Where to stay in Grand Rapids: Amway Grand Plaza Hotel review

The following post is written by Pit Stops for Kids’ Midwest contributor, Kate Basi.

Situated on the banks of the Grand River in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids, the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel is one of the landmarks of the city’s skyline. It consists of two distinct sections—the historic Pantlind Hotel, built in 1913, along with a modern glass high rise tower that offers stunning views of the city.

amway-hotel

Room amenities:

Our family of six was given a Tower luxury suite, with views of the river and the city on three sides. A spacious living room included a 42-inch TV and sleek, modern mirrored decor. We had ample shelving and a spacious mini-fridge as well as a jetted tub with luxurious shower options. The only thing we lacked was a microwave.

The bedroom included a king-sized bed as well as a second TV, a lounge couch and a spacious desk (complimentary wifi) that gave this working mom room a place to be productive while the kids watched TV. The view of the river from that desk was icing on the cake.

amway-grand

We were also given a connecting bedroom with similar decor and two queen beds. Smaller and more functional (for instance, it had only a walk-in shower, not a tub), that room nonetheless had a desk and great views of its own. The layout, as well as the luxury bedding in both rooms, allowed everyone in our family of six to follow their normal sleep schedule despite being away from home.

It’s the details that make the Amway Grand Plaza such a great place to stay. Our suite came with plush his-and-hers bathrobes, and the kids were particularly entranced by the mural artwork on the underside of the coffee table, which was reflected in a mirror below.

That attention to detail can be seen in other parts of the hotel as well. Without fail, the staff was helpful and courteous, and generally responded quickly to questions or requests.

amway-pool

 

The fourth-floor fitness center includes an outdoor tennis court and an indoor pool, as well as a workout room set up with multiple ellipticals, treadmills, stationary bicycles, and weights. The pool area is relaxing and designed with beauty as well as function in mind. Parents can lounge on cushioned wicker chairs and couches separated by potted plants. Our kids enjoyed seeing the water change color under the fiber optic lights. As an added convenience, the fitness center boasts a snack bar. The hours are extensive, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.

 

What To Do:

 

Amway-GrandThe Amway Grand Plaza is located in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids, connected by skywalk to DeVos Convention Center and within easy walking distance of numerous attractions. There are at least four museums–the Public Museum of Grand Rapids, which includes a planetarium and high-visibility traveling exhibits (King Tut, when we were there); the Gerald Ford Presidential Museum; the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum; and the Grand Rapids Art Museum. The Amway’s riverside location offers not only beautiful views but also access to the river walk on either side of the water. Downtown Grand Rapids boasts numerous pedestrian/bicycle bridges and cultural opportunities, from carillon concerts at the university across the river to a ballet school, a concert hall, live music at the band shell on Rosa Parks Circle, and an ice hockey arena that hosts big-name tours.

Dining:

Amway Grand

The Amway Grand Plaza includes two upscale dining options: Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse on the ground floor of the Pantlind wing and Cygnus 27 on the 27th floor of the Tower. For more family-friendly pricing, visit GP Sports, which offers bar & grill fare (burgers, sandwiches, pizza, and appetizers). Gluten-free and vegetarian options are notated on the menu. Coffee lovers will be happy to know that there is also a Starbucks in the building.

Rates:

Room rates start at approximately $200/night on weeknights. Our Tower Luxury Suite was in the $400/night range. Valet parking is available for $29/day, self-park for $19.

For downtown lodging close to almost everything and a comfortable, luxurious night’s sleep, you can’t do better than the Amway Grand Plaza.

Location:

187 Monroe Avenue NW, Grand Rapids, Michigan, adjacent to DeVos Convention Center.

Our family stayed at the Amway Plaza Grand as guests of Experience Grand Rapids in return for an honest review.

About the author

Kathleen Basi Freelance writer Kathleen Basi has lived her entire life in "flyover country," but she's an old pro at road trips, having taken the first of many extended driving vacations at the tender age of five. She's a huge proponent of letting kids see and experience the space between "here" and "there." Find her at http://kathleenbasi.com/blog/.

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