Motels in Oklahoma
Route 66 Motel Afton, Okla. NOTE: This little motel, formerly known as the Grand Lake Country Inn, has no connection to this Web site. We do, however, like it a lot (and not just because it has a great name). Although it isn't as historic as some of the motels listed here, its cute theme rooms make it a memorable stop. Clean, pet-friendly, and very reasonably priced. For reservations, call (918) 257-8313.
Chelsea Motor Inn Chelsea, Okla. Located at the eastern end of Chelsea on Route 66, the six-unit Chelsea Motor Inn offers clean, quiet, comfortable rooms at reasonable prices. The friendly and attentive owners -- who are enthusiastic Route 66 supporters -- live in a historic farmhouse next door. For reservations, call (918) 789-3437.
Claremore Motor Inn Claremore, Okla. Immaculate rooms and tons of amenities at reasonable prices. Friendly owners. Pets allowed (and there's a vet clinic next door, which I found very reassuring when traveling with my terrier). This is one of the few motels where I've had enough positive experiences to feel confident checking in without asking to inspect the room first. For reservations, call (800) 828-4540.
Desert Hills Motel Tulsa, Okla. The Desert Hills is a classic. The neon sign out front features a big cactus. The motel also features unique architecture (all the rooms are set at an angle, giving the building the appearance of a giant accordion) and one of the best perks on the road: For some reason, the tile floors in the bathrooms are always warm, so your toes never get cold when you step out of the shower or wander into the bathroom in the middle of the night. Well worth a stop ... and Tulsa is a great place to stay overnight, because it's well-blessed with great restaurants, stunning Art Deco buildings, interesting people, fantastic museums, and absolutely gorgeous neon signs. For reservations, call (918) 834-3311.
The Campbell Hotel Tulsa, Okla. Located right on Route 66 in midtown Tulsa,The Campbell Hotel is one of those breathtaking reclamation projects that makes historic preservation enthusiasts weep with joy. Subjected to myriad indignities at the hands of vandals, thieves, and neglect, the long-dormant 1927 Spanish Colonial masterpiece -- which spans the entire length of a city block -- reopened in 2011 as a boutique hotel with beautifully decorated theme rooms (my personal favorite is the Leon Russell room) and plenty of modern amenities in a historic setting. The Campbell was never a Harvey House, but it has a similarly luxurious vibe. Well-mannered pets allowed. Highly recommended. For reservations, call (855) 744-5500 or (918) 744-5500.
Skyliner Motel Stroud, Okla. One of the true jewels of the road. On our first visit, we stopped at the Skyliner just because we thought the neon sign out front looked cool (the "L" in Oklahoma on this page is from the Skyliner). We requested a nonsmoking room and received the key to Room 3. The next morning, the owner asked us how we liked the bed. I told him it was more comfortable than our own bed at home. He grinned as he explained that he had purchased the bed -- with a top-of-the-line mattress -- for an elderly family member, who didn't like it because it was "too tall" (it's an unusually large bed) ... so the owner just put the bed in a nonsmoking room for customers to enjoy. Bonus: The Skyliner is located just a few blocks west of the famous Rock Cafe, which gives you a primo excuse to have dinner there and then return for breakfast the next morning. For reservations, call (918) 968-9556.
Lincoln Motel Chandler, Okla. Under new ownership and currently undergoing renovations, the Lincoln Motel is a classic motor court, with well-landscaped grounds, a cool neon sign, and a driveway that sweeps in front of a row of neat little buildings, each of which houses two units. Metal chairs out front are available for travelers who want to spend a summer evening watching the world go by on Route 66. Historic neon sign was recently repainted by volunteers from the Oklahoma Route 66 Association. Small pets allowed. For reservations, call (405) 258-0200.