This past week I was sent to Kansas City, MO and KS momentarily for work. I had never been to Kansas City before and really had no expectations, but I’m happy to say that Kansas City is near the top of the list of cities I have visited over the past two years. The entire week was full of firsts and lasts, but ended with my last flight on American Airlines under their old mile earning structure.

Flying out of Chicago O’Hare on a Monday morning is always stressful, especially given the extremely long TSA lines from earlier this summer. I left early to make sure that I would make my 7:30am flight, but only made it to the plane with moments to spare. Traffic proved to be much slower  than I had anticipated. Luckily, the TSA PreCheck line moved quickly and I was able to board my flight. Boarding late is always risky when carrying luggage aboard, but because I was in the bulkhead row, the flight attendants allowed me to place my bag in the first class seating area! The flight was smooth into Kansas City airport (MCI) and we arrived early.

Once outside of the airport, I took the Rental Car shuttle, which services all rental car companies, to the parking structure. As a Hertz Gold Member typically your name and parking space are on a board waiting for you when available. Unfortunately, my name did not appear on the board when I arrived. For the week I was assigned a Toyota Prius C. I wanted a hybrid to test for the week, but I do not recommend ever renting this vehicle. Entering the highway proved was extremely difficult and the blind spot was able to hide a Chevy Suburban!

I had never been to Kansas City before and had absolutely no idea where to stay, but picked an SPG property in order to rack up some SPG points. I had booked the Sheraton Suites Country Club Plaza purely because it featured an Indoor/Outdoor pool (which did not disappoint). When I arrived I was pleasantly surprised by a large suite with a living room and king sized bed overlooking 47th street. The hotel was fantastic and located near Kansas City’s Country Club Plaza Mall.

The Country Club Mall area is comprised of a few blocks of retail shopping, restaurants, and a cinema just walking distance from the hotel. I would definitely recommend staying in this part of town when visiting KC. The hotel was also just a short walk to the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Although I did not make it into the art museum, the grounds are beautiful and were an excellent place to walk around after a long day of work. Apparently, the museum has open outdoor yoga on Tuesday night as well.

On Wednesday night, I was lucky enough to get tickets with a friend to the Kansas City Royals game. The stadium is located just outside of downtown and shares one of the largest parking lots I had ever seen with Arrowhead stadium. The Royals’ stadium is stunning and extremely open. Although it was a hot evening, the breeze through the stadium made the game quite enjoyable.

After a long week, on Thursday I had finally made it to the Sheraton Suites’ pool. The pool is mostly outdoors, but includes a small indoor pool that is connected to the outdoor pool. You can swim under the window or use the door to enter/exit the indoor pool area. There is also a hot tub and generous fitness area.

Sadly, due to the busy week of work I was unable to explore much beyond the Country Club Plaza to experience some traditional KC barbeque nor was I able to make it to KC Power & Light District, but overall I was very impressed with the Midwestern city. It is definitely a destination worth visiting!

The Sheraton Suites I was staying at was a participant in SPG’s Make a Green Choice Program and I earned an extra 2,000 SPG points for not accepting room service. Also, although I rarely stay at SPG properties, I earned 50% Bonus Points for my stay for maintaining SPG Gold Status thanks to my American Express Platinum Card. I also received a complimentary upgrade to first class on my American Airlines flight home thanks to my American Airlines Platinum Status. All dining expenses were paid using my Chase Sapphire Preferred card to take advantage of the 2x points on dining to ensure I hit my spending requirement for my Sign-Up bonus. Most importantly, I reached Chipotle Mild Status and earned my second free burrito of the month thanks to Chipotle’s Chiptopia program!

As part of this post I was hoping to provide a brief review of the Kansas City Admirals Club, but I left my Citi Prestige card at home and was not able to access the lounge. The Admirals Club requires the physical Citi Prestige Card in order to access the lounge. I have heard reports of Citi reimbursing daily club fees when this happens, but figured it was not worth the hassle.