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“Disgusting!” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Knickerbocker on the Lake

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Knickerbocker on the Lake
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   1028 East Juneau Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53202 (Downtown)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #39 of 53 Hotels in Milwaukee
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2013 via mobile

We booked our room at The Knickerbocker because there were literally no other rooms available in Milwaukee due to the NML convention in town. The photos on line looked good so we decided to take a chance. Don't be fooled. The photos do not represent the property accurately. As we made our way to our room and got off the elevator and walked down the hallway we smelled urine immediately. We should've turned back at that point but, we didn't have another option so we continued on to our room. We opened the door to find a space that looked like it had been furnished with findings of some random garage sale! The furniture was old, warn and didn't coordinate at all. They were even using a wooden stool as an end table for the sofa in the living area. Classy. The huge bleach stain on the carpet in the same room looked as if it could be the scene of some past homicide! I walked into the kitchen, I noticed personal notes from the previous occupant held with a magnet on the fridge. In the bedrooms it was more of the same. More garage sale type furniture and the quilt on the master bed wasn't even large enough to completely cover the bed. Though we had a three night reservation, we stayed the one sleepless night we had to. Thankfully we found another room for the next two. Take my advise and avoid this property! YUCK!

Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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93 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Oak Brook, Illinois
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2013

Stayed at the Knickerbocker and should of read the reviews. The front desk check in - the woman was on the phone stood there forever waiting to find out about parking and was not friendly. Came back later after the fest room was no very cleaned. Asked for a King Bed had two hard double beds. The outlets did not work - had to find one in the room that worked. Bathroom was just plain icky Price was expensive and was terrible -I was expecting as another reviewed an upscale hotel -Just plan bad -

  • Stayed June 2013, 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
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2013

I travel a lot for work and was pretty excited about going to the Knickerbocker for a wedding. Online it looked adorable and for the expensive price; I was sure this was going to be one of the best hotels ever. Oh dear god... was I wrong.

When we arrived the desk clerk said she wasn't sure if our room had been cleaned could we wait. Sure, no biggie. Then she said... I'm sure it was, go ahead up and call if it hasn't and we'll take care of it. When we walked it, I thought ooops hasn't been cleaned. The bed sheets didn't look washed, there was trash on the side table and everything was just kind of rundown.
THEN, I walked into the bathroom and there was pubic hair all over the shower and the toilet seat. There was a used bar of soap that apparently had been used by Sasquatch-covered in hair.

I called down to confirm it had not been cleaned. A different clerk told me it was but he would send housekeeping up. The housekeepr was incredibly rude and told me she had cleaned. When I showed her the bathroom she said: Oh I must have missed that! EWWWW. what else did you miss. I went down to demand a new room and a discount for the trouble. (We were now late for the rehearsal dinner.) We were switched to the room next door. It was just as rundown but at least clean (at least that's what I'm telling myself.) I called hotels all that night to see if we could change hotels but everything was booked.

They gave us a $20 discount for the trouble - $20 on a nearly $200 room GIVE ME A BREAK. That barely pays for your $15 parking fee. I felt dirtier sleeping in the bed than I did after 5 hours of dancing at the wedding.

If you have a reservation here... GET OUT NOW.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
20 reviews 20 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2013

useless service, if you can call it service. the staff seem to be bothered by anything you ask and are not volunteering any sort of information, a check in normally requires the reception to do more than to give you a key. check in 1t 3pm is too late, at 2:40 I gave up waiting and left my bag there. mind you I had to find my own way to the bag area. got woken up in the morning twice asking if i want my room cleaned. the room was nice but old and small bathroom. location was good, there is a close by supermarket and you can walk to town but it takes a while. would not recommend staying here, stay somewhere where you feel welcome.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Appleton, Wisconsin
3 reviews 3 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

We had guests stay at the Knickerbocker for our wedding. They were so helpful, very nice and patient with me when I called a ton of times to ask more and more questions. I stayed there the night before the wedding and it was neat. There was a mini- kitchen in the room! The staff was just great.

Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2013

The hotel is in a nice location, but the place itself is not that great. It’s interesting because of its age but the nostalgia wears off quickly. The sheets at first glance made me wonder if the bed had been changed. The bathroom sports a pedestal sink so there is no counter space, you can put your toiletries in a wall cabinet behind you. The water temperature in the shower fluctuates quite a bit, a few seconds of way too hot. They didn’t clean up the room like a regular hotel. You get a kitchen and small dining table, but the coffee cup and glass I used, some small trash were still there after the room was done. 2 clocks and neither had the correct time, I think one was dead. The rooms have window a/c units. My a/c never quit running, it didn’t really cool the room, adequate at best. The parking was the worst of any hotel I’ve ever stayed at.

I arrived in the afternoon. There was no parking available at the curb by the hotel entrance. I saw that the parking lot for the hotel had a gate entry arm, meaning you need an entry card to get in, and you can’t get an entry card unless you check in. I drove around several times and there was no parking available on any side streets. Finally, I was lucky enough to see some space in front of the hotel but it was a No Parking zone. I asked a restaurant valet about parking for the hotel. He was nice, he said I could turn my flashers on for about 15 minutes to check in and take my luggage to the room. When I got to the hotel counter I asked about parking and I was told by Larry that their parking lot was full and that I needed to park on the side streets. I knew there were no spaces, but since I was in a no parking zone, I didn’t want to waste time so I hurried to the room. From my room, I looked out the window and I could see down into the hotel parking lot. There were about 5 spaces open. When I went downstairs I told Larry and a female employee at the front desk that I saw several spaces available. He replied that the spaces were all assigned to customers already and that my only choice was to park “off street”. No apologies, nothing. Very unhappy but I left because I had dinner plans elsewhere and I thought parking would be available in the street as the night went by.

When I was driving back from dinner, I noticed that there were many people with chairs and blankets congregating at Juneau Park. I didn’t know it at the time but they were gathering for fireworks, this was the first night of Summer Fest. The parking situation was now really bad, the number of cars looking for off street parking had multiplied since earlier and also lots of people walking to the park. I parked in the same no parking zone and waited quite a long time for someone to leave, it was useless. I went into the lobby and Larry was still there, the female employee was gone. I asked again about parking. He said I needed to drive to Prospect and look for street parking there. I said I was a customer and I shouldn’t have to drive around and park so many blocks away. Another lady came in and stood in line behind me while this conversation went on. I asked Larry where he parked, no answer. He answered about 3 phone calls while I was at the service window. I asked if the hotel will pay for my car to be retrieved if it got towed, he said no. I asked for a manager, he said the manager was gone and would not be back until the morning. I then asked if he will put me in another hotel with parking. He said I have an “access spot” (handicap) and you can park there. Then he motioned to the lady behind me and told her he was not giving away her spot, that he had 2! I received an entry card plus a hang tag for the rearview mirror so I was angry-happy. Halleluiah! It was about 9:30p when I got to the room to unpack. The next day I returned after 10pm. Someone was parked in my assigned parking space, the handicap slot. There was no hang tag on the rearview. I drove around the small lot, no open spaces and back to the handicap slot and parked in front of the car occupying the space. I walked in the lobby and spoke to the same female from the night before. I told her someone parked in my space. She says that SHE parked in that space and that the cards only give me access to the lot, not the space! Remember?- just the day before there were several spaces and she was present when Larry told me spaces were all assigned and for this reason I did not get an entry card. What?? Then the hag tells me there is a space in the back of the building and that’s where I can park. No remorse, no offer to move her car so the customer can park there. Both mornings I saw that even at 6a.m. there was no curbside parking available. I don’t think it mattered that Summer Fest was going on, there are several apartments in the area. Drive there at your own peril.

Room Tip: Go someplace else.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2013

We stayed here for 3 nights in the junior suite. It was like a small apartment. We had a separate kitchen with a full fridge, stove and microwave. They also had glasses, utensils and cookware. We had 2 closets and quite a bit of space including in room free internet. It was quite old an interesting, yet updated and comfortable. The shower was a bit weak. But the decor was fun and we enjoyed discussing the different pieces, including the very unusual doors which opened up 2 ways. The houskeeping did a good job, but did not come one of the days... we are not sure why. Great location across from a park down by the lake. Service at the front desk was good. We also ate at the restaurant on site which had phenomenal food. We had tilapia with a succotash which was very fresh and tasty. We also had a hummus with artichoke and tomatoes paired with warm pita. I loved it. Good experience. We will return. I did not see a pool or fitness center, so I put average as not sure on them...

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Knickerbocker on the Lake

Address: 1028 East Juneau Avenue, Milwaukee, WI 53202
Location: United States > Wisconsin > Milwaukee > Downtown
Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Spa Hotel in Milwaukee
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Knickerbocker on the Lake 3*
Number of rooms: 160
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Also Known As:
Knickerbocker On The Lake Hotel Milwaukee
Knickerbocker On The Lake Milwaukee

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