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“Uptown in a quiet downtown” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Clarke Hotel

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The Clarke Hotel
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   314 W. Main Street, Waukesha, WI 53186   |  
Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 8 hotels in Waukesha
Topsfield, Massachusetts, United States
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Uptown in a quiet downtown”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 7, 2012

Get your best rate online for this surprising wonderful boutique hotel. Worth getting off I-94 and heading downtown Waukesha. Combine the stay with a visit to the unique art galleries downtown. Plenty of places to eat. Hotel rooms have very tall ceilings, large windows, mood lighting, wonderful beds. Some rooms have sort of funky dimensions, certainly not a square room, and not small. You will have to park your car in the nearby garage overnight as there is no on street parking overnight. Make sure to ask if any downtown events, such as Friday night live, or art crawl are taking place while you are there. Since you will be in the center of such fun occasions, there will be some noise.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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57 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (11)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Champaign, Illinois
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2012

We booked the Clarke hotel for Friday of Labor Day weekend and when we first arrived, we realized that there were several parking spots reserved for unloading our bags and so we parked there. The hotel lobby is kind of non-traditional in that it's on the second floor, so when you want to enter to check in, you must press the intercom button and they will buzz you in. After you check in and get your room key, you can later just use that to enter. Parking is complained about, but there are 2 parking garages within walking distance. You can go for valet for $10, or if you can walk about 2 blocks, you can just park in the garage, which is a $2 flat rate each time you park. It may not be a great option when it's cold and snowy, but when the weather is nice, I don't see why anyone wouldn't opt for a short walk and cheap parking.

So the building is built in between sharply angled streets and so the room layout and dimensions vary room to room. This makes for an interesting set of largely unique options when you are selecting a room. We got an executive suite which was very roomy with a King Size bed, a work desk, a plush chair, a mini-fridge, coffee maker, large closet, and very large, roomy bathroom. The shower in this room was really quite something...it was probably about 5' x7' feet with rubberized floor and clear glass all around...and there were 6 shower heads, I believe. So we were only there for one night, but I had to make sure I could fit two showers in.

There was also a Sony sound system which was really nice and you could use your ipod or iphone to play your music over the speakers. The towels, the furniture, the shades, the art..it all seemed like they used high quality versions. There were a lot of little nice surprises that would wouldn't get in your typical chain motel which made it feel pretty high-end.

The area around the hotel was also surprisingly cool. We didn't have any expectations about having much immediately around the hotel, but there was. The hotel is located in the center of a small downtown amidst 2-3 story buildings where there were local shops and restaurants. It may be just a summer thing, but every Friday night they have a small music/art festival and the hotel is right in the center of it. Saturday morning they held a really nice farmers' market about a block away. These little events actually threw off our plan a bit as we lingered a bit on Friday before we went to Milwaukee and lingered a bit on Saturday morning when we were originally planning on just taking off. So we ended up spending extra time in Waukesha, but I'm so glad we did. It was an enjoyable stay and the Clarke hotel actually enhanced the whole experience and I really can't say that of very many hotels that I've stayed in before.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Chicago
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2012

We LOVED this hotel. Went on a Friday night and stopped in early to ask for parking details since the downtown has a festival every Friday with no street parking allowed. The gentleman at the front desk was great. We were able to check in earlier that thought and given directions to the parking garage. The parking garage is only 1.5 blocks away. The cost is two dollars for 24-hour versus ten dollars valet.

The hotel itself is quite grand, as are the rooms. Rooms appear to be newly refinished, and the bathrooms are amazing. Bathtub with jets and a separate shower with multiple shower heads.

Continental breakfast is served in the lobby and it's just that, continental breakfast (coffee, OJ and rolls). If you want something more, there are several choices within a one block walk.

The hotel is in a perfect location – in the middle of town between two busy streets. Depending on the night, expect some noise as you’re in the middle of downtown. The town itself has something for everyone; shops, restaurants, cafes, bars, and coffeehouses. Check out TripAdvisor for restaurant recommendations as they’re right on target with suggestions.

Waukesha has a busy farmer's market on Saturday morning one block from hotel worth visiting.

Considering the price and location, this was a perfect hotel. We’ll definitely be back. I would recommend a stay here without hesitation.

Room Tip: If you're a light sleeper, request a room that doesn't overlook Main Street.
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  • Stayed August 2012, 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Morocco
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2012

I really wanted to love this hotel. It looked beautiful online and seemed like a good deal for a weekend away. We booked a 2 night stay and ended up leaving after 1 night.

First impressions were good and the lobby area was nice and the man who greeted us was friendly. We found out we could park our own car for $2 (although we would have had to move it after 24 hours I think) or have them park it for $10.

We stayed in the Point Suite "which defines boutique luxury, and the grandest most memorable view of downtown!" That was the first of many inconsistencies between what we were led to expect from their website and what we found when we arrived. The Point Suite is advertised as having "A large separate bedroom". I guess the bedroom was separate from the bathroom but it wasn't separate from anything else, it was just a normal hotel room with a bed and 2 chairs, there was no separation between the bedroom and the living area which is what we were expecting.

Their website also says, "All bathrooms have granite-topped vanities, Kohler spa showers with invigorating body sprays and bubble-massage tubs." Our room did not have a tub and they were unable to move us to a room that did. It also said, "Suites feature over-sized sofas" which was untrue since our room only had 2 chairs.

We were also promised, "ample work space and spacious desks provide a great place to accomplish business from the comfort of your room or suite." There was a small desk, but no chair to go with it.

The linens were nice, but the bed came unmade as soon as we pulled the comforter back and we found all of the pillows quite uncomfortable.

There was a grate in the wall next to our door which meant we could hear any noise in the hallway quite easily. The worst part though was the noise from outside! We were there on a Saturday night and there was loud throbbing music playing until midnight. Turning on the A/C fan was not enough to block it out. Other rooms might have been quieter, but after all the other negative things I wouldn't bother to find out.

Also beware that there is not much open in Waukesha on Sunday and Mondays and the restaurant in the hotel is closed for renovations. The "continental breakfast" is coffee and pastries, nothing else.

Room Tip: Certainly don't get the Point Suite if you're hoping to sleep. Other rooms might be better?
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Dallas, TX
Top Contributor
162 reviews 162 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 69 cities Reviews in 69 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2012

This is nice quiet hotel on Main street (or at least it was during the week). I liked the look of it and the interior colors. What some people might not like is for long term parking there is a parking garage a few blocks away. Self parking is (at the time of this review) $2 or $7 for valet. I self parked because I don't mind doing it but I didn't see any valet guys standing around looking to park cars at midnight when we got in. There is no swimming pool on site so consider that if you have small children. I got the vibe that the hotel didn't really cater to families with small children but we had small children and felt welcome anyway.

Room Tip: Apparently there are only about 20 rooms in this hotel and they're all on the second floor (the...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Springfield, IL
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 16, 2012

Our daughter who lives in Waukesha made the reservation for us as a gift for my birthday. We were coming up for a Summerfest concert (Beach Boys). Upon arrival, we were pleased at the quaintness/charm of the hotel. It appeared clean and well-kept. The hotel is tastefully decorated with old-world charm. The entrance is secure and you must use your key to enter. The check-in desk oddly is on the 2nd floor of the hotel. Parking is a bit of a problem. The hotel is located in the downtown area of Waukesha, along with many businesses. There is no off-street parking. Fortunately, we arrived on a Sunday when most businesses downtown were closed. We ended up unloading our vehicle near the entrance, then driving our vehicle a few blocks down the street to our daughter's apartment and walking back. Not sure what other guests do, but I do believe they offer a valet parking service. The restaurant/bar of the hotel was not open "due to remodeling". The check-in was a disappointment, the desk clerk very unfriendly/unwelcoming. The guest room was nicely decorated with newer carpet, high ceilings, plush bedding, a mini-bar/fridge with coffee maker and guest robes. The bathroom is extremely large with a lovely 4-head shower, jetted tub and granite counters. Our toilet was broke and would not flush. My husband lifted the lid off and discovered the flush mechanism had been secured with a paper clip that had failed. We didn't discover the problem until too late in the evening to call for maintenance and no one was at the desk. The room was not at all quiet, the windows are poor quality and the walls thin. You can hear every noise on the street. Fortunately on a Sunday night not busy in the downtown, but can imagine on a Fri./Sat. night it would be quite noisy. We could hear the noises all night from the neighboring guest rooms. The ventilation in our room was extremely loud and did not work properly. It was either ice/cold or hot, could not get it to a comfortable temperature. There was no information anywhere in the room about what the "check-out" time was. When my husband went to get the "free breakfast", he found it consisted of coffee, bottled orange juice and one, single pastry was left at 8:30 in the morning. When I walked down a few minutes later, there was again one single pastry and no juice left. I feel the biggest disappointment of this hotel came when we went to check out. We stood at the desk waiting for over 20 minutes to check out and advise the desk clerk of the problem with the toilet, ventilation, etc. There was a bell on the desk to ring for service and we rang it many times, to no avail. I finally got on my cell phone and actually called the hotel number, only to receive a voice-mail. We saw a maid walk by several times and she never spoke or acknowledged us, not sure she even spoke english. Finally, an older gentleman slowly walked up taking his time (no apology for making us wait). We were never asked how our stay was and when we brought up our complaint about our toilet and ventilation issue, again no apology given. Just a "I will give the information to our maintenance staff". We asked for a print-out for the credit card we gave upon checkout showing a "zero balance" and weren't given one. We were told the receipt was given when the hotel was booked by our daughter. (We had left a different credit card for incidentals when we checked in). When we were taking our bags down, a staff member was taking out the kitchen garbage in the main guest elevator (the same desk clerk who checked us out) leaving the elevator smelling like rotten garbage. It's very unfortunate the service in this hotel is so terrible, it could be a lovely hotel, but it appears they have management issues. Unfortunately, we would not stay here again....

Room Tip: A room away from the street would probably be quieter, but the walls/windows in the rooms are so bad...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vienna, Virginia
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2012

This is a great old hotel. Rooms have been refinished and are nicely decorated, and it's in a great location smack in the middle of town, with restaurants and everything else right nearby. The room has a really comfortable bed and a beautiful, large, modern bathroom with a fantastic four-head shower, wow! We've stayed here twice now and will definitely be back. The only downside this time was we couldn't get internet access in our room, but had to use the business office in the lobby to get on line -- but it all worked out just fine. Dave's for breakfast across the street....

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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 The Clarke Hotel

Address: 314 W. Main Street, Waukesha, WI 53186
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Wisconsin > Waukesha
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 8 hotels in Waukesha
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Clarke Hotel 3.5*
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