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“Disappointed in Banff International Hotel” 2 of 5 bubbles
Review of Elk + Avenue Hotel

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Elk + Avenue Hotel
Ranked #16 of 32 Hotels in Banff
Clayton, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
“Disappointed in Banff International Hotel”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 21, 2014

Potential guests need to be aware that this property is 'dated', does not have air conditioning and two rooms we were offered included soiled furniture.

The desk staff is very well trained to give customers lip service, and tell the customer in a nice way that the guest doesn't know what they are talking about.

It turned out that our room was exceptionally warm and the hotel solution was to deliver a small pedestal fan that did not work. Finally a man came to the room and shut off the heat by removing panels from the registers to turn them off, i.e. the thermostat did not work.

The front desk staff promotes their on site restaurant. Unfortunately, we arrived for breakfast and were told 'too bad, we don't have the staff so the restaurant is not open.' No one even cared that guests were forced to go somewhere else in the pouring rain. It seems they might have offered a shuttle or at least an umbrella to help the guests get to another restaurant.

The location is great, but the property leaves a lot to be desired.

  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank rfinkle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 26, 2014
Dear rfinkle,

Thank you for your review of our property. I am sorry to hear that your stay was not comfortable. We take all our guest reviews seriously and are committed to act upon them to improve our level of service.

Unfortunately, at this time, we do not have A/C in the rooms. Occasionally, the heat in individual rooms may malfunction and staff are trained to respond to such situations immediately. I apologize if this was not the case for you. During the extensive room renovation our property will begin to undergo in Fall 2014, we will be putting A/C in the rooms.

Again, I appreciate your comments. Recently, we purchased a number of umbrellas for guest use for those occasions where there is a sudden downpour. We sincerely wish our guests to have an enjoyable stay but I am sorry that you were let down in that regard.

Sincerely,

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,002 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (159)
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English first
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 17, 2014 via mobile

I stayed at this hotel on June 14, 2014. I went with a few ladies for a short getaway. We paid $185 for the room which I find pricey but the hotel is in an excellent location so I didn't mind. Safeway is across the street and it is very close to Earls restaurant and many bars and nightclubs. The rooms are a little dated but they are clean and comfortable. The bathroom is quite large with decent lighting. Ricki's grill is in the hotel so it's nice to go for a quick breakfast after checkout. Also they serve alcohol in the lobby at night which we took full advantage of! Overall my stay was great and I would stay here again.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank sunkissed23_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 19, 2014
Dear sunkissed23_11

We are very happy that you were able to enjoy so much of what the hotel has to offer. Thank you for posting a glowing review and we look forward to hosting you again. Feel free to book directly with me at preferred rates via 403-762-5666.

Sincerely,

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 9, 2014 via mobile

Got a real surprise - booked on booking.com at the last minute. It was cheap for Banff so I wasn't expecting much and I was pleasantly surprised. It was so nice and comfortable, beds were soo comfortable. Location was awesome! I would highly recommend this hotel for value, service and location.

  • Stayed June 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Ding123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 16, 2014
Dear Ding123,

We are glad that we pleasantly surprised you and exceeded your expectations. We do aim for great service, value, and comfort and it is gratifying that we hit the mark with you. Thank you for your review.

Sincerely,

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bournemouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
293 reviews
108 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 148 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 9, 2014

The hotel's position on the main road is probably the best thing it has going for it. My room was adequate for me at least and certainly clean enough. Most of the staff do their best but others do not. Some don't have a clue. I had breakfast twice and dinner once. I have never in my life had a waitress take my knife, fork and napkin away while I was getting my food from the buffet before. I have also never stayed in an hotel where they think it is perfectly ok to have a plastic knife and a metal fork or vice versa to eat my food with. The orange juice was watery too but it was improved, after some pushing.on the second morning. Two of the male staff "worked their socks off" to put things right at breakfast and dinner so clearly somebody cares. Note to management: Please support your staff better than this. I must say they were all very nice to me.

For any customers wishing to try a local restaurant for dinner may I recommend The Bison at 211 Bear Street.

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank ericBournemouth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 16, 2014
Dear EricBournemouth

Thank you for reviewing our property in Banff. I am glad that you found the room clean and enjoyed the location. Regarding your dining experiences, we have undergone some recent staff and management turnover in the F&B department and are looking to improve the consistency of very good service. I apologize for the way in which your vacation ended but we do appreciate your comments moving forward.

Sincerely,

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
Level Contributor
39 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 8, 2014

I chose this hotel for its location four blocks from the Banff Rocky Mountaineer station. Location couldn't have been better as the train station, restaurants, shopping, etc were within easy walking distance. The Front Desk personnel were very nice and helpful as well. Our king premium room was comfortable and clean. My husband found a fan in the closet and the ceiling fan switch was on the outside wall behind the entertainment center. We also opened the windows which helped the room temperature. The bathroom was also a nice size compared to some of the other hotels we reserved. On the negative side, we wanted to eat at Ricky's Grill when it opened for breakfast, but we were told one cook hadn't come to work, and the other one was busy with a large tour group. We were told we could wait or eat next door at the Ptarmigan Inn which was what we did. Also, the fire alarm went off our second evening there. No fire, but it was a very different experience for us and no one told us what had happened. The Banff International is an okay place to stay because it is clean & comfortable, but I may choose to stay somewhere else if I ever return to Banff.

Room Tip: Ask for a room that has been renovated.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TXTripper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 16, 2014
Dear TxTripper

Thank you for posting a review of your stay at the Banff International Hotel. We appreciate your positive comments about our location, the Front Desk staff, and the comfort and size of our rooms. We are sorry that your experience with the on-site restaurant was not better and we are seeking to make sure such experiences do not occur. Please do consider us again when in town and feel free to book directly with me.

Sincerely,

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dalheim
Level Contributor
29 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 5, 2014

My wife and I stayed at the Banff International for 3 nights as part of a tour of Western Canada. We were not impressed. However, to be fair, let me state first what was good: the situation of the hotel was fine, sitting as it does on the main street and close to shops, restaurants and a large supermarket; our bedroom and bathroom were spacious and clean, though the view from the window was of a brick wall a couple of yards away; the staff were friendly and obliging, but woefully too few for the number of guests.
Now, the not so good and the downright bad: the wi-fi we were promised only seemed to operate in the lobby. When I’m checking my bank accounts and making bank transfers online I do not want to do it when surrounded by a constant stream of guests milling around. Like many other people posting on here we got stuck in the lift one day when it arrived on the ground floor and refused to open its doors. I used the telephone in the lift and the receptionist told me that someone would be there shortly. Luckily the technician arrived quickly, as my wife is slightly claustrophobic and I could see that she was beginning to hyperventilate. In addition, when the lift jammed, the air conditioning went off and the temperature in the lift began to climb like a rocket. Since this appears to be a regular occurrence it would surely be wise to get this problem fixed once and for all.
On the first evening I wanted to give my credit card details to reception so I could charge drinks and meals. There was only one young lady on duty and she was occupied with a phone call from one of those people who want to make a reservation but want to know everything from the type of pillows to the manufacturer of the mattress. After standing there for 5 minutes I went back into the restaurant where my wife was waiting to order. At least two people are needed at reception in a hotel which has a rapid turnover of guests staying for two or three nights.
In the restaurant the food was okay without being exceptional, apart from our first breakfast which was appalling. Once again understaffing was a problem as there were only two waitresses to serve a pretty large restaurant. There was only one young lady serving at the bar and she was also responsible for serving drinks ordered in the restaurant. She was very, very busy, and one evening our wine arrived after we had finished our meal. In the bar you can wait for 10 minutes while the poor young lady rushes into the restaurant with a tray of drinks and bottles of wine.
Our first breakfast was described as a “plated breakfast”. This is another way of saying rubbish on a plate – take it or leave it. I took one look – a smear of scrambled egg, a couple of rashers of bacon fried so hard that it was impossible to chew and a mass of grated potato that was half burnt and half raw – and sent it back. This is what your tour company contracted for, I was told. The waitress tried to tell me that these potatoes were hash browns. I disputed that. “These are known as hash browns throughout North America,” she insisted. I told her that having travelled extensively throughout the US, I could tell her that hash browns are not that pile of half-cooked rubbish on my plate. Our tour manager quickly got on to our tour company and breakfast the next two mornings was at least edible.
It’s clear that the management of the Banff International are trying to run it on a shoestring, one person on reception and two waitresses in the restaurant are hopelessly inadequate, even though they keep smiling despite being run off their feet.
My recommendation – try another hotel. I wouldn’t recommend this place to my worst enemy. And avoid the plated breakfast at any cost.

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank BillBDalheim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 8, 2014
Dear BillBDalheim:

Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback regarding your recent stay at the Banff International Hotel. We take your comments seriously and are committed to ensuring that our guests have a memorable visit. Your comments help us in achieving this goal.

I was concerned to read that your experience with our service did not meet your expectations. We are committed to continuous improvement and delivering the best experience possible and I sincerely apologize for the issues you encountered.

We truly appreciate knowing that our guests have been well served so we can celebrate our success and work towards even better service in the future. We look forward to your return when you are in the area again.

Thank you again for your feedback.

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Banff hotels

Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 4, 2014

Please read the whole review for the best parts of why I am recommending this Hotel in Banff. The constructive is that the Hotel needs renovation. No A/C in the rooms, a bit rough around the edges as far as decor. They did not have my room that I reserved. However, if I come back to Banff, I would stay here again!

Now the very good. The staff bent over backwards to make my stay enjoyable. Daren Hill the Front Office Manager personally came to my room. He upgraded my wife and I to a Loft for our whole stay, while honoring my original Hotwire rate. I have traveled a lot and he has been, by far, the most solution oriented Manager that I have encountered. Besides the upgrade, he switched my loft room to a less sunny side of the building so it would be cooler.

Also, the entire front desk team was incredibly hospitable and friendly. At first I was going to switch hotels. Daren and the staff turned me around. So, give this hotel a chance if you are going to Banff. Great location on the main road in town, convenient to everything.

Room Tip: Rooms in the back of the Hotel are quieter.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank jpmtge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bihmanagement, Front Office Manager at Elk + Avenue Hotel, responded to this review, June 8, 2014
Dear jprntge,

Thank you very much for your kind and positive feedback on your experience with us in Banff! Your recognition of the efforts of the front desk team is very valuable to us and it is greatly appreciated. I too am very grateful for the praise. Ideally, we are here to assist in making our guest experience in Banff a memorable one. When we hear that we have been able to achieve this, we all smile.

Starting in Fall, we will be renovating and putting A/C in our rooms.

Thank you again and we hope to see you again!

Daren Hill
Front Office Manager
Brewster Hospitality
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Elk + Avenue Hotel

Property: Elk + Avenue Hotel
Address: 333 Banff Avenue | Box 1040, Banff, Banff National Park, Alberta T1L 1B1, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > Alberta > Canadian Rockies > Banff National Park > Banff
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 32 Hotels in Banff
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Elk + Avenue Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 162
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Just a few steps from the quaint streets and ample restaurants, shopping and nightlife of downtown Banff, Elk + Avenue Hotel brings an upscale twist to the classic mountain escape. Whether you're looking for a relaxing après-ski sanctuary or a big night on the town, our contemporary designed rooms pair clean, minimalist design with cozy Rocky Mountain-inspired elements to create the ideal accommodation for exploring the best of Banff. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Banff International Hotel

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