Located just 30 minutes from Reno and Lake Tahoe, the Courtyard Marriott in Carson City offers a nice-sized and well-priced base for exploring this area. When our family attended a wedding in Nevada’s historic state capital (yes, it’s Carson City, not Reno), we added on a couple extra days to drive around Lake Tahoe and visit the Old West town of Virginia City. Staying here was a perfect fit.
For those with extra cash they hope to part with, the hotel is also conveniently located within steps to the Fandango Casino. But even if you’re not into gambling, the casino houses Dukes Steak House—a fantastic place we dined one night on excellent dry-aged prime beef.
When Courtyard Marriott transformed all their hotel lobbies a couple years ago –check out Tim Leffel’s post, he writes about the “technological centerpiece” of the lobbies: a large touch-screen flat screen where guests can find local information (attractions, restaurants, weather, etc.) at their fingertips.
In Carson City, we found this especially helpful as we planned our day trip around Lake Tahoe. Being November, we knew the weather was changeable in the Sierra Nevada mountains (remember the Donner party?). Locals had also informed us that CalTrans implements “chain control” if roads around the lake are slick with snow or ice. And unless you’re driving a 4-wheel vehicle with snow tires, the Highway patrol makes no exceptions. (Even if you argue you’ve driven in Minnesota under much worse conditions.) Fortunately, the November day we went, it was unseasonably warm –in the 60s—and sunny.
Besides the touch screen in the lobby, there was also a cozy sitting area around a fireplace.
Nearby was the “Bistro” –the generic name given all the Courtyard’s food service areas. Breakfast is served here (not included in room rate) as well as snacks, lighter meals and Starbucks coffee during the day—transforming into a cocktail bar in the evening.
We didn’t have breakfast at the hotel but went across the street to the Red Hut Café (there’s also one in South Lake Tahoe) for an awesome breakfast one of the mornings.
Check in was fast, easy and friendly—and our room (one of 88 at this four- story Marriott) was clean, comfortable and spacious with a king bed, sofa (makes into a bed), desk area with lots of plugins, free wi-fi, plus HDTV. Like all the other rooms, it also had a coffeemaker, and refrigerator. Note: Ask for a room on the fourth floor and not facing the highway (they’re quieter).
The bathroom was a typical mid-range chain hotel style with combination shower/tub. I appreciated the ample counter space—and liked the Paul Mitchell hair and bath products—one of my favorites and a nice little perk.
The hotel also has an indoor pool and a Jacuzzi plus a small fitness room.
Rates start at $159 but there are packages and deals available. Make sure to check the website where reservations can be made. You can also compare rates and make your reservations through Hotels.com, Travelocity or Expedia.
Review and photos (except where noted) by Donna Tabbert Long