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“Faded glory but friendly staff in a good location”

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Fairmont Hotel Vancouver
Ranked #32 of 92 Hotels in Vancouver
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 1, 2011

Having recently spent a combined 6 nights at the hotel one is left with two lasting impressions. The first is of a hotel that is showing its age and the second of a very helpful and friendly set of staff. Unfortunately for the hotel the efforts of the latter cannot wholly compensate for the former.
There is also a feeling that the hotel may be a little short of cash (??) as the interiors and rooms are in need of refurbishment and the standard rooms are still not equipped with any form of in room safe leaving you to need to deposit any valuables in the safety deposit boxes behind the reception (for which woe betide you lose the key as the replacement will set you back $200!)

The feeling of the hotel working with less than optimal staffing is also suggested by the fact that on two separate arrivals and departures we only spied a member of the bell desk on one occasion. The plus side is that you save the tips but the downside is lugging your bags what can be a considerable distance to the room.

So what stands out from the trip is

1) A good looking facade to the hotel and some character within. Decent sized rooms but very rudimentary/small bathrooms.
2) Good downtown location (especially for shoppers)
3) Friendly and efficient staff
4) A very average breakfast (there are cheaper and better cafes/restaurants nearby)
5) Expensive internet

The overall experience was not a bad one but neither was it anything better than average and so unless doing better than their 'best rate' it is not a good value proposition as it sits uncomfortably between the experience of higher class 5 star hotels (which would cost more) and the likely decently cheaper 3 or 4 star hotels nearby which would provide the same in room experience.

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Londoner303
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,884 - 2,890 of 3,335 reviews

Reviewed December 21, 2010

We stayed at the Fairmont for 6 nights to attend a family wedding. We had the best time, housekeeping was immaculate, the room was large and comfortable and the concierge staff are the most helpful and friendly people ever, especially Neil and Debbie.
Mavis and Beau absolutely made my daughter's holiday and we were honoured to take both of them out for quite a few walks which was fun The leisure centre and swimming pool were great and not very busy at all. When we were there we had the pool to ourselves most times. It is a beautiful hotel on a par with The Landmark in London but without the snobbiness and a lot more friendly, although we found that service in general in Canada is 100 times better than in England. Only negative was that we had to leave after 6 days.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with family
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Thank Emily1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 15, 2010

A superb room in this luxury hotel with an ideal location for explring Vancouver.
Attentive staff and great facilities.
Excellent, although rather limited, restaurant facilities.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank MandarinBlairgowrie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 7, 2010

The Hotel Vancouver is a located in one of the most beautiful buidings in downtown Vancouver. The luxury boutiques in the street front contribute to the upscale atmosphere, which does not disappoint when you enter the lobby. The main entrance is well appointed with a gorgeous decor. The service clerk was very courteous and friendly, so was the concierge. The elevators are also very beautifully and richly decorated. The sense of luxury lasted until we got to our room, which is where one spends a major chunk of time, usually. I can only speak of the two adjacent rooms that we were allocated. The rooms were also well decorated and the bed were very comfortable. However, the rooms were also very small, which is arguably a difficult thing to fix. What could easily be changed, though, are the bathrooms which are very ordinary. Those kinds of bathrooms are typically found in 2-star hotels: very very small, old tub and tiles, an old broken retractable clothe line in the tub... Just out of place for a hotel of this standing. Clean though...

The fitness facilities are excellent, so are the change rooms with the dry sauna. The pools were good, temperatures were comfortable, there is a very small pool that our kids (3 and 6) enjoyed very much. The facilities are open 24 hours, which is also very nice.

The only two reasons why we will not go back to this hotel and why I would not recommend it are:
1) the bathrooms are nowhere near nice enough. We have stayed at several hotels downtown Vancouver and they were all nicer, for about the same price.
2) the parking is a total rip-off, we were told the overnight parking would cost $43!!! that is totally unacceptable to me. Last thing I want when I pay good coin to stay at a nice place is being nickel and dimed. The wireless isn't even free. Not cool. We ended up parking overnight at Pacific Centre for $16 and walking the 2 blocks.

In summary, once we have tried every upscale hotel downtown, we will definitely go back to the Four Seasons. The parking is not only cheap (at the Pacific Centre) but right there, at the same spot as the mall. The pool area was nicer, with complimentary drinks, the rooms were also superior, although about the same size, but with a really beautifully updated bathroom. ( I like my bathrooms, what can I say? )

Fairmont Hotel Vancouver: beautiful but falls short on key aspects amidst the competition.

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled with family
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Thank wwhog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2010

Good hotel, decent room, very good service, but above all, in an excellent location for business downtown, 1 block from Robson street, proximity to variety of restaurants ranging from McDonalds and Tim Hortons and up. It is 2 blocks away from Vancouver central station for train ride to/from the airport.

  • Stayed: November 2010, traveled on business
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Thank Born_to_Travel9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 28, 2010

1st trip to Vancouver. Loved it ..... Fairmont Hotels are the way to go ....second time we stayed in one and definetly the best....shower had broken in the room so had a free upgrade to a suite....and 100 dollars to spend in the hotel they just cant do enough for you . Griffins resteraunt for Thanksgiving was delicious .

Vancouver has lots to see and do . Dont miss the Trip Whale Watching if you do go with 'Wild Whales Vancouver from Granville Island ' they guarantee a second trip if you dont see whales on the first one but you go with trained Marine Biologists and they know what they are doing.. we saw a pod of 15 whales !!! Awesome !!
Also do the day trip sea to sky highway saw black bears in thier natual environment !!
Totally awesome holiday .... dont think u will beat it ..... i having trouble deciding on next years cause this one was amazing !!!!

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank aphillips55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2010

Have stayed here a bazillion times ... Coroporate rate and room-upgrades for frequent stays instantly makes this place a cut above in terms of value. Staff throughout the hotel are friendly, prompt and courteous. The place knows what the business traveller demands, and exclusivity weeds out noisey hockey teams from Kamloops.

Rooms are classic and spacious. Might just be me, but I have never had a good night's sleep here ... Thermostats don't go low enought and traffic noise can be a problem.

Sneak up to the upper floors and poke around the reception room, and the Royal Suites ... It's spooky late at night.

The lobby bar is great ... You can avoid the obnoxious trenderati in the small area behind the main foyer ... But they need to get rid of the monsterous TVs - Tacky in an otherwise classy joint.

Don't bother with Griffins ... Better restaurants for any taste are steps away (Shabusen Sushi, Italian Kitchen, ...).

  • Stayed: July 2010, traveled on business
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Thank sam_and_jaime
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HotelVancouver, General Manager at Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, responded to this reviewResponded November 22, 2010

Thank you for your comments and we are pleased to hear that you are a frequent guest. We are currently preparing for renovations, which will include several sound proofing measures required for in a historic hotel in the heart of the city. In addition, our restaurant Griffins will also be transforming and is sure to be worth a second look after we get finished.
Sincerely,
Rick Corcoran, Hotel Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fairmont Hotel Vancouver

Address: 900 Georgia St W, Vancouver, British Columbia V6C 2W6, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > British Columbia > Vancouver > Downtown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Spa Hotel in Vancouver
#23 Luxury Hotel in Vancouver
#25 Family Hotel in Vancouver
#30 Romantic Hotel in Vancouver
#30 Business Hotel in Vancouver
Price Range: $232 - $706 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Fairmont Hotel Vancouver 4*
Number of rooms: 556
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver is centrally located, close to Robson street shopping and many cultural offerings. The lobby features designer shops, including the flagship Louis Vuitton boutique, Gucci, Omega, and St. John. The hotel has a state-of-the-art health club, indoor pool and Absolute Spa. Vancouver's landmark hotel, the castle in the heart of the city is rich in history, vibrant and cosmopolitan. Fairmont Hotel Vancouver will continue its guest room renovation project. Floors under renovation will be closed with no guest access and construction is limited to 09:30am to 5:30pm, minimizing any impact to guests staying with us. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fairmont Vancouver
Vancouver Fairmont

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