A Stay At The Radisson Blu, Mall Of America [Review]

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When visiting Bloomington, you’re going to want to base yourself near to the iconic Mall of America, the largest indoor entertainment and shopping center in the USA!

Chances are, that’s the reason you’re visiting Bloomington in the first place, right?

Well, with only two hotels actually in the mall, it’s easy to narrow down the options to just two; Radisson Blu or J.W. Marriott?

To help you out, we stayed at the Radisson Blu Hotel in the Mall of America, and have written about our experience below.

Our in-depth review is an honest portrayal of our experience and should help you decide whether or not a stay at the Radisson Blu will be right for you…

Disclaimer: We visited Bloomington, Minnesota, in a paid partnership with Bloomington CVB and Mall of America, though all thoughts, ideas and opinions in this guide are our own.

exterior of radisson blu hotel in the mall of america
Radisson Blu, Mall of America
Shopping at Mall of America

Our Experience at the Radisson Blu, Mall of America (MOA)

Our hotel room at the Radisson Blu, Mall of America was one level up the escalator and a short walk along the skyway connecting the Radisson Blu to Mall of America.

When you spend time in Minnesota you’ll soon learn that many of the buildings are connected by skyways – bridges in the sky – to help pedestrians get around during the freeze of winter.

Radisson Blu Mall of America skyway
Skyway between Radisson Blu and Mall of America

In three minutes, I was in the hotel room grabbing our coupon book and running back down to the mall.

I made use of our convenient hotel location over our three-night stay to switch between outfits for shopping, high ropes obstacle courses, and then dinner during our days exploring the mall.

woman and children going down escalator at the Mall of America, Bloomington, Minnesota

I think I may have even snuck back to wine hour in the business lounge at Radisson Blu after a few child meltdowns.

Oh wait, maybe I just dreamed about doing that? Or maybe it was me really having the meltdown?

Well, I could have done it if I wanted to!

girls sitting on a couch

The minute we drove up to the Radisson Blu MOA, Savannah spied the elegant, clean lined black exterior, and the valet parking service, she exclaimed “I love this hotel. This is so fancy.”

The decor is sleek and modern, keeping up with the latest trends in fashion and technology.

She loved it even more when we walked in the room, and this was after staying at the Great Wolf Lodge Minnesota, which both girls adored.

inside a hotel
hotel lobby

The Radisson Blu had everything we needed to make our time at Mall of America memorable.

The suite style rooms were comfortable and stylish and offered us a table, which gave us the space to work while the girls rested or played. (See rates and availability here.)

Our trip was busy so we didn’t have a lot of time to do that, but it helped our productivity when we did.

people sitting at a table
girl laying on a couch
people sitting on chairs
living room

I loved popping down to the skyway of a morning to grab my latte from Caribou Coffee, a local chain that makes excellent coffee.

They had a big blackboard the kids had fun writing on.

Radisson Blu Mall of America skyway
Skyway from Radisson Blu to Mall of America and Caribou Coffee
Caribou Coffee, Mall of America

We didn’t step outside the mall for three days. We didn’t need to and it was fantastic.

And in case you don’t know, the temperature inside Mall of America is 72 degrees all year long!

The business lounge was a welcome respite for an afternoon of Mall of America fun.

We’d sit down to relax with a glass of wine, some cheese, and a little too many M&Ms.

woman  with wine glass in Radisson Blu MOA Business Lounge
food on a table

I loved the view from the lounge, you could watch the planes coming in and out of the nearby Minneapolis/St.Paul International Airport (only a short light rail ride away) and look over the mall to get a sense of the size of it.

The Radisson Blu also has a free shuttle service to the airport for its guests, which is always a nice bonus!

The business lounge also offered a buffet breakfast, which made it easy for us to fill up and prepare for the day ahead.

girl at a buffet
girls sitting at a coffee table

There are also seven meeting rooms for those who need to catch up on work when in town or need to host meetings.

If you’re looking for an event space such as spacious ballrooms for weddings, there’s 26,300 square feet of event space with flexible seating options available.

living room
people sitting on a table

I can’t help but think the Raddison has thought of everything you might need, and one upped it.

In fact, it even has a Kids’ Club, on-site Solimar Spa & Salon, and guess what – you can bring your pooch! That’s right, it’s pets-friendly!

person sitting at a table

If you’re looking for a more ala carte breakfast experience, the FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar offers hearty breakfast yummies like Farmhouse Breakfast, Walleye Hash, gluten free lemon ricotta waffles and healthy smoothies.

Mall of America has a fantastic concierge service as well.

If you call them, they will collect your shopping from where you are in the mall and take it back to your room for you at Radisson Blu. Isn’t that so cool?

It saved us lugging around our American Girl Doll shopping for the afternoon. Seriously, how much can you spend on doll’s clothes?!

girls buying dolls at American Girl Doll Store, Mall of America

Marty The Moose Scavenge Hunt Passport Program

If you have kids, they will love the Marty the Moose program and scavenger hunt. Radisson Blu has designed a scavenger hunt for three different age levels.

Upon check-in, children receive their very own Blu Passport to destinations around the hotel and at Mall of America. They collect passport stamps once completed.

Radisson Blu Passport Program

When you collect four stamps you receive a prize!

Don’t forget the most important thing to find – the Marty the Moose mascot hiding in the lobby. The girls had to show me where it was.

It’s a great way to engage the kids, help them to get to know their surroundings and feel more like they are staying with family.

Radisson Blu Mall of America also has a signature offering: you can have a tent put in your room for the kids to sleep in.

Makes it a fun adventure for the kids to camp in the middle of a hotel room.

Our Favorite Features of the Radisson Blu

The Radisson Blu at Mall of America, Bloomington has a few special features I urge you to engage with.

The pods down by the fire in the lobby

They are so pretty and comfortable and many people commented on our photo of them, some requesting they be shipped all the way to living rooms in Australia.

You won’t want to get out of them. The girls, unfairly spent way more time in them than me.

girls sitting on a couch
girls sitting on a couch
girls sitting on a couch

The featured wall length fire crackling beside them adds to the cozy ambiance. Relax with a good book and a glass of wine and watch the world go by.

The Butt Chairs on the second floor lobby

girl sitting on a butt chair

Or as we say in Australia, the Bum Chair.

We loved these chairs and you can imagine the jokes that were told. Get your selfie in the Butt Chair.

There are lots of other cool red chairs to choose to sit in as well. Choose your favorite and share your pics of it. I liked the plush sofa type chairs.

girl sitting on a chair
girl sitting on a butt chair
girl sitting on a chair

The Fitness Center

girls doing sit ups in the Fitness Center at Radisson Blu, Mall of America

I’m mad on fitness centers in hotels now as I strive to keep up my workout routines.

This one is massive and has state of the art fitness center equipment, including individual muscle weight machines, as well as free weights, yoga balls, running machines and more.

There is also an indoor pool next door.

FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar

restaurant

The FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar is a signature dining experience at Mall of America, Minnesota and is situated in the Radisson Blu hotel.

It’s a family-friendly upmarket casual restaurant. If you’re looking for a stand out dining experience at Mall of America, this is it.

I know you may be thinking that a hotel restaurant can’t look and taste so good, but the restaurant keeps with the chic and sleek lobby and innovative butt chair foyer.

It’s wooden beams, muted colors and modern furnishings are soothing and comfortable.

The wide wall of windows offer beautiful natural lighting, but also a glimpse into the world outside. You feel miles away from the hustle of the mall.

people sitting in a restaurant

Now you’re ready to savor a true Minnesota food experience.

FireLake Grill House & Cocktail Bar Mall of America is a farm to table experience, incorporating fresh and local produce where possible into regional dishes.

The word FireLake represents the wood fire cooking of the food that comes from the 10,000 Minnesota lakes – yes they do have that many!

This restaurant has also been honored for its outstanding wine program in Wine Spectator’s 2017 Restaurant Awards, among other winners all over the globe!

I was delighted to taste walleye, the local wild caught fish from Red Lake.

A plate of fish and rice
Walleye

Walleye is a fish the local Indian Tribes can catch and sell along with wild rice, which accompanied my walleye. It was healthy, light, delicious and socially responsible.

Craig enjoyed his woodland mushrooms with salmon.

A plate of salmon and brussel sprouts
Salmon

We also shared a poutine type dish Minnesotan Dirty Fries style: hand cut fries, with a red wine reduction, cheese curds and oven roasted mushrooms.

Fries will never taste as good for me ever again!

A plate of dirty fries
Dirty Fries

On the rooftop of the Radisson Blu, Mall of America are bee hives. The hotel takes the excess honey and uses it in their restaurant.

The menu will let you know what dishes have the local honey in it with a small bee next to it. We tried it in the honey lavender cheesecake for dessert which had such subtle flavors.

I’m not usually a cheesecake lover but I did not find this dessert too overbearing and rich. It was light and tasty.

The Verdict: Would We Recommend The Radisson Blu?

There are 50 hotels in Bloomington, MN, just short shuttle rides away from the mall, but there are only two Mall of America hotels: the Radisson Blu and J.W. Marriott.

To speak to the quality of both of these hotels at Mall of America, during the Super Bowl hosted in Minneapolis in 2018, the Philadelphia Eagles stayed at the Radisson Blu, and the New England Patriots stayed at the J.W. Marriott.

We definitely chose the winning hotel to stay at! Can you imagine the atmosphere after the Eagles won?

We loved our stay at the Radisson Blu and would highly recommend it to anyone visiting Bloomington and looking for a place to stay near the iconic Mall of America.

Review of The Radisson Blu, Mall of America Video

Learn more about our stay at Radisson Blu in our video:

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