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“Horray for the Valet! Classsic Customer Service.”
Review of The Brown Hotel

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The Brown Hotel
Ranked #3 of 97 Hotels in Louisville
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 30, 2007

The Brown Hotel is a most beautiful property. Located in a newly re-emerging Louisville in the most convenient location it's luxury and classic design with comfort was a welcome surprise. We only stayed one night.
First of all, what I have to say may be a little unexpected, but what stood out most of all and above most other hotels were the Valets. These guys were class acts. Apparently they're mostly from Poland and work long hours, but have smiles on their faces and brave elements all day long. One guy in particular was from Poland and had worked in the business for quite a few years. He was very friendly, gave great advice, talked socio-culture with me and just all around was easy to engage with. These guys took excellent care of all of our family during our first in 50 yrs reunion and deserve recognition.
Secondly, the ambiance was surprisingly authentic, historically. The Lobby was magnificent, ornate and well kept.
The front desk staff were also genuinly friendly, much like the valets. These ladies were great with sugguestions! I was so happy to hear from them that a Starbucks is right around the corner.
Our room was huge, clean and had lots of old world charm. It was just a little out dated looking though and a little too eclectic to make it truly beautifull, though...
I definitely reccomend this hotel for both tourists and business travelers. The restaurant food is good. The bar is well stocked with a surprising variety of Vodkas for martinis, (especially for a southern local).
The ballroom is like an old Cinderella's castle ball room, with ornate plaster celings and elaborate woodwork. It's a little like a living time capsule from the days gone by.

  • Stayed: November 2007, traveled on business
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1  Thank Sonnenshine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,890 - 1,896 of 1,938 reviews

Reviewed November 22, 2007

This was my second time staying at the Brown and I still love it though it did seem as if it has gotten older though since the last time I was there in early 2006. The soaps I loved are gone and some carpet in the halls torn a bit which surprised me. The lady in the gift shop said the old soaps were going to be used again by the end of this year I believe so that’s always nice. From the moment I gave up my keys for valet service ($20 approximately a day) I felt welcomed and pleased. My last visit the doorman didn’t even greet us when we arrived but this time they were helpful and very friendly even remembering my name, which is always nice. Everyone was friendly and efficient, the service nearly impeccable. The food was still good, the hot brown to die for and something everyone should try although my daughter didn’t care for it, too rich for her taste! The beds were warm and so comfy with nice couches to lounge on in the room if you have them, and down in the lobby on the second floor too those couches are just lovely to sink into. It’s a really lovely lobby, quite huge. Something else to sink into are the complimentary robes, which are cozy and warm though over large for a small person like myself, but I can’t complain about that.

The added bonus of being on the club floors, besides the view from plentiful windows is that you have 24 hour concierge service with a very nice continental breakfast in the morning consisting of pastries, boiled eggs, toast you make yourself, yogurt, cereals, juices, and the usual morning drinks although I must say I felt the water for the tea came out tasting odd as well as the hot chocolate. I could have mentioned this but had taken the drinks to my room and didn’t think of it when I returned. There are hor’dourves for dinner with beer and wine and soda pops and cookies, enough food to fill you up if you want a snack or don’t wish to order room service or go to one of their restaurants or anywhere else. The first time I stayed there I didn’t venture out but this time I felt I might as well since you pay for it with the room and I wasn’t disappointed. You can also watch television in the lounge (there’s one TV on either side of the room) or read the New York Times which reminds me the USA Today is delivered to your door each morning.

The only downside to the hotel, in my opinion, is the addition of the flat screens. They’ve removed their lovely armoires, which used to sit in front of the beds and containing a large television inside and instead put flat screens on the wall to the right of the beds. How can flat screens be a bad thing you may ask and I’ll tell you. Before you could lounge in bed and enjoy a show if you liked but now you must either lie across the bed or turn onto your side to see the TV otherwise you risk leaving the hotel with a painful crick in your neck from craning your head around to look at the flat screen. It’s a small complaint I suppose because I don’t watch a lot of television but it still annoyed me.

And that reminds me the lack of heat bothered me too. I actually had a small heater in the car along with a small fan because last time I had a hard time going to sleep because of the noise on the street on Fourth Street and brought them for white noise but I didn’t use them. Let me say that I had no problems with that this time but I wasn’t on that side. Well, I turned the heat up as far as it would go but I was still cold. The robe and down comforter helped immensely so I suppose it wasn’t awful and my daughter who went with me said it wasn’t cold to her but it did bother me at first. Despite these two things all in all I enjoy this hotel very much, it felt like coming home again and I’ll be going back again next year though I may indeed bring up my little heater from the car this time.

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled with family
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4  Thank StormyWindRider
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 18, 2007

Growing up in Kentucky and with all the hype that comes with the Brown we didn't even think to stay anywhere else when traveling in to town for a concert at the Palace.

The lobby is beyond words. So old world and grand on every level. Check in was swift and informative and we were on our way to our room.

The room was between quaint and spacious. The couch in the seating area was comfy and the bed was heaven; with more pillows than the pillow ailse at Bed Bath and Beyond. We were on the private level so we had acess to free drinks and snacks at ALL hours of the day and night which was very convenient.

In genreal the bathroom was nice but, the shower was horrible. Water pressure and temperature could've been better and, one of our embroidered towels was turned inside out . . . so it wasn't very appealing.

Overall this is a nice place to stay with attentive service and old world class. But, for only a one night stay it is difficult to say if the rate was worth the amount of time we were in the room.

Lastly, this is a VERY quiet hotel. We received a note from our neighbors complaining about the in-room phone beeping due to a message left by the front desk.

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank kalamazooboys28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2007

We just returned from Louisville where we stayed at The Brown which, unfortunately, is no longer owned by Camberley. We have stayed at the Brown every other year for the past six years. There was a BIG difference from the last time we stayed there in 2005. Although the lobby is still grand, the rooms, hallways, and elevators are in need of "sprucing" up. The Brown is no longer a five star hotel and needs their rating to be updated. We always stay on the Club floor where, because of the price difference, we expect that floor to be kept up. They are not - from peeling and stained wallpaper in the hall and rooms to the new flat screen tv's (which ours did not work and kept on turning off by itself even after contacting maintenance) that took away from the previous old world charm of the rooms. At times, the room was not cleaned until after two in the afternoon. The towels are almost threadbare and toilet always running (even after contacting maintenance) takes away from - what used to be a 5 star hotel. Attention to details is everything when you are rated so high and The Brown has lost that since the owner change. Sometimes there were doormen, but sometimes not. Another big disappointment was the gift shop. Once you felt like you were shopping at an upper end hotel now it looks like a step up from Wal-Mart. The Maswell-Cassey soaps are no longer available in the room - substituted with less expensive brand found in any 3 star hotel. Although The Brown has been our home away from home in Louisville for many years, we will not be returning there the next time we visit Louisville. We were very saddened to see what had happened to this Grand Old Lady since 2005. The Hot Browns are still great and on the Club Floor the food was still good - if you got there at the right time. But - if you have never stayed at a 5 star hotel (and you don't know what to expect) and not stayed at the Brown before 2006 (so you don't know what to compare it to) you may not mind the condition and service.

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Willow78717
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 18, 2007

Beautiful lobby, excellent service. Mostly English as a first language speaking staff. Large room, bathroom and closet. Comfortable bed.

On the down side, no coffee in room. You have to go to the first floor between 6:00 and 9:00 a.m. Fitness center is ill equiped and there is no pool.

Stayed: October 2007
Thank GLCmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 14, 2007

i enjoyed staying at the hotel. It was one of the best experiences I have ever had. The staff is AMAZING, especially the front desk! Everyone was so nice and helpful. Check-in and check-out was a breeze! I can't remember the names of the two girls that helped me, but I know they both were brunette and had excellent customer service!!! i would recommend The Brown to anyone who was staying in Louisville, even though they dont have coffee makers :(

  • Stayed: August 2007, traveled solo
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1  Thank bobjoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 12, 2007

Very nice place. Excellent restoration of public spaces. Fantastic service. Good food. Large rooms. Suspect its pricey but the bill was covered so I didn't have to worry about that. Only issues were minor.
No coffee maker in the room?? - come on - in a room that I'm sure is well north of $100/night whats wrong with not having to fool with room service for a morning coffee?? Free airport shuttle but with a limited schedule and requiring advance signup.

  • Stayed: October 2007, traveled on business
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1  Thank Greg126
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Brown Hotel

Address: 335 W Broadway, Louisville, KY 40202-2167 (Formerly The Camberley Brown Hotel)
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Kentucky > Louisville > Central Business District
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 97 Hotels in Louisville
Price Range: $184 - $629 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Brown Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 293
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located at the corners of Fourth and Broadway in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, The Brown Hotel is one of Louisville's most treasured landmarks. Built in 1923 at a cost of $4 million by J. Graham Brown, the hotel was a magnet for many prominent guests and celebrities during the 1920s through the 1950s. In 1971, two years after the founder passed away, The Brown closed as a hotel and later reopened as the Board of Education building. ... more   less 
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