TRAVEL THERE: OMNI LA MANSION DE RIO
San Antonio Hotel with Historic Significance offers Modern Indulgence on the Riverwalk
I love swanky hotels, but usually I opt for bargains, in order to travel more frequently. Still, there are opulent hotels on my wish list and every once and a while, I get the chance to check them off. That’s what happened on this trip to San Antonio.
Thank you, Expedia
As I planned a trip to see the Riverwalk’s Christmastime luminaries, just for grins, I checked La Mansion‘s pricing on expedia. As if Santa were filling my order a little early, there was a deal I couldn’t resist. I rocketed up the stairs to beg Bill’s indulgence, but he was in a good mood, so he told me to book the deal before I even had the chance to kneel.
I’d wished for La Mansion long before it was part of the Omni chain. Unless I’m completely off, I think it used to be part of the Rosewood chain that has THE Mansion, here in Dallas. Whatever the case, I’d wander around the Riverwalk wishing that hotel was my vacation address. This time it would be.
Parking There Was Not Half the Fun
After a visit to the Witte Museum we drove to La Mansion with little to no trouble (thank you GPS), but upon arrival found a $35 hickey for valet parking. That strained our spartan ways. The staff told us we could park across the street cheaper, but that begged the whole luggage thing and the lot across the street charged for in-and-out. So we bit the bullet, ponied up for the parking and even tipped a bellhop. I think the tip may have actually caused Bill physical pain.
Luxuriating in the Splendor
Once our pocketbook quit bleeding, a look around our room excited us. La Mansion occupies a building which was a university, a long long time ago. Wood beams hold up the ceiling and rod iron balconies are just outside the French doors. Since the hotel is an Omni, the furniture, upholstery and drapes are lush. As we inspected our accommodations and tried on the luxurious robes provided, we decided we weren’t as upset about the price of parking as we thought we were going to be.
Bill whipped open his laptop to check the market and I started to unpack. Next to the TV was a lovely bottle of water and I thought, “What a nice gesture,” but thankfully I checked the hang-tag before opening it. Six bucks! So, I opened the dresser and yes, there it was the minibar and snacks. So many ways to capture extra income! At least there was free shampoo. (They didn’t have a safe in the room, though and I thought that was an oversight.)
I’m poking a little fun at the Omni, but we actually enjoyed our stay there completely. The historical building gave everything a very special touch and we did get top notch service. The bed was beyond comfortable and if the only thing we could see out of our window was the parking lot across the street, that was our fault for not choosing to pay extra for a room with a view.
The True Parking Solution
We also figured out the parking problem. See, overnight valet parking is $35, but they don’t charge you for each in and out. The overnight parking across the street is $10, and I assumed it was $10 every time – and that could get expensive quick. But across the street you aren’t charged the overnight price every time, only when you stay overnight. You can short term park much cheaper. Since short term valet parking at the Omni is only $15, that evening we recovered our car and went to dinner. When we came back, we parked across the street. The good news is the Omni never charged us the $15. Thank you Omni!
I’d Do It Again
The next morning we had breakfast in the hotel’s Las Canarias Restaurant, but I’ve already talked too much for today. The Omni La Mansion De Rio is a lovely hotel and I’m so glad we stayed there. Since the Polar Express hit while we were there, it was a little cold to traipse across the river for the privilege of working out at the Omni spa property, but we did peek in and decided it would be great if the weather was friendlier.
Do I think you should stay at Omni’s La Mansion de Rio? I have to say yes. It was a remarkable experience. The proximity to everything on the Riverwalk and the downtown area was perfect for sightseeing. We were blown away by the service. Just keep your eyes open. Who knows when expedia will have another deal! (And keep coming back, because I’ll eventually tell you about breakfast!)
2 thoughts on “Omni’s La Mansion de Rio in San Antonio”
Nothing makes a time away from home feel like a real vacation more than great accommodations. Tom and I made an agreement early on in our marriage that when we were driving anywhere just to get from point A to point B (and there’s a lot of that in my line of work), we’d stay at motels that were moderate but safe. Then I’d turn in my expense report and ask for the straight travel allowance reimbursement. The gov would have paid for me to stay in much nicer accommodations, nicer meals, etc. (trust me, it took a lot of hard work to reach that level) but we always tucked the extra travel money away and saved the lush accommodations for times when we were going to have at a minimum 3 day stay.
We have a list of 4 and 5 star locations that are destination stays simply because of the accommodations. This is especially true in the B&B market.
I only want to pay the big bucks when I’m going to be there for several days. Since I love road trips, it seems like a sin to arrive someplace in the dark and be gone early the next morning when you’ve paid a premium to be there. And I hear you on the B&B’s. Having been to Virginia several times I really have no need to get back there anytime soon, except that I’ve gotten to know Michelle Darnell of Belle Grove in Port Royal through blogging. So now I’m busy putting together a trip in that direction.