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“Absolutely no complaints!!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Monaco Alexandria, a Kimpton Hotel

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Monaco Alexandria, a Kimpton Hotel
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   480 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22314 (Old Town)   |  
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Breakfast for $1
Ranked #7 of 49 hotels in Alexandria
GreenLeadersGold level
Georgia
Top Contributor
207 reviews 207 reviews
107 hotel reviews
Reviews in 77 cities Reviews in 77 cities
230 helpful votes 230 helpful votes
“Absolutely no complaints!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2008

I just spent two nights at this property and it was top notch from check-in until check-out.

I arrived at the hotel much earlier than anticipated (10 a.m.) and I did not expect an early check-in. When I reserved the room I requested a room on a high floor that was away from the elevator and QUIET. Noting this request, the person at the check-in desk said that a suitable room was not available, but that they could store my luggage, take my cell phone number, and call me as soon as the room was ready.

She said that the occupants of my room had requested a late check-out, but it appeared that they were not going to need it. She called someone on the cleaning staff and told them to make my room a priority. I left and walked along King Street, had lunch, and returned to the hotel. I expected to sit on one of the sofas or plush lobby chairs to wait, but within a very short time she called me and provided the room keys, had my bags readied, and I was on my way to the room by 1:30 p.m.

The room was large and well appointed. The marbled bathroom was actually two rooms with one area with the sink and another with the tub and toilet. L'Occitane toiletires were provided. There were lots of plush towels, a small toiletry jar with Q-tips and cotton balls.

There was a closet in the bedroom. It contained a safe, an ironing board an iron and an umbrella--nice touch! There were three robes, all wild animal prints. One was short and two were long. There were some other items for sale that were in plastic bags--silk pjs and boxers--and I pushed them to one side. I was only there for a brief stay, but there was adequate room for my needs.

There was an entertainment stand with three drawers on one side and a mini bar on the other that held the nice flat screen television. A clock radio with ipod dock was playing NPS when I entered the room and a plate containing fruit and chocolate was waiting for me.

In addition to the cold items in the mini-bar--lots of drinks--there was an assortment of items including razor, toothbrush, first aid kit, intimacy kit, chocolate, nuts, candies, etc. for sale. I was very appreciative of these items even though I did not purchase any of them.

There were two fabric-covered footstools at the end of the bed, a desk with a nice desk chair, and a chaise. There were two bedside tables on either side of the king bed.

There was a trash can for recyclable items which I thought was wonderful. And best of all, there were real fresh flowers in the bathroom and in the bedroom and a live goldfish in a small round bowl on the desk. A card by the fish said his name was Peewee.

All in all the decor and the amenities of the room were excellent.

The room (#533) was quiet. I did not notice any annoyance from the air conditioner. The temperatures in the public area were fine to me. On Saturday a young man set up on the sidewalk across from the hotel with upturned buckets and he played "drums" there for several hours. I could hear this noise but he played at a reasonable hour so it did not disrupt my sleep and his playing was not something the hotel could control.

I enjoyed the Saturday market at the govt plaza near the hotel and i had breakfast in the hotel restaurant. The breakfast was fine--nothing stellar.

I did order room service one night and the person who responded had a difficult time understanding my order. His English was not good and the conversation was difficult with my repeating things and his asking me things I could not understand. It was probably as frustrating for him as it was for me. I had a burger and a salad and both were fine. The dessert I received did not match what I thought I ordered. I gave up getting the person to understand that I wanted a pinot noir and finally agreed to a merlot. The food was fine--no complaints.

When I checked out the clerk gave me a receipt without my asking for it. She asked if I needed an envelope for my receipt and if I needed transportation. I told her I planned to get a taxi at the stand out front. I went out and into a cab to go to the airport.I had seen the shuttle arriving and leaving the hotel during my entire stay and I knew that it offered rides to the airport, but I also knew that I might have a wait and/or I might have to wait while other guests disembarked at concourses other than my own so I wanted the speed of a taxi. I intended to fly out on an earlier flight if possible.

There was free Internet in the room and I used it with no difficulty. There was free coffee and hot tea in the lobby every morning.

The hotel was very convenient to the many shops and dining options of Old Town Alexandria. It was within a few blocks of the water taxi departure and arrival dock.

If I am in this area again I will not hesitate to choose the Monaco. The price was less than most of the other properties I checked and there were more amenities than offered at the other spots. I did not use the pool or the business center so I can not remark on them.

  • Liked — Free Internet!
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (263)
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English first
Waterloo, Iowa
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2008

After reading all these fantastic reviews, I was so thrilled at the fantastic rate my colleagues and I had for the Monaco. Having stayed in other Kimpton/Monaco hotels, I knew that this would be a great stay. However, despite the cool décor in the rooms and lobby, the comfy beds and the HDTV in the room, my stay was less than wonderful. My message to fellow reviewers... did we stay at the same hotel?

-Air Conditioning
The air conditioning system in the hotel is primitive. The units in the room are so noisy; one must turn them off at night in order to get a good night's sleep. The choice is either to sleep and sweat or stay awake serenaded the sound of a lawn mower. I was going to complain, but after talking with my colleagues and other guests, I discovered all the rooms were like that. The public areas of the property were not air conditioned. The hallways were sweltering and the lobby was quite “tropical”. If there was a heat wave, it could be forgiven however the temperatures outdoors during that time were average.

-Business Center
Two computers and a printer do not a business center make. The charges for printing and internet access could be simply classified as "price gouging.” Almost 2 dollars a page for printing and 6 dollars for 15 minutes of Internet access? In this day and age most hotels offer such services at much lesser rates, or at no additional cost.

-Receipt
The front desk refused to give me a receipt for my stay even though I booked directly through the hotel. If I had not been late for my flight, I would have pressed the issue. This was totally unprofessional. My colleagues had the same problem. One colleague was billed twice and fought (and won) her right to a receipt.

-Shuttle Service
On two occasions, when requesting a shuttle pick up from the metro station, the female staff member on the phone refused to send the shuttle and told me to take the public bus. A colleague called for airport pickup and was left there for over an hour until she was forced to take a cab (Although the hotel did reimburse her). I found upon multiple inquiries about the shuttle service, it seems that the staff are reluctant to offer this service. They tended to hemm and haw and implied that the shuttle was not available. One staff member had no idea that the shuttle dropped off at the Metro station. The moral of this story is: if you don't want to offer a service, please DO NOT ADVERTISE OR TELL GUESTS THAT SUCH A SERVICE EXISTS!

-Room
I did not have a closet in my room. The armoires are not large enough for even one guest. In the armoires are dozens of items for sale…from naughty underwear to threadbare bathrobes. I had to stuff all the sale items in the drawers so I could hang up my suits. There were so many items in the armoire that it was impossible to use most of it.

All in all, this was a disappointing stay. We had been staying at the Hampton Inn up the street, but we thought the Monaco would be a change of pace. The Monaco is pretty on the outside, but under all the expensive décor is a worn down hotel with a staff that seems just a worn down. The Monaco is a minimum service, older property and should be priced and advertised as such.

  • Liked — The beds, bathroom and the TV were fabulous!
  • Disliked — The lack of services, overpriced Internet, air conditioning, shuttle services
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Monaco-Alexandria, Assistant General Manager at Monaco Alexandria, a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, July 27, 2008
Dear tomreidmiller,

Thank you for your comments; as a new property we truly value your feedback in order to continually refine our product and services. However, as Assistant General Manager of the Hotel Monaco Alexandria, I was concerned about the challenges you experienced during your stay.

We recognize the problems that some of the air conditioning units in our rooms have presented and are currently in the midst of a project to replace those AC’s that are not capable of maintaining a comfortable temperature. I’m happy to report that the replacement units have arrived on our property and we are scheduling the installation of them to correct that issue. It’s our goal to have them installed as quickly as possible.

I appreciate your feedback regarding our business center. The equipment in that facility is outsourced and maintained by a professional IT firm. The fees charged for the use of the computers and printers are to pay for the costs of the IT support service and replacement of toners, supplies and hardware as needed. It’s never our goal to force unnecessary charges on our guests; as with every Kimpton property we are always happy to print items such as boarding passes at our Concierge Desk at no charge.

However, I was most concerned about the perception of a lack of response to your requests. I do assure you that as we advertise, the Hotel Monaco Alexandria offers complimentary shuttle service to both the Metro Station on King Street and Reagan National Airport. These services are on a regular timed schedule, rather than on-demand, due to the fact that we do not have a fleet of vans. This may have been the challenge your colleague experienced, however I’m happy that our Guest Services team did respond to assist her with the cab. In between those shuttle times we do recommend as an option the free City of Alexandria shuttle. It appears as if we did not fully explain the scope of our services and all of the options we could assist you with. I’m truly sorry that did not happen and assure you that we’ll use it as a learning experience for our Front Desk staff.

Thank you for your feedback, if there are any other questions I may answer I would welcome your contacting me directly at the Hotel Monaco Alexandria; it would be my pleasure to assist you. We truly appreciate your comments, as they will continually allow us to review and improve our property for future guests of our hotel.

Best Wishes,

Assistant General Manager
Hotel Monaco Alexandria
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Bay Area, CA
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2008

Just spent three nights here. This was my second stay (was there a few months back in colder weather). The atmosphere and location of the hotel are great. The decorating in the lobby and rooms is festive. The staff are friendly and they try (with a glitch here or there). The beds are comfortable and everything is new, up-to-date, (TVs, internet service, IPod radio, bathrooms) and tastefully luxurious. Having stayed in this hotel in its previous incarnation as a Holiday Inn, one cannot say enough about how fantastic a transformation this is. The one good carryover from the Holiday Inn is the bring-your-dog happy hours they have in the courtyard. Very cute.

Lest this sound too perfect, two areas of warning. First, some rooms can be noisy. This last visit, we changed rooms because the air conditioner made a dreadful racket (and we like our room not that cold). We were moved to another nice room and eventually realized that unfortunately we were behind the elevator bank - which made a clunking noise every time an elevator was engaged (i.e. almost constantly). I strongly recommend avoiding all rooms ending with "10." Another warning - I have yet to hear anybody say anything great about the restaurant. I had breakfast there (OK) and friends who live in the area have been disappointed when they've eaten there. The restaurant atmosphere is dull and sterile compared to the rest of the hotel. (Fortunately, great restaurants are mere steps/blocks away.)

  • Liked — Atmosphere
  • Disliked — Noisiness of some rooms
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Ottawa, Canada
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2008

This hotel used to be a Holiday Inn and was closed for over 1.5 year to turn it into a wonderful Kimpton property. It only re-opened about 6 months ago.

The Kimpton Personal Touch is everywhere to be seen from the choice of colors in the lobby, the awesome decor in the accommodations to the Occitane Amenities in every bathroom.

We booked a King Deluxe through Kimpton's website and received an e-upgrade e-mail which once answered put you on "stand-by" to receive an upgrade at a very reasonable cost upon check-in. Upon arrival, we were upgraded to a beautiful Monte Carlo Terrace Room for only $19 per day. Well worth every penny as it showcase an outdoor balcony with patio settee for two, overlooking a beautiful courtyard (14 of these rooms are facing north while 14 are facing south which can be very hot in the summer). We had breakfast to be delivered every morning on our balcony, which was a great way to start our day excursion to Alexandria or Washington.

The concierge staff was most helpful and very knowledgeable of the area, transportation, etc.

We highly recommend this property in Old Town Alexandria. Excellent Service & Staff, Best location in Old Alexandia (only two blocks from the waterfront) and close to the King St metro station (about 10 blocks away). A free trolley ride is also available in front of the hotel to go either way: Waterfront or Metro Station. The hotel also features a complimentary and upon request shuttle service to and from Washington Reagan National Airport.

  • Liked — Quality & colors of the furnitures & Occitane amenities
  • Disliked — Everything was perfect!
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
nrsggirl
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2008

My husband and I just returned from our vacation to Washington D.C./Alexandria VA. The Hotel Monaco was the icing on the cake for our entire experience in Alexandria. When we arrived at Reagan National we called the hotel to let them know we had landed and within 15 minutes the hotel's shuttle was there to pick us up. The service we received from ALL of the hotel's employees was exceptional. Everyone from the housekeepers (Monica) to the doormen and all of the knowledgeable concierges (Ben) were a delight to speak with.
The hotel decor is beautiful. I had been afraid, from looking at the pictures online, that the decorations might be a little too "out there", but I was so wrong to have worried.
We had a monte carlo terrace room on the second floor and it was wonderful! The bed was super comfy, the bathroom was well decorated with nice hardware and great L'Occitane products. The patio was large and had a wondeful breeze that we enjoyed every morning. Two mornings I ran across the street to Madeline's to grab breakfast which I brought back to the room and we ate on the patio. We also had Bruegger's (sp?) one morning, and that was also very tasty. We requested turn down service and every evening when we would arrive the bed would be nicely made, the lights dimmed, candies left for us on the bed, and classical music would be playing from the bedside radio/Ipod dock.
Another special treat that the Hotel Monaco gave us was that when it was brought to their attention (by our super-nice housekeeper Monica), that we were just recently married they brought us up a plate of strawberries, chocolates and a bottle of champage.
One of my favorite perks that we enjoyed was the hotel's complimentary "Guppy Love" program! You simply call the front desk and let them know that you would like your "guppy" and they bring you a goldfish in a lovely "bowl" (more like a large vase) and he is your pet for the remainder of your stay. He comes complete with a little "Hello, my name is....." tag. Our little fish Alexander, made it into alot of our hotel photos!!
We did not have a car and used the metro to commute into D.C. everyday and see the sights. We would take the free King Street Trolley from our hotel to the metro station at the end of King Street. We loved the metro and thought that it was such a simple and affordable way to get around the city!
We never had any problems with our airconditioner, although I know from reading reviews that many people have had issues. We kept our thermostat set at 70 and we never had to touch it!
We highly reccomend the Hotel Monaco and can't wait to go back!

  • Liked — the wondeful service and location
  • Disliked — I can't think of anything I didn't like...room service was kind of pricey
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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San Diego, California
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2008

We blocked off a bunch of rooms for my family to stay here for our wedding. I also stayed here with my bridesmaids in the Meditteranean Suite with an adjoining Double Deluxe Suite. I highly recommend this room for a bridal party, lots of space and light. Overall the Hotel is beautiful. Benjamin at the front desk is wonderful, he brought me and one of my bridesmaids a complimentary bottle of wine while we were waiting for the room to be ready. The only issues we had were with the air conditioning. It was like a sauna in the hotel. My mother-in-law had to move rooms 4 times. The hotel was running on a back up generator all weekend so it was all you could hear from one of the rooms she was placed in. There were also some billing issues, she was billed twice for her room. Also, my one bridesmaid was checking into her room, and they put her in a room that was already occupied. But, the hotel was nice enough to refund her some money as an apology. It's a new hotel so I'll give them some slack, they need to work out some kinks, but overall it was beautiful and I'd recommend it.

  • Stayed June 2008
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Bloomfield, Connecticut
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 30, 2008

I attended a small conference in June (about 75 people) and we stayed at the Monaco. Overall I was very pleased. The rooms were nicely appointed, although they are still working on the air conditioning. One friend with no AC had to call maintenance at ten o'clock at night - but they did come up immediately and fix it. At one point a number of us on one floor had to go back to to the front desk - none of our keys worked and we had to get them reprogrammed. Other than that, it was a great place to stay. Conference food generally isn't all that great (they don't call it rubber chicken for nothing) but at the Monaco the food was very good.

Service was excellent - everything clean. They did have a big generator parked on the street to supplement the A.C. going around the clock (Diesel fumes and noisy) but they were almost done with their repairs and it should be gone soon. Next time, if these are fixed I'd easily give it a 5!

I could easily see staying there on a vacation - it is right in the center of a lot of Old Town locations and they even have a free shuttle too and from the hotel.

Stayed June 2008
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Distribution_Mgr, Area Distribution Manager at Monaco Alexandria, a Kimpton Hotel, responded to this review, July 9, 2008
Hello Gibsonjunkie.

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. It is a great way for us to gain valuable insight as to how we are doing. I am glad that you enjoyed your conference. I am happy that you enjoyed the food and that the staff went out of the way to provide excellent service.

Do come again! Thank you and have a great day!
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Additional Information about Monaco Alexandria, a Kimpton Hotel

Address: 480 King Street, Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Virginia > Alexandria > Old Town
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 Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Alexandria
#3 Green Hotel in Alexandria
#3 Romantic Hotel in Alexandria
#3 Business Hotel in Alexandria
#4 Family Hotel in Alexandria
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Monaco Alexandria, a Kimpton Hotel 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Monaco Alexandria, in the heart of Old Town Alexandria, is a luxury boutique hotel with rich design. Discerning travelers will appreciate the sumptuous décor, top-notch service and eclectic sensibility that this Kimpton Hotel provides. The hotel aptly reflects its historically rich surroundings, adding contemporary comforts for a memorable stay near Arlington National Cemetery, Mount Vernon and all of Washington DC’s many attractions. Conveniently adjacent is the exceptional Jackson 20 restaurant. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Monaco Alexandria Kimpton

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