Management at American Best Inn & Suites in Mason City wants people to know it is working hard to run a clean and safe hotel and dispel adult services rumors.|Lorna Acker is the manager at American Best Inn & Suites in Mason City.
Lorna and her husband Sean told NorthIowaToday.com a story that got them on edge and concerned about the reputation in the community about the hotel where they work.
First, Sean told NorthIowaToday.com about a man that walked in to the lobby of the American Best Inn on Sunday night. “Guy walks in and asked how much a room is. He was an older gentleman probably in his 60’s, short, with white hair. He asked how much a room was, and does a girl come with it.”
Sean says he thought the guy was joking, and they both chuckled a little before the man said, “Really, can you set me up with a girl? I heard there are girls available here.” That’s when Sean says he realized the man was serious, and politely explained, “We don’t have any of that at this hotel.”
Before turning around and leaving, the man said, “Thanks, I’ll keep you in mind.”
Sean Acker told his wife Lorna what had happened and she became concerned about how the community was perceiving American Best Inn. “I kind of wondered where to start or who to call, to try to find out what was going on, and how to change this,” she said.
So, Lorna called up the Mason City Chamber of Commerce, of which American Best Inn is a member, and talked to Director Robin Anderson, who was willing to help.
Mrs. Acker told NorthIowaToday.com that Anderson told her that these prostitution rumors were “the repercussions of an irresponsible Council person” and then went on to name that Council person as Max Weaver. “We can go to the Globe Gazette and have a story written about this. I’ll call by this afternoon if you want me to.”
Recently, the Mason City City Council had wrangled over adult businesses and zoning for them in the downtown district. The debate had made national news and created a buzz in the community.
NorthIowaToday.com was able to reach Robin Anderson at the Chamber of Commerce office and asked if she had spoken to Mrs. Acker. Anderson told NorthIowaToday.com “she (Lorna Acker) called to ask if there was a way to dispel the (prostitution) rumors. I told her I can think of two ways we can help. An email blast with a blurb, or we can put you in touch with the news media. Let me know what you want me to do.” Anderson denied mentioning Max Weaver by name.
Lorna and Sean just want the public to know that they have worked very hard to turn around American Best Inn & Suites. They have given food and clothing to patrons in need and even rides if someone needs it. “We have a little emergency food pantry, just in case. Sometimes people are really hurting, and we try to help.”
The Ackers say that the type of people staying at their hotel is improving and occupancy is climbing as a result. They hope with hard work, the image of the hotel continues to improve over time.