I'm considering asking a friend to go with to GenCon this year. Unfortunately, she has minor PTSD, and specifically can't take elevators without a lot of stress. She's fine taking stairs up a few flights to the room, but we need to make sure we can get a room near the ground floor (preferrably on the 3rd floor or lower).
Any recommendations on hotels to search out or avoid?
Most of the hotels in the Downtown area are multi floors where the rooms are on the upper floors. Banquet halls on the lower.
Maybe Union Station for a DT hotel. Very nice and I do think their "Rooms" if you want to call them that are all accessible w/o elevators. You can opt to stay in converted sleeper cars.
Otherwise I would suggest calling hotels further out and seeing if they can place you on lower level rooms. Booking directly VIA phone.
Well you can't book over the phone, unless you need an ADA room. Not in the block.
Normally, that's something you can request, but would not be guaranteed. If you make a reservation in the block, you would call the hotel shortly after the housing is transferred to the hotel, which happens, oh, about a week before the con, and ask about requesting a lower floor. It's nothing that you can get a guarantee for when you book a room however.
If it helps, specifically the Embassy Suites and the Hyatt have glass elevators, if that's something that would help/hurt her.
There are some nice hotels outside of downtown where that wouldn't be an issue. I stayed at La Quinta Inn Indianapolis East a few years back. It was nice, cheap, had complimentary breakfast, was next to a shuttle stop, and only has two floors so you wouldn't have to worry about elevators. If it wasn't for a disability in my group requiring someone to be able to retreat to a room abruptly, we would have continued to stay there and drive in.
FYI: PTSD is covered under ADA.
So either look at the hotels mentioned above, or call a hotel to book an ADA room out of block.
My public reference for making the statement: http://www.ada.gov/servicemembers_adainfo.html
If you have the time, call around and talk to the staff at some of the hotels that you're interested in. That way you have a working list of preferred hotels going into the housing reservation fun. Some hotels have their rooms on top of the parking structure so that'll be a difficulty. Then, once reservations are transferred over, call the hotel and tell them the room needs to be on the lowest floor possible to be covered under ADA.
We've stayed at Staybridge, which is really close to Lucas Oil and not a bad walk, and they have a parking lot. So they've definitely got low floor rooms.
We have also stayed at Residence Inn on the Canal, which is out of block. It's about a 10-15 minute walk, but it's a pleasant walk. They also have a parking lot, and low level rooms. If you are interested, call and speak to someone in the office and they might make you a good deal (possibly pre-pay for some of it) if you explain your situation.
What they need is a standard room and then to ask the hotel to make reasonable accommodations for their needs.
That's still an ADA request, and should be handled by the housing group via the phone. I have a similar situation. I don't need a special room, I just need something close for a couple of reasons. It's all covered by the ADA. Frustratingly, the phone line for ADA requests puts you on hold for 15 minutes, then disconnects you.