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“tired of the chain hotels, decided to try a boutique instead!”

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Drake Hotel Toronto
Ranked #11 of 136 Hotels in Toronto
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed May 15, 2011

I use TripAdvisor almost all the time before booking hotels. and I think every time I find the ratings giving to a hotel are pretty accurate. Although I have to wonder whether those who give poor or bad reviews are those who experienced it only once and those who actually don't bother to write a review are the ones who have to say all the good things about certain hotel, but never make it to the pool of reviews for whatever reason.
Anyhow, the hotel at first when we called (we drove there) as we were approaching the hotel from the 401; seemed quite welcoming...the person who answered the phone at the front desk was respectful, she pointed that the hotel had only a few spots for parking and offered us one of them as it was available for the night we were staying.

When we arrive to the hotel, there was no spots available in the parking lot (small lot across the street) my spouse waited outside while I went inside and find out if it there was an actual spot reserved for us. The person parked in our spot was a manager or perhaps a supervisor, not sure, but she was pregnant and she ran out to the street to move her car! I was so worry she was going to fall in the middle of the road or something..... anyways we checked-in and were treated with respect... The lobby is small and it shares the entrance with a funky bar/restaurant. There are all kinds of artifacts, that looked tasteful all around. As went up stairs we noticed some interesting photographs on the walls, and beautiful chandelier... very chic. The hotel was being a host for the CONTACT photography festival that was happening.. and the reason we visited TO.
Before we entered the rooms area (there is a locked door where you need to use your room key to go through) we wondered through the hallway, a dark long hallway that it is illuminated by hanging mini-red-lampshades, with a chain with the room number. We were curious to see the interior. We didn't see any photos of the hotels before we booked it. so We were really curious to see what they look like, we entered the room and it was a surprise!! It was decorated very tasteful and colorful and modern and classy at the same time. we loved it!. It was a nice atmosphere to be in, we usually stay at the Sheraton downtown or at the Sheraton airport location and we were tired of all the 'fancy' drapery that these kind of hotels have. The rooms were awesome, the set up for the shower, toilet, sink, all were positioned in a very organized way. At the end, we ended up staying an extra night because we loved it so much. The people was great to deal with, love this place! I think if there was a negative thing, and isn't negative at all is just a small detail... was the restaurant service was a little bit slow..... but we didn’t care.
Love this place, and now we are looking forward to stay in another boutique hotel somewhere else!!

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank arteisfoto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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482 - 488 of 648 reviews

Reviewed May 9, 2011

Small but stylish rooms.
Noisy, both from inside and outside.
Far from downtown, in an arty farty neighbourhood. Count all the pros and cons and you end up average, doubt if thats worth the 200 can dollars I paid.

  • Stayed: May 2011
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Thank wilhornis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 6, 2011

If you asked someone where all the hipsters go to party, drink and eat in Toronto, he/ she would probably respond "The Drake Hotel." The hotel is advertised as "a hot bed for culture" with its fascinating pieces of modern-meets-historic art pieces, varied entertainment, furnishings and decor.
The crash pad rooms are very cute and uniquely decorated. The voyeur-pleasing shower stall and toilet with its frosted glass were a bit of an adjustment along with the limited storage space. Overall, the crash pads are a fun, unique experience... Just don't expect privacy if you're sharing the room, nor a comfy pillow-top mattress. Also, the cleaning staff did an average job of cleaning our room; bottles were not cleared from our room, wet towels were left on the floor and the bed partially made. Plus, due to limited space, there were tons of orange laundry bags littering the hallways during cleaning hours which made it impossible to use the "computer pad" business station.

Where the Drake dramatically falls short is its "too cool" service. Upon checking in, our greeting wasn't warm or welcoming; I felt like I was bothering the concierge. There were 1-2 staff members that were friendly, some were almost unapproachable. During our stay, we were asked once if we needed any help as we toured the city (I was expecting staff to ask if we were looking to shop/eat/ watch a show as per previous reviews raved about the staff's expertise on local hot spots and friendliness). During day and night hours, whenever we ascended the stairs to our room we were asked, "Where are you going?" which I assume is a safety measure as many people wander into the hotel.
As a guest, this recurrent question made us feel like intruders being pleasantly interrogated.

The Drake lounge had some delicious dishes (the ribs really stood out) and awesome drinks... Sadly, the food isn't worth the poor, slow service. We had 3-4 different servers throughout the evening; the first 3 were decent however, the last server rudely asked us if we were "planning to eat or should I just take the cutlery away?" while we were enjoying happy hour. She also messed up our dinner order (my boyfriend ended up with cornbread instead of a burger) and took 20 minutes to bring our final round of beers. If she said "sorry" once or gave us a reason, we would have been happy customers.

Overall, stay at the Drake for an artsy, kitschy crash pad room experience just to say you did it. Hang out in the lounge and sky bar to experience the hip Toronto party/ bar scene. Beware of inconsistent service in the lounge and the hotel. To live up to all its hype, the Drake service needs to be more consistent.

  • Stayed: May 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank MarieGrace17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jonathan_LeClaire, Manager at Drake Hotel Toronto, responded to this reviewResponded June 20, 2011

Dear MarieGrace17

Thank you for the compliments, we love our singularly designed Crash Pads too, 3rd Uncle Design are a marvel with esthetics, and unique ways to find extra space.

Clearly, however, I would like to apologize for some of the elements that tarnished your stay with us. The laundry bags you reference are a challenge given the heritage nature of the building, as you say, we have limited space available to us, but we always try to minimize this impact on guests’ experience. The head of housekeeping has made a few changes that will ensure guests can always access the computer pad in the future, so thank you for bringing this to our attention.

As for your service experience, please forgive us - You as a valued guest could never be a bother. While we are all well acquainted with city attractions and secret spots to look out for, we attempt – whenever possible – to not intrude on our guests while they stay with us. We stand ready 24/7 to answer any questions or to give directions to local hangouts or Toronto destinations. We even offer curated bicycle tours of the city on our very own cruiser bikes!

We hope you give us the opportunity to serve you again, I know we won’t fail to impress!

X[OH]!

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 27, 2011

I was looking for a funky boutique hotel and the Drake ticks all the boxes - however, crash pads really are tiny rooms with shower and toilet pretty much at the end of the bed. Low lighting doesn't help if you're trying to get ready for a night out and no natural light due to window being blocked by brick wall. Overpriced for the size of the room, not even a complimentary bottle of water!
However, 90% of staff were great and if it's a funky/pretentious atmosphere you're looking for, this is it. Advice? Drink at the bar, stay elsewhere - your money can be better spent!!

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank tricks23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jonathan_LeClaire, Manager at Drake Hotel Toronto, responded to this reviewResponded May 7, 2011

Dear Guest,

We thank you for taking the time to share your experiences. We are proud of all our offerings at Drake – so naturally we are sorry to hear you were not satisfied with your accommodations.

We encourage any guest who will be spending additional time in their room to avail themselves to our competitively priced Dens, Salons or XL Suite.

With regard to a brick wall outside your room, the 121 year heritage of the building did necessitate a few concessions to a view in a select number of rooms. For this reason guests should not be surprised to find unique, private art installations, or seasonal plantings nestled into the otherwise urban sights.

We have big plans for the next few years, and will be excited to have you stay with us again, perhaps in a room with a grand view overlooking the city’s West-End.

X[OH!] Jonathan + Drake

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 24, 2011

The test of a good, if not great, hotel might be its ability to deliver time and again a memorable, fantastic experience...and here the Drake does not disappoint! We planned a trip in April to celebrate a birthday and secured the suite for the weekend. The largest guest room at the boutique hotel, it was more of the same quirky, charming, eclectic bent as the room we stayed in last time, albeit more spacious and with more nifty touches. Yes, the funny, funky doll with chest hair and bondage gear was there, but so was a big screen TV hooked up to DVD player; a very cool sitting area with daybed/sofa, and original art throughout. Despite being the largest room, it was still compact and made great use of space. Again, like last time, be warned that the Drake is a happenin' joint with music and people bouncing around until the wee hours of the morning...it was loud but it felt right and we had no problems sleeping through the bass thump and waking up in the morning to the smell of coffee and baking. Yum! Speaking of which, the brunch was fantastic and the weather was beautiful so the patio was open and we got to experience good food and people watch all in one sitting! As usual, the staff without exception, were phenomenal and are a huge reason why we came back and will keep going back...warning! pay attention to parking signs on the street...had the misfortune of mis-reading the sign on a friday afternoon and fell asleep/took a nap...woke up at 6pm and the car was gone! Sigh. Off to the impound lot to collect the vehicle and park in the right spot. My bad. The Drake staff heard about it and comiserated with me...even got a free drink at dinner which helped...and they also brought out cake...what a fantastic experience (car being towed aside) and we can't wait to get back there again!!! Highly recommend the Drake for a unique and amazing experience...

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  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Apollo E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 20, 2011

The Drake has it all -- a funky sense of style, chic and convivial spaces for dining and lounging, compact and expertly designed rooms, innovative and streamlined furnishings, comfy beds, sleek bathrooms – but the real standout here is the service. The Drake's warm and welcoming vibe is genuine and you feel it the moment you step inside. Not so much as a hint of attitude, just classic hospitality at its best. Don't miss the Sky Deck, especially if you have little ones. You can sink back on the atrium's long banquette or gather round the fire pit and roast marshmallows -- quite a treat for our 10-year-old daughter!

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled with family
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Thank bettyegan220
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 18, 2011

Loved the hotel! Great rooms, and the most thoughtful, friendly service we've encountered in any hotel in the world.

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Tijen_Holger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Drake Hotel Toronto

Address: 1150 Queen St W, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1J3, Canada
Phone Number:
Location: Canada > Ontario > Toronto > Queen Street and West Queen West
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#5 Romantic Hotel in Toronto
#10 Business Hotel in Toronto
Price Range: $196 - $353 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Drake Hotel Toronto 3*
Number of rooms: 19
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Also Known As:
Toronto Drake Hotel
Drake Toronto

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