly and responsive as they can be. Nice touch to have a basket of cookies in the evening. Also, it's cool to have a historical plaque just outside the entrance to the hotel. For 2 days during the Civil War, when General Sherman (Union General) took over Columbia from the South during a period where the South wanted to secede, he used this location as his headquarters.

Now the bad. The place was dated, musty, and seriously in need of updating and maintenance. 1) All electrical sockets are behind tables, 2) all lights are very dim and difficult to read under, 3) carpets are well worn and stained, 4) TV is small and old. Also had problem that night stand light (mounted on the wall) and the safe didn't work. I asked for maintenance repair the first day. After 3 days at the hotel, these items were not addressed. This included my reminder the second day to the staff. This is a security issue that wasn't addressed. This is a reflection of bad management.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Gary C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Florence, South Carolina
Level 4 Contributor
40 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 September 2013

This was the hotel a volunteer group I belong to uses every year because of it's proximity to the Capital and overall the other reviews nailed it pretty well. It is older and does need some serious refurbishing but the room rate reflects this. I made the mistake of ordering the continental breakfast to my room one morning to save time....don't. The buffet served downstairs is much cheaper and far more plentiful. However, plan on eating dinner out every night as while a nice luncheon is served,dinner is basically soup and sandwiches and since my meeting two days didn't allow time for lunch that wasn't going to suffice. The staff was very helpful and a small mini fridge in the room would have been worth any extra $10 a night!!

Room Tip: Book early to stay away from the inner courtyard where the pool is located. I did but a last minut...
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  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Martha G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Mill, South Carolina, Usa
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 September 2013

Very attentive and friendly staff. Breakfast buffet, with group discount, was good. Any problems fixed immediately. Old, out of date decor in rooms. Housekeeping keeps place clean, but carpeting and some furniture is stained. Appliances work well.
In general, the hotel is ok, but needs a serious update/upgrade..

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Arsailman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Georgia
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 8 September 2013

I reserved this room through Priceline which always causes a little anxiety and after reading some of the other reviews I was definitely nervous before arriving. However, we had a excellent stay. The staff is wonderful and friendly; check in was quick and the room was clean. It is an older hotel and shows its age but we were well satisfied. Note: We stayed in the main section of the hotel but I'm sure the outer lying rooms were just as clean.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank GeorgiaBB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wilmington, North Carolina
Level 5 Contributor
64 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2013

This is an older Hotel, but has been remodeled and is very clean. The breakfast buffet is reasonable and very good food. The wait crew is excellent and attentive. The hotel is six blocks from the center of historic downtown area. It has a pool and has airport transfer service. The are is quiet and safe. The only thing kit didn't have was a refrigerator in room. I will use this hotel again, when I return to Columbia.

Room Tip: higher number room numbers are further away from central area.
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Monk55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Charleston, South Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
199 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 174 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 June 2013

I am staying this weekend at the Clarion Hotel Downtown. Now for those of you that follow my travels, you are aware that I am a very foo-foo type of traveler. For this trip, the accommodations were specified and I was not able to deviate my lodgings.

Let me say the positives up front as usual. It alway easy to bash a place but few people talk about the positives. And let's admit it that in every travel experience there is at least one positive.

Positives: The hotel staff is extremely polite, positive and ready to serve. They are friendly and accommodating. The front lobby is very nice and clean. Their on-site restaurant is decorated nicely and comfortably. The discounted group rate of $67.00 per night for a king sized room was reasonable. The outside pool is very clean and goes from 4ft. to 8ft which makes it great to exercise in. The king size bed was stupendous. I did not want to get out of it this morning to make my meeting.

Now for the negatives: Though the decor in the restaurant is very nice. The FOOD leaves a lot to be desired. Last night they were serving on their buffet, old looking fried chicken, some type of hash stew something or other, white rice with no butter or gravy, wilted string beans and a bland potatoe salad. All for a whapping $13.95 Plus tax. After looking every thing over, I walked a mile and ate a Long horns. That will be discussed in another review. I tried again this morning and ate breakfast in the restaurant. For 8.95 plus tax I got a breakfast buffet of bacon, grapes, cantalope and cold hash browns. They offered 3 types of cereal, skim milk, watery eggs, grits and again some of that hash stuff. Yuck.... Holiday Inn Take Me HOME>

Though the bed was great, the room overall was in very poor condition and small. I had requested a refrigerator 2 months ago. Upon check in the very friendly staff made sure one was procurred. However, upon getting the fridge, the deliver kind of waited around the room for a minute more than I though was cool, so I tipped him 5 bucks. Then he promptly left. SO I guess that was what he was waiting for.

You know how when you clean your old tub from back in the 70's and the dirt just won't get off the base of the tub where your feet go. Well that was what my tub in room 128 has. I had to put a bath towel down inside the tub for fear of getting hoof in mouth by stepping in it. The shower sorround has milde going up the walls and around the soap dish and behind the toilet. Gross. The Television is on of those old 26 inch tube tv's and the refrige that I tipped 5 bucks for seems like it came out of Sanford and Sons garage.

Overall, had I had a choice in my accommodations this time, I would not have stayed at the Clarion. Que Cera.

Room Tip: If you are not on a budget and If you are paying for your trip... Please go somewhere else. If you a...
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank infoctrl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Carolina University Inn

Property: Carolina University Inn
Address: 1615 Gervais St, Columbia, SC 29201-3413 (Formerly Clarion Hotel Downtown)
Region: United States > South Carolina > Columbia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #76 of 94 Hotels in Columbia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Carolina University Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 87
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the Carolina University Inn located in the heart of Downtown Columbia. Travelers of all needs can take advantage of our one of a kind property located in the business, financial, and entertainment district of downtown Columbia. Unique local restaurants, boutique shopping, and exciting night life are all located within a one mile radius. The brand new USC Law School opening in Fall of 2017 is just across the street from the hotel's front door and a short walk from where you can discover everything the University of South Carolina campus has to offer. We take great pride in our Gamecocks here in Columbia. Williams Brice Stadium is a short 2.9 mile drive where you will experience college football here in Gamecock Country! Breathtaking views of the South Carolina State House are blocks away on Gervais Street. The South Carolina State Museum and Museum of Art are conveniently located downtown offering a taste of our local culture. Take the family on a delightful educational adventure to the Riverbanks Zoo and Garden or the Edventure Children's Museum, both located within 5 miles of the hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Clarion Hotel Columbia
Clarion Columbia
Columbia Clarion

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