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All reviewslobby barclub levelhistoric hotelpiano playerberry piebell staffmodern amenitiesdowntown louisvillesouthern charmbeautiful lobbycorner roomevery staff membervalet parkingan older hotelroom was largebourbon trailbed was very comfortable
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Reviewed June 1, 2014 via mobile

Having grown up in KY I had always heard good things about the Brown. My husband and I had tickets to see a show at the Kentucky Center this weekend. I attempted to make a reservation at 21 C, a hotel across from the Kentucky Center for the Arts but it was fully booked. We decided to give The Brown a whirl. The first tip off that gouging might be an issue came when we called the hotel to make a reservation for one night only to be told only Friday/Saturday two day bookings were being offered. We then went on The Brown's website only to find we were quite able to book only one night, so long as you booked a package. Since we had been willing to spend a couple of hundred dollars at 21 C and we had always heard great things about the Brown, we sucked it up and paid over $200 a night for a queen package, which included a bourbon tasting (which we didn't need or want), etc., because it was the only way to book a room.

When we arrived, the first thing I noticed was that the neighborhood was a little sketchy. Run down buildings across Broadway, etc., not to mention the overall distance to the majority of downtown activities. The hostess at check in was quite friendly and offered suggestions for dinner. When we asked about getting to our show that night she mentioned a courtesy vehicle the hotel has but said she doubted they would be able or willing to take us or pick us up from the Kentucky Center because they would be making airport runs. I asked about walking and she indicated it was quite far and a cab for $6 one way might be our best bet there, though getting a cab back might not be that easy. Needless to say we drove on our own and paid for parking at the Center.

When we headed upstairs to the room we were told we were on a club level room and to insert our key in the elevator for access. While this is a great safety feature, there appeared to be no rhyme or reason as our floor was not entitled to any of the club level amenities. The carpet on the elevators is quite warn and the brass is in need of a good polish.

Once upstairs in our room the first thing that hit us was the overwhelming mildew/old smoke smell. We were on the 12th floor and couldn't open windows and the a/c didn't help dry the room which had almost damp air. This could possibly be to the lack of bathroom ventilation and years of shower steam penetrating the room with no escape. We decided we were not going to be in the room long so we just went with it.

After our show was over we picked up dessert and brought it back to our room. We ordered coffee to go with our dessert from room service. We waited 25 minutes at 11:30 at night (not peak hours by any means) for our coffee to arrive. It was delivered by a nice young man and was presented well but we soon discovered we were charged $14 for coffee for two people. The coffee was ok, but cost more than some dinner entrees. In fact upon checkout the person at registration asked if we had enjoyed our room service dinner, and when we said we just had coffee she commented, oh, it must have been coffee for 2 at that price. Yes, even the employees are shocked by the prices! Speaking of checkout, their is no express checkout, so be prepared to wait to check out of the hotel. Not a huge deal but quite odd when they hold a credit card number and have magnetic keys. It seems unnecessary.

Long story short, if you are looking for history this hotel is ok (but the Sealbach is better). If you are looking for opulence, you might enjoy the ornate lobby ceiling and heavy fabrics in the lobby. Once in your room you will find nothing more than an average Holiday Inn might offer, at a much, much higher price. I will be booking elsewhere for much better quality the next time I visit Louisville.

Stayed: June 2014, traveled as a couple
Thank Travelers R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 29, 2014

The Brown hotel gives you the feeling of old Kentucky charm. The rooms are reflective of Kentucky culture. The rooms are beautiful and very clean. The service is also exceptional. In an ideal location for out of town visitors.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Jill P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2014 via mobile

My husband and I stayed here for one night on a quick trip to Louisville. This is the most beautiful hotel I have ever seen!! The staff was so helpful and courteous. The only thing we didn't care for was that the windows didn't open, a little fresh air would have been nice. Overall I would highly recommend this charming hotel.

Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
Thank Raelyn922
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2014

My husband and I recently stayed at The Brown Hotel on our trip to Louisville. What a grand hotel, oozing history and charm! The lobby was beautifully appointed in the ornate style of the 1920's. We booked a suite on the executive level and were glad we did. The suite had extra space and a comfy sofa and was decorated in a more modern style, but still classic. The room had all the amenities you would expect in this level of hotel, turn down service, ice bucket, bottled water provided nightly, etc. The only 'nit' would be with the executive club level lounge itself. It was rather small and the weekend we stayed could not accommodate all the club level guests. Many times seating was not available so we moved down to the our suite (see sofa comment). Food for both breakfast and 'happy hour' was rather lackluster and disappointing. The quality of the wine was also sub par. Compared to other hotels with club level lounges, this one would rank on the bottom of the list.

The hotel was further from the downtown nightlife/restaurants than we anticipated. If proximity is important to you, keep this in mind.

We did not use the valet service, instead we opted for park in the garage next door for $20 a day versus $25. If you are going to leave your car 'parked' for your stay then the garage is the better option. While the valet is a better option if you plan to be using your car. If you leave the garage you will be charged eacy time, where as the valet you can retrieve your car as you need it without any charges (other than tip of course). One note about the parking garage, there is a very convenient enclosed/connected walking bridge directly from the garage second floor to the lobby.

The lobby bar is a rocking place on Friday and Saturday nights. Lots of 'action' and on the weekend we were there several wedding receptions were taking place. Of course staying at The Brown, we did have a Hot Brown for breakfast one morning in the downstairs restaurant. It wasn't my cup of tea, but like staying at the hotel itself... it is something you have to do once. Glad we stayed at the Brown Hotel. It was an experience we enjoyed overall, but we will probably try another downtown hotel in Louisville our next trip.

  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled with friends
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Thank LAB019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2014

My husband and I recently stayed at The Brown Hotel for our anniversary celebration. We did not encounter anyone employed there that wasn't polite, cheerful and thoughtful. The bartender overheard a conversation with a couple getting married and surprised us with a luscious dessert and rose. We felt that everyone we encountered went out of their way to make us feel special and make our stay as wonderful as possible. We will definitely go back and highly recommend!

  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank MrsC052105
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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