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Frequently Asked Questions
Important Disclaimer: We make every effort to ensure that the information contained in these Frequently Asked Questions is true and up-to-date. However, sometimes we are not notified about changes to Johns Hopkins’ protocol, and Hospital-related information falls out-of-date without us knowing about it. Please call the Hospital at 410-955-5000 to confirm any of our information, especially if it is particularly important to your stay
What is McElderry House Lodging?
We have seven individual townhouses, located across from the Wolfe St. entrance of Johns Hopkins Hospital. These accommodations are available as individual bedrooms with either private or shared baths and shared common areas (living room, dining room, kitchen, and powder room), or as entire private townhouses. Most bedrooms are on the second floor. Linens, towels, paper products, soap products, coffee, tea, and filtered water are provided. Houses have a fully equipped kitchen complete with pots, pans, and dishes, and have a washer and dryer. Local phone, basic cable, and central heat and air are provided, as are all freshly laundered linens, towels, and bed coverings.
Is McElderry House Lodging part of Johns Hopkins Hospital?
No, McElderry House Lodging is privately owned and operated. It was started in 1996 by a nurse whose daughter was treated at Johns Hopkins for bone cancer. We have a long-standing relationship with individual departments at the Hospital.
Does McElderry House Lodging allow children?
Yes, but only when an entire private townhouse is rented. Shared-house environments are for adults over age 18, although in specific circumstances 17 and 16 year old children will be given individual consideration.
Why doesn’t McElderry House Lodging allow children in shared houses?
The vast majority of our guests are either patients or patients’ families. Since young children are particularly susceptible to cold and flu viruses, their presence can pose a serious threat to a patient whose immune system is already compromised. In addition, medical situations can be very stressful, and we want to make sure that all occupants of a shared house are matured enough to give others quiet and space when needed. We try to provide a comfortable place for both patients and patients’ family members, where patients can undergo treatments without feeling self-conscious of their therapy’s side effects, and where patients’ family members can take a break from sitting in a bedside chair at the hospital. Finally, we do not wish to expose children and teenagers to anything that might distress them unnecessarily; we want to provide an emotionally safe environment where difficult subjects like major illness, surgical effects, and grieving need not be brought up unless the child is directly affected. Again, children are welcome when you reserve an entire private house.
Does McElderry House Lodging allow pets?
No. Because many of our guests are patients with compromised immune systems, and also to guard against possible allergic reaction, we can’t allow pets in most circumstances. Exception will be made to accommodate a service animal, but please give us as much advance notice as possible if a service animal is coming.
Does McElderry House Lodging allow smoking?
No; all of McElderry House Lodging’s houses are smoke-free. If you wish to smoke, you may do so on the front porch or in the backyard area. Please make sure to close the door behind you so that smoke does not come into the house. If evidence of indoor smoking is found after your departure, your credit card will automatically be charged a $100.00/night smoking fee for each night you stayed.
What is the exact address where I’ll be staying?
Unfortunately, we usually cannot tell you the exact address of your accommodations until the day of your arrival. This is because when one of our current guests requests an extension of their stay, we try our hardest to keep them in the same place and “juggle” reservations of future guests.
I only have an estimate of my length of stay. How long should I reserve for?
Most patients and families of patients only have a doctor’s best estimate of your anticipated length of stay to go by, and that is okay. Please tell us that estimated number of days, and we will reserve the outside estimate of your length of stay. If you depart earlier, and we receive your keys before check-out time, we will only charge through the actual number of nights stayed.
I’ve never shared a house with a stranger before. How does that work out?
McElderry House Lodging has been in business since 1996, and 99% of the time shared-house situations have worked out great. In fact, a lot of our repeat guests have reported that they are still in touch with former housemates. Over the years we have discovered that putting people together who are in similarly stressed circumstances tends to lead more to friendship than conflict. That being said, we understand that problems do occasionally occur. If you are unhappy with your housemate, we will make every effort to promptly address the situation and, if desired, move you to an accommodation in a different location.
Where should I get my mail sent?
We highly recommend that you get your mail sent “c/o” our office: McElderry House Lodging, 2000 McElderry Street, Baltimore MD 21205. We wouldn’t recommend getting your mail sent directly to your accommodations, because of the chance of mail being misplaced by future guests after you check out.
Can I receive packages and/or flowers while at McElderry House Lodging?
You are welcome to get packages sent to our office address, but remember to make sure that your name in our files matches the name written on your package. We ask that you not have flowers delivered to our office, because patients often come to our front desk and sometimes they are not supposed to be around fresh cut flowers. This also applies to flowers delivered to your house if you are in a shared environment, for the same reason.
How many people can rooms sleep?
Single rooms sleep two people comfortably, usually with two twin beds. Our 2-bedroom, 1-bath, private townhouses sleep four comfortably, with two twin beds in one room and a full-size bed in the other. Air mattresses are available for $10/day.
Are cribs available?
Pack n’ plays (portable cribs) are usually available, free of charge. Advance notice is helpful.
What’s inside the rooms?
Bedrooms are equipped with an alarm clock, a telephone extension, and an extra blanket. Rooms with private baths always have a television in the bedroom. Rooms with shared baths may or may not have televisions, although you may state your preference for one when making your reservation. At least one of the bedrooms in our two bedroom one bath houses have cable television
Will housekeeping come into my room during my stay?
No. To keep costs low, our housekeepers will enter your room only after you depart. We clean all common areas (kitchen, living room, shared baths, etc.) every time a guest checks out. In addition, should either you or a housemate find yourselves unable to tidy up after yourselves (for example, not being able to wash dishes or perhaps to adequately clean the bath), please notify McElderry House Lodging office and we will send in a housekeeper as soon as possible.
Do I need to bring linens and towels from home?
No. There will be a supply of fresh towels and washcloths in your room, and the bed(s) will already be made with complete sets of freshly-laundered bedding/bed linens. There will be a washer and dryer inside the house for your use during your stay. Because we send out ALL of our laundry to a commercial laundry service as each guest checks out, you do not need to launder anything upon departure.
Can I get extra towels?
Guests are welcome to extend their initial supply of towels by availing themselves of the laundering facilities provided. We can arrange for delivery of additional fresh towels and washcloths for guests upon request.
Do you provide internet?
Yes, all houses offer free wireless network access. You do need to have a wireless internet card for your computer, with most new laptop computers having one.
Is there anything in particular that I should bring?
Perhaps you may wish to bring your own hair dryer. We do have several loner hair dryers at the front desk, available on a first-come, first-served basis.
Where do I eat?
There are a variety of food options inside the hospital, including a Subway sandwich shop, Einstein Bagels, and several coffee/sandwich shops. There are also two hospital cafeterias.
Also, there are several nearby carry-out restaurants in our neighborhood offering Chinese, Greek, Caribbean, African, Irish and Italian fare. Historic, hundred-year old Northeast Market, with fresh meats, fish, fruits and vegetables is also close by, providing breakfast, lunch and dinner options along with carry-out of prepared food items. Finally, there are dozens of good restaurants within a mile of the Hospital. A five-minute cab ride to Baltimore’s Inner Harbor (or 3 minutes via subway) provides a choice of restaurants such as Phillip’s, McCormick & Schmick’s, the Cheesecake Factory, and The California Pizza Kitchen, and Pier 5! Cabs are usually available at the Wolfe St. entrance to the hospital, or call for a cab to your door by dialing #410-685-1212.
Is there a grocery store nearby?
Besides the Northeast Market, there is a small grocery store on East Monument Street, across the street from Northeast Market. There is a large Safeway Supermarket within 1½ miles of our office, as well as a Whole Foods Market at an equal distance. Directions to Safeway and Whole Foods can be accessed at our front desk.
Is there a pharmacy nearby?
There are several pharmacies nearby, including one in the Johns Hopkins Outpatient Center and on the Monument St. side of the hospital. Also new CVS on the south side JHH Fayette St. and Walgreens 3 blocks north of JHH. ;
Is the neighborhood safe?
During the daytime hours, especially weekdays, the neighborhood is bustling with people: doctors, nurses, hospital employees, students, out- patients and neighboring families. Hopkins Security is well-represented, and provides optional escort service 24/7.
Does Hopkins provide shuttle service?
Yes! Even though all accommodations are located just across from the hospital entrance, shuttle service is always available, door to door.
Where do I park?
We suggest that guests park in one of the many Johns Hopkins parking garages, on N. Washington St, off Caroline St (Out-Patient Garage), or in the Weimberg Parking Garage (off Broadway at Jefferson St to beneath Weimberg building) The Orleans St garave across from Main Hospital entrance (Orleans St)
The Hopkins web site says that the Washington Street Garage is only for staff. Is it?
No. As of this writing, we have been reassured by the Hospital Parking Office that the Washington Street Garage is for patient parking, too. It is a misprint.
How long can I park in a Hopkins garage?
You can remain parked in a garage 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Please make sure to take note of the entrance and exit hours posted in whichever garage you choose.
How much will garage parking cost?
The standard rate is $12/day. However, if you are a patient or a family member of a patient, discount parking stamps at the Hospital admitting office at Wolfe Street Entrance (ask to speak to the cashier). Books of stamps are $20 for 5 stamps, with each stamp covering one 24 hour parking period, saving $6.00 per day. These coupons do not have expiration dates, so you could use them on future visits to the Hospital.
Can I sell my unused parking coupons back to the Hospital?
No, but McElderry House Lodging will buy back, at cost, any coupons no longer needed, making them available to future guests.
Do I have to buy a full book of parking coupons even if I’m only staying a night?
McElderry House Lodging may have extra coupons available from previous guests, you may inquire upon checking-in.
Why can’t I park on the street?
On-street parking is highly restricted and highly ticketed. The whole area is under a 2-hour limit from 7am to 7pm, and there are many street-cleaning zones with automatic ticketing.
Is there a place to park while I check in?
We have a 15-minute spot directly in front of our office at 2000 McElderry Street. It is not available, however, on Mondays between 11:30am and 2:30pm due to street-cleaning. Your accommodations are not at 2000 McElderry Street, and might be two doors away or one-two blocks away. After you check in, we can certainly direct you to the house in your car, but you may have to double-park and leave one person in your party with the vehicle (to avoid ticketing) while someone else gets shown to accommodations. Doing this during the daytime is a bit of an effort, so we only really recommend it if someone in your party has limited mobility. Parking becomes less of a problem in the neighborhood on weekends, and after 4:30pm on weekdays.
What time can I check in?
Sunday through Friday, our regular check-in time is 2:30pm-4:30pm. Please notify us if you need to arrange for after-hours check-in.
Where do I check in?
You check in at our office, located at #2000 McElderry St, on the northeast corner of McElderry Street and North Washington Stree
What can I expect when I check in?
Soft landings…often following lengthy travel!! After providing an imprint of your credit card, orientation to local landmarks, resources and to parking options will be offered. We will then personally escort you to your accommodations
How do I pay?
An imprint of your credit card will be made upon check-in, along with pre-authorization of the amount of your total anticipated length-of-stay, or of the first ten days of your stay, whichever is less. If you leave earlier than anticipated, you will only be charged through the night prior, as long as you check-out by 12 noon.
Can I pay with a checkcard?
Yes, but it works differently than a credit card. Pre-authorizations will tie up your available funds immediately and appear as if we have charged your card. In reality, the money is in limbo, not in your account and not in our bank. When we process the charge, the transaction is finalized and the correct amount of money goes to our bank.
Can I pay with a personal check?
McElderry House Lodging can only accept checks from pre-approved third-party payers such as Johns Hopkins Hospital, local, state, or federal government, or another medical institution.
Can I pre-pay with a personal check?
Yes. If your check arrives at our office ten days or more prior to your arrival date, we will accept it as payment and apply it as a deposit on your account.
Can I pay with a money order, travelers checks, or cash?
Yes. However, if you wish to pay at the end of your stay, we will still need to imprint and preauthorize your credit card upon checking in. If you don’t have a credit card at all, you will need to pay your whole anticipated stay in advance, plus a one night security deposit.
What happens to the credit card pre-authorization if I pay cash at the end of my stay?
The credit card pre-authorization usually drops off in several days and frees up your money again. This process is totally dependent upon your individual bank.
What if a third party wants to pay toward my stay?
Third parties who wish to pay with a credit card may complete a McElderry House Lodging credit card authorization form, which we can fax, email, or mail to the payer. If the third party payer is an organization or governmental agency, pre-approved by McElderry House Lodging and to be invoiced at the end of your stay, we must receive a written billing authorization prior to your arrival. Billing authorizations need to be on the organization’s letterhead, and should include the following:
1) a statement indicating that the organization is committing to pay
2) your name
3) the agreed-upon price
4) the length of stay
5) the exact address where the invoice must be mailed, including name and phone number of the contact person
6) signature of an authorized representative
Authorizations can be faxed to the McElderry House Lodging office 410-534-3996.
Do you offer any discounts?
Long-term discounts are offered with reservations of the two bedroom one bath houses.
When must I check out?
Check-out time is 12:00pm (noon). Please return your keys to our office at 2000 McElderry St, unless you have made prior arrangements to leave the keys within the accommodation upon departure. DO NOT leave your keys in the house or with a housemate unless you have McElderry House Lodging’s prior approval… to avoid being charged for another night.
What happens if I have to leave outside of office hours?
Please place your key set through the mail slot at the base of our office door (2000 McElderry St) and notify us during business hours of your departure (#410-732-5464).
What if I need to leave earlier than I initially scheduled? Will I be charged?
Please return your key set(s) to our office by our noon check-out time. You will then only be charged through the night prior. (We cannot issue refunds except in the case of documented medical emergency to students or medical professionals booking longer-term accommodations).
What if I need to extend my stay?
If you need to extend your stay please notify us as soon as possible, even if you’re not 100% certain that you actually need to extend. If space is unavailable, we maintain a waiting list in anticipation of unexpected openings.