Madison Beach Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton. Bottom Line Review.

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The Madison Beach Hotel is a Hilton Curio Collection property located on Long Island Sound in Madison, Connecticut.  My wife and I stayed 3 nights and paid 80,000 points per night.  Cash rates at the time were about $550 per night.

Madison Beach Hotel Bottom Line Review

The Madison Beach Hotel is a very good choice if ocean views are important to you.  All rooms are ocean-front and all have nice sized balconies.  Unfortunately, during COVID-19 they do not open their restaurant until noon.  Instead of offering breakfast in the restaurant (which has a fantastic ocean-front balcony), they bring a food basket to each room.  We were pretty unhappy with this solution.  There is a highly rated restaurant available for breakfast only about a block away, but Christy’s doesn’t open until 9am.  Since my wife and I tend to rise early, we instead drove into town each day (about a mile away) to bring back breakfast to eat on our balcony.  Despite this inconvenience, we still very much enjoyed our beach vacation at the hotel.

  • Points Price: 80,000 points per night (minimum 3 nights required)
  • Point Value: Good.  During the summer, after taxes, you’d be likely to pay about $600 per night if you paid cash.  Compared to that rate, 80,000 points gives you a point value of 0.75 cents per point.  That considerably better than our Reasonable Redemption Value (RRV) of 0.45 cents per point.
  • Location: Excellent.
  • On-Site Dining: As described above, the restaurant is not open for breakfast so I have to give them a fail on this measure. We didn’t eat lunch or dinner at the hotel so I can’t rate them there (except to say that the views are great).
  • Bedroom: Very good.  Beautiful view.  Large ocean-front balcony.  Our room was on the small side (most are larger at this hotel), but it served our needs well.
  • Service: Not rated.  We didn’t request any services other than asking for water to be brought to our room a few times (which they did quickly).
  • Resort fee: None when booking with points.  I don’t think they charge a resort fee on cash rates, but I’m not sure.
  • Parking: $20 per night for self parking.
  • Hilton Elite Benefits: We were given two free drink vouchers upon check-in.  I believe this was due to my Hilton Gold status.  Normally, we’d also get free breakfast at the restaurant, but as described above, the restaurant is not currently open for breakfast.  We also could theoretically qualify for a room upgrade, but the hotel was sold-out when we were there.
  • Would I stay again?  I’d like to return once they open their restaurant again for breakfast.

Photos and captions follow…

View from our deck
Another photo shot from our deck
View from our deck. My phone’s panorama mode caused the deck to appear u-shaped, but I thought this did a good job of showing how expansive the view was.
Our room was quite small (most rooms at this hotel are larger), but it did the trick.
Instead of a full breakfast, a basket like this appeared each morning.
This shows the contents of the breakfast basket.  Note that even though there were two of us, there was just one of each thing: one juice, one water, one muffin, etc.  I found that really strange.  I called the desk to ask if it was a mistake.  Nope.
When first checking-in we found this sticker certifying that our room had been cleaned and disinfected.
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19 Comments
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Luke

Those kayaks that I see in one of your photos– are they useable as a hotel amenity? Or rentable from a vendor? Another random question– did it feel unsafe (covid-wise) or awkward at all having all of the balconies right next to each other? Thanks!

[…] for the first half of the year) and breakfast offerings in many places have been trimmed back (in some places almost embarrassingly so). However, if you know someone who will be traveling, this will be a pretty nice gift. Furthermore, […]

DSK

Just returned tonight. Exact same breakfast as you had, except we got a second apple. We received a nice upgrade due to our Diamond status from Aspire–large room with two very comfortable wing chairs facing a gas fireplace that started by remote control. Dinner at the hotel was excellent. We really enjoyed eating at Cristy’s Madison, which was literally a three minute walk from the hotel–so much so that we ate there three times. All of our meals at Cristy’s and the hotel were outside, and the hotel felt safe in COVID times. Great use of a Hilton free night certificate, and we were able to book with no minimum night requirement (perhaps because it is after Labor Day). Hotel was full. We never received the drink vouchers.

DeDe

Happy to see this review. We also stayed at the Madison Beach over 4th of July weekend (during COVID) and overall were very pleased with our stay (but were disappointed by the breakfast as well). We ate dinner at the restaurant twice during our stay (we felt more comfortable ordering food and bringing it back to our room) and the food was delicious both times. I would feel comfortable going back there and felt their precautions were very good.

With only 32 rooms, we felt safe the entire time. It is worth mentioning that it can be difficult to get a room there on points (we ended up booking cash because I got a great deal, but I’ve had trouble getting points rooms at this property in the past).

Thanks for the great work guys, I enjoy your posts and your podcast!

Jim H

Did you travel to the east coast by Air or Car.

Nick Reyes

By Air. Our main topic of discussion on this week’s podcast (just published this morning) was his trip, so if you’d like to hear more about it, you can check it out here on Youtube (this link goes directly to the “main event” part of the video) or on your preferred podcast platform. I imagine Greg will also write more about it, but if you’re curious right now maybe this will satiate that:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwj3ic4r7-4&t=1168s

escot

This issue you so gently mention being “unhappy about” — the cheapo/lame breakfasts even at top flight resorts deserves more commentary and reporting by bloggers. I of course “get it” that previously cramped breakfast areas, with self-serve shared buffet lines, aren’t likely to work well in most areas presently. What works even less though is hotels, even those once famous for shelling out generous hot buffet breakfast spreads, are now less than candid about just what alternative arrangements they’re making — or NOT making…..

To be cynical here, what’s really happening at far too many hotels is the lame/lazy substitution of cold options (travel-lodge class)– saving the hotels tons of money and really “sticking it” –needlessly — to travelers willing to risk staying with them. Message to those travelers seems to be: “so sorry, not sorry, too bad, we’re hiding behind Covid-19 — and you don’t dare say anything about it.

Hotels that are more creative with their alternative options deserve attention & praise, and places like this, yes, something else.

MickiSue

Not one of those things in your basket is something I can eat. So, if I stayed there currently, basically they’d be saying that, for the equivalent of $600 a night, “No breakfast for you.”

Stvr

Any quarantine restrictions?

Nick Reyes

As I understood it, I don’t think CT or RI had any restrictions for residents of Michigan (but as Greg wrote about earlier in the week, part of the reason he didn’t end up going to Miraval Berkshires is because MA had a 14-day quarantine requirement for Michigan residents).

Larry K

Gold? How do you not have an Aspire?

DSK

Great timing–we will be there fairly soon (Hilton free night certificate). If you have any other thoughts or suggestions, we would love to hear them. Hope you enjoyed Connecticut!