Pittsburgh's Oakland neighborhood is home to many of the city's universities, but it also has a distinct lacking in available hotels to accommodate the influx of visitors the colleges receive. Our visit to the Hampton Inn University / Medical Center is our first entry covering the Oakland hotel scene, and we wanted to answer very important question: is it worth your visit?
Basic Rooms in Good Proximity to Oakland
We're going to cut to the chase in this hotel review and state the obvious: The Hampton Inn Pittsburgh University Center is about as average of a hotel as you can get and follows the Hampton Inn blueprint perfectly. So if you've ever stayed in one before, odds are good you know what to expect next.
For those who haven't, the quick summary is that the rooms in this newly renovated hotel are fairly small, the beds are decent, and the free breakfast includes a few hot items (like oatmeal, eggs, and bacon during our stay) as well as a few other staples like cereal and muffins that during our visit were in a constant state of chaos from the frequent breakfast traffic.
Overall, it is a fairly typical chain hotel that was recently updated.
So why would you want to stay at this one in particular? While we cannot call out much that is special about the rooms themselves, there is one amenity that we think is pretty great and that is the hotel also offers a complimentary shuttle anywhere in a three-mile radius.
Since Pittsburgh is fairly small geographically, and this property is strategically placed in Oakland in the center of the city, this means you can go just about anywhere via the shuttle service- be it up the road to the colleges or downtown for dinner. As we often like to recommend visitors to pick their neighborhood to stay in based on the driving logistics to what they want to see, this could be a huge perk to many depending on why you are coming in to the city.
Some Rooms Have Pittsburgh Views
Another interesting perk of this particular hotel is that some of the rooms have a fairly unique view of the city thanks to their vantage point next to downtown.
Only about 30% of the rooms are likely to have a city view, so if you want this one try to get in one of the even numbered rooms on a higher floor. We were in 818 when capturing the photos in this post, and enjoyed the view especially during sunset as it is one even we hadn't seen before.
Please note that the hotel recently underwent renovations and we think (but haven't confirmed) that the old room numbers may have been flipped around with the even numbered rooms facing the opposite direction. But as of November 2016, the even numbered rooms are facing downtown with the view.
Overall, if you're looking for a hotel in Oakland that is often on the more cost effective side of things (around $130 per night when we looked), even with their extra $14/day parking fee the Hampton Inn University / Medical Center is a decent choice. The rooms are fairly basic, but the hotel shuttle and views in select rooms makes this one worth considering.
Hampton Inn University is located in Oakland at 3315 Hamlet Street, just off 376 and Forbes Avenue.