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“Very clean but a bit too big for us” 3 of 5 stars
Review of The Westin Harbour Castle

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The Westin Harbour Castle
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1 Harbour Square, Toronto, Ontario M5J 1A6, Canada (Downtown Toronto)   |  
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Breakfast for 2 Included
Ranked #38 of 141 Hotels in Toronto
Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Very clean but a bit too big for us”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

We stayed here for three nights recently and enjoyed our stay. As active 70 year olds spending a few nights in several Canadian and US cities over the next few weeks, we felt it was a bit far from the centre of town. We don't (as a rule, eat in hotels) we like to get out and try the various restaurants in town and it was a long walk from anything other than convenience stores or take outs.

Due to jetlag, I woke very early and it was great that the pool was open at 5.00am for us lap swimmers. The swimming pool area is very well maintained and extemely clean.

It is a pity that if you arrive from the airport on the shuttle that you either have to carry your luggage up about 20 or so stairs or brave the driveway entrance car ramp. We were offered bellboy help once we were inline at reception. We had managed to get our heavy cases that far - we were quite capable of taking them up in a lift. We had plenty of bathroom amenities in our room and they were replaced daily.

This is probably a great hotel for young people and for those attending conferences but if you are a couple here to see Toronto I would stay somewhere more in the centre of town.

Room Tip: Our room was on 27th floor, facing the islands. We could watch the ferries cross to the isla ds and...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, May 1, 2013
Dear Stratheden,
Thank you for your recent visit and for staying with us during your visit to Toronto.
I was pleased to read that you enjoyed your stay with us as well as took advantage of our swimming-pool.

However, I am really sorry that you were not made aware of our accessible entrance which would have saved you the stairs in the entrance ramp – I sincerely apologize for that.
I do hope to have the pleasure to welcome you both back soon. Please do not hesitate to email me at experienceteam@westin.com if you need anything prior to your next visit

Stay well,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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2,377 reviews from our community

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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 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (620)
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Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

Our stay at the Westin Harbour Castle was part of a theatre package we purchased for Wizard of Oz. It included tickets for two to the show, a one night stay at the hotel, and a 3-course dinner at a restaurant of our choice.

We arrived on Friday at around 3:30pm, just as everyone was checking-in. The lobby was very busy. Despite having to wait in line, I found the check-in process rather painless. There were 6 people working the front desk. What I really liked was how the front desk staff would step around from the desk to stand in front of the guest when giving them their key cards. Quality service.

The room was a typical, average-size business hotel room. Nothing to really rave about. The best part of the room was probably the extremely comfortable bed and the high quality bedding. The bathroom was a bit small, in my opinion, but it had all the amenities we needed for the night. Since we chose Toula (located on the 38th floor of the hotel) for our dinner, staying in the hotel made it very convenient for us.

When we checked out the next morning, there was a line up at front desk once again. There was a staff member standing at the beginning of the line for assistance. She collected my card, which saved me from having to go to the front desk. However, I wondered if it would have made more sense for her to be standing at the end of the line so I wouldn't have had to wait in line unnecessarily for 10 minutes.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, May 1, 2013
Dear missfranny,

Let me start by thanking you for posting your review on your recent stay.
I trust you enjoyed The Wizard of Oz musical and am pleased to know that you slept well on the Westin Heavenly Bed.
Thank you for your visit and we hope to welcome you back soon – maybe for the next Mirvish musical?!

Warmly,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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Seattle
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2013

Spent a while at the Westin this time, but the room needed a bit of a refresh... Nice TV, and bed as usual, but the room seemed dated overall. Definitely needed more plugs for the modern business traveler.. Luckily, either someone forgot their power strip, or housekeeping put it one in next to the bed. Otherwise, there were only two at the desk area - so I had my devices spread across the room charging. At least I didnt have to use the plugs in the bathroom. And the cordless phone didnt work... which was painful as i couldnt answer the wake up call...

I wish their restaurant on the 1st floor was open for dinner instead of eating in the bar area on couches or the like. Food there was good with a good selection of local brews and wines. The whole downtown of Toronto is under construction, as is the front of the hotel - luckily, no construction noise. Noise, thought the walls and doors werent thick enough to muffle passersby as well as hearing the flushing next door. Would I stay here again - you bet...

Room Tip: Take a room on the lake side.... good views, but dont be spooked by the airplanes landing and taking...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, April 30, 2013
Dear sergeik,

Thank you for sharing your comments on the room condition. I am pleased that you slept well in the Westin Heavenly Bed. I will follow up with our team to address some of the issues you address. In the meantime, I would appreciate if you could email me at experienceteam@westin.com

I look forward to connecting with you,
Once again, thank you for taking the time to share your review.
Warmly,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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Sussex, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
48 hotel reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
87 helpful votes 87 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 24, 2013

Modern hotel, with large relaxing entrance lobby featuring open plan coffee bar - hotel is divided into North and South Towers, and the lobby obviously spans both. There is also a little gift shop at one end.
My room had a beautiful view of the lake, and the small harbour, with the little ferry going back and forth, and a small active airport to the side (although you can't hear anything). Rooms look pretty new - although the bathroom was rather small, it was adequate, with a good modern shower with rainfall type head. Bed very comfortable. Rooms were quiet, possibly due to being in small corridors.
Reception staff were absolutely lovely, all seemed very proactive, warm and welcoming.
The main problem with this hotel - and one I've never seen really anywhere else in the world to this extent - is several huge flights of concrete stairs to access the lobby, which strangely, is not on the ground floor. (Apparently conference rooms occupy the ground floor areas?). There was no porterage to greet, so this meant lugging several heavy suitcases up maybe 50 steps or so. I think, to be honest, it's pretty dangerous - I dread to think what would happen if one were to fall. You can also go up a ramp where cars are valet parked (so dodging them is also not ideal). There is an elevator, but it is right around the other side of the hotel and involves a walk. There is currently a lot of building work going on so maybe this situation will improve when this finishes, but in any event, sadly I don't see how anyone with physical difficulties could easily access this hotel, based on the above. It's a shame, because the hotel itself is of a very high standard, once you actually get in!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, April 30, 2013
Dear kimski44,

Thank you for your recent visit. It was a pleasure to have you and to read your valuable feedback. I am glad that you enjoyed the beautiful lake views from your guest room and appreciated all your interactions with our associates.

I am sorry about the current construction on Queen's Quay and sorry that you were not made aware that there is an accessible entrance on the side of the hotel which takes you directly to the main lobby.

I hope to have the privilege to welcome you back soon and I would love for you to email me prior to your next stay at experienceteam@westin.com so that I can make sure your visit is flawless and show you the accessible entrance.

Stay well,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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Toronto, Canada
1 review
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2013

My husband and I stayed here on New Years Eve (2012/2013). I realize this was 4 months ago now, but I feel like writing a review.
We were looking forward to a beautiful room facing the lake, as this is what they make you think on the website. Those photos are so deceiving! We ended up getting a room facing the lake with a balcony. The balconies are not very private, as the outside walls are slanted so anyone in the adjoining rooms can look over and could climb into your balcony with no problem. It didn't feel very safe! We slept with the curtains closed and did not get to enjoy the view since the hotel was full of college kids who were loud and hanging out on the balconies.
The room was either freezing or boiling hot. There was no way to keep a constant temperature. The bed was very uncomfortable and lumpy. The wallpaper was peeling. The carpet and lounge chair had stains. The bed was not even made properly (sheets half on). In the bathroom, someone had stuffed a bunch of Kleenex into the box in such a way that we knew it had been handled and was not clean. The sink was dirty. The bathrooms are so sterile looking, you feel like you're in a hospital. The cups were plastic. The fridge isn't even a fridge, so what's the point??! The whole place has a dark and drab feel to it, which is nothing like they make it appear to be on the website! It seems like they spend all their money making just the lobby look good. What a crappy stay. We barely slept for all these reasons and the room cost almost $400!! Ridiculous.
When we were getting ready to check out, we opened the curtains and found cigarette butts, a couple beer bottles, and a plastic bottle that was obviously used for smoking drugs. These things were tossed from another balcony in the night. I realize that's not really the hotel's fault, but come on... It's so trashy.
This hotel needs some serious upgrades. For what they charge, you'd think you're getting exactly what they show on the website. This is not the case.
Read the reviews before you book. I don't know... maybe my standards are too high. I can't understand why this hotel has so many positive reviews. We'll never stay here again.

Room Tip: If you are a college kid who just wants to party, this place is perfect.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, April 30, 2013
Dear M P,

Thank you for choosing to stay with us to celebrate New Year’s Eve and for sharing your thoughts now. I am sorry that your experience with us that night was not flawless. We always take a lot of extra measures to avoid noise issues on that particular night and I am sorry that you did not managed to rest well.

What you describe on the room condition is unacceptable and I will personally follow-up with our housekeeping team. In the meantime, I would appreciate if you could email me at experienceteam@westin.com

Best regards,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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West Sussex
Top Contributor
101 reviews 101 reviews
45 hotel reviews
Reviews in 53 cities Reviews in 53 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

This hotel overlooks Lake Ontario on the waterfront and a little way from the downtown area of the city. The hotel is very dated and in urgent need of a facelift. There is currently lots of construction going on outside so dont get a room looking towards the city.The staff were reasonably helpful but somehow it just all lacks something.... The rooms are just "ok". Very few amenities in the room but some are available on request....strange to find that these days. The restaurant in the lobby was ok but overrun with children running and screaming all over the place. I will look elsewhere to stay next time I am in Toronto.

Room Tip: Choose a room overlooking the lake as its less noisy.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, April 30, 2013
Dear RichWestSussex,

Your review is really concerning me and I thank you for sharing this valuable feedback. At Westin, we pride ourselves in taking good care of our guests to make sure they leave us feeling better than when they arrived, and I am sincerely sorry that we did not meet this promise during your recent visit.

I would love to speak with you and discuss your review in further details. Could you please email me at experienceteam@westin.com?
I look forward to the opportunity to personally apologize.

Warm regards,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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Kingston, Canada
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

This hotel was a disappointment, simply by being average. I had hoped for a very comfortable experience, but the room was a problem. The air vent was on an air shaft protruding from the wall beside our bed. Its noise was very disturbing. Every so often the fan would roar on, with a horrible metallic scraping sound, then run, making a noise like an airplane taking off. We tried to adjust the fan to make it softer, but without success. And so, around 3:00 am, we had to turn off the heating system altogether.

We got a good rate for the room, but then had to spend $40 plus tips for valet parking. We also paid almost $50 for a very ho-hum buffet breakfast, which was adequate but not much better than what I have received for free from some supposedly lower-quality hotels that include breakfast.

I also had to pay $14 for WiFi, and I do believe that internet access should be included in the cost of the room. (There was a notice that said the hotel would even charge for local calls--charging by the hour! That's ridiculous.)

There was some sort of problem with the elevators; it seemed as if not all of them were running. We were on the 14th floor, and whenever we needed to go down, we had to wait an inordinate amount of time. Sometimes the elevator would arrive but be so full we could not get on. We talked to one man who told us he waited so long, he eventually took an elevator UP to a higher floor in order to get on. I pity people who tried to board from floors below ours; they had no success, especially during busy times of the day.

We had a partial view of Lake Ontario and the Toronto Islands, which was nice. However, there is a tremendous amount of ongoing construction on Queen's Quay, and the blocking of the street serves to cut off the hotel even more than it is cut off from the major downtown sites. We enjoyed a walk along the lake, but would have had to take a substantial walk north, under the Gardiner Expressway, to get to the subway.

In conclusion, I doubt that I would book this hotel again. It is, indeed, average, and nothing more.

Room Tip: the higher the better--for the sake of the view, and also to avoid elevator problems. Be sure to as...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, April 30, 2013
Dear Introvertica,

At Westin, our mission is to exceed our guests’ expectations and I sincerely apologize that we did not during your recent visit.

I thank you for taking the time to share your comments online as well as some valuable feedback and can assure you that I will follow-up accordingly with the teams. From what I can read, it sounds like your stay was impacted at very different stages with various issues and I would love to personally follow-up with you on each of them.
This is why I would really appreciate if you could email me at experienceteam@westin.com. I look forward to connecting with you and apologize once again that you did not leave our hotel feeling better than we you arrived.

Sincerely,
Edwin Frizzell
General Manager
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Additional Information about The Westin Harbour Castle

Address: 1 Harbour Square, Toronto, Ontario M5J 1A6, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > Ontario > Toronto > Downtown Toronto , Harbourfront
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 Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#17 Spa Hotel in Toronto
#23 Romantic Hotel in Toronto
#26 Family Hotel in Toronto
#27 Luxury Hotel in Toronto
#34 Business Hotel in Toronto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Westin Harbour Castle 4*
Number of rooms: 977
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to The Westin Harbour Castle, Toronto. Our downtown Toronto hotel is located on the vibrant waterfront of Lake Ontario, where you can enjoy Toronto's seasonal events. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Westin Harbour Castle Hotel Toronto
Westin Hotel Toronto
Westin Toronto
Westin Harbor Castle Hotel Toronto
Toronto Westin
Westin Harbour Castle Toronto

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