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Soaring Eagle Resort

April 11, 2010

  • 2395 S. Leaton Road
  • Mount Pleasant, MI 48858
  • 888-732-4537
  • Website

When it came to try to find a destination for our mini-vacation, we turned to country music.  I started scouring concert venues from here to Pittsburgh looking for a country singer we haven’t seen yet in concert or would want to see again.  The list is pretty short.  We’ve seen almost everyone we’ve wanted to see and there are only a few we’d like to see again.

We found one of those at Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort in Mount Pleasant.  J and I have been to the casino in the past, but we’ve never seen a show there or stayed at the hotel.  This time, we decided to do both.

The hotel at Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort is part of one large building on South Leaton Road just east of Mount Pleasant on the Isabella Indian Reservation.  The hotel take up the north part of the building and there are actually two towers with 514 guest rooms.  The resort is a AAA 4-Diamond property that includes a spa, a fitness center, pool, conference center, and Kids Quest which is an arcade to keep your kids entertained while you’re gambling.

There is a valet option, but there’s also large parking lots in front of both the hotel and the casino as well as a parking garage that is connected to the casino building so you never have to walk outside if you don’t want to.  The property is set up with the large conference center acting as a buffer between the hotel and the casino floor.

4:00 PM is check-in time and everyone wanted to check in at the same time.  We actually got there about 3:45 and we walked in the doors, there was a line at the reception counter that looked more like something you’d see at an amusement park.  I’ve stayed in a lot of hotels since I travel a little for work and I have never had to wait in a line to check in at a hotel.

To their credit, they did have five people working the desk trying to keep people moving, but a late check-in time like that makes people antsy.  Everyone’s going to show up right at 4:00 because in reality, most would have liked to check in much, much earlier. 

It took about fifteen minutes for us to get to the front of the line.  Once we did, the check in process went fairly quick.  The room was already paid because they require to pay for at least the first day of your stay in advance.  You don’t just give a credit card to hold it, you actually pay for it.  We just had to put a credit card down for incidentals at check in time.

There are two different elevators for the different towers.  We were in the north tower, so we headed for the north elevator this is near the gift shop and the fitness center.  We took advantage of the shop a couple of times to grab a couple pops.  They also had beer and liquor and the prices seemed in line.  I heard another guest say a six-pack was a little cheaper than what he normally gets at the gas station.

Our room was on the seventh floor which is the highest level.   When you get off the elevators, there’s a lounge right in front of you and room wings to either side.  We headed to our room which was on the side opposite the elevator shaft and about five rooms down (remember that location….)

Upon opening the room, we were greeted with a tile floor and a huge bathroom.  By far, that was J’s favorite part of the stay.  There was a  nice large sink area with a huge mirror and the soap and shampoo were Bath & Body Works products.  The soap was even her favorite scent Warm Vanilla Sugar.

I headed to the bed to put our bags down and wasn’t really happy with what I ran in to.  The bed was fine as was the space, but the furniture was the cheap armouir that you find at Holiday Inn’s.  To make it worse, the TV was pathetic.  I have to remind you this is a 4-Diamond Resort that cost me $180/night.  The TV was a 19″ Magnavox tube TV from the Mid-80’s with the cheap hotel cable system.  Sure, if you want to pay $15 for a movie, it might be ok, but do you really want to watch Avatar on TV that was dated before HD came out?  I usually stay at Red Roof Inn’s when I travel on my own dime.  For $50, I expect that kind of TV.  When I pay as much as I’ve ever paid for a hotel room, I want a HDTV with more than 20 channels….15 of which are news and sports channels.

Anyway, we did a little gambling, went out to eat then came back and changed for the concert.  After a great show, we did a little more gambling, got up a few bucks, then went back to the room for the night.  The entire complex had complementary Wi-Fi so J and I got caught up on all the unimportant things we needed to get caught up on, watched some Flint news, then went to bed.  I stayed up a little later than J watching TV and the whole time I kept hearing this whooshing sound.  It wasn’t until I shut the TV that I figured it out.  It was the elevator.  And it was constant.   All night long.  I have never stayed in a hotel where the elevator kept me up all night and again, did not expect it from a highly touted resort.  I thought maybe I was just hearing things until we got in the elevator to check out the next morning.  A lady who got on the same time as us asked if we heard it all night.  They were unlucky enough to be right next to the elevator shaft, but you still don’t want to pay almost $200/night and not get a good night’s sleep.  We chose to do the video check out so we didn’t have to go back to the desk, but she went down to the desk to check out and make sure they knew she wasn’t happy.

As for the bed, J and I were split on this one.  I thought it was alright.  I was a little disappointed there weren’t more pillows.  Marriott’s dress the bed up to look like a girl’s bed with so many pillows you have to get a back hoe out to clear them off just to get in bed.  At Soaring Eagle, there were three pillows across the head of the bed and one more in the closet.  Not a huge deal, just surprising.  I actually thought the pillows that were on the bed were pretty comfortable and I thought the bed was comfortable as well.  Even though J slept a lot heavier and longer than I did, she thought the bed was a little hard.  I couldn’t sleep not because I couldn’t get comfortable, but because of the elevator going up and down all night.

Overall, I was a little disappointed.  It wasn’t worth the price.  It’s a really nice hotel, but you are really paying for the location.  It works out great if you want to gamble, drink and not have to worry about trying to get back to Mount Pleasant.  It even worked out great for us to see a show and not have to worry about being rushed, finding parking, and getting into the venue.  After the show, we walked back out into the casino and played a little more before retiring for the night.  As far as comparing goes, it’s probably, by far, the best hotel in Mount Pleasant, but it doesn’t measure up to the same level as a Marriott or a Hilton.  If you’re planning a trip to Mount Pleasant and want to stay near the casino, Soaring Eagle is your best choice, but I’m not so sure I’d make it a destination just for a getaway.

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