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“Weekend Get-away”
Review of The Townsend Hotel

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The Townsend Hotel
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Birmingham
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 23, 2013

We won a Weekend Getaway Package at an auction to the Townsend. It was a lovely hotel, with old world charm. Our bed was one of the most comfortable beds I ever slept in.

However, our morning breakfast was overpriced for what we got but it was good nonetheless.

  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Maria C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded January 25, 2013

Dear carolsfair,

Thanks for your kind feedback on our beds! We do hear a great deal on how comfortable they are!

We look forward to welcoming you back on future visits!

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director
The Townsend

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751 - 757 of 866 reviews

Reviewed January 21, 2013

Service, service, service, and location were the main reasons to stay at The Townsend as the rooms, while possessing some of the most comfortable beds I've experienced in any luxury hotel, are hopelessly stuck in the 1980s.

Unfortunately my most recent stay lacked any of the service that made The Townsend what it is.

For example:

No "Welcome Back" from any of the valets. Actually there weren't any to be found when we arrived. Carried my bags inside, the desk clerk called someone. No "Welcome Back" from her either, or acknowledgement of my iPrefer status. I included my flight information with my reservation and Delta delayed my flight by several hours. No questions concerning my flight or why I was much later than anticipated. Just a cold robotic--Drivers License and credit card please. Then she couldn't get the printer to work or swip my credit card, in the meantime I had already acknowledged that I knew a room wouldn't be available yet (it was around noon when we arrived), and we were mostly stopping by to drop off our bags then going to get some lunch. She made no effort at any welcoming small talk or even restaurant recommendations (not that I really need any as I've been coming to Detroit for 20+ years).

Returning to the car, the valet opened my door, but not hers. Didn't inquire of our destination, did we need directions, etc. Just pulled the car up and ran away.

The receptionist did call to inform the room was available and I wan't sure if it was a live person or a computer, she was so robotic. Returning to the hotel, valet opens my door, but not hers and the other valets/bellmen standing around didn't open the front door of the hotel either. This became the theme with the valets/bellman the entire weekend, even observed one standing just inside the front door texting rather than opening the door.

The bellman who delivered the bags did offer to get ice, but no offer of unpacking service as has been in the past.

A call to housekeeping for extra foam pillows went unanswered and I had to call the front desk. Absolutely inexcusable that housekeeping couldn't answer the phone. Said pillow delivered 20 minutes later.

Service in the Rugby Grille for breakfast both mornings was as cold as the potatoes.

As already mentioned, the rooms are hopelessly stuck in the 80s. I overlooked this as I'm rather conservative/old-fashioned myself and the service and the supremely comfortable bed made up for the tired furniture. If it were antiques, I could understand, but most of the furniture is just worn out. Not to mention, housekeeping hadn't moved the cushions on the sofa in the living room for some time as the remote fell between them I picked one up to retrieve it and was surprised at the amount of crumbs.

Since the same staff have been here for years, I can only conclude that a new management team is in place which doesn't subscribe to the high standards of service of the previous team.

With the demise of The Ritz Carlton Dearborn, The Townsend had the opportunity to really shine as Detroit's only luxury hotel. Unfortunately they're fading away just like The Ritz.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank rjm8970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded January 23, 2013

Thank you for staying with us and thank you for being so candid with your comments on your recent stay.

We certainly apologize for the lack of service you experienced. It certainly not indicative of the fine quality of service we are know for and try to maintain. It is comments such as yours that make us better to prevent similar experiences for future guests.

We are going through several upgrade renovations this year that include our Tea Lobby (already completed) our luxury suites and the Rugby Grille Restaurant in the next few months.

Again, thank you for your comments.

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director

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Reviewed January 2, 2013

We stayed there for a NYE party. The service & the initial impression when entering the lobby was very impressive but the rooms were nothing special. It was clean & nice, just a bit outdated.Would recommend if you are not on a budget.

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Jamie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded January 4, 2013

Dear Jamie M,

Thank you for your kind comments regarding your recent stay on New Years Eve.

I was pleased that overall you enjoyed the excellent service and your accommodations. I wish to inform you that we are currently going through some upgrades and renovations in 2013 that will further enhance the property! The upgrades and renovations include our Rugby Grille Restaurant and our luxury suite guest rooms.

Thank you again for staying with us! Happy New Year to you and we hope to see you next year at The Townsend!

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director

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Reviewed December 20, 2012

All staff members were friendly and accomodating. Great location near many places to shop and eat. Room was very clean, spacious and well decorated. Bed was very comfortable with a great down comforter. Going back this weekend- looking forward to our stay!

  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Alivia G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded December 26, 2012

Dear Alivia G,

Thank you for your kind review of The Townsend Hotel in "walkable" Birmingham, MI!

We certainly appreciate your loyalty and look forward to welcoming you back!

Have a wonderful holiday and travel safe!

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director

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Reviewed November 6, 2012

Love Love Love the unique boutique style of the Townsend. So Chic, and love that I can shop at all the stores and have so many great choices to dine. There is even a wonderful movie theater close by. Nice romantic spot too.

Room Tip: I don't even know if they have spa or pool. I was too busy. Tips for rooms??? hmmm, they are all...
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank TIWendy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded November 7, 2012

Dear TIWendy,

Thank you for your kind comments on your recent stay at The Townsend! We were delighted that overall you enjoyed your visit to the hotel and the walking city of Birmingham!

We look forward to welcoming you back in the near future!

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director

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Reviewed November 4, 2012

On Sweetest Day, my boyfriend planned a surprise night out for us and we ended up here to my surprise. This is such a swanky hotel, and all the celebrities stay here when they visit the area. When we arrived, we valeted the car, and the valet guy almost gave the surprise away because I had no idea we were staying here, just thought we were going to eat. When we walked into our big room, my boyfriend decorated it with rose petals and proposed to me. He got a romance package which included chocolate covered strawberries and champagne. It also included a $65 room service credit for breakfast, which surprisingly got us quite a schmorgesborg. The service was outstanding, and they would welcome us back whenever we returned. Best service I have ever experience at a hotel. The bathroom was completely marble, and the service was beyond my imagination. It will cost you, but for a special occassion totally worth it. My only complaint is that our air didnt work, and even with the window open in October it was still too hot. No pool either. Classy classy classy.

  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank nikiroo29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded November 6, 2012

Dear niki b,

Congrats on your recent engagement! It is obvious your boyfriend (and now Fiancé ) has great taste in you and in choosing The Townsend Hotel to seek your hand in marriage!

What better place now to celebrate your wedding than at The Townsend in its magnificent ballroom!

Congratulations again and we wish you the very best in your future together!

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director

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Reviewed October 26, 2012

It's hard to separate the hotel from its surroundings because our experience in Birmingham for just one night left us wanting more! Normally we would stay in Troy near Somerset Mall and the larger, chain restaurants, but since that area was booked, American Express recommended The Townsend as an alternative, albeit an expensive one, only 2.5 miles west of our normal haunts. Since we were running out of options, we decided to book it at a discounted, prepaid rate of $281 for one night. It normally runs well in excess of $300/night, from my understanding, being a 4 star hotel.

We were very intrigued with the New England looking/feeling town of Birmingham when we arrived, and we immediately knew that this would be a cool place to stay. The hotel is not too large and is literally surrounded by restaurants, bars, boutiques, galleries, bakeries, etc. We enjoyed a walk around the town.

The greeting and welcome were very nice with bell hops and valets eager to help. The lobby is very nice with a lounge on one end. Naturally, though, our prepaid rate meant that we would get a less desirable room. Even though the room was plenty nice, the window was extra small because it looked out over the inner section and onto a roof. So no view. I'm guessing that the outer rooms with balconies are much nicer though.

The bathroom was roomy and had lots of mirrors and marble tile. It's a tiny bit strange that a hotel of this caliber would have a shower curtain and not a glass enclosure or door, but not a big deal for us. The toiletries were by Gilchrist & Soames, an upscale brand found in luxury hotels & resorts. Nice touch.

The front desk was friendly & helpful with restaurant information and recommendations. A recommendation from the Townsend got us a complimentary appetizer at the new Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse that had just opened down the street.

I feel I should mention one negative. The parking situation is confusing and somewhat frustrating at the Townsend. Let me see if I can regurgitate what we were told: There is street parking, which is free for a couple of hours, but after that, you have to feed the meter into the evening. There is a parking deck next door, and it is free for the first two hours, but it charges $20 for overnight parking. To valet park is $24/day plus a tip. So all that puts you in a position that you either have to work hard to make sure the meter doesn't run out until 6pm, or you have to bite the bullet and valet park.

We would probably stay at the Townsend again, but it's hard to justify the cost from a business trip standpoint. I will keep it in my rotation of hotels to check for rates when traveling back to Detroit.

Room Tip: If you can swing it, get an outside facing room.
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  • Stayed: October 2012, traveled on business
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Thank KelekeWahine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Steven K, General Manager at The Townsend Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded October 29, 2012

Good Day KelekeWahine,

Thank you for staying with The Townsend on your recent trip to Birmingham! We are delighted you enjoyed your stay and the lovely walking city of Birmingham!

For the record, a pre-paid rate does not mean at The Townsend a less desirable room however, we do have some rooms that have a lesser desirable view. Please let us know when you return so we can rectify this!

In regards to your comment on parking, it is a valuable commodity downtown and the options are parking on the street, a garage right next to the hotel and our own valet parking.

Again, thank you for staying with us!

Sincerely,

Steven Kalczynski
Managing Director

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Townsend Hotel

Address: 100 Townsend St, Birmingham, MI 48009-6068
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Michigan > Birmingham
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Birmingham
Price Range: $336 - $467 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — The Townsend Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 150
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Townsend Hotel is a gem of European modern luxury, tucked away amidst the pleasing parks, sophisticated designer shops and nationally acclaimed art galleries of Birmingham. Exquisitely appointed Guest Rooms & Suites welcome you with fine furnishings, luxurious Frette beds & linens, marble bathrooms, Bose radios & the calm & privacy of a quiet suburban location. Our staff delivers gracious, thoughtful and personalized service. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Townsend Hotel Birmingham

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