I'm looking at taking my wife for a long weekend and since Charlotte is one of the few places I can fly direct I thought we might try it out. I've never been there so I was looking to see if anyone had any advice on which part of town to stay. I have a free Category 5 night that needs to be used and both Renaissance hotels fall into this category.
I like to be able to walk to some dining and sites if possible.
Both properties are nice (I love the SouthPark location) but neither are in the city of Charlotte (known as Uptown). The Renaissance in SouthPark is in an upscale suburb that is walking distance to many nice shops and restaurants, including high end steak houses and department stores, but you will not be in the city. Unfortunately, there aren't any properties in the city that qualify for a certificate.
Depends on what you want to do.
If you stay in the middle of downtown Charlotte at the Courtyard Charlotte City Center (category 5) or the Residence Inn Charlotte Uptown (category 4), you are close to:
Lots of nice restaurants
Bank of America Stadium for a Panthers football game
Blumenthal Performing Arts Center for a play or concert
Time Warner Cable Arena for a Hornets basketball game or a concert
If you'd rather shop, then South Park is very nice.
crnkotm - My favorite Marriott facilities in Charlotte are actually south of town, called South Park - either the Marriott (Cat. 6), or Renaissance (Cat. 5), both approximately $240/night, if paying. You might need to rent a car at the airport.
There are a number of good restaurants - McCormick & Schmidt, Cooks, and a host of others - within walking distance of either hotel, and you can walk 5 minutes to shopping at nearby center (back side of Marriott), or the South Park Mall.
You might want to check out this thread Local Restaurants-Charlotte?
Several good option if you choose to stay in the South Park area. I loved it when I was there in March (stayed at the Renaissance).