In one of the United States’ best cities for those who love food, Ann Arbor’s Kensington Hotel is a modern boutique place to stay. The hotel is about a 10-minute drive to the college town’s downtown shops and restaurants and just seven minutes from the University of Michigan’s Big House, the largest sports stadium in the country (get an aerial view of it via a flyover in a WWII B-25 bomber from the Yankee Air Museum).
The Kensington’s light-filled lobby welcomes guests. You’ll find people soaking up the atmosphere — or the warmth from the fireplace — in the comfortable chairs and enjoying complimentary treats from the Viennese Coffee Bar. On the left when you enter is the hotel’s restaurant, Relish, with its international menu and craft beers from Michigan’s excellent selection. Go right for the hotel’s 200 rooms and for the indoor pool (the largest in the city), hot tub, sauna, gym, plus an outdoor patio area with a soothing water fountain and a bonfire.
The decor of the guestrooms and suites is in contemporary greys with pops of sunshine yellow. The king (or two doubles) bed is plush with very fluffy pillows, and bedside tables have easy access plugs. I spent my days and evenings exploring all over Ann Arbor and was grateful to have an excellent sleep throughout my stay. The carpeted rooms have a desk and a couch or easy chair with footstool. A microwave, mini-fridge and coffee maker make snacking easy. The flat-screen TV has oodles of channels, but note there’s no room safe. Dog-friendly rooms are available if you’re travelling with a fuzzy friend.
The marble bathrooms feature fabulous Beekman 1802 bath products (you may have seen the owners on the Cooking Channel or when they won The Amazing Race). The sink has a large counter for all your stuff; it’s in its own area with a large closet. There’s a separate room for the toilet and shower-curtained bathtub/shower. Some rooms have a whirlpool soaking tub too.
Executive rooms on the third floor have access to a club lounge which serves a complimentary light breakfast with muffins, bagels, pastries, cereal, yogurt and fruit, plus juices and coffees, teas and hot chocolate. It’s perfect for grabbing something to go or enjoying in the lounge. Hors d’ouvres are served at evening receptions, but I was too busy checking out Ann Arbor’s fabulous dining scene so can’t report on it.