Boise – Best Rated Downtown Hotels

Boise is the capital and most populated city in the state of Idaho. It is Boise City-Nampa metropolitan area’s principal city and Ada’s county seat. It also is the largest city flanked by Salt Lake City, Utah and Portland, Oregon. It is located along Boise River and situated at the foothills of Rocky Mountains. With its ideal location, Boise is a perfect place for outdoor activities. A desert, lakes and rivers are also situated within the area.

Boise is not only a place for outdoor activities. It is also proud of its museums, urban parks, festivals and events. It houses the largest university in Idaho, the Boise State University. Downtown Boise is the location of many businesses, some high-rise buildings, cultural centers, shopping hubs, dining choices and friendly Boise hotels. Boise Airport in 3201 Airport Way links the city to different parts of the United States.

Boise Downtown Hotels
Hotel 43- One of Boise’ downtown hotels, it is located in 981 Grove Street Boise, Idaho. It is situated at the heart of Boise’ business district, at the corner of Grove and 9th Street. The hotel is 5 miles away from the airport. The shopping areas, cultural centers, Boise River and greenbelt are only minutes away from Hotel 43. It has 112 rooms and suites with scenic views of the vivid foothills and dazzling city lights.

There are 8 room accommodations types to choose from. The room amenities include flat screen TV with cable, hair dryer, MP3/CD player, iron and ironing board, easy chair, executive desk, Euro-top plush bed, spa robes. A refrigerator, wet bar, sitting room and a Jacuzzi are additional features of the suites. Lavish body care products, newspaper, shoeshine, Wi-Fi Internet, airport shuttle, morning and evening service are complimentary. Chandler Steakhouse is the hotel’s in-house restaurant. It features a Martini Bar. Metro Café serves the hotel’s breakfast. They offer accommodation packages at special prices. Room rates range from $119.00 to $269.00 Advanced prepaid reservations start at $99.00. The hotel’s contact number is 1-800-243-4622.

Safari Inn Downtown- This Boise accommodation is located in 1070 Grove Street Boise, Idaho. It is only a block away from 58 restaurants, Boise Convention Center, Edwards 9 Theaters and Qwest Arena. It provides free airport shuttle to and fro. Other hotel features at no extra cost are coffee and tea, high speed Internet access, local calls, parking and use of fitness facilities, pool and sauna. The room amenities include coffee maker, refrigerator, 25″ cable TV, speaker phone, hair dryer and iron/ironing board. Pets are allowed with extra fee. Rates start at $71.10. Safari Inn Downtown’s toll free number is 2-800-541-6556.

Cambria Suites Boise Airport- This 119-room hotel is conveniently situated near the airport and Boise State University. It is at 2970 West Elder Street Boise, Idaho. Close by the hotel are the Boise River, Roaring Springs Water Park, Idaho Ice World and Zoo Boise. Some of the hotel services are Braille elevators, indoor heated pool, whirlpool, business center, meeting room, fitness center, valet cleaning and guest laundry. The room features are flat screen cable TV, high speed Internet, hair dryer, iron/ironing board, in-room safe, coffee maker, microwave, refrigerator and multiple phone lines. There are available handicapped accessible features and non smoking rooms at this Boise hotel. Reflect is the hotel’s bistro which offers breakfast and dinner. The Stay and Fly package is at $99.00 per night and the Romance package is $129 per night. Rates range from $129 to $149. Cambria Suites Boise Airport’s contact number is 208-344-7444.

Downtown Boise Attractions
When you’re checked in at a Boise city center hotel, enjoy your stay by seeing the attractions nearby. Some of must visit tourist spots are the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Idaho Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial and Opera Idaho. For dining options go to 8th Street’s cafes and restaurants. “First Thursday” is a downtown event held every first Thursday of the month. The affair is at 5 to 9 p.m. Guests are given an event map and free trolley service. They are welcomed by downtown shops with special in-store entertainment. “Alive after Five” is Boise’ famous summer concert held at the Grove Plaza every Wednesday from June to September.

Downtown Sarasota

Downtown Sarasota contains a small, walkable shopping and dining district a few blocks from the Sarasota Bayfront, east of Tamiami Trail. While Sarasota is a city, the sidewalks are not busy like most cities, unless there’s a farmers market or arts festival downtown. So it feels more like a small town during the day. At night, however, downtown Sarasota comes alive with people out and about, enjoying the many live music venues and restaurants.

Here are highlights of the various districts that make up downtown Sarasota.

FIRST STREET

The Sarasota Opera House, Selby Library, and Whole Foods Market Centre create a cultural and shopping spine along First Street. The Opera House, in soft tones of peach and cream, was extensively renovated last year. It sets a classical European tone and is very popular during Season. Ceviche Tapas Bar & Restaurant, First Street Chop House, Bijou Cafe, and Florida Studio Theater (on Palm Ave at First Street) are all situated in old buildings with character, forming a cozy downtown theatre district.

Diagonally across from the Sarasota Opera House is Selby Public Library, designed by Hoyt Architects. It floats like a big white circus tent supported by elephant-leg columns. At least that’s how it looks to this observer. Inside is a very modern, airy, natural-light-filled library with lots of Internet-capable computers, free wi-fi for using your own laptop, a spacious children’s section entered via an exotic-fishtank archway, and large collections of books, CDs, DVDs, periodicals, fiction and non-fiction books.

Whole Foods Market Centre incorporates upscale ground floor retail shops, upper-floor condominium apartments, a parking garage, and a Whole Foods Market with lots of outdoor seating. This is one of the best places in downtown Sarasota to enjoy a bite while you watch the passing scene. There’s a takeout food bar and an indoor cafe, too. Whole Foods Cafe and the Main Street corridor all offer free wi-fi in downtown Sarasota.

MAIN STREET

Stretching from Rte 301 on the east, to the Sarasota Bayfront on the west, Main Street is the spine of downtown Sarasota. The section between Rte 301 and Osprey Avenue is busiest during weekday business hours, as most of its business comes from office workers related to banking, law firms, and the courts, which are all concentrated in that part of downtown. On the corner of Main Street and Rte 301 is the Hollywood 20 Movie Theater complex. There’s a branch of the Sarasota YMCA in the same building.

From Orange Avenue west to Gulfstream Avenue, you’ll find an eclectic selection of international cuisine, from Greek to Spanish, Vietnamese to Thai, Chinese, Italian, American, French, Pan-Asian, and Fusion. There’s a health food store with supplements and a branch Post Office, art galleries, an Apple store with a cafe, bakeries, and clothing stores from women’s fashions to Brooks Brothers.

During Season, Main Street hosts many arts and crafts festivals, a biker rally, and celebrations of major holidays with rides and food vendors.

In the evening, you can bar-hop around Main Street, checking out the live music at numerous venues such as Mattison’s City Grille, Sarasota Vineyard, Pastry Arts, The Box Social, and The Gator Club.

LEMON AVENUE

Every Saturday, from 7AM to 1PM, year-round, Lemon Avenue from First Street to State Street is the epicenter of the Downtown Sarasota Farmers Market, where approximately 50 vendors offer oodles of fresh produce, including lots of organics; flowers and plants; arts and crafts; prepared foods to take home or take out; baked goods; gluten free foods; meats; and cheeses. It’s one of the best people-watching and dog-parading events in town.

The main downtown bus depot for SCAT (Sarasota County Area Transit) is located on the corner of Lemon Avenue and First Street.

STATE STREET

It’s easy to miss State Street, quietly perched one block south of Main Street. State of the Arts Gallery shows work by artists who are all local and self-supporting with their art. Much of the work shown there is large-scale, museum quality. On S. State Street, one block west, European Focus is a colorful shop with lots of intriguing gifts made by artisans in Europe. From “bouncies” — dolls that bounce up and down on springs — to French linens, to Bavarian “smokers”, to ceramics and tours of Europe, this is a unique Sarasota store. Next door to European Focus is Sarasota Candle, a local manufacturer that also has a booth at the Downtown Sarasota Farmers Market.

PALM AVENUE

This is downtown Sarasota’s “Gallery Row”, with everything from handblown glass to elaborate jewelry to paintings, sculpture, and hats. There’s a First Friday Artwalk that takes place along Palm Avenue from 6-9PM, when the galleries stay open late and offer refreshments and live music. Caragiulo’s Restaurant is on Palm Avenue, with indoor and outdoor dining. At the corner of Main Street and Palm Avenue, Epicure is a favorite spot to sit outside and relax with friends over lunch or dinner.

BURNS SQUARE

Burns Square, at the south end of Pineapple Avenue, is part of downtown Sarasota, but it’s separated by a two- block walk alongside non-descript office buildings, so it feels like a separate district. It shares the First Friday Art Walk with downtown. Here the buildings are low and charming with bright stucco colors and a changing array of intriguing shops. Awesome Orchids, Parkland Art Gallery, Malika’s Imports, L-Boutique, Jack Vinales 20th Century Classics, and Citrus Cafe are all worth a look. Behind Pineapple Avenue, Burns Court reveals Sarasota’s art film house, Burns Court Cinema, and Owen’s Fish Camp restaurant. On Saturdays, there’s a small, independent, outdoor artists’ market on Pineapple Avenue in Burns Square.

SARASOTA BAYFRONT

At the far east end of Main Street, Marina Jack restaurant and marina ties downtown Sarasota to Sarasota Bay. The restaurant is surrounded by the scenic Bayfront Park, which includes a walking path, children’s playground, O’Leary’s Tiki Bar & Restaurant, lots of free parking, yacht basin and small beach for launching rowboats. You can sit on a swinging bench and watch the tide go in and out, look across at the stunning John Ringling Bridge, or take in the glorious Gulf sunset.

Saving a Ton on Traffic – Best Deals Aren’t Downtown

 Downtown is the trendy place to be.  No matter what city you live in or near, the downtown area is where everything is concentrated.  You have businesses, clubs, restaurants, activities, stadiums, events- everything you could possibly want is downtown.  Because downtown is so central and so concentrated, it’s where everyone wants to be- including data centers and collocation facilities.

The High Price of Downtown
 
But downtown comes with its own host of problems.  The main disadvantage of downtown is the high cost of real estate.  Everyone wants to be there.  And because of this, companies have to pay a premium to locate downtown.   If rents rise, people are either forced to pay higher rent or leave the location that they perceive to be prime.
 
Unfortunately, this doesn’t help the consumer, especially when it comes to data centers and colocation.  Because these facilities are so specialized and require so much energy, power and infrastructure to run, they’re not likely to move locations if rents are raised too much.   In fact, it would be a disadvantage for downtown data centers to do so because of the costs associated with moving an entire data center and the inconvenience it would cause for the customers.
 
So, when rent goes up, colocation facilities are forced to pay.  In order to make up the costs, prices are raised or services are cut in order to maintain the same margin.
 
The Best Deals Aren’t Downtown
 
If you’re looking for the best deal on colocation, downtown is not the place to look.  The farther away you get from the city, the less expensive real estate is.   There are many reasons for this, but the point is that data centers don’t have to pay the high premiums for real estate.  Without these excess costs for rent, facilities are able to pass these savings onto customers.  Not only can they offer cheaper prices per rack, but they can also include more bandwidth and more services.  By locating away from downtown, you’ll get at least the same quality of service and in many cases you’ll get better service without having to pay the high prices that you do downtown.  
 
A sample price comparison of a facility located just outside the city center and a facility located right in the heart of downtown is as follows:
 
Downtown facility-

 ½ Rack- $650 (Does NOT include traffic)

Full rack- $1200 (Does NOT include traffic)
 
It is not possible to rent space in any smaller amounts.  It’s pretty much all or nothing, which doesn’t accommodate the needs of smaller businesses or allow for gradual expansion.  Other services include a power generator (which belongs to the building and therefore they don’t have complete control over its usage) and 100mps ports.  
 
Facility near, but not in, downtown-  
 
1/8 Rack- $175 (includes 50 GB traffic)

¼ Rack- $350 (includes 200 GB traffic)

½ Rack- $500 (includes 350 GB traffic)

Full rack- $900 (includes 800 GB traffic)
 
Other features include a power generator which is owned by the company allowing more control, owning their own facilities, 100 mbps ports and free internal traffic with an internet account.  
 
Savings Passed on to You
 
As you can see, facilities that are not located downtown can afford to pass on the savings to customers.  Not only is it less expensive to rent a rack, but it also comes with more features, such as included traffic and free internal traffic.  Not only that, but hosting away from downtown will save you on other costs you may not even have thought of such as not having to pay for parking.  All-in-all, regardless of where you’re located, it’s always much cheaper to host your servers outside of downtown than it is to host them right in the heart of downtown.