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“Hostel Nightmare”
Review of Swiss Hotel

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Swiss Hotel
Ranked #35 of 68 Hotels in Ottawa
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 1, 2008

Under no circumstance should anyone stay here. They claim to be a bed and breakfast, or possibly an inn, but they barely qualify as a hostel. I haven't stayed in a place this grimey since I backpacked through Peru when I was 22.
They were unquestionably overpriced. Essential 'hotel' services such as internet and parking were unavilable/limited. Front desk staff exaggerated prices of local parking lots by four fold to make their own look cheaper. When in reality, theirs cost three times as much and you had to hand them over your keys so that some teenager could shuffle around cars to fit more into their lot. Not to mention, when they shuffle around your car, they change all your mirrors and settings within your car. You can hear every noise from every room throughout the entire building The ventilation is so poor that you will wake up with a build up mucus in your nose and throat (they request not to open windows because of air conditioning). The 'hostel' is in the worst part of town. There are crack dealers around the 'hostel' at night. p.s. bring your own toiletries because the bathroom is not properly stocked, and don't bring lots of luggage, the room will be so congested that you will have no room to walk.

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank sgoswami7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management5, Owner at Swiss Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded September 13, 2008

In response to the comments of Sept 1st regarding our parking facilities, we have 5 parking spots in our lot and one more in the garden all on a first come first serve basis. We charge $12.00 for 24 Hours. If the lot is full guests have other choices such as, public parking or street parking. From our experience, people love to leave their car parked and just walk, as we are located in the heart of Ottawa. Strictly for the convenience of our guests, rather than for profit, we suggest blocking other cars and leaving the car keys with us. No teenagers work for us and only the owners may move a car if needed.

We do not practice false advertising. Our advertisement is absolutely accurate as stated on our website. Since 2005, we provide free WiFi Internet throughout the property and free use of a computer equipped with Internet in the breakfast room for all guests.

Here at the Gasthaus, we express environmentally friendly values. We, by no means, prevent our guests from opening the windows in the room. Fresh air is always the best. However, we simply suggest not to open the windows And turn on the air conditioning at the same time due to previous incidents.

Every bathroom is equipped with two bath towels, two face clothes, two hand towels, a bath matt and a hairdryer. We equally provide soaps, mouthwash, shower cap, body lotion, and shampoo and shower gel. If there is anything else guests may need please, just ask at the front desk.

To address concerns regarding room sizes, room dimensions range from 175 Sq feet, a Single room, to 406 Sq feet, a Honeymoon suite. Every room contains a closet available for luggage storage.

This neighborhood is beautiful and vibrant with the Ottawa University at the next block, Rideau and Congress Centre 2 blocks away, Byward Market around the corner, Claridge Plaza luxurious condominiums next door. You are right at the center of all the best Ottawa has to offer including scenic beauty, friendly people, superb restaurants, businesses, convention centres, meeting locations and exciting night spots in Ottawa's own unique lifestyle. Sandy Hill is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Ottawa. And Daly Ave was home to many Fathers of Confederation (Sir Samuel Leonard Tilley, Sir Alexander Campbell, Sir Alexander Tilloch Galt) and our first Prime Minister, John A. Macdonald who lived just across the street from our Inn (1865 to 1872).


Thank you,
Sabina Sauter, Owner

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286 - 292 of 382 reviews

Reviewed September 1, 2008

Stayed for five nights while on holiday in August and found it was a great choice. It is close (2 to 3 blocks) to either the Byward market or the Rideau shopping centre and the transit hubs. Was able to park my car and get around by foot or bus and not worry about anything happening to my car. Ottawa University is just a block away and the neighbourhood is busy at night with students so if not for the mention of any kind of shelter by the owner I would have been ignorant of any kind of problems in the area. The room was nice. Clean. and for my five days I really didn't have a problem with storing all of my baggage or purchases. I wasn't planning to spend my holidays in my room so it wasn't an issue about it being a basic bed, desk and television. The bathroom was small with just a shower but again I wasn't spending a lot of time in there. Breakfast was such a pleasure with the variey of cereals, fruit, hot and cold dishes, cheese and the muesli. It was nice to have real china and the table service as unfortunately a lot of hotels charge much more for rooms with "continental breakfast" which consists of plastic and styrofoam and cold cereal and do it yourself toast.. It being summer was able to sit out on the patio most mornings for breakfast and take in the city scape. The concern of the owner and her family and staff contrast sharply to the chains and bigger hotels where good, friendly service is more of surprise than an everyday occurrence. I was pleased with the accommodations, the service, the location and would most assuredly consider this my first choice next time I travelled to Ottawa. Only downside has nothing to do with the inn but with the construction in the area which literally shook the building at times or seemed to start at some unpredictable time on week mornings.

  • Stayed: August 2008, traveled solo
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Thank arborgmadman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 15, 2008

My husband and i were very dissapointed with this establishement. We reserved one of their best rooms with a king size bed, only to find a less then average room with more like a queen size bed . To top it off, the room was dark , damp and cold, the only nice thing about it was a jacuzzi bath tub in which we were not able to use, shampoo, soap, bubblebath or bath oils.

Breakfast was also below par. We were expecting a greater variety and perhaps something coming hot out of the oven to the table. There was no fruit, a questionable selection of cereal and terrible coffee.

All in all, for the price we paid, we could have stayed in a nice room at a better hotel like the Chateau Laurier and probably had a wide selection at breakfast and a comfortable room. (we checked the rates when we got home) Maybe because we are from Montreal and have stayed at many hotels, smaller inns and B &B's, we are used to higher standards for less money. Seriously, when a B &B can't deliver on 2 things, the Bed and the Breakfast, it's time to revamp or close. Before booking at this overpriced establishement, continue looking!

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank marcomel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management5, Owner at Swiss Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded July 29, 2008

In response to the post made on July 15th, I would like to clarify a few things.

We do feel disappointed that these guests did not enjoy their stay but their reasons listed are illegitimate. The suite they booked is equipped with a full, four-poster king size bed and not a queen bed as so stated. The descriptions of the rooms, along with photos are all available on our website, which is where all of our reservations our made.

Bath oils and bubble baths are not meant for any Jacuzzi for it will severely damage it. In combination with the Jacuzzi jets, the bubble bath will instantly overflow and damage our hardwood floors not to mention everything else in the suite. This is why we supply bath salts in the room, which are meant to be used with the Jacuzzi.

In terms of breakfast, we serve fresh French toast, eggs, muffins, and croissants made each morning, all hot. We also make a traditional Bircher-muesli dish filled with fruits and a whole fresh fruit platter, which is also prepared every morning. In addition to this, our breakfast also consists of tea, orange juice, homemade bread and jam, and a variety of cheeses and yogourts. As for our Coffee, it is all imported from Switzerland as well as the coffee machine itself. Not only that, but each cup is freshly ground.

Finally, we feel that our prices our very fair, especially for this kind of suite with a double Jacuzzi. We are very proud that we are able to offer such a variety of rooms and suites for that special occasion in our small establishment.

Thank you so much for the consideration!

Sabina Sauter, owner


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Reviewed July 12, 2008

The Gasthaus Switzerland is a small family hotel located near downtown Ottawa. It is within walking distance to most attractions. The room in which we stayed was roomy and clean. Breakfast is served daily and you can choose from a selection of warm and cold foods. There is a computer downstairs that guests can use who are not travelling with one of their own. The host, Sabina, is extremely helpful. We found our stay most enjoyable.

  • Stayed: June 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank bug09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 11, 2008

As other reviews have stated I was also a little weary when I first arrived. THe Inn is relatively close to the Mens' mission and there are a few unsavoury characters on nearby streets. Having said this its pretty close to the Westin and other nearby hotels so if you stay there you have these people around anyway.

My room was pretty cheap, not the cheapest but the next one up. The room was basic but comfortable and more than adequate. I had a queen sized bed, a small desk and a flat screen TV mounted on the wall. The bathroom was a decent size with a shower. The room was very clean and quiet. There is free wireless internet throughout.

As for the breakfast, well the Coffee is AMAZING, and there is a large spread of pastries, eggs, french toast, fruit, yoghurt and the Bircher muesli whcih I had once and was pretty good. The staff were very friendly and helpful.

All in all a good stay, close to the Rideau centre, the Westin, the U of Ottawa and Parliament Hill. Walking around even at night I felt quite safe.

Good value for money, woudl stay again.

  • Stayed: May 2008, traveled on business
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Thank mrmark
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 20, 2008

When I first arrived at the Gasthaus Switzerland Inn, I wasn't too sure if I had made the right choice. I walked a strange way from the Rideau Centre bus stop down a fairly unsavoury street, and when I arrived at around 11 in the morning the downstairs reception was dark and empty.

However, I left my bags and returned at 3pm - the earliest time you can check in. And I was very glad I did! My room - the cheapest available - was prettily decorated and perfectly adequate in size for one person for a short stay. The bed was perfectly comfortable and the bathroom adequate. I think there are much nicer rooms available, but you get what you pay for, and my room had no real faults, it was just fairly basic. But the reason I would call this place a little gem is because of the owner - Sabina. She is a real character and very happy to help with advice. She will make your stay memorable no matter how short it is!

The other reasons to stay here are a convenient location, within an easy walk of Parliament Hill for sightseeing and the Byward Market for eating out or shopping. But the best reason of all is the breakfast! Excellent swiss coffee, homemade Bircher muesli (which might look like a bowl of wallpaper paste with rapsberries on top but is one of the most delicious breakfasts I have ever eaten), a large selction of breads and pastries, fresh fruit, cheeses - wonderful!

If I go back to Ottawa, which is not top on my list of things to do, I would stay here again. You can probably find more luxurious accomodations, but for personal service, charm and value for money this place is a good bet.

  • Stayed: May 2008, traveled on business
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Thank mandyc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 14, 2008

This B & B was amazing! Sabina and the staff were very helpful when asking where to go for dinner and giving directions. The location was very central and we could walk everywhere we wanted, including the Byward Market, Parliament Buildings, and the Rideau Center. On a rainy day Sabina lent us an umbrella, and when we had to check out the early she packed us some fruit and drinks for the trip, as we left before breakfast was served. The bedding was soft and comfortable, and we enjoyed the wireless internet.

  • Stayed: April 2008, traveled on business
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Thank 2_Moms_from_SK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Swiss Hotel

Address: 89 Daly Ave, Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6E6, Canada (Formerly Gasthaus Switzerland Inn)
Location: Canada > Ontario > Ottawa
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #35 of 68 Hotels in Ottawa
Price Range: $124 - $186 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Swiss Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Swiss Hotel is ideally located in downtown Ottawa in the heart of the Nation's Capital within easy walking distance to tourist attractions, shopping, restaurants, bars, and convention sites. This European-style boutique hotel has modern flair and offers its clients a warm, cozy and intimate accommodation experience with friendly service in a quiet, stress free environment. Each of the 22 rooms has private bathroom, A/C, European style white bedding that is 100% cotton with plush duvets, hardwood floors, free hi-speed wifi internet, a Nespresso coffee machine in every room. For business or pleasure, choose from standard, superior, deluxe rooms with a fireplace or our romantic getaway suite with a double Jacuzzi. The hotel offers an optional healthy Swiss buffet breakfast, as well as opportunities for small meetings. The hotel also has a pretty courtyard garden patio for relaxation - a true oasis in the middle of the city. ... more   less 
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