This hotel has character and atmosphere like no other that I know in this wonderful, sometimes frantic, endlessly fascinating city. I first stayed at the Windsor a couple of years ago on a work trip. My hosts wanted to book me into an international hotel in Heliopolis. But I wanted somewhere more central and that did not fit the generic, formulaic hotel model and so made my own arrangements and stayed at the Windsor. I loved it and having decided to take a family holiday in Egypt including an initial 5 nights in Cairo, there was only one place I wanted us to stay.
As on my previous visit I booked a "deluxe room", they are spacious, clean, have old furniture, wooden floors and just have a homely, relaxing and rather timeless feel to them - yes, they are not pristine but what you lose in a bit of wear and tear, you gain in so many other ways. Of course, the famous barrel bar oozes atmosphere and is somewhere we always looked forward to spending a little time in at the end of a long day. The breakfast room was always a pleasant place to start the day and the food plentiful and of reasonable quality.
The staff are very friendly and could not have been more welcoming. From the first moments "welcome back to the Windsor, sir", to the fond farewell, everyone was personable and very warm. And, of course, my 9 years old daughter was treated with extra care and attention. From the refined gentleman who owns the hotel, through the manager, front desk staff, the room cleaner and not forgetting, the wonderful ladies at breakfast all were civil, polite and hospitable.
Airport transfers are reliable and we arranged one trip through the front desk to wonderful Saqqara and Dashur (Samir or his colleagues provide a good and fairly priced service).
Just one other thought, I did notice that a few guests appeared to come with a rather "defensive" attitude - which perhaps if they had had bad experiences elsewhere is excusable. But it's a shame and one of the charms of this hotel is that the staff are very decent people and trustworthy and goodwill, respect and a few deserved tips will be more than returned in helpfulness and care.
So if you dont' mind not having all the mod cons (though wifi works well!) and are tolerant of "imperfections" but want to stay somewhere steeped in history and that helps you feel that you are living in Cairo (which is why you came in the first place, right?), you will probably love the Windsor as much as we did!