When I first walked into the lobby at the Sheraton Bloomington, I felt like I was walking into a Vegas hotel. The lobby was huge & open. It had a high window ceiling that made it feel modern & bright. Next I saw the chic, luxe decor and was promptly greeted by smiling, welcoming faces. First impressions are a big deal for me and usually are indicative of how the rest of my stay will be. So within moments, I knew I was in good hands.
Sheraton Bloomington is pioneering some pretty innovative technology that will probably be the norm at hotels soon. Before there were cards, there were keys. And now there are apps. I was super excited to see how this all worked. Before walking through the door, I took a minute to register with the SPG app to activate keyless entry. When I arrived at my room, I just held the phone up to the door and it unlocked it for me. Um coolest thing. So convenient. Also, it’s added security. Meaning more peace of mind and a more comfortable stay overall.
I could have seen myself camping out in the Sheraton Club room all day, taking turns relaxing and working. It has customized butler service so you feel quite like a queen. There are top-shelf beverage options & hors d’ oeuvres available throughout the day.
Local photographer/videographer extraordinaire & friend of mine, Paul Weaver, came over to grab some shots of the stay. I love working with people who are passionate about what they do. You can tell because he gets ideas as he’s going and on the fly creates really original vantage points and fresh departures from the normal picture. I really respect his work.
We went down for cocktails at the hotel lobby bar, Sidebar, another crazy thing… it turns into a Starbucks in the mornings. You honestly would have no idea that this swanky hip bar could flip seamlessly to be a fully-functioning coffee/breakfast shop. So at the bar, we chatted with Eric, a bartender who had been there 16 years. I feel like that in itself says a lot about a place. Loyalty & investment from your team show strength of brand and overall better service and experience delivery. Eric agreed and said he’s not the only one, a lot of people have been there many years. The cocktails were unbelievable. Characteristic of something you’d find at an edgy downtown spot.
Another Sheraton team-member, Sammy, who’s been on board over 30 years, told us about a couple who celebrated their wedding anniversary at the Sheraton every year. It was the 40th year this last time so they wanted it to be extra special. The wife called ahead of time to request a certain kind of dish for dinner that wasn’t on the menu at Lela. The chef not only accommodated but worked with her to design an entire several-course dinner just for the two of them. I love that!!
Lela is the restaurant attached to the Sheraton Bloomington. Actually almost teared up a bit when I heard that every month Lela works with a new local nonprofit and the proceeds from each drink sale go directly towards the work of the cause. This month was Still Kickin, I ordered the cocktail, it was great!
A few friends joined me for dinner and we had such a nice time. It was the night before I left for Europe so it was really nice to just relax on the patio and enjoy the company of some Minnesota gems. We ordered basically everything on the menu and everything tasted insanely good. The deviled eggs were like an art piece that belonged in the Walker. The Tagliatellini pasta was amazing. And the owner of the white lamborghini who regularly spends the evening on the patio with his friends recommends the lobster truffle gnocchi. Looking at his table & ride I’m thinkin, that’s us in a few years, right? 🙂