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“Not enough attention to details considering the price”
Review of Bell Tower Hotel

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Bell Tower Hotel
Ranked #4 of 35 Hotels in Ann Arbor
Certificate of Excellence
rome italy
Level 5 Contributor
77 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Not enough attention to details considering the price”
Reviewed May 5, 2013

When I travel for business, there are only a few things that are really important to me. One of them is wi-fi. So that's where I'll begin: passenger pigeons would have been more reliable than the wi-fi in room 409. Perhaps I should have asked to switch rooms. I've never done that, but I seriously considered it when I realized that the wi-fi worked much better in a colleague's room.

More generally, I was disappointed by the hotel in many ways. The single rate for a king room was $180/night, which I consider to be not exactly cheap for a place like Ann Arbor. At that rate, there are certain things that I think one should be able to expect. Like an elevator that works (when we were there, the elevator was out of service more often than not). Like a minibar or fridge in the room (there was no place even to stash a bottle of water). Like a bathroom cold water tap that turns the right way and gives cold water, not hot (I did complain about this and they said they'd fix it, which didn't happen, though they did send water bottles up to my room, because, really, who wants to drink a glass of hot tap water?). Like showerheads that are old and clogged so they spray little water jets in 19 directions.

Most of the above things are not show stoppers per se. But you don't expect them from a hotel which obviously occupies a high-end market segment. If you have to put up with them, you should pay a fair but less.

On the plus side, the staff is very friendly, the hotel itself has a historic charm, the room service is good and the rooms are very clean, the complimentary breakfast offers lots of choices, and the location, right across from the Diag, is obviously excellent for anyone visiting on business related to the University. So clearly the Bell Tower has a lot going for it. But there needs to be more attention to details in the areas that I mentioned above to justify the high price.

Room Tip: Avoid 409 (and probably 209 and 309, which are at the end of the hall) if you want wi-fi.
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mulsone
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, May 10, 2013
Thank you for writing a response to your recent stay. We had out IT department review the internet in the room you stayed in. He increased the bandwidth and renamed some access points so a computer would not "bounce". Hopefully this will help the internet problem.

As for the elevator, it does work, but I agree it is not the fastest elevator. You may have to wait a couple of minutes if there is a lot of traffic using it. Our maintenance department reviewed the shower head and sink handle.

Please give us another try next time you are in Ann Arbor and I assure you that you will be happy with your accommodations!

Thanks again,

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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723 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 (78)
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English first
San Francisco, California, United States
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed April 30, 2013

Rooms were very clean, staff very accommodating. Offers free valet parking but you have to make special arrangements when valet is closed late at night and early in morning (to catch a plane from Detroit). This worked OK until they couldn't find our keys at 5:45 AM the morning of our flight. Panic set in but someone finally showed up and gave us keys. Also the elevator in this four story hotel didn't work for about two days intermittently. So we had to climb stairs, luckily not with our bags. We'd probably stay there again but if we didn't have to be near the University I might try another venue just to see what Ann Arbor has to offer. Again though, staff very accommodating.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Bruce O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, May 2, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write a review. I am sorry that we had elevator issues one afternoon. Schindler did not fix the problem correctly that afternoon so we had to have them out the next morning. I am very sorry, we never like to inconvenience our guests. If you would have had bags, our valet would have been more than happy to assist with them.

Again, sorry for the elevator inconvenience. I hope you give us another try in the future when returning to Ann Arbor.

Regards,

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
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GROSSE POINTE FARMS
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviewed April 14, 2013

Location is outstanding. Room and bathroom was clean and comfortable. Service was outstanding. The bar was alot of fun mostly due to the bartender and the waitstaff. Price was a bit higher than we thought it should be, but not outrageous. We would definitely stay there again.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ART H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, April 15, 2013
Glad to hear that your experience not only in the hotel but in the restaurant, Mercy's, was great. You are right, you can park your car in our complimentary valet parking and walk everywhere you need to go.

We look forward to your next stay when in Ann Arbor.

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 2, 2013

I have one daughter who is now graduating from UM and I have another daughter who will be attending this fall and I wouldn't stay anywhere else!! The staff is very friendly and helpful and we've gotten to know many of them over the years. The rooms are clean and pleasant and the location is perfect for walking around both the campus and the city. I recommend it highly...

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank DelMarGirl37
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, April 15, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your recent stay. I am also glad to hear your next daughter made it in and will see you for the next few years.
Thanks again for the review!

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portola Valley, California
Level 5 Contributor
74 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed March 18, 2013

You can't beat the location of The Bell Tower Hotel. It is a small property, almost in the center of campus. It's a great place to stay for a weekend in Ann Arbor at the university. It is very convenient. The interiors are a little dated and the hotel could use some sprucing up but the location can't be beat. The staff are also very hospitable.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Cookie2008_04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, March 29, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your recent stay. We look forward to your return visits. We have recently completed a heating and cooling project on more than half of the rooms in the hotel. We are also looking forward to continuing a bathroom project soon.

Best Regards,

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lincoln, Nebraska
Level 4 Contributor
18 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed March 15, 2013

We were attending a conference at University of Michigan and stayed at the Bell tower hotel for for four nights. Staff and Valet were extremely friendly and helpful. Location was convenient. it is a charming little hotel. We booked small queen bed room. Room was very small, bathroom was clean and large enough. There was no desk in the room and had only one night stand. We had to keep our laptops and books on the floor. Heater was very noisy and we had a hard time getting good sleep. Dinner was very good @Mercy's.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Prem P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, March 18, 2013
Since we have new PTAC's in the room, I am surprised the heater was noisy. We researched the quietest units on the market so I will need to review the unit and ensure it is working properly. We had to reconfigure the room since we installed new HVAC units and the new desk has not arrived for that room yet. They have been ordered and should arrive in the next few weeks.

I am also confused that you mentioned our service, location and cleanliness was great but did not receive high rankings?

Again, I am sorry about the level of noise and I will personally review that unit and ensure it is working properly.

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fort Wayne, Indiana
Level 2 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 13, 2013

My four children all graduated from Indiana University, while I am a Michigan Alumna. As a Christmas gift, I got us all tickets to the Michigan-Indiana basketball game. I wanted them to experience Ann Arbor is a classy and "on campus" kind of way. Wow, did we get that by staying at the Bell Tower Hotel! Across the street from the Arcade, the Diag, great shopping and restaurants, we could not have asked for a better location! We strolled the campus, ate at Grizzlies, Zingerman's, and had drinks at Mash before we headed to Crisler for the game on Sunday afternoon. Wonderful. I would absolutely reserve the same room in the same hotel!

Room Tip: My corner suite was great! The in-room bar had barstools, and the bathroom was immaculate!
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Robin P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
belltowerhotel, General Manager at Bell Tower Hotel, responded to this review, March 15, 2013
Thanks for your review and I am glad you enjoyed your weekend. Please keep your eye open for a new package we are working on. We are trying to put together a "behind the scenes" package that will allow you to tour the Big House and possibly Yost hockey arena or Chrysler basketball arena.

Again, thanks for your review!

DeWayne Grann
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Bell Tower Hotel

Property: Bell Tower Hotel
Address: 300 S Thayer St, Ann Arbor, MI 48104-1699
Location: United States > Michigan > Ann Arbor
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Family Hotel in Ann Arbor
#4 Romantic Hotel in Ann Arbor
#5 Business Hotel in Ann Arbor
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Bell Tower Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 66
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Also Known As:
Bell Hotel Ann Arbor

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