Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center Review
To be honest, I thought that my review of the Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center would be a parody. I am a hotel snob and stay mostly at Hyatt properties. However recently I needed to spend about 8 hours on an overnight layover at Burbank Bob Hope Airport on a mileage run. The closest Hyatt is the Andaz West Hollywood and I couldn’t justify the cost for perhaps 6 hours at the property. I had some IHG points through the Priceless Surprises promo and the Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center offered a free shuttle to/from BUR so I booked it for 30,000 points. I just needed a place to sleep a few hours after all. It ended up being a completely decent hotel.
Location: Okay, first of all, I can’t say enough good things about Burbank’s airport. It is small (14 gates) and located just north of the Hollywood sign. The plane lands and the taxi to the gate is no more than 60 seconds. Another 60 second walk and you are out of the terminal.
The Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center is about a 10 minute drive from the airport. It is located just of I-5 in the heart of the entertainment studios. While I didn’t have time to explore the area, I noticed there were plenty of restaurants and shopping right across the street. Universal Studios is 5 miles away.
Check In: Upon landing, I fired up my cell phone and waited for an internet connection. I walked out to the curb of the airport, thinking I would need to call the hotel for a shuttle but there was a Holiday Inn van already there. The driver confirmed that he was going to the Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center. He was there for the Southwest flight crew but had room for me.
When I arrived around 11:30pm, there was one staff on duty. The flight crew were able to self check in it seemed, so he helped me out. I asked about the morning shuttle and he said the first one was at 5:15am and that he would be there in the morning to check me out. I received a 500 point welcome bonus (as I have Platinum status through my IHG credit card) and headed up to my room on the top floor (18) of the property.
The lobby was what I would expect from a Holiday Inn, nothing fancy but clean. That could describe the guest room as well. There was clearly a bar or lounge on the floor off the lobby as there was some karaoke hard rocking the Thursday night. I was tempted to join in but knew I needed every minute of sleep I could get. The hotel is quite large, over 400 rooms total in two towers; the website says it is the biggest Holiday Inn on the west coast.
The Room: I had a top floor room in the northeast tower that faced I-5. I could hear street noise but when I turned on the AC/fan unit it covered it up.
The room had a King bed and was pretty generic. It was clean and, my guess, had been renovated fairly recently as all the furniture was in good shape (the website says 2015).
There were all the standards; desk, flatscreen tv as well as a microwave and mini fridge with complimentary bottle (singular) of water.
Besides the water bottle, I received another welcome gift; two mints next to the ice bucket and plastic cups!
I didn’t turn on the tv but it looked like there were good channel options.
The door seemed quite secure. However I didn’t notice if there was an in room safe.
The bed was very comfortable. A nice touch was that two of the pillows were labeled “firm” and two labeled “soft”.
The Bathroom: Same song, different verse. The bathroom at the Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center was very clean and basic. There were plenty of bright white towels although the counter space was lacking. A combo bath/shower had one of those typical shower curtains that could be washed between each use (I hope it is, it looked clean).
The one standout point were the bathroom amenities that were Coconut Lime Verbena scent from Bath & Body Works; a product line that I use at home for my bathroom hand soap. It smells delicious. There was also a small bottle of generic mouthwash.
Everything Else: I can’t really say anything else about the property as I was there for such a short time. I understand there is a pool and garden. I noticed a small workout room off the porte-cochere (glorified alley) as well as a “business center” and arcade with games from the early 1990’s (radical!).
At the end of the day, a hotel is about getting a good night sleep. Just like a flight is about getting from point A to point B. Luxury is always nice, but as long as it is quiet, clean, safe, with a comfortable bed and warm water, the rest is icing on the cake. Had I been spending any length of time at the hotel this might be a very different review. But for someone just looking for a place to get some rest, the Holiday Inn Burbank-Media Center will do just fine. Maybe I am becoming less of a travel snob; but I doubt it.