Thursday, July 9, 2009

Speaking of bridge runs...

When I left Charleston after my first go at the big Cooper River 10K this past April, I swore I'd be back in '10 -- and that I'd get a hotel room closer to the action next time.

On our visit, we stayed at the Charleston Marriott on Lockwood, which is about two miles from the finish line. It was also about two miles from the most interesting parts of the city: the historic districts and the university area. So whenever we wanted to go over there, we had to wait for a shuttle, ride the shuttle (sometimes through horrible traffic), and do it all over again to get back. After the race, it took 45 minutes to return to the hotel.

Anyway, this week, I e-mailed the race team down there to find out what the closest hotels to the finish line are. The answers are:

  • The Holiday Inn Charleston Historic District Hotel at 125 Calhoun St. Click here and you'll find standard rooms for $323.10/night.
  • The Francis Marion Hotel at 387 King St. Click here for the Web site. Online reservations are not being accepted yet, but you can call the hotel; they quoted me $299/night for a standard room and $329/night for deluxe rooms.
These prices aren't necessarily for the faint of heart, but they're also not out of line for Charleston. The room I got at that somewhat-out-of-the-way Marriott this past year cost me $269/night.

Hope this tip helps runners who like to plan way ahead ... especially since these two places are likely to fill up fastest.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Check out historic charleston bed and breakfast. Just google that. They rent carriage houses and basement apartments in/next to some of the large historic homes in the historic district. My wife and I have stayed in several and never had to walk more than 15 minutes to King St, Market St. or Meeting. They might be more expensive during that weekend but they were far less than a hotel room at other times.

amlinz said...

Do you think being at the finish is better? I would rather be close to the start to make the logistics easier in the am to get to the start line. I can always find a way to get back from the finish. Cab, bus, hitch hike :)

Anonymous said...

Hook up with a hot honey, and you don't have to worry about getting back to your hotel.

Anonymous said...

Think about staying on Isle of Palms or Sullivan's Island. There are beachside restaurants and bars there and its easy to get to the start line. It will be a little cheaper than downtown Charleston, but still pricey for the bridge run weekend.

Anonymous said...

Cooper River is a fun getaway weekend. A very tough to get a PR because of the crowds. So I suggest you decide, do you want to be close to downtown Charleston and the finish line or close to the start? For me going to Charleston means staying as close to downtown as I can afford. Charleston is not a cheap weekend at anytime of the year. Just factor the hotel cost into the total race weekend cost. Don't just look at the race entry fee when deciding if this is a race to attend. I stayed at the downtown Embassy Suites. No, not a cheap stay, and a few blocks from downtown, but a very unique hotel. This was the first barracks for The Citidal. Close to all the shopping, College of Charleston, and race Expo. I would rather have family and friends at the finish line than at the start. Very few spots along the course for spectators at Cooper River. There are carriages and bicycle taxis if you are too tired or too hot to walk.

Anonymous said...

You were 2 miles from the finish, but took a shuttle back? Why didn't you just walk or run back? I love staying close to start/finish line so that I can warm up on the walk there and cool down on the walk back.

Disco CL said...

Rent a house in the IOP with some friends, its worth it and will most likely be cheaper. Its a 15 minute drive but its well worth it because you can relax on the beach there and hit up several of their great food venues.
I stay in IOP every year and we have a blast.

Anonymous said...

Staying downtown (which is where the finsih is, start is in Mt. Pleasant) is IMO the only choice. Getting to the start is no big deal...getting back over afterwards I have heard is. Plus if you have loved ones with you, it is easier for them to get to the finish from downtown than from somewhere else. Plus, the thing about Charleston is BEING in Charleston...fork out the extra dough and stay downtown. The experiance is worth it.

Anonymous said...

I don't think paying $300+ per night to stay in downtown Charleston is the only option. You can find reasonable priced places on Mt. Pleasant within a 10 min drive to downtown or to the IOP beach. Last year, just a couple days before the bridge run, there were still rooms for $129 per night. I have always stayed on IOP and its a fun, laid-back place with bars and restaurants right on the beach.

And its never a problem to get back to the start area after the race. There are dozens of school busses to shuttle you back (for free) and maybe a 5 - 10 min wait to get on the bus.