The Dwell Hotel, Chattanooga


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Hotel Group: Starwood Preferred Guest (a subsidiary of Marriott International)

Hotel Category: Category 5

Hotel Status: Gold

Booking Type: Points Booking (12,000)

Room Type: King Suite – The Europa

Date of Stay: December 2017



Hotel

The building the Dwell hotel occupies has been a hotel for over a hundred years. In 2016, majority owner Seija Ojanpera completed a thorough renovation drawing inspiration from her travels around the world. There’s not a room within the building that is dull. From the leaf wallpaper in the parlor to the living wall of plants in the restaurant, every corner of the hotel is eye-catching.

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This is truly a boutique hotel with only 16 suites. All suites have either a queen or king bed with some having private balconies. There is no fitness center, but they do give access to The Sports Barn, which is .07 miles from the hotel. There is one restaurant and one bar on site.

With this being a Member of Design Hotels, you get limited SPG benefits and kids under the age of 12 are not permitted.

Booking

I booked the queen suite-The Orient using 12k Starpoints since this is a category 5 SPG property. If I had paid cash, it would have cost $263.81. Upon checking in the receptionist had upgraded me per my gold status to the king suite-The Europa which was going for $293.13. Factoring in the price of my upgraded room, I was able to  get 2.44 cents per point. I love hotel status.

Check-in

Check-in was a breeze. I was gracefully greeted by the front-desk  agent, and she explained where the bar and restaurant were and after formalities, I was heading upstairs to my room.

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Room

I had room 26, which is on the second floor straight across the stairs tucked around the corner. The suite comes in at 325 sq ft with a soaking tub, and stand-alone rainfall shower.

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The bed was semi-soft with the silkiest sheets I’ve ever felt at a hotel. The nightstands had somewhat easy access to outlets on the adjacent wall, or you could pull the nightstand out a bit and use the ones behind them.

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As you can see the 42in TV is hung in the corner above the desk. When I arrived, I had chocolate-covered Oreos waiting for me from the local chocolatiers, and they were delicious. The wi-fi gets a passing grade.

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The view left a lot to be desired. I felt like I was looking at an old jail house (it wasn’t) but with all things considered it was easy to over look this.

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One thing to note about the rooms, the hardwood floors and stairs are very squeaky. This is after all a building that’s over 100 years old. To combat the noise they provide earplugs and a sound machine in every room.

Bathroom

The bathroom was on the far left side of the room with a deep soaking tub, and a stand-alone rainfall shower.

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The toiletries were from C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries. This was the first time I’ve encountered this brand in a hotel and was pleased with the scent and overall quality. The ConAir 1875 hairdryer with concentration attachment gets two thumbs up.

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The robe was rolled up nicely in a bag below the sink alongside a sound machine. This was the first time I’ve come across one of these in a hotel.

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I was thoroughly impressed with the bathroom. The toiletries were great, hairdryer and robe were both fantastic, and the rainfall shower had great water flow.

Fitness

Like I mentioned above, there is no gym on site. They do, however, give you access to the Sports Barn, which is .07 miles down the road. I google mapped it, and it said it would be a 14-minute walk to get there from the hotel.

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Restaurant

The restaurant is named Terra Máe and at the moment it’s closed for renovations until March 1st, 2018. It was open during my stay, but I chose to have dinner in the bar area. My overall impression of the decor was the same as the hotel, I loved it with its open feel dinning room and beautiful wall hanging plants. I’m not sure whether it will be the same when it opens back up but here are a few photos.

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I’m not sure going forward if this will be offered, but at the time you could reserve the chef’s table, with two days notice and the head chef would prepare you a special menu. I hope they keep this feature as this is surely a highlight of the restaurant.

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Here is the menu for Terra Máe, I assume it will change when it opens back open.

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I dined in Matilda’s Midnight Bar, which is located on the bottom floor left of the reception area. The stools around the bar area are from a McDonalds from the 1950s. It’s interesting to see how Seija Ojanpera could bring these back to life. I’m a big fan of bar stools that have backs to them, and these were very comfortable.

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I ordered the house assorted fried pickles, pommel frites and the braised beef French dip. The assorted pickles were not my favorite, but I could see this being very popular. I was just thinking when I ordered, it was going to be actual pickle’s not assorted vegetables pickled. The fries and French dip were fantastic though. The French dip sauce was thick with lots of flavor and was only $11. I give the overall meal 8.5/10.

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Here is the food menu for Matilda’s Midnight Bar.

Service

I give service a 9/10. I really only spoke with a few front-desk associates and one bartender, but everyone was nice and more than helpful. The bartender was great in answering my questions about the menu and cocktail list, and the front-desk agents didn’t bat an eye when I was taking photos of the hotel.

Overall

I haven’t stayed in many hotels in Chattanooga, but I’m familiar with the hotels in the area, and I can say with confidence if this isn’t the best in the city, it’s in the top two. The bar and restaurant are top-notch, and the ambience of the hotel is matched by none. The mid-century modern design and Mad Men feel really make it unique. I highly recommend the property if you find yourself in Chattanooga.

Have you stayed here, Do you consider this best in the city?

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