Road to the White House: Hotels of the Campaign Trail

PHOTO: The Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel and Marina, Tampa, Fl.
Tampa Marriott

Hotels play an important role on the campaign trail: Whether it's a place for a president or presidential hopeful to rest his head or a place to prep for the all-important debates, hotels are a home-away-from home.

Click through the next few pages to see the hotels that have welcomed President Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney along the campaign trail.

PHOTO: The main lobby of The Waldorf Astoria in New York City.
Waldorf New York

The venerable hotel was the site of the 67th Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner on Thursday. The event is the New York Archdiocese's biggest charity gala of the year and a pit stop for many presidential candidates in the final weeks of campaigning. ABC News reported the dinner raised some $5 million for the foundation, which provides aid to the poor, sick and underprivileged.The first pair of candidates to grace the stage were John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon in 1960.

Obama also attended a fund raiser at the hotel on Sept. 18. Romney did the same on March 14.

PHOTO: The Melville Marriott in Long Island, N.Y.
Courtesy Melville Marriott

President Obama didn't spend the night, but spent several hours before the Oct. 16 debate at this Long Island hotel close to Hofstra University, the debate site. The president and first lady reportedly dined on steak and potatoes at the hotel prior to the event.

PHOTO: The Long Island Mariott in Uniondale, N.Y.
Mariott.com

Another Long Island Marriott played host to Mitt Romney prior to the Oct. 16 debate. A local newspaper reported he dined with his wife, Ann, and five sons before heading to Hofstra. They ate rotisserie chicken, with sides of spinach and baked potato.

President Obama hunkered down at the posh Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg, Va., in the days leading up to the second presidential debate. He only left "debate camp" once, to make a surprise visit to his campaign office in Williamsburg. He brought pizza. The Kingsmill has four 18-hole golf courses, a luxury spa and a tennis center. The lowest rate found for the first weekend in November was $170 per night.

PHOTO: The atrium at the Embassy Suites, Columbus, OH.
Courtesy Embassy Suites

Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney spent time the weekend prior to the second debate in the battleground state in Ohio, huddled up at an Embassy Suites with his top advisers.

President Obama made this Charlotte hotel home during the Democratic National Convention in September. As part of Starwood's luxury collection, the Ballantyne is a AAA four-diamond hotel with a championship PGA golf course, a luxury spa, indoor and outdoor pools and tennis. Rates from $269 per night over the first weekend in November.

PHOTO: The Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel and Marina, Tampa, Fl.
Tampa Marriott

The ABC News Tampa affiliate reported the Marriott Waterside Hotel spent $2 million on a renovation in preparation for the Republican National Convention in August. The hotel was home to the Massachusetts delegation and the convention's guest of honor: nominee Mitt Romney.

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