We booked a stay at the Minto back in October 2012 for Winterlude 2013. Booked early in anticipation that it would be a busy weekend in Ottawa with Winterlude and the Family Day weekend. Made a minor change in December to the reservation via their 800 customer service line and received an email confirmation that our change was made.
We arrived at the hotel on February 15th, only to find out they did not have our reservation on file. I showed the clerk (who was very friendly) my confirmation and she was able to book me a room. I asked her if it was a Queen Suite as I had previously booked and she confirmed it was. We headed up to the room looking forward to a great weekend. When we arrived in our room, we found it was NOT a Queen Suite with a separate bedroom as we had booked. Sigh. I called down to the front desk and explained that this was not the room we wanted-we wanted a separate bedroom as we had our kids with us and wanted to additional privacy. The girl on the phone was able to change us into the room we wanted and advised someone would be up with new keys for us. Great..
The fellow arrived with the new keys. Abruptly handed them to my husband and took off. Did not offer to assist us in moving our luggage down to the new room, no apology for the mix up, nothing. Not too impressed. We grabbed our suitcases and headed down to our new room. This room was exactly what we wanted and suited us just fine.
Saturday became a bit of a nightmare with the elevators. We waited 10 minutes for an elevator to take us to the main floor and still could not get onto an elevator (only 2 actually stopped on our floor). At that point we decided to take the stairs (8 floors). When we arrived on the first floor, we found the door to be locked. Grr. We banged on the door until someone answered. The gentleman who answered the door explained that the door actually came next to the front desk and tried to make us go back up and take a different route. We refused due to the hassels we had already experienced and he finally let us pass, but in a very curt tone told us we were not to use this passage again. There was no making on the door on the 8th floor to indicate this was not a stairway that could be used. All of Saturday was the same thing with the elevators-waiting for long periods before being able to get on. One of them actually stopped on the 4th floor and would not go any further-the doors only opening halfway.
The adventure continued on Sunday. We had been out all day long and returned to our room at 5:00pm to find that it had not been made up. The pullout bed was still out, the garbage was still in the room, etc. I called down to the desk again to ask if they do not make up rooms on Sundays and was told that they had been full up Saturday night and are running behind. They would get to our room "soon". We finally had a knock on our door from housekeeping at about 5:40 to make up the room. We told them we would be out in about 20 minutes as we were just heading out for dinner. The room was partially made up by the time we returned-the pull out was still out, but the sheets had been made, the kitchen was tidied but no coffee filters were replenished and the garbage was taken out.
Check out was smooth. I was surprised to find I was charged for the local call we made for pizza delivery (I did not check this previously as I have never had to pay for local calls when staying at a hotel and did not expect to do so this time) so that was a bit of a disappointment.
The parking situation was adequate. Again, given that the hotel owns the parking garage, I would think they could comp the parking fees for their guests, but I guess they are trying to make an extra buck.
I did find it convenient that there was a 24 hour market in the building for supplies. Given the convenience factor, the prices were reasonable (don't mistake that to mean they were cheap-anything but-however for the convenience they were acceptable).
The kids enjoyed the pool. It seems we were lucky we got there when we did on Saturday because as we were leaving, other guests who wanted to use the pool had to put their names on a waiting list to get in. Another inconveneince (I understand why they have to limit the number of people in the pool, but it is still a pain especially for the kids).
Overall, the hotel was okay. I might have been a bit more enthusiastic if I hadn't experienced the issues above. I'm undecided at this point if I would return to the Minto. As I said the room suited us fine. The location of the hotel was great-walking distance to many places (only 20 minutes to the Nature Museum, 15 to the Byward Market). I'm really just annoyed at the inconveniences that we experienced during our weekend. I will have to think about booking into the Minto again.
Try to get room away from the elevators. The high traffic near the elevators can cause some issues...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
February 27, 2013
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Thank you for submitting such a thorough and helpful review. I would first like to thank you for choosing Minto Suite Hotel to spend Winterlude with your family. Please allow me to apologize for the inconvenience regarding your reservation, as well as the customer service you received. I can appreciate that you expect more from Minto Suite Hotel, and I assure you that this is not typical. Thank you for bringing these issues to my attention, so I can communicate with all departments involved and ensure proper procedures are in place. We have a tremendous reputation for delivering unsurpassed value and friendly service and I sincerely hope we have the chance to create an inspiring stay for you in the future.
General Manager, Customer Experience - Hospitality
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.