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“Stimulate your senses!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Fairmont Banff Springs

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The Fairmont Banff Springs
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   405 Spray Avenue | P.O. Box 960, Banff, Banff National Park, Alberta T1L 1J4, Canada   |  
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FREE SKI PASSES
Ranked #1 of 31 Hotels in Banff
GreenLeadersSilver level
new york
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Stimulate your senses!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2014

Visited August 2013 for a quick getaway. The location did not disappoint at all. I planned this vacation with my best friend from high school. We wanted to hike and enjoy the spa!

I had a tough time choosing between the Fairmont Banff and Fairmont Lake Louise. I finally chose Banff. So thankful I did! Lake Louise is a mad house with buses everywhere, the lobby is overtaken by tourists bumping into everyone. Most of all, the hotel is old and extremely dated.
Banff is tastefully decorated and is the more civilized option when choosing where to stay. Banff also has a town, Lake Louise does not.

Lake Louise has the most incredible view, but sleep in Banff and use that as your starting point!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FBS1888, Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 5, 2014
Thank you for your honest review which we appreciate. Banff and Lake Louise are uniquely special, each offering experiences that attract a wide array of visitors. There are peak and low seasons in both locations for those seeking solitude.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (807)
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English first
Vancouver, Canada
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 3, 2014

We just returned from our 6th family Xmas at the Banff Springs Hotel. I also spent at least 6 other Xmas there as a child with my father and brother. My wife and I were married at the Springs during the Xmas of 2009. Both my wife and I are president's club members and stay at Fairmont hotels whenever and wherever we can afford to. It seems that all that means very little to the Fairmont chain. This is not to say that our whole trip was horrible but it certainly started off that way. For the first time we had a bad experience at our beloved castle in the Rockies. We arrived on the day of our anniversary. The room wasn't ready. I had made calls earlier explaining the special nature of our day. We'd also called ahead to see about special dining arrangements for our anniversary dinner to the food and beverage manager which were never returned. Now this is very small potatoes I know. But we've put alot of money into this place over the years. We have high expectations. When the room finally became available we were assured it was the room we booked. It was not. It was the single worst room we've ever had. Steer clear of 1821 at all costs. We have children and always book a room with a separate bed area so we don't have to go down at 7:30 with the kids. I know on the website it says they can't be held responsible for rooms with slight variations, it is after all a large hotel and it's old. The rooms vary. I get it. This was unacceptable by any standards. That they would categorize this with what we'd reserved is completely ridiculous. What we paid for was a very different room indeed. Its important to note that my wife and I are not in the habit of trying to get freebies or upgrades but we expect to get what we pay for. So when I confronted the manager, who was to his credit agreeable, he said the room we booked wouldn't be available for another 3 days. Our loyalty to this place was of no consequence. We tried our best to make do. That night we ended up having an absolutely wonderful dinner in the Banffshire dining room. Recommend that for sure. Then we went back to the room because the baby sitter we hired was calling about the kids. When we got back to the room there was obviously something wrong. The room smelled very strongly of raw sewage. It was disgusting. It was late and we were tired and the kids were sleeping so we didn't make a fuss. In the morning it was much much worse. Our youngest starting throwing up. Not what we were hoping for. Again we talked to the manager, same guy, he showed concern and moved us across the hall for the morning and promised our originally booked room later that day. Which we got and it was exactly the room we'd been promised. That first night should have been taken off the bill. Any 2 star roadside motel would have compted us the night in the sewer room. Not the Springs. Rough start. I am happy to say from that moment on it was winter heaven. The staff was incredible, especially the wait staff in the Rundle Lounge. The pool wonderful as always, the spa amazing, we both had massages. We tried the Waldhaus pub for the very fist time and liked it so much we had our Xmas dinner there. Best, or really, the only cheese fondu I've had in 30 years, so good went back 2 more times. Night skating outside with my son. Bowling with my whole family. The Santa send off was great though a bit more rehearsal would have served them well. The only poorly run Xmas event in our opinion was the manager meet and greet. Like I said I've been to more than my share of them. Usually they are fun and festive way to start off the season. This one was basically a room full of managers from every department standing around like foot soldiers each with a stack of business cards I'm sure they'd been ordered to hand out. One of the managers, the one in charge of children's events approached us and when I told him about how great the event used to be 30 years ago he ignored me, didn't want to hear a thing, just moved on to the next victim to hand off another business card.
All things being equal I can't help but recommend this place for Xmas. It's one of a kind. Just be very careful about what room you reserve and don't expect anything in the way of appreciation from the hotel. Even a little card or bottle of wine saying, "Happy Anniversary" or "Sorry about the raw sewage" would have been something. Oh well. We'll be back and next time we'll see what happens.
Hope this helps.

Room Tip: Huge, Old hotel, so many rooms. Some great, others awful. Best way is to not skimp and when you get...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FBS1888, Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 5, 2014
Thank you for your review. We care very much about your experience and want to connect with you. A hotel representative will be emailing you shortly.

The Fairmont Banff Springs
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Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2014 via mobile

We were here for a convention and were pleasantly surprised by the beautiful views. We saw 20 elk in the golf course from our window. Everything is very ornate and lush. We didn't use the spa but it looked nice. The walk into town was beautiful and easy. I went horseback riding and my husband golfed. Such a serene place.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FBS1888, Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 5, 2014
Thank you for your review. We are delighted that you were able to enjoy some of the flora and fauna of Banff National Park, including the elk that reside here and our world class golf course. We hope to see you again!

The Fairmont Banff Springs
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Burke, Virginia
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2014

If you're going to Banff, this is the place to stay. Banff is an experience in itself and this is part of that. The hotel is in a beautiful setting and offers the ambiance expected. We had several experiences that detracted from rating this as outstanding though. First, we were offered a room in the tower. It was a long way from the elevator and up a steep set of stairs. That was unsuitable because of mobility issues but the hotel arranged another satisfactory room. There were many tour groups attempting to have breakfast at the same time, and thus a substantial queue developed waiting for service. But the breakfast was worth it.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FBS1888, Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 5, 2014
We appreciate your kind review thank you! We would like to know if you are planning to return so we can ensure a room location suitable for your needs in advance. Do contact us directly if so as we appreciate a room move on arrival is not ideal for our guests.

The Fairmont Banff Springs
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Ames, Iowa
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2014

This is one of the most amazing places to stay while in Banff, Canada. It has the most beautiful views and what great staff. I would recommend this place to everyone I know. I know we will come back more. Rooms are not the largest, but you are there only to sleep anyway. AMAZING is all I can say.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
FBS1888, Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 5, 2014
Thank you for visiting from Iowa! We are delighted that you enjoyed your stay.

The Fairmont Banff Springs
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Toront, ON
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
141 helpful votes 141 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2014

I've been here twice in as many years and Banff Springs Hotel is really growing on me. YES, I know, some (or many) of the rooms are on the smallish size. This is a product of the hotel's history and you either need to upgrade to get a reasonable sized room, or just grin and bear it, spending most of your time out of the room anyway.

BSH is great for kids. Went a few years back with my four year old daughter, who received a tiara upon arrival and was treated like a princess by all staff thereafter. She loved going for tea with grandma (bubble gum tea!) and out to the secret bowling alley on another evening.

More recently was last month, on a skiing weekend. I love the ambience of the hotel, it is so pitch perfect and is consistently the same. If you let yourself get into it, it totally feels like the alpine getaway that you travel to by steam train. The massive outdoor semi-hot tub after a day of skiing. The fondue at the german restaurant, which requires a short walk outside to get to (which makes total sense for the atmosphere). The various shops. The huge arched ceiling over the main pool. It's just fantastic and I wouldn't think of staying anywhere else in Banff.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EJROE, General Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 2, 2014
Dear Valued Guest from Toronto,

Thank you so much for returning to The Fairmont Banff Springs for a ski weekend and for taking the time to write this great review. I was so happy to read that you enjoyed the aquatic center with the outdoor and indoor pools, along with the stroll down to the Waldhaus pub for fondue. Please let you daughter know that we still give all young children who are checking in a tiara or a crown, and the team also presents them on special occasions to adults too.

I trust you had a great holiday season and on behalf of the entire team we wish you a very healthy and prosperous 2014, along with looking forward to welcoming you back in the very near future.

Yours sincerely

Edward J. Roe
Hotel Manager
The Fairmont Banff Springs
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Calgary, Alberta
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2013 via mobile

My gf and I had booked a Deluxe Room with Mountain view approximately a month in advance, taking three nights for price of two special. Our room was quite spacious however incessant noise from the hallway made a restful night impossible. Our "king sized" bed was made up with no fitted sheets and a queen sized duvet; the covers were constantly tangled. By the end of our stay we both had very sore backs (in spite of the lovely massage at willow stream). During our packing for checkout my gf noticed the bed frame was actually broken! No wonder the whole thing sagged. The bathroom door didn't latch, and the in room movie service offerings at $18 per movie seemed VHS quality (anyone remember those?). Add to that some mysterious illness after dining at the hotel, this was an unpleasant stay. My gf had a weekend of taking care of me and was afraid to eat there.

Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
EJROE, General Manager at The Fairmont Banff Springs, responded to this review, January 2, 2014
Dear Valued Guest from Calgary,

Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review about your recent stay at The Fairmont Banff Springs, even though you certainly seem to have had a disappointing stay. Therefore, I have taken the liberty of sending you a direct message to find out some more details regarding your stay in order for me to personally follow up with my housekeeping team to ensure the bed frame has been fixed, the right king size duvet is now on the bed and that the bed has been made correctly, along with ensuring the TV movie system has been fixed. These challenges and service breakdowns are certainly not indicative of the fine level of service and guest experience that we are striving for, therefore I was pleased to read that you had a lovely massage in the Willow Stream Spa.

On behalf of the entire Fairmont Banff Springs team I am sincerely apologetic that your stay did not live up to your or my expectations, and I look forward to hearing from you.

All the best for 2014 and yours sincerely,

Edward J. Roe
Hotel Manager
The Fairmont Banff Springs
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Fairmont Banff Springs

Address: 405 Spray Avenue | P.O. Box 960, Banff, Banff National Park, Alberta T1L 1J4, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > Alberta > Canadian Rockies > Banff National Park > Banff
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Banff
#1 Romantic Hotel in Banff
#1 Spa Hotel in Banff
#1 Family Hotel in Banff
#1 Green Hotel in Banff
#2 Business Hotel in Banff
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Fairmont Banff Springs 4*
Number of rooms: 770
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in the heart of Banff National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the world famous Fairmont Banff Springs resort stands as a landmark in the picturesque alpine town of Banff. This year round luxury resort is styled after a Scottish baronial castle and offers guests spectacular mountain and valley views, a championship golf course during the summer, unparalleled skiing in the winter, and an award-winning European-style spa, the Willow Steam Spa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel Banff
Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel
The Fairmont Banff Springs Banff
Fairmont Banff Hotel
Fairmont Hotel Banff
Banff Fairmont

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