A couple weekends ago, Nikki & I, along with a friend took a short trip down to Jacksonville, FL. We were celebrating Nikki’s birthday and attending AEW’s Fight for the Fallen (yes, it was a wrestling event). We waited until a few weeks before the event to book our room and found Candlewood Suites. Everything near the venue was full, but this hotel was only seven miles away.
We left on Friday evening and stopped for dinner is Orangeburg, SC. The drive to Jacksonville is only 5.5 hours from Charlotte. With the dinner stop and gas/potty break, it was closer to 7. When we stopped for dinner, I called ahead to let them know we’d be arriving late. I was told it wasn’t a problem. It was after 1 AM when we checked in. To our surprise, two people were checking in ahead of us.
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Our room was one the second floor. We opened the door the find a refrigerator, sink, stove, microwave and cabinet with dishes on the right. The kitchen area leads into another area with a bed and recliner on the left and a long desk and TV. The bathroom sits cater-cornered near the recliner.
The next morning after I showered, I had an issue turning the shower all the way off. The handle was hard to turn and I couldn’t get the water to shut off completely. After my sister & our friend tried, I called down to the front desk since it was too much water to leave running. A maintenance man was quickly at the door to investigate. The handle needed to be replaced. While we were getting ready, he replaced it.
While waiting for the maintenance man to finish what he needed to do, we Googled restaurants that had gluten-free restaurants. One found one place that had gluten- and dairy-free protein shakes, but they still had soy. They also have weekly pre-made meals that can be delivered. We found Epikburger and it sounded great. They have a variety of burgers and fries. Gluten-free buns are an option. I called the restaurant and sadly, they cook their fries in soybean oil. They did have a couple of salads, but Nikki wouldn’t have had dressing. Since we were needing to pick a place before going to the show, we decided to go to Texas Roadhouse.
There was a location about 3 miles away. Once we got there, Nikki decided to ask if they cooked in soybean oil and they do. Since the ones here use canola oil, we didn’t think to ask until we got there. She had to order a salad without dressing. Her steak wasn’t cooked to the temperature she had requested. It ended up being a pretty mediocre meal, which we’ve never had at a Texas Roadhouse before. I felt bad since it was her birthday lunch. We should’ve just tried Epikburger instead.
We had time to go back to the hotel to change shirts and freshen up before heading to Daily’s Place. The drive was pretty easy. I had drive over a drawbridge and I was not so much a fan of that, especially on the way back when it was after midnight. The show was great and we had a fun time.
As we were sitting in the parking lot waiting for traffic to ease up, we decided to check UberEats to see what delivered and met Nikki’s dietary needs. There were limited options, so we settled on IHOP. We placed our order and it would be there about 15 minutes after we got back to the hotel. Nikki settled for grits, bacon, and a fruit cup. Since we didn’t have a chance before we left, Nikki ate one of the Goodman’s Gluten-Free cupcakes she brought with her.
We had another wrestling show in Charlotte to get to, so we left about 10 AM. We enjoyed our stay. If you’re looking for a comfortable, affordable hotel in Jacksonville, book a reservation at Candlewood Suites. Just a heads up, they will run your card the day you’re scheduled to check. I wanted to switch to another card when we got there and couldn’t because of this.
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