As I start to write this, I wonder if there is any way to make this sound like I’m not exaggerating but I’ll try to convey our experience as honestly as possible. I can only hope anyone thinking about staying here would spend the extra 20 or 30 bucks and stay elsewhere. This review only applies to the “basement suite” and I use the term suite very loosely.
First off, we vacation a lot, usually stay at hotels over 3.0 but as close to 5 if possible, if we can get a deal on popular travel websites. We grew up in Montreal so we know the area well and two nights anywhere normally wouldn’t hurt anyone. I dropped my wife at the front door since there was no parking in the immediate area. No problem, I parked at another hotel around the corner and it was cheap. When I got back to the hotel, the front door was locked. The guy (this is how I will refer to him from here on in) who was working the “front desk” (there is no front desk, this is basically an old townhouse converted to a hotel, no room for front desks and I have no problem with that) ran to unlock the door. I thought it was odd that the door was locked. He advised me that my wife was waiting for me in our room. Great. Then he preceded to show me where my room was. We had to go down a rot iron spiral staircase that was about 18 inches wide from side to side and steep. Once at the bottom (the basement) we passed through a small short hallway with the door to the room to the left and what looked like a kitchen area to the right. The sink was full with glasses that were somewhere in the middle of being washed. Beyond the sink area was what appeared to be a kitchen area although I could only see a small portion of it. I knocked on our room door and my wife opened the door to let me in. Once inside and after scanning the room, she explained that the guy advised her that there was another room available upstairs but that it was not cleaned yet and we would have to move after one night even though we booked the room a while ago. So basically this was going to be our room. I looked around and this is what I saw.
1) The room was very dark as there were no windows in it.
2) The furniture was very old. Looked like someone scavenged a flea market for antiques but never re-finished them to make them look nice. They were literally falling apart.
3) The keychain for the room key had a key for our room and the front door, as the door is always locked from the inside. (the guy showed my wife how to unlock the door as there was a “trick” to it) Not good.
4) There was a large aquarium in the room (LARGE) which happened to be empty.
5) There was a back door, that led apparently, to a fire escape but the door was blocked by a large spa bathtub which was outside of the actual walled in bathroom area and a wide 6 drawer dresser and an arm chair. It would take some effort to get to the door if you needed to and I hope no one ever has to find out.
6) The room was actually quite large but there was a separate bathroom area that was walled off and raised about 4 inches. All of the molding was unattached and just kind of leaning against the wall. You may think that this was on account that they were doing renovations but I can assure you there were no renovations going on in this room.
7) There were two night stands beside the large king size bed and when I opened the drawer on one of them, the front “panel” with the handle came off in my hand.
8) There was another large 6 drawer dresser to the right of the bed and another dresser behind it blocking what appeared to be a door to the kitchen. The door itself was only about 5 feet tall but I did not see any locks on it.
9) When I tried to open a drawer to this dresser, it too came off in my hand.
10) There was a huge flat screen tv on the wall beside this. Honestly, I love my flat screen tv’s but this was ridiculous for where it was located. Very odd.
11) And finally, just to the right of the door was a fairly large armoire. I opened it to see if there was a safe in it (yeah right) but instead of a safe, there were about four to five men’s shirts hanging in it.
This was the last straw so to speak, so after having a good laugh to ourselves (only laughing because we were able to leave), we grabbed our bags and headed past the dirty dishes and tried to get up the spiral staircase from hell. We spoke to the “guy” and told him my allergies would not allow me to stay at the hotel. We offered to pay for the first night but asked him if he could cancel the second night’s reservation. He called his boss who after listening to my allergy story, asked me if we would like him to have the carpets removed from our room. I told him that that really wouldn’t help and he agreed to cancel night two. It wouldn’t have mattered anyways, I would have paid a week’s worth of rooms just to leave at that point.
I know when renovating my home, I was not allowed to have a bedroom in the basement without a window in it. I’m not sure if this is a legally designated room or not but I do know that if there is ever a fire in this hotel, the people staying in this room are probably doomed. So if you book a room at this “hotel”, DO NOT stay in the basement room.
Pros and cons
Pros – Nice old building from the outside, centrally located, large flat screen tv, large aquarium (bring your own fish)
Cons (basement suite only) – Not clean, old musty room, question the legality of the room, no windows, fire hazard, not 3.5 star more like 1 star, hidden doors, flimsy locks, etc etc etc.
So there it is, good luck to future travellers. Take this review or leave it. I know I won't be going back.
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