My husband and our two small kids (age 3 and 14 mos.) stayed here in late June 2007. Since I started visiting Victoria when I was about 10 years old, I've dreamed about staying at the Empress. As a child, teen, and young adult, I would walk through the public areas of the hotel and marvel at the grandeur. When we decided to book a night at the Empress to kick start our week-long family vacation in BC, I was excited to finally stay there. What a let down. We only stayed one night, fortunately.
The lobby was separate from the public areas of the hotel. This is done for practical reasons, I suppose, but the lobby could be any 3-star hotel; not a Fairmont, and not the Empress. The staff was fine, but nothing special (except for the very friendly and helpful doorman who sent us on our way--with some ice-cold bottled water for our road trip). The room was small, which I expected for an old building, but much shabbier than I think is acceptable for the rates charged and for being a member of the Fairmont family. The room was non-smoking, but the bathroom smelled of cigarette smoke (presumably because of the smoking room next door). The refrigerator was virtually non-functioning and we were unable to properly store our 14-month-old's milk, which is a necessity for a family traveling with young kids. The fridge was also improperly installed and would actually fall out of the wardrobe it was set inside when you would pull on the fridge door to open it. The only cleanliness problem I noted was the the kids' wading pool looked like it wasn't being cleaned often enough.
I will not stay at the Empress again unless it gets a much-needed room renovation.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Regarded as a Condé Nast Readers' Choice and Gold List hotel, and honoured with the Travel + Leisure distinction as a top Canadian hotel, the Fairmont Empress graces Victoria's sparkling Inner Harbour with an iconic presence. The Fairmont Empress, Victoria B.C.’s most iconic hotel, has just unveiled a $60 million dollar restoration.This luxury hotel offers 464 beautifully appointed guest rooms and suites, and expansive meeting and wedding space adjacent to the conference centre. Located on the picturesque West Coast of Canada, this is the ideal location to explore all the natural beauty of Vancouver Island. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Fairmont Empress Hotel Victoria
- Fairmont Hotel Victoria
- Fairmont Hotel Empress
- Empress Hotel Victoria
- Fairmont Victoria
- Victoria Fairmont
- Fairmont Empress Hotel