Summary: Excellent mid-upper scale hotel – fast internet, delicately furnished rooms, and outstanding friendly service! High recommendation and far better than the Hilton Bonoventure (the other alternative).
I am a business traveller and recently chose to stay at the Fairmont this time after staying at the Hilton Bonoventure in 12 separate times last year – now stayed in Fairmont for 7 nights on the 9th floor in Room 903. I wish I could’ve stayed at this hotel earlier instead of the Hilton.
I will be writing my review as a Fairmont vs. Hilton, given that they are close proximity to each other, and hope this will be a meaningful comparison for readers.
- Very fast internet. Internet speed at the Fairmont was 100x better than the Hilton. I was so impressed with it, I even did a download/upload test, which resulted to 55mbps download and 36 mbps upload. On the other hand, the Hilton had sporadic internet access in their hotel (they recognize the problem and blame the building structure) and my tablet could not connect at times in the Hilton. As a traveller, good quality internet is a must and the Fairmont delivered well here. For techies, this is a great choice.
- Warm furnishings and room feel:- The rooms are bright, warm, modern and comfortable – with an eloquent feel to it – marble furnishings, hard wood furniture, fresh wallpapers, new lamps, etc. Some people fear that the Fairmont is “old” but for me it is more “eloquence”. My room was recently renovated and has a brighter and warmer feel than the Hilton. The only part that was old was the bathtub and did not appear to be replaced as part of the renovation- and yes it did have chips and small cracks in it – I would not take a full bath in the Fairmont. The shower water pressure is excellent, however, and the toilets/other amenities in the bathroom is excellent. Also, they give you bathrobes in the rooms, but no slippers.
- Excellent lighting:- There is definitely more natural and indoor light in the Fairmont rooms as compared to the Hilton. For someone who likes light, the Fairmont is a better choice.
- Excellent radio clock:- the radio clock is a Sony and has a built in dock for iPhones – which is great if you have an iPhone.
- Not so convenient electric plugs:- There are quite many, however, the bedside lamps themselves do not have plug outlets built within the lamp (unlike the Hilton) – making it hard to plug a phone in by the bed. However, under the bed there is a large powerbar and you can easily plug multiple devices in at a time – once you reach for it.
- Television: The Fairmont has a large screen LG LCD TV and appears to have more channels and slightly larger than the Hilton. However, unlike the Marriott in Orlando, it does not have any cables to plug your computer to it to watch movies, etc and when I dialed room service they didn't have any. Most hotels don’t have it but it would be nice.
- Excellent Service: The service at the Fairmont is way better than the Hilton – prompt ,friendly, and they even gave me a gift on my second night. I had my shoes shined complimentary and the valet laundry was done very well (the laundry comes back in proper Fairmont branded bags instead of plastic sheets). Also, when I requested a thinner pillow, a larger empty fridge (the is already a bar fridge) and a microwave, the response was fast, friendly and professional. Service is top class.
- Slightly expensive room service: The food in room service is slightly more expensive given the $3 charge (the Hilton room service is cheaper).
- Good toiletries: The toiletries in the Fairmont (Le Labo Rose 31 soaps and shampoo) are great and better than those offered at the Hilton. It has an excellent scent and definitely more luxurious. However, unlike the Hilton, no mouth wash is provided.
- Restaurant:- Montrealais – better selection than the restaurant in the Hilton. The cheesecake is one of the best I’ve had in a while. Also they have an all you can eat salad bar for about $16 which is perfect for business travellers like me.
- Overall higher class: Overall there is more class at the Fairmont – even though the rates between Hilton and Fairmont are similar. It’s the little things that the Fairmont does that make them more eloquent, such as 1) classical music is on in your room when you first arrive; 2) hanging your newspapers on your door in an environmental friendly re-usable instead of putting it on the floor as done in the Hilton; better glasses/cups for in-room tea/coffee (Hilton gives paper cups while Fairmont has proper mugs) ; better in-room coffee machine, etc.
Overall – I highly recommend the Fairmont and will come back and stay here anytime (and definitely better choice than the Hilton).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- At the center of Montreal's vibrant cultural and commercial district sits the city's grandest and most gracious hotel - Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth. Located above the train station (Via Rail & AMTRAK) and connected to the extensive underground city of thousands of boutiques, restaurants and cafes, and within walking distance of sports and cultural attractions, this Montreal hotel reflects the city’s distinct elegance and charm. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth Hotel Montreal
- Fairmont Hotel Montreal
- Fairmont Montreal
- Fairmont Queen Elizabeth
- Montreal Fairmont