We stayed at this hotel between 6th to 15th September 2011 - we were in Vancouver for a leisure holiday.
I give this hotel an overall positive rating. First let me list the positive aspects: good location - right by English Bay, shops & plenty of sit-down restaurants & take-away places. Close to Safeways & discount supermarket as well as other shops including an office licence AKA liquor store if you wish to purchase alcohol (there is a mini-mall nearby). Entertainment also nearby including a local cinema. Close to transport links (buses to metro stations/Ferry/tourist trolley stop). Within easy distance of Stanley Park. Apartments were spacious & generally clean. You can choose when the maid comes in to clean. Staff were generally friendly & knowledgeable about the local area. The great thing about this hotel was that it was the cheapest rate in Vancouver, free wi-fi access & allowed smokers & pets. Also had a sofa bed for additional guests if needed.
OK, so this was the basic end of the accommodation market, but I still think it's good value although don't expect the Hilton. As I list a few of the negative aspects this point may become more apparent to you.
So, onto the negative points: the cutlery & tea towels had seen better days - they were old and very much used, evidenced by a burnt in stain found within a saucepan. The frying pan was the smallest I'd ever seen, which made cooking breakfast difficult. The towels in the bathroom were small & rough. The bath had mould in places and really did deserve a good scrub! The water was difficult at times when showering; it would turn boiling hot, even when no-one else in the same apartment had switched a tap on.
These apartments have NO LIFT so not good if you are disabled etc.
There is NO air-conditioning whatsoever - I can imagine it being very hot/stuffy in summer.
There is NO noise insulation - we were not disturbed too much during our stay (perhaps because the building was quiet due to it being off season), but we could hear the people above us quite clearly.
As I mentioned, the staff were generally friendly & helpful, but our first impression upon check-in was frankly appalling. We had booked a smoking room at $100 per night. When we checked-in the lady at reception was extremely rude to us saying that the hotel did not supply smoking rooms (outright lie). She then argued the nightly price saying that price was actually $120 nightly. In essence, my email confirming a smoking apartment @ a nightly rate of $100 was not enough to stop her arguing, but when I suggested she called the manager who made our reservation, she did so (give her credit there I guess!) and the manager confirmed that the email I produced & booking conditions I was stating was indeed correct. However, this lady continued to be rude saying things like 'I have to keep all the customers happy not just you!', to which our replay was 'that is why we checked prior to booking your hotel'! Other smokers did check into the hotel after us & there were regular smokers staying there.
Learn from this lesson - reserve via email if you are booking a smoking room AND/OR if you wish to secure a certain nightly rate. Rates have started to go up on their internet site, so do be careful that you pay the price that you reserved at.
But considering all the above points I would recommend this hotel. It's cheap & central & close to transport links. But do bear in mind the saying 'you get what you pay for'.
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