Simply put, Le Meridien Columbus: The Joseph is one of the fanciest hotels in Columbus (it recently received the Four Diamond rating from AAA) and would rank in the top 10 across the state of Ohio. Clean lines, elegance, and careful planning of every aspect of the visit makes this into a must-visit for anyone that is making it to Ohio’s capitol for business, pleasure, or anything in between.
The hotel was gracious enough to host us a few weeks back, and we were immediately impressed by the closeness of the property to the thriving downtown of Columbus. Each of the property’s 135 rooms are designed individually to establish something special each time one makes it to the hotel. Le Meridien Columbus towers above the buildings immediately around it; when one has the ability to spend a night in one of the upper-floor rooms, one can see the vital artery of High Street extending into the distance.
Looking at the décor of the hotel will take a better part of the hour. The fireplace and ample selection of art books in the foyer establish a close and cozy vibe while providing complementary Wi-Fi for those kicking up their heels. Large windows provide one with an insight into the hustle and bustle of the Short North.
The Soul bar in the hotel lobby had a number of carefully-collected microbrewery offerings, including efforts from Lancaster, Ohio’s Rockmill Brewery.There were special rare bottles contained on the bar’s menu, but we were pleasantly surprised at the complexity of the brewery’s farmhouse ale. The bar has a beautiful setup of their immense amount of wine selections, with a hand-written listen of the cocktails that are available for patrons. An example of their visionary drinks comes in their Ginger Delight, which has a Tito’s Vodka base with black walnut bitters (from Rochester’s Fee Brothers, Inc.), homemade gingersyrup and finished with sparkling wine. For those wanting to have a dinner after getting to the hotel, The Guild House (a Cameron Mitchell Restaurant) is attached to the hotel. The Guild House offers a seasonally-changing menu for each part of the day, from breakfast to dinner, for those meeting at a brunch or winding down a day with a dessert.
The art aspect of Le Meridien Columbus is perhaps the biggest attraction at the property. The walls of the second floor are studded with a wide variety of contemporary art, while across the street, the Pizzutti collection (632 North Park Street) is personally catered by Ron and Ann Pizzutti, world-renowned art collectors. A night’s stay at the hotel allows individuals to take their own private tour of the gallery. While there are specific hours to the Pizzutti collection, there is an additional art collection on the second floor of Le Meridien Columbus capturing local artist (the Ohio Portfolio). Each of the rooms at the hotel contains a print from a local artists, which are all available for purchase from the hotel.
Fitness centers are typically considered to be an afterthought in many hotels, with only a small amount of activities, machines, or free-weights available to those lodged. The Le Meridien Columbus creates a stellar gym on their property, with a number of stationary bikes, treadmills, ellipticals, and a whole slew of free-weights from a few pounds up until the fifty-pound mark. Couple these inclusions with a multi-use machine and one can be assured that they will receive a workout that is comparable to that at their local gym. Large flat-screen TVs can be tuned to any one of the large amount of cable channels thatthe hotel provides, while the Le Meridien Columbus provides individuals with single-use hairties and earbuds for their time at the gym. To ensure that muscle catabolization does not occur, a bowl of apples is the final gift that the hotel provides.
The Valet parking service that is offered by the hotel is stellar. If one has driven through High Street in Columbus, they will understand the sheer business of the road. Even at rush hour or during dinner time, one will be able to have their vehicle for use within 10-15 minutes .The service is a pittance at $30. Upon exiting the vehicle, a friendly and careful set of porters ensure that the luggage is brought up to the room to one’s specifications.
The rooms have a modern feel to them that will make individuals feel as if they have been transferred back to the mid-1960s,albeit with all of the amenities that one would desire from a hotel today. A mini-bar and ample sweets are available for a small charge, with a refrigerator allowing one to chill their drinks for the night. A good amount of current-generation technology is also present at Le Meridien Columbus. The paper-thin television fills up one of the walls, while there are USB plugs mounted into the side of the headboard to allow individuals to charge their smartphones, tablets, or other electronic devices. The hotel is smoke free. For any sort of toiletries or other things that one may require when they are visiting the hospital, the concierge is knowledgeable and more than happy to help.
Another high-water mark for the Le Meridien Columbus has to be the quality of the bed in their suites. Where many hotels are perfectly fine skimping on mattresses and sheets, this hotel has chosen a firm yet comfortable mattress. The sheets and covers will keep one warm while ensuring that one is not overly hot or sweaty. The thermostat on the wall ensures that the temperature of the suite is perfect, keyed in to the tenth of a degree.
The hotel takes steps to separate the bathroom / shower from the rest of the suite; a sliding door blocked light and the noises from the former. Rich tile work makes the shower pop amongst the more muted tones of the rest of the room, a representation of cleanliness amongst the fine trappings. The room is tastefully decorated with hand-chosen art, adding a further bit of uniqueness to an already-unparalleled experience.
To speak a little more about the central location of Le Meridien Columbus is essential, not only for the wide array of different restaurants and shops that are available within a mile but for the sheer ambiance of the walk. The friendliness of Columbus means that one will be invited wherever they go. Of particular note within a mile of the hotel has to be The North Market, which has a number of different stalls selling artisanal goods and a wide variety of affordable cuisine. The ZenCha tea salon has a large number of different teas from around the world along with an inviting atmosphere.
While breakfast is typically a humdrum affair with eggs and bacon, Le Meridien Columbus has created something special with their various room service offerings. Goat cheese, ham, and fresh fruit with rosemary.
The sweet side of Le Meridien Columbus is a fun addition to the visit, with eclairs specifically designed with Columbus in mind; Joseph Éclair is inspired by Joseph Pizzuti’s favorite dessert treat, the Italian Anisette Cookie. The light Italian puff pastry is filled with a lemon and anise flavored cream and topped with whipped cream, a biscotti cookie and lemon shavings. To make their éclair into a reality, the Le Meridien Columbus has worked with a local bakery (Pistacia Vera). Smaller delights are available during the day at the bar.
During the week, the rooms at Le Meridien Columbus will begin around $225. I would heartily recommend getting a suite at the higher floors just to have the same breathtaking view. While a great many of the attractions in Columbus are within walking distance of the hotel, having a vehicle or cab service is essential to visit some of the world-class breweries around the area.
It is no secret that visiting attractions in downtown Columbus is a bit difficult owing to the population density of the Short North and nearby neighborhoods, but reserving a night at Le Meridien Columbus: The Joseph allows one to have a home base, with considerable ease in going to some of the city’s fanciest dining and shopping experiences. The level of comfort and accommodation offered by the hotel is unparalleled and should be sought out by anyone that wishes to have a transformative experience. Whether there for business, a night to unwind, or something in between, Le Meridien Columbus: The Joseph will ensure that you are given an out of this world experience.
Le Meridien Columbus: The Joseph / 620 North High Street, Columbus, OH 43215 / https://twitter.com/LMTheJoseph / http://www.starwoodhotels.com/lemeridien/property/overview/index.html?propertyID=3872&language=en_US