RISMEDIA, April 23, 2010—TripAdvisor, one of the world’s most popular and largest travel communities, announced its quirkiest U.S. accommodations, according to TripAdvisor editors and travelers. From sharing a bedroom with King Tut to waking up among tigers, these properties offer truly unique places to stay. And TripAdvisor travelers seem to enjoy a little ‘quirk’ with their lodging: 76% who described a hotel as ‘quirky’ also rated it either 4 or 5 (out of 5) on tripadvisor.com.
1. Not Too Cool for School: McMenamins Kennedy School, Portland, Oregon – Catching some Zs in class was previously frowned upon, but no longer: guests are encouraged to snooze and relax at this elementary school-turned-quirky hotel where the guestrooms were once classrooms – still complete with chalkboards today – and the auditorium is now a movie theater. And at an average of $104 a night, it’s an inexpensive education.
2. Railway Relaxation: Forget-Me-Not Lodge and the Aurora Express, Fairbanks, Alaska – Forget you won’t after a night spent in a restored Alaska Railroad car with views out over Fairbanks, Alaska and the Alaska Mountain Range. Completely authentic, one was even a hospital car from World War II.
3. Two Dog Night: Dog Bark Park Inn, Cottonwood, Idaho – Man’s best friend becomes traveler’s best friend at this very unconventional Idaho inn where not only is the entire building shaped like a giant dog, but carved dog statues made by the owner, a headboard covered in carved dogs, and plenty of real furry friends all make this a truly canine-oriented lodging treat.
4. Caving Inn: Kokopelli Cave Bed and Breakfast, Farmington, New Mexico – No dank, dark quarters here – in this unique sandstone lair carved out of the side of a cliff, travelers can have their cave and heat it, too: the earthy atmosphere is paired with warm, inviting accommodations and the luxuries of home.
5. Theme Scene: Victorian Mansion at Los Alamos, Los Alamos, California – The eccentric suites at the Victorian Mansion at Los Alamos range from “Gypsy” to “Pirate” to “Fifties” themes. Adorning the Egyptian Suite are Persian rugs, images of the desert and even a life-size sarcophagus of King Tut himself, hiding a surprise for guests.
6. Cats’ Cradle: Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge, Eureka Springs, Arkansas – Lions and bobcats and cougars, oh my! Not for the faint of heart, Turpentine Creek gives travelers the chance to get up close and personal with nature’s big cats. The animals are housed in enclosures right outside several of the rooms, giving travelers access to incredible sights and sounds.
7. Tent-alizing: Wigwam Motel, Holbrook, Arizona – “Have you slept in a Wigwam lately?” asks the Wigwam Motel’s front sign, enticing travelers to spend a quirky but comfortable night in one of the motel’s Wigwams along Route 66.
8. On the Bandwagon: Adobe Grand Villas, Sedona, Arizona – Travelers nostalgic for the Wild West will enjoy sleeping in a covered wooden wagon in the Wagon Wheel Villa, or enjoying the enormous and aptly-named Hacienda Villa, complete with whirlpool tub beside a terracotta fireplace. To top it off, this quirky accommodation has breadmakers in each of its 15 unique, historical villas.
9. Dell-ectable Fifties: Shady Dell RV Park, Bisbee, Arizona – In Bisbee, Arizona, there are nine small places where the ‘50s are alive and kickin’ – nine vintage travel trailers outfitted to look like an authentic ‘50s diner, a “Polynesian Palace,” a yacht and more. With LPs spinning on the old record player and lawn flamingos out the door, this property turns back the clock.
10. Tree-top Stop: Winvian, Morris, Connecticut – A night spent in a true treehouse? Sleeping in a 17,000-pound restored U.S. Coast Guard helicopter? Travelers can do either at this property nestled in the Connecticut countryside, home to a total of 18 whimsical cottages designed by innovative architects.
“Quirky appears to be ‘in’ in 2010, with these off-beat properties among the most beloved by our members,” said Christine Petersen, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor. “From uniquely themed villas to wacky dog-shaped inns, these odd accommodations can be a really fun way to spice up a vacation.”
For more information, visit www.tripadvisor.com.