by Terry Rogers
In September 2017, the former Traveler’s Inn in Milford closed for major renovations. At the time, the motel was struggling with crime, negative reviews and a petition was circulating labeling the location a nuisance property. Today, the motel has been completely remodeled and is now the Rodeway Inn, part of the Choice Hotels International chain which has more than 6,500 hotels.
“We have done a complete renovation inside and outside, including new guest room furniture, brand new custom bathrooms, new flooring, new televisions, new heating and cooling systems as well as new bedding and window treatments,” Jigar Patel, owner of the Rodeway Inn, said. “As for the outside, we put new stucco to give the exterior a brand new look. All of our renovations are just about complete. We need to power wash the sidewalks and install new exterior carpeting.”
As part of the Choice Hotels International chain, the motel is required to maintain ten brand standards. The motel will be periodically inspected by the chain to be sure those standards are met. Part of the problem the motel experienced was the clientele that they attracted prior to the renovation.
“Our business used to be local extended-stay clients,” Patel explained. “But now, we only accept online reservations and through a GDS system. This means fewer walk-in clients and a more reliable clientele. To my knowledge, since we have reopened under the new name, we have not had one single crime incident and we are making sure we are not renting to any guests who seem suspicious. Even when we were the Traveler’s Inn, we tried to keep a crime-free environment and never supported crime or criminals. Unfortunately, we needed to make some changes to our reservation system and upgrade in order to eliminate the guests who were causing the problem.”
Chief Kenneth Brown says that the new Rodeway Inn is an example of what can happen when the City and a business owner work together.
“I cannot tell you how happy I am with the changes in the Traveler’s Inn,” Chief Brown said. “They have stepped up to the plate and responded to everything we asked them to do. They have gone above and beyond what we needed. Right now, we have not had any complaints at the motel. Their new policy to accept only online reservations and not renting to suspicious clientele has made a huge difference. This has taken something that was a terrible eyesore right at the entrance of our town and created a golden opportunity full of hope.”
Chief Brown said that the City worked with Patel in an effort to resolve the issues the motel was facing. He said Patel and the City came up with solutions and that now the motel can be viewed as an asset to the town.
“We are seeing guests that are in town for events at the sports complex,” Patel said. “We also have some construction workers who are in town for projects as well as the occasional business or leisure traveler. We are very happy with the improvements and look forward to even more travelers coming to stay with us.”
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