Check in was unorganized and crowded. The front desk person was alone, flustered with the phones and people in line. He also had to communicate regularly over the radio.
The place is getting very old. The bathrooms have that dull beige type style with cracks here and there and general signs of age. This makes the place feel much dirtier than it actually is. Except for the bed, there was hair in the bed.
I booked an executive room which was about 30$ more expensive because I had a great time at an other Holiday Inn a while back where executive guests would have access to a lounge that had snacks, appetizers, drinks, wet bar, exclusive small breakfast in the morning all complimentary. They also had much nicer rooms. I was quickly disappointing to learn that the only difference here with a regular regular room is that you get a mini-fridge and safe. No lounge, no breakfast, nada. Wow how that sucked big time as I couldn't care less about those items!!!! I certainly felt executive. Oh, and the other Holiday Inn only charged about 15$ more for executive level compared to regular rooms.
Electrical outlets are very, very, very few and far between. The desk does have a power bar though hanging from the wall. How great does that look (not). seems cheap, the kind of cheap that even Econo Lodge or any no frills dump wouldn't go down to.
See, Holiday Inn implies a Holiday. Relaxation, comfort, retreat, inspiration. Overall nice stuff, but this does not live to that expected standard. Their site clearly indicate that executive rooms have 14 foot vaulted ceilings. I did quick math and figured out I'm 5'8. In theory, two 6 foot people could stand on each other and still have room to spare. I could almost touch my room's ceiling standing up at only 5'8. False advertisement much. I paid for that vaulted ceiling and I expected to have that. I Even confirmed with front desk and they said my room was an executive one as it was on the 14th floor. What went wrong!!!??
MY favourite part is that Wifi does not reach the 14th (executive floor). How the heck does that make sense! Why don't we put business people where there's no Wifi! I hope the genius who thought of that got promoted. Instead, we get an Ethernet cable at the desk area for floors above the 11th if I recall correctly (they took the time to write a note indicating which floors have internet via Ethernet in the room's hotel guide rather that put a Wifi router to just fix the issue!). I wanted to use my laptop in the comfy bed but couldn't! What if I wanted to connect my tablet or cell? How disappointing. I ended up using my phone's tether because I wanted that unfulfilled comfort of catching up with work in bed.
An other favorite is parking. They wanted 22$ for parking. Here's the thing, I'm pretty sure they don't own the parking lot. I think they just have agreements with the company that owns it. I quickly found out that if I paid the machine directly at the lot under the hotel, it would cost me only 13$. And that's exactly what I proceeded to do! What a scam. And yes, it's not a different lot because the hotel elevator brings you directly to that lot underground.
Lastly, front desk tried calling me because they wanted to give me an update on a question I had earlier. I pick up the corded phone and it stopped working after a few seconds. I tried calling them back but no joy because the phone didn't work. I tried the wireless receiver instead but it's obviously dead and looks almost like an antique. I had to fiddle a long while with the corded phone to be able to maintain a conversation with front desk. Pathetic. Good thing it wasn't 911 that I was trying to reach...
Regardless, we try for some sleep after all is said and done. The ventilation system had a loud rattle that kept me from sleeping for a while, and caused the air to become very dry to the point where I woke up in the middle of the night with my mouth dry and hands chapping to get water from the restaurant downstairs. (I'm not paying 3.50 for a bottle of warm water sitting in the bathroom).
In summary, this hotel is old, too expensive, not comfy and simply not up to my expectation. I don't care how many company inspections they pass or how they claim to be above standard, this place is a disaster for the rate and location. This place should be modern, refreshing, comfy, inspiring, and well above the rest. There are tons of other cheaper, more modern hotels in the immediate area. This is the second time in a row that a Holiday Inn was grossly under expectation.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Fashionably located in Toronto's upscale Yorkville area, at the historic University of Toronto, our comfortable rooms, professional staff and superb surroundings make our downtown Toronto hotel an ideal choice for business or leisure. Enjoy walking the tree lined streets to the surrounding museums or use the adjacent subway stop (St. George) to whisk you to your business appointment. Our 209 well appointed rooms ensure that you are well rested to start your Toronto adventure. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Bloor Yorkville Hotel Toronto
- Midtown Holiday Inn
- Holiday Inn Toronto
- Toronto Holiday Inn
- Journeys End Hotel