by Lissa Poirot
Our family experience at this Holiday Inn Express began actually across the street at another hotel. Traveling nearly 3,000 miles for our national park road trip adventure, we were staying in towns with limited hotel choices. Arriving in Cortez, Colorado, to visit Mesa Verde National Park, we wound up at a different hotel, but upon further inspection, changed our minds. It didn’t feel safe, it wasn’t very clean, and across the street was a Holiday Inn Express. We took a chance that a room may be available, and at the front desk, the receptionist asked if we would like to try a Family Suite. A Family Suite? Yes, please!
Walking into our corner room (all Family Suites are in corner locations), the kids went wild. As we entered to see the king bed and large flat-screen TV and a small sitting area, a log cabin looking wall lured us around the “corner” to the entrance of a “fort.” Peeling back the curtain revealed a corner bunk bed set of four beds and a small desk with a small TV and games. Before we could even comprehend what was happening, the kids were jumping up and down on the beds, screaming with delight, and closing the curtain to shrill “no grownups allowed!”
We didn’t even need to see the rest of the hotel to know this was going to be a good night, even though it had a swimming pool (the kids never made it to the pool). They were too busy telling us that the fort was the coolest room they ever had and could we please, from this point on, only stay at a Holiday Inn Express?
Yes, this is a resounding “yes,” that this hotel is great for families.
Our Editor Loves
- Family suites with
- Free breakfast and Wi-Fi
- Swimming pool
- Connecting Rooms
- Family Room 5+
- Free Breakfast
- Free Wi-Fi
- Onsite Dining
Find the Best Price for Your Stay
Our reason for loving this Holiday Inn as much as we did was the Family Suite. With an Old West Fort theme, "Fort Holiday," kids have their own area of the room complete with four bunk beds to accommodate up to six in one room. The fort features a TV, a Nintendo Game Cube, board games and a desk. Meanwhile, mom and dad have a large room with a king bed, sitting area and flat-screen TV of their own.
Standard guestrooms are comfortable and provide two queen beds or one king bed. Cribs and rollaway beds are available. Kids stay and eat free at all Holiday Inns.
Mini-fridges and microwaves are standard in each guestroom and suite, as are TVs, free Wi-Fi and coffeemakers.
by Kathryn C
Well priced, very well kept rooms and very friendly staff. This is a perfect hotel if you are in town to visit mesa Verde national Park. The morning breakfast buffet is plentiful, hot and free. All the good things. Not one complaint.
by Arlethea M
This is a very comfortable hotel with some nicely remodeled rooms. You're located on the end of town nearest the Mesa Verde National Park, very close to some decent restaurants and a Safeway. There's a lot of convenience built into this location. You can walk across the parking lot to a restaurant where the food is good (not 5 star gourmet, but good!) Unfortunately, the minor inconvenience is that the fitness center for the hotel is also across the parking lot. That's not bad until the morning temperatures are around 21 degrees! But still, the rooms are very clean and offer all the amenities. The staff is very, very friendly and competent. If you travel a lot, you'll appreciate this. This hotel also has a better than usual breakfast. You can get small (pre-made) veggie omelets, pancakes and the usual cereals, yogurts, and biscuits & gravy. Bananas and apples are also offered, although I'd love to see oranges offered as well. (Red delicious apples just aren't delicious!) So, yes. I recommend it, but don't expect 5-star luxury.
The hotel's swimming pool is a bit small and located indoors. While it's perfect for winter, during summer hours, we wished we could be outdoors. The pool is open 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily.
Mesa Verde National Park
Located just down the road, Mesa Verde National Park offers families hiking trails and outdoor fun. It is just 1 mile from the hotel. Park access varies per season.
Part of the Holiday Inn's charm is its free breakfast offerings. A breakfast buffet is located in the hotel's great room beginning at 6:30 a.m. daily. During the week, breakfast ends at 9:30, while on weekends it is provided until 10 a.m.
The restaurant onsite restaurant is a standalone adjacent to the hotel's parking lot. Destination Grill features Southwestern cuisine and is open daily, 4 to 10 p.m. All guests receive a discount at the restaurant.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Guest laundry is located near the hotel's fitness center. Open daily from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m., supplies are available, as well.
The hotel's small fitness center features a treadmill, two stationary bikes, an elliptical, dumbbells and body resistance machines. It is open daily, 5 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Free Wi-Fi is provided in guestrooms, the lobby and all public areas of the hotel.
Onsite parking is complimentary for all guests.
Check-in is at 3 p.m. and check-out is at 11 a.m.
The Art of Smart Timing
Peak season for travelers visiting Mesa Verde National Park and the Four Corners area is during the summer months. During the winter, access to the park is limited. If planning to visit during the summer, book with as much advance notice as possible to secure a room, especially special, limited suites.
The Holiday Inn Express Mesa Verde-Cortez is conveniently located near Mesa Verde National Park (just 1 mile down the road), as well as Four Corners National Monument and Durango, Colorado. The hotel is situated along Main Street, just off of Highway 160.
For guests looking to fly in, the Cortez Municipal Airport is just a few minutes away, and the hotel provides a shuttle to and from the airport.
Cortez is located 10 to 15 minutes from Mesa Verde and is not a walking town. You'll need a vehicle to get to the area and to visit Mesa Verde. Once inside the national park, you're family can park and ride the park's shuttle, but you are also welcome to drive the park, which spreads a number of miles between its visitor's center entrance and attractions.