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“Magical...” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Contessa

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Hotel Contessa
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   306 W Market St, San Antonio, TX 78205   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 352 Hotels in San Antonio
Certificate of Excellence 2014
GreenLeadersBronze level
California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Magical...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2010

The San Antonio Riverwalk is a magical place and Hotel Contessa added to the magic. Rooms were larger than expected (2 rooms really) and were very nicely furnished. The tapas bar downstairs was perfect for a nice light dinner. Short and pleasant walk to the convention center along the Riverwalk. Happy to return to the Contessa.

Stayed May 2010, traveled on business
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HCGM, General Manager at Hotel Contessa, responded to this review, October 6, 2010
We appreciate and thank you for taking the time to write all about your wonderful experience while staying at Hotel Contessa. We have shared your comment with our staff. We look forward to having you as guest again in the future.

We look forward to having you as guest again in the future.

Sincerely,
Wende Blumberg-General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,025 reviews from our community

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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 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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texas
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2010

My husband and I spent labor day weekend at Hotel Contessa.
Pros: The hotel and restaurant/bar area was very nice. The hotel has a great location on the riverwalk. The hotel is a little further away from the restuarants on the riverwalk but I thought that was better to be away from the noise. I thought the bell service was outstanding.
Cons: The bed was a little hard. We did have some problems with our bathroom though. The outlet in the bathroom did not work and the faucet in the shower was falling off.( This was a little disappointing for the price we paid for the room) We also paid to have a view of the riverwalk and the view was not worth the upgrade. Also we could hear cars passing on the street below all night. I also thought the price of the valet parking was a little expensive too. In the previous review, they had to wait a half an hour to get their car but we never had this problem. We would call and go downstairs and our car would be waiting for us. I also agree with previous review too that the pool is small and not enough lounge chairs.
Overall I think the hotel is nice but it is not worth the price. I don't think I would return to this hotel

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 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.
HCGM, General Manager at Hotel Contessa, responded to this review, October 6, 2010
Thank you for your comments about the restaurant and the great location of our hotel. However, we are sorry to hear about the issues with your guestroom bathroom and the traffic noise as well as the mattress comfort in your guestroom. We appreciate your observations, we will be sure to take them into consideration and make the needed adjustments. These are all items that I will address with our maintenance department.Without your comments we cannot continue to make improvements.
Sincerely,

Wende Blumberg-General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
USA
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 7, 2010

This is long, so here is a quick summary: Our first say was outstanding (see my earlier review), this time was a disapointment. Generally it was okay for a 3 star hotel. Basically a 5 star building with LaQuinta type service. No real value in return for staying so far from the center of the Riverwalk. With 5 star service like it had the last time I stayed there I could imagine no better in San Antonio. But alas, that no longer exists.

Review: First of all if you were influenced to stay here in any way what so ever by my first review; I am sorry. Things change and so did this hotel. What was on one trip one of the best experiences in San Antonio turned into a disaster on the second visit. My guests were my extended family from one of the U.S.’s best allies in Latin America. They consisted of the 70 year old wife of the former Minister of Defense a United Nations representative, his wife an executive of PriceWaterhose, their child and my wife and I. Total of 7 people three River Facing Rooms.

We arrived at noon to find the entry congested with cars and guest waiting for the valet service. As a result of being understaffed for a sellout weekend people were being told it would take 20 minutes to get their cars. We were checking in and it took almost as much time to get assistance with the luggage and a car claim ticket.

At the desk the young lady was pleasant and greeted us with a smile. After about 10 minutes signing three of everything she handed me one key. “Where are the other two” I asked. The response was that they hadn’t cleaned enough rooms yet. I really should have been told when the process started and not at the end of the process. When asked how long, the response was 3 or 4 hours. I had requested early check-in when I made the reservation and I had hoped that they would give the request some consideration; 3 or 4 hours didn’t seem too “early”. Okay, well at least we had one room to drop bags in and then we could go to the famous San Antonio Riverwalk to kill some time. However; when reaching the room on the 9th floor (9 out of 12 was a good sign because I had also requested one as high as possible – makes my mother-in-law feel more secure) we found it hadn’t been cleaned either so the SEVEN of us headed back to the lobby.

The clerk seemed un-embarrassed. She was the only one who wasn’t embarrassed as I was humiliated. While I was speaking to him he ignored me picked up the phone and made a call. If it had been my wife and I alone we would have walked at this point. You don’t take guests into a situation like this after you promised them the best. I left a cell phone number and a request that that they do what they could as quickly as they could and we headed for the river.

Four hours later there being no phone call we returned to the hotel. Two rooms were ready and there had been no phone call because the third room was not ready. BUT!! If was almost done and if we headed up slowly it might be ready by the time we got there. This time on the 5th of 12 floors. Give that the lobby was empty of waiting guests I would guess we would have had rooms sooner had we sat there and waited. Don’t bother with any special requests at this hotel. They don’t really care. As compensation for the wait I was given 5 complementary breakfasts for the seven of us – huh?. Its not about the money!! If it were about the money we would have stayed at a Motel 6!

This hotel does have excellent rooms. And they are clean and well designed and decorated. Because of the location on the River don’t waste your money on the river view. Not worth it.
Time for dinner! We decided to eat in the hotel. We were tired from 4 hours of killing time on the river waiting for our rooms. The table was sticky, the service was miserable and the mandatory gratuity excessive for the what we got. Oh, the food? Miserable as well. My guests looked at me with sympathy because they knew I was embarrassed. After all, this is the best San Antonio has to offer. When the check came without a pen I went searching for someone with a pen. I found who appeared to be the restaurant manager. He made the mistake of asking if everything was okay. I told him how “okay” it was, borrowed his pen, signed and left with my guests.

The next morning for breakfast they could not accommodate 7 guests and asked us to wait 15 or 20 minutes. After about 15 minutes the manager for the night before appeared and forced his staff to push two tables together on the outside patio. The breakfast was a buffet. Most of the tin serving warmers were mislabeled and you had to open them to see what was really in them. Nothing wrong with breakfast in general, I just really don’t care for buffets; but nothing else was offered to us. The waiter that morning was the only professional that we ran into during our stay. I doubt if he will last long. Of course if they had a breakfast menu as well as the buffet, then forget the compliment for him as well.

Checking out was smooth. We presented the bills that had been slipped under our doors. I even presented the bill for the room down the hall that had been slipped under my door. They didn’t seem to get much right. It took 5 minutes to get our first car and 20 minutes to get our second car but that was okay, this time, because some of the guests were running slow.

Next time we try the Watermark next door.

  • Stayed September 2010, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HCGM, General Manager at Hotel Contessa, responded to this review, September 29, 2010
Good Day,
We read your comments about your recent stay at Hotel Contessa. We always appreciate hearing from our guests regarding their experience while staying at the Hotel Contessa
I would like to apologize for your mishaps with Check in and the restaurant. Everyone in our hospitality industry desires to provide their guests with a quality product and outstanding service, and reading through your comments I can see why you would be less than happy with your stay.

We appreciate your comments and will be sure to take them into consideration. Without your feedback, we cannot continue to make improvements.
Sincerely,
Wende Blumberg
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Worth. TX
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2010

Travelled to San Antonio for a weekend getaway with a friend from Chicago. We wanted a high class hotel on the Riverwalk.

Postives: Suites are amazing, clean, beds are fabulous. Exceeded expectations. Location is great, walk everywhere. Concierge and bell service was great.

Negatives: Parking is expensive, and if you dont' want to hike to your car you have to pay for valet that is $20 + per day and wait almost 30 minutes for them to retrieve your car (however, it was very busy the weekend we were there).

Pool is tiny, and there was never enough lounge chairs, chairs, or anywhere to sit. Unfortunate when each guest should have adequate seating available, if desired.

Checkout: We were not allowed a 1 hour delayed checkout, however, we waited over 1 hour to check out - which was very frustrating. Unorganized process with long line. Very aggravated the 'denied' our request for late checkout.

Room Service: We had to request our room be cleaned on Saturday (our stay was Friday - Saturday). Expect more prompt service for a hotel that is $250 + per night.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with friends
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HCGM, General Manager at Hotel Contessa, responded to this review, September 29, 2010
Good Day,
We always appreciate reading guests reviews regarding their experience while staying at the Hotel Contessa. While we appreciate your acknowledgement of our facilites that you enjoyed in our hotel, I apologize that we did not provide a better experience with Valet and the checkout process, we will always strive to do better, and I thank you for the constructive thoughts you have shared in your review and will be sure to take them into consideration. Without your feedback, we cannot continue to make improvements.
Sincerely,
Wende Blumberg
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2010

Loved having two flat screen TV and the space between bedroom and frontroom was excellent and gave you breathing room. Going to the bathroom from one side or the other and you really did not intrude on each other. Was on the quiet side of the River walk. Slept like babies!

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HCGM, General Manager at Hotel Contessa, responded to this review, August 26, 2010
We are very pleased that we exceeded your expectations and have shared your wonderful comments with our staff. We look forward to having you as guest in the future.

Sincerely,

Wende Blumberg-General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
marinewife_tx
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2010

My husband and I stayed here with our 10 month old daughter for 3 nights at the beginning of August. The hotel is very nice, all rooms are suites with separate bedrooms, and a good location. It is on the Riverwalk but not at the busiest part, which we preferred. We chose this hotel because of the suites. Since we were traveling with our baby who goes to bed at 8:00pm, we wanted a separate bedroom so that we could put her to sleep, shut the door and still stay up and watch TV without disturbing her. The rooms were spacious, clean, and nicely decorated. It is set up like a small one-bedroom apartment (minus a kitchen).

We ate at the on-site restaurant, Las Ramblas, one night and thoroughly enjoyed it. The food was excellent as was the service. Our baby had gotten tired and fussy before our meal was served so we asked the waiter to change our order to take out. He instead brought it up to us as room service so that we could see the beautiful presentation. He set it all up for us on the dining table and was so polite. All of the food was good, but we especially enjoyed the Beef Tenderloin Kabobs.

Our only issue is with the front desk service at this hotel. They were snobby and rude every time we went up there. When we booked the reservation on the hotel's own website, we requested a crib for our baby. At check-in, I asked about the crib and the woman at the front desk said she'd have one sent up to our room. The bellman also said he'd make sure we got one. They NEVER brought it up. Luckily, we had our Pack 'n Play with us so our daughter slept in that for three nights. My next visit to the front desk was b/c my key card stopped working. I walked up to two people working at reception who were in conversation with one another and they did not stop talking to help me. I stood there waiting for them to finish and they just ignored me. I finally had to "get their attention" which seemed to annoy them. When I told them that my key had stopped working, they immediately accused me of putting it next to my cell phone or credit cards and that deactivated the key. The truth was, I kept the key in the cardboard holder in a separate pocket of my bag the whole time, so there was no way that happened. But regardless, even if had been a mistake on my part, they should not use an accusing tone with customers. And lastly, at check-out I told the woman behind the desk that we never got a crib and all she said was, "Oh." No apologies or anything else. It is unfortunate that a nice hotel would have such rude people working at reception. It really makes for a bad first and last impression.

Luckily, the rest of the staff is friendly (valets, bellmen, housekeeping, and food servers). Perhaps, the front desk staff needs some customer service training.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
HCGM, General Manager at Hotel Contessa, responded to this review, August 26, 2010
We appreciate and thank you for taking the time to write all about your experience while staying at Hotel Contessa. We are very impressed with the level of detail you have provided in your review. I would like to apologize for the lack of service you received from the Front Desk staff, this is not a norm and rest assured that these have been shared with our management staff. I know this does not change your experience but know that without your comments we cannot continue to make improvements.

We appreciate and thank you for taking the time to write all about your stay at Hotel Contessa.

Sincererly,
Wende Blumberg-General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Murphy, TX
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2010

My hubby, 4 yr old son and I really liked the look and feel of the hotel. The suite was spacious, the beds were comfortable, the bathroom was large and clean. The bathroom doors do not lock, but the double doors closed tightly without crack. The Aveda products were nice for me. We got a great rate at Hot Wire, so we had double beds upon arrival instead of a king. Although we were hoping for a king, the double beds worked out OK. Our view included the parking garage so we could keep an eye on the SUV. We were able to get a refrigerator and microwave delivered to our room for $25 each. Upon arrival, we had to valet park because all of the lots were full due to weddings (we stayed Sat - Wed). After Saturday, we were able to self park in the garage in the next block (same place where they valet park your car). The hotel staff was very friendly. A young man named Prince was our first and last contact at the hotel and he was a great example of the hospitality of the folks at the hotel. (He parked our SUV and helped us back it out). The least friendly (not unfriendly) were the front desk people but they were fine once you approached them. I didn't notice the concierge. The restaurant is right on the river. We enjoyed the breakfast bar where there was fresh fruit, bacon, eggs, pancakes, yogurt, etc. They also made great omelettes. One evening we enjoyed the restaurant's happy hour with half priced tapas and $5 margaritas.
For us the location was very convenient. We were right on the river so we just walked to all of the attractions on the River Walk. We even walked to La Margarita (not on the River Walk), which took us by less touristy areas. It was a little scary on the way back because it was dark and secluded in spots, but we made it without incident. I think the self parking was about $15 a day and valet was $28. The hotel looks new (5 yrs old). The exercise room and pool area looked nice, however we didn't have a chance to use them. We will definitely stay again.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled with family
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Contessa

Address: 306 W Market St, San Antonio, TX 78205
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Texas > San Antonio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in San Antonio
#3 Romantic Hotel in San Antonio
#3 Green Hotel in San Antonio
#3 Luxury Hotel in San Antonio
#12 Family Hotel in San Antonio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Contessa 4*
Number of rooms: 265
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Also Known As:
Contessa Hotel San Antonio
Contessa San Antonio

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