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“BAD - not the worst hotel ever, but BAD”
Review of 89 Chestnut

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89 Chestnut
Ranked #103 of 136 Hotels in Toronto
Ottawa
1 review
“BAD - not the worst hotel ever, but BAD”
Reviewed June 27, 2009

My husband and I stayed at this hotel because we were attending a conference and the organizer had booked a block of rooms there. It is inexpensive and in a great location for access to downtown and to the University of Toronto (in fact during the school year it is a student residence).

It was terrible. Our room was very dirty - if you have allergies at all the dust and mold will likely bother you. The bathroom was particularly bad - full of mold, probably because there was no working fan in there. But there are no working fans in any of the bathrooms in that part of the hotel. We asked. There was no television and no internet access; the only way to access the internet was to rent a physical modem from the front desk. There was no iron or ironing board in the room: these too had to be picked up from the front desk, borrowed for an hour, and then returned. Nor were we given any hangers. We had to call and have these brought up to the room. There were no glasses in the room for water, and when we ventured out to find bottled water we found that both of the hotel's vending machines weren't working.

One nice thing to say: the breakfast was included and was much better then you'd find at most hotels. Since it serves as a student dining area as well, there are cereals, eggs, bread type stuff, fruit and vogurt, pancakes, muffins, etc.

But overall: the $15-30 more you'd pay per night to stay somewhere better would be well spent.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank s-and-t-in-Ottawa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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114 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
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English first
Brighton, Michigan
Level 5 Contributor
79 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
Reviewed June 27, 2009

There seems to be some confusion in the reviews. This is more of a residence/hostel than a hotel, and its website doesn't claim otherwise. That being said, I thought this was a great value and really nice as far as hostels go. My room was only $99 (Canadian) per night with parking $23/day.

The room rate included a cafeteria style breakfast. It was much better than the standard "bagel and juice" continental offered at most hotels. There was a wide variety of coffees and other beverages, every cereal you'd ever want, ice cream, yogurt, fruit, and multiple rotating hot options (eggs, bacon, pancakes, french toast, etc.)

There was a spacious, full gym with several treadmills and exercise bikes. It had various free weights, medicine balls, yoga balls, mats, and just about every variety of weight machine available. There was a TV with cable.

The rooms were maybe not quite as "crisp" as a standard hotel, but they were OK. They are very hotel-like besides the lack of TV and mini-soaps/shampoos. Our shower had pretty intense pressure.

The hotel is located close to China town and the university.

Overall, I thought this was a perfect hotel for a quick and cheap Toronto get-away.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank vanitysvial
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
seattle
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 21, 2008

This hotel was recommended to us by the organizing committee of a conference we attended. At $109 Canadian, we were expecting a decent room, instead we had to spend 5 nights in a dingy and none too clean dump. Our room had no television and the radio was barely functioning. The bulbs in the two bedside lamps were so weak that we bought new ones and replaced them so that we would have light to read by. We had to request (and wait a day) for new towels, housekeeping never visited our room and one night we came back to the room to find that the leaky toilet had flooded the bathroom. To top it all off, our sleep was disturbed by gangs of kids running through the hallways giggling and banging on doors. All of this was made all the more galling when other conference-goers described to us the much more normal places they were staying in for the same money or little more than we were paying. 89 Chestnut promises a hotel experience and discounted prices, it delivers neither.

The one bright spot? They serve a full breakfast.

  • Liked — breakfast
  • Disliked — dingy, uncomfortable room
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank luigia_simonich
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ames
1 review
Reviewed July 24, 2008

So, this was one of the "recommended hotels" for a conference I just attended. They charges 100 CAD per night, which apparently is WAY more than their regular rate. Oh, wait, when did this dump even get the name "hotel"?? The pool on the rooftop is currently being used as a nasty junkyard for rusty deckchairs. The underground parking garage is so narrow that we scratched our van against the walls dodging other cars. There is NO housekeeping service, even AFTER YOU ASK FOR IT! When I asked the reception about their advertised "indoor pool", I was laughed at! The only good thing about the place is breakfast, which was included in the room-rate for us, but for a few bucks I'm sure we could've found something in the area, and actually have some variety for that matter. Within 2 days we had two fire-alarms go off as well, coming from the same floor no less (once at 4AM in the morning). The biggest joke was when it turned out that they can't electronically swipe credit-cards: they hand-swipe and therefore keep a physical imprint of your card in a book somewhere. I canceled my credit-card upon arrival back in the US. Are you kidding me??

  • Liked — location, breakfast
  • Disliked — everything else
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank blurpie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madison, Wisconsin
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed July 17, 2008

We stayed at 89 Chestnut due to a professional conference being held there. Imagine if you had something like a Road Star or Red Roof Inn... now imagine it has 26 floors and is in downtown Toronto. That's 89 Chestnut. You are paying for the location. It is noisy and worn. Although it was July the place was full of students. I received slightly random towels (one day no bathmat, one day an extra hand towel), but they were clean. The "0" stuck on my phone. When we checked in, there was no information in the room on how to dial out, what checkout time was, anything. The staff was at least friendly. Not a single lamp in my room had better than a 40-watt bulb, and not one had a finial so all the shades wobbled.

If you don't mind the feel of "bargain" accommodations, you should try 89 Chestnut. If you prefer a solidly 3-star or better hotel, you should stay somewhere else.

  • Stayed July 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank tigerb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
maryland
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2008

...and I'm not even 30! Anyone who is looking for a "hotel" experience, please move along, there is nothing to see here. If, however, you are looking to relive those years of living around loud, obnoxious, fire-alarm pulling juveniles, then by all means, welcome! Where to begin:

1.) Housekeeping once a week (yes, you read that correctly, once a WEEK). My wife and I ran out of shampoo and were informed by the front desk that the housekeeper was not in that day, and that there was no shampoo available...??

2.) There is a difference between "spartan" and "a bargain" and "dingy" and "run down". For instance: cheap, hand-me-down furnishings -- "spartan" BUT peeling paint and wallpaper, dirty windows and towels and questionable linens -- "run down" and "dingy".

3.) Card key system for getting into rooms and using elevators is a joke. Apparently your card can be desensitized by cell phones, magnets, other cards in your wallet, fresh air, sunlight and just about any environment outside of the "residence" itself.

4.) The breakfast buffet was the typical limp bacon, greasy sausage, cold pancakes and eerie-looking eggs that you would expect to find at any university setting...in retrospect, I shouldn't have been surprised.

5.) ZERO amenities! I mean, none...no TV, no iron, no ice machines, no soda machines, no mini-fridges. Again, if you were a student, you would probably bring many of these things to the "residence," but as a traveler, well, you're out of luck!

6.) The toilet, which had to be flushed twice for every one time you wanted it flushed. What is this, a dorm...oh wait, IT IS!

On the few plus sides:

1.) The technical staff was great. We couldn't get our internet to work, and he came up to our room multiple times with different cords and modems and eventually got everything to work.

2.) The view (at least from our room) was great...the CN Tower and Canada Life Building both in view, if you could see them through the aforementioned dirty windows...

All in all, this is a "residence" to be avoided by all but the college students because they should be at the library studying instead of being at 89 Chestnut!

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank onetraveler58
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed June 28, 2008

My review should be taken in the context of it being late June, and virtually no students around !

By virtue of it being housed in a tower block that used to be a hotel, 89 Chestnut is like no university hall of residence I have seen before. The rooms are huge. My room 1850, on the 18th floor overlooking City Hall and the CN Tower had a view to die for, a large comfortable double bed, two wardrobes, an easy chair, a desk with swivel chair, and hotel style ensuite bathroom with underfloor heating taking the chill off the tiles. Room access is via electronic swipe cards (which are used to activate the lifts as well – ask the guy on the security desk if you are not sure about this). Efficient aircon. Whilst housekeeping is advertised as once per seven days, my room was serviced after 2 nights of my 4 night stay. There was virtually no noise to be heard, apart from the room above me (presumably inhabited by a student) where an alarm clock provided a good impression of a pneumatic drill at 08:15 each morning and every 9 minutes thereafter as the snooze button was continually used !

As other reviewers have mentioned the all you can eat breakfast buffet is fine with good choice, and although I didn't sample it there is an all you can eat dinner buffet available for CAD 12 plus taxes. The general information sheet provided at check in provides clear guidance that one piece of whole fruit and tea/coffee in a environ-mug can be taken from the dining room and nothing else. Breakfast is available from 07:30 to 10:15 daily.

89 Chestnut is virtually dead centre within the downtown area literally just 2 minutes walk from the coach station, and the airport transfer coach service stops right outside.

Internet access is apparently available at CAD 5 per day, but if you take your laptop to nearby Dundas-Yonge Square free fast wifi is available via wirelesstoronto (google this for more info).

  • Liked — Price, convenient location, breakfast
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank MRC_London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about 89 Chestnut

Property: 89 Chestnut
Address: 89 Chestnut St, Toronto, Ontario M5G 1R1, Canada
Location: Canada > Ontario > Toronto > Downtown
Amenities:
Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #103 of 136 Hotels in Toronto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — 89 Chestnut 2.5*
Number of rooms: 700
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
89 Chestnut offers accommodation in Downtown Toronto, with the look and feel of a hotel and the economy of a University Residence. 89 Chestnut, is located in the heart of downtown with Toronto's famous City Hall and Nathan Phillip's Square as our direct neighbours. Near shopping, business, entertainment districts and all major attractions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
89 Chestnut Toronto
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