Travel Lesson #38 – A Hotel Deal That Seems To Good To Be True…Is

My husband and I went away for the weekend. He wanted to go check out a dirt race track in Lancaster, SC, about 3 hours away from us.  I recently received a brochure in the mail called Waterfalls of the South Carolina Upcountry. There are 30 of them. I love waterfalls, so we will eventually see every single one.

Reedy River Falls in Greenville, SC

Reedy River Falls in downtown Greenville, SC

One of the waterfalls was only a 2 hour drive from the racetrack, in Greenville, SC, so we decided to make a weekend of it.

In an effort to save a little money, we tried to find an inexpensive hotel. We’d never been to Greenville before, so we weren’t familiar with the parts of town we shouldn’t drive in, let alone spend the night in.

We know now.

The hotel (which shall remain nameless – NOT a national chain) looked run down as we pulled into the driveway. We gave them the benefit of the doubt, checked in and went to our room.  On the way, we passed by what they claimed was a swimming pool. Unless you’re an alligator, y’all aren’t swimming in that green pool. It looked like an after thought:

“oh crap, all the other hotels have a pool, we better come up with something.”

“Here! This’ll do – quick, throw a fence up around this here piece of swamp.”


We get into the room and after the long drive, our first priority is the bathroom. Once flushed, the toilet refused to stop running. Even after we turned the water off.

The molding around the bathroom floor was falling off and there was a large repair from an obvious water leak behind the wall between the toilet and the shower. I use the term “repair” loosely. To me a repair is hardly noticeable. We could almost count the “repairs” by the various layers of putty the hotel had smudged on the wall. It wasn’t a small spot either…if they had just knocked the space out instead of “fixing” it, I could have walked through to the room on the other side.

I’m not kidding.

It was a non-smoking room that reeked of smoke. There were cigarette stains on the bathroom sink and all over the bed spread.

We saw a hole in a corner of the baseboard where overnight guests of the insect variety could have come in by the hundreds. You might be able to put that one over on other tourists, but we live in South Carolina. We’ve seen roaches (Palmetto Bugs) the size of gerbils. Black Widow spiders will mess you up. Fire ants…well, you get the idea.

There’s no way we’re sleeping here.

After an hour searching for another hotel that had rooms available, I was sharing our experience with the hotel employee at the new, nicer accommodations and she knew exactly the hotel I was talking about. She had pulled off the road there once to use their free wi-fi because she was lost and the police showed up and tried to bust her for prostitution!

Gee, what a nice place.

The moral of the story – be careful because the least expensive anything is probably not the wisest choice.


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