Your summer road trip might be a bit nicer this year. Why? Because more and more motels have been sprucing things up. According to The New York Times, over the past few months, lots of motel chains have been getting makeovers, adding amenities that you’d normally find only in upscale hotels. For example, Red Roof Inn added rain-flow shower heads and pillow-top mattresses. The Super 8 chain has new bedding and granite countertops in the bathrooms. The Holiday Inn has a new signature scent that wafts into the rooms – citrus and white tea, with undercurrents of woods and herbs. Motel 6 has taken their nondescript roadside pit stops and given them chic white-and-wood interiors that won a Travel & Leisure magazine 2010 design award. However, travelers can still enjoy a Motel 6 room – complete with a comfy bed, a flat-screen TV, and a free cup of coffee for $29 a night. You can see which Motel 6 locations have been remodeled on their website.
So, why all the upgrades? Experts say the down economy is pressuring motels to become a bit more posh. Because as room rates plummeted everywhere, travelers started trading up to hotels they normally couldn’t afford. So motels had to hustle and keep up with what hotels offered to attract and keep customers. The other good news is - once hotel room rates start to rise again and guests head back to cheaper motels, they’ll find their accommodations much more luxurious.