Hotels with a view...of the Airport.

Call me a bit crazy, but I need some help finding vacation spots that also allow for spotting planes. Ideally a warmer weather locale with a nice view of the airport from a nice hotel. I’ve had the pleasure of watching the airport from a great room at New York NY in Las vegas and really enjoyed being able to watch an airport that never sleeps. I’ve been able to watch what I recall was Miramar and all the touch and go’s while in San Diego. Going to the airport just isn’t what it used to be for attempting to watch planes.

What i’d like is any suggestions you all have. I travel quite a bit and my son is beginning to get the plane watching bug. I’d like to be able to take him somewhere new and fun. While I know some places I’m looking for somewhere new. Ideally being able to watch from a hotel would be nice. Any suggestions are welcome. Fire away and thanks.

I was just down at SXM - AKA “Planewatcher’s Paradise”. Temps were in the low 80s. The SONESTA hotel has rooms overlooking the airport. The planes come in over Maho beach (a five-minute walk) at about 50 feet overhead. One heavy (Corsairfly 747) comes in on Sundays in the afternoon.

LINK to my video

Yeah, St Maarten would be my choice if going internationally. As far as staying in the US, you can always go back to San Diego. That hotel next to Miramar is still there if you want military stuff. But for airlines, there is a Sheraton complex and a Hilton on Harbor Island next to KSAN. Also, there is a Holiday Inn (which apparently became a Crowne Plaza after that merger) about a mile north of KPHX. From there, you can drive/walk down 40th St to the boundary fence, where it curves left. At that time, you’ll see a large dirt lot where you can sit and watch rwy 26 close-up. I’m sure there are more in Phoeinx area, but this one I know of for sure.

During your travels it might be worth your trip to stay a couple days at The Alexis Park Inn & Suites in Iowa City I’ve been wanting to stay there since I heard of them a couple years ago, and if my trip out west this year pans out I will. They are 200 yards from the Iowa City Airport and most of their suites are aviation themed. They also have suites that look out over the runway.


Sorry if i miss spell but the Renisance at the Atlanta Airport has a great few of the apron.

Ohare Hilton.

Probably the very best is a tent at the end of the runway at Oshkosh during the EAA fly-in. Everything from blimps to jets, warbirds, experimentals, etc. will fly a few feet over your head.

I haven’t been to this hotel so I can’t vouch for the views but it’s right at the airport" Airport Marriott Hotel at IAH. I’m assuming that if it is in the middle of the terminal complex it has to have good views.

Hilton at Montreal CYUL. Located end of 06R.

Also the stretch of hotels on Wandlin Road in Bangor ME give you some good looks.

There is a Sheraton on the NE corner of the intersection of I-95 and Griffin RD, next to Ft. Lauderdale - Hollywood Int’l KFLL.

If you have access to an automobile, there is a viewing area with ATC chatter on loudspeakers just south of the threshold of runway 9L. If you don’t drive it, it’s about a 10-15 minute walk from the hotel.

Edit: After passing there today, I noticed that the hotel I was talking about above is a Hilton. The Sheraton’s across Griffin RD.

I’ve stayed there, it is right in the middle of the runway complex near the terminal.

There’s a hotel adjacent to Terminal 3 in CYYZ.
Anyone have an experience to share?

Not to steal spdmonkey’s thunder or anything, but while we’re on the subject, does anyone have any hotel suggestions specifically for EWR (Newark, NJ)? Preferably something near the airport transit station…

Grotto Bay Beach Resort in Bermuda has a beautiful view of the airport from across a very nice lagoon with numerous snorkeling sites. Not a lot of action at that airport, but there’s enough and it’s gone up in recent years. I stayed there when I was a kid when BDA was served from London by a BA DC-10. That was a beautiful sight.

There is a Marriott right on the airport property at EWR.

The Marriott Hotel at KLGB (Long Beach) practically sits on the runway. They’re limited to 41 commercial flights a day, but since Boeing is there, there’s all manner of military planes coming and going, sometimes ones that are foreign. The old DC3 Catalina Flying Boats also do runs twice a day, and it’s always a thrill to see if they’ll actually make it off the runway.

Orlando International Hyatt. It is right in the terminal, views of arrivals and departures from certain rooms and from the pool deck. ( MCO ) for McCoy field

If you get to Washington, DC, the cherry blossoms will soon be out and one of the world’s most picturesque plane watching spots is Gravely Point, a public park/boat launching area, right at the north end of the Reagan National main runway. You can practically touch the planes when they are landing to the south.

Wonderful views of the planes as they touch down on the runway. You’ll get a great respect for all pilots as they are somehow able to overcame the crosswinds that occur so often at that airport. [Must be a lot of rubber on that runway as the wheels don’t always hit it at the same direction the plane is heading!]

Great views of the Potomac, the Capitol, Washington Monument, with people sitting there in their lawn chairs, many listening in on ATC. Given 911, a little surprising it’s still open to the public. It gets very crowded during the summer, and the parking is very limited.

As respect for those who have suffered tragically in air travel, you can walk a busy, paved bike path a couple hundred yards up the river to the site of the Air Florida 90 crash, which most of us have seen so many times in film footage of the rescues. It’s just downriver from the outbound span of the 14th street bridge.

While Gravelly Point is an awesome place for plane spotting, I don’t know of any hotels in the area that offer any views of the airfield. There are a few that are within walking distance of the park, but it’s a bit of a hike (20 to 30 minutes). No heavies come into DCA. The largest is the 757, and not very many of those - Lots of RJs though. A good number of MD90s, 737s and A319/320s. The cherry blossoms attract MANY tourists (BIG CROWDS).

There’s an Hilton in Boston’s Logan.

Although there are a number of Crystal City/National Airport hotels, I agree, I don’t believe any of them have views of the airport.

Just back from Gravelly Point, on a Chamber of Commerce early spring afternoon. Still a marvellous plane-watching site. Lots of available parking, too. [Love the sign: "No Kite Flying!] For good reason!

Incidently, I don’t think any hotel at Dulles is very good for watching airport activity. The Airport Hyatt, upper floors, on the west side, might have good views of the wonderful IAD terminal, and some of the north end of 1R, but it is definitely limited. [If you have a friend working next door at the Northrop-Grumman building, you may have better luck.]