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“Disappointing service for a 4-star hotel”

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Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston
Ranked #19 of 85 Hotels in Boston
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Reviewed July 13, 2006

The room we were given, and the service we got, were not up to my expectations. I stay at 4- and 5-star hotels about 10 nights of the year, and am a member of the Fairmont President's Club preferred guest program. Every interaction we had with a staff member was unimpressive, from the mumbling check-in person to the distracted check-out clerk. No doorman was on duty when we checked in, nobody offered to help with our bags, and the concierge was unable to answer basic questions about the immediate Copley area.

The door to our Fairmont Room opened right onto the bed, with no vestibule or closet area to separate the room from the public hallway. The closet provided less than 12 inches of hanging space, and no trouser hangers at all. There were no drawers or shelves for clothing, anywhere in the room -- the whole armoire was taken up by the TV and minibar. There was no coffee in the room, although a notice in the minibar area said that we could have a pot and supplies delivered for an additional cost! The bathroom was minimal, with a shower over the tub surrounded by a fabric shower curtain (which, of course, blows in on you as you're trying to relax) and no robes. Toiletry amenities were basic but decent, and actually smelled pleasantly of citrus and herbs. But still, for a 4-star hotel, I expected a better setup.

The TV in our room was malfunctioning, turning itself on at will. We tried to unplug it, but the armoire was too heavy to move. We turned down the volume, closed the doors, and threw the bedspread over the armoire to hide the light that was coming throught the door. The next morning, we asked the front desk to have it fixed. Maintenence left a note saying that the problem was resolved, but it wasn't -- we were awakened at 2am by the TV turning itself on at full volume! Needless to say, we weren't very happy the next morning.

We left for our day out at about 8am, and left the "please make up room" sign on the door. When we returned, exhausted and ready for a shower, at 3:30pm, the room was still just as we left it. We called housekeeping, and the person who answered actually lectured us that we should KNOW that they have until 4pm to make up the room. (Are we psychic?) We asked them to send up towels so that we could shower; 30 minutes later, they hadn't arrived, so we called again. 20 minutes later, still no towels. I went out into the hall, found the abandoned maid's cart, and got them myself.

The maid finally came to our door a few minutes later at 5pm, asking to make up the room. We told her that we'd like her to come back in an hour or so, after we left for dinner, and she sighed and stamped off. We took our shower, and came out to find a little "sorry you didn't want your room made up" notice slid under the door -- infuriating! When we called the front desk and explained what had happened, and asked them to please send someone up in 30 minutes to freshen the room, they gave us all kinds of flack, and finally agreed to only change the sheets and towels.

The location on Compley Square is fabulous, and the bed was comfortable -- but those are just about the only things I can think of to recommend this hotel. I'd rather spend less and stay at the Marriott across the street; at least then I'd expect minimal service.

  • Stayed: June 2006
    • Value
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9  Thank AEC in SF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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A TripAdvisor Member
Northern Ireland
213
Reviewed July 13, 2006

Arrived at Hotel after having a terrific stay at the Fairmont in Washington DC, from the outside, thought, yes this looks promising, although once inside it is a different story. Yes the foyer is very grand, but the rooms are a different matter. Upon checking in we asked for a quite room, with a view, and when we explained that we had just come from the Fairmont in Washington they very kindly upgraded us to the 4th floor (GOLD FLOOR) - we thought great.!! When we were shown to our room we were shocked to find a REALLY REALLY small room, a bathroom which needs updated and a droan from the air-conditioning vents just below our room, as for the view it was the side of the building next door!! We were not happy and immediately asked to be re-located, only to be told the hotel was fully booked and they could not do anything until the morning. So a sleepness night was had.

Give them their dues they moved us in the morning, to a room which was a good bit bigger, not huge - but the noise was just the same.- it really is loud. We were told that was "part of living in a city".

Given that we have stayed in a couple of Fairmont Hotels around the world - I would not put this hotel in the same league - needs updated and more attention paid to detail.

The only good thing to come out of our stay was that on the fourth floor you have access to a lounge with complimentary breakfast, drinks anytime etc.

  • Stayed: July 2006
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11  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 7, 2006

Have stayed here about 10 times in the past two years and feel like I know the place well. I would agree that certain house keeping issues are a concern at the Fairmont. When I arrived on this last trip, I found an old dust mop right in the hallway off the elevators (one of those yellow feathered things) and on my first day there, maid service did not show up until about 3:00. In addition, on my final morning, I had just stepped out of the shower and into a robe at 8:30 a.m. when there was an abrupt knock on the door. Before I had a chance to say anything (I was all wet and listeneing to the Today Show while drinking my coffee), a woman unlocked the door and walked into my room. I was so shocked and surprised I could barely react as this has NEVER happened before. She was in a uniform but there was no cleaning cart with her- I do not know who she was but it was totally uncalled for. I would recommend bolting the door. I had just gotten room service for breakfast and had not thought to do so. It was strange.
And room service trays are left in the hallway for WAY too long.
Aside from that, things were fine. Catie Copley is now a huge celebrity and the kids all love her. It is sweet to see so many little ones running up to her. She makes the formaility of this place all more cozy in a way. Yes, the bathroom is a bit outdated and sometimes the sound level is poor, but something about the Fairmont keeps me coming back for more. It has amazing charisma and charm, and of course,the location is tops.

  • Stayed: July 2006
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5  Thank MVY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 2, 2006

Let me start by saying I know I should not complain about staying at this hotel for $84 a night, as I found them through Priceline (I never thought a hotel of this caliber would be on that site!) but soemthings just aren't right, even at that price. When I arrived, there was no one to greet me and I struggled with my bags to the desk. I asked for an upgrade (and I was a little upset about having to lug my bags) and they put me on the Gold Floor...what a treat and it made me immediately forget about my poor reception! The room was ok, but the lounge and the service in the lounge was great, as well as the food.

Would I spend $300+ a night to be on the Concierge Floor, the normal rate,...no chance, would rather stay at the Ritz or Four Season. It was nice, but definately not great. But for $84 a night...it was a treat! The bathrooms was very small and not very clean...the hotel is just old and in need of a renovation/TLC as no one seems to care about dirty corridors, little tears and chips all over, chipped bath tub and peeling wallpaper. Nothing terrible, just not crisp as you would expect on a Concierge floor or at the Ritz/Four Seasons. But, the biggest issue was that I saw a mouse in the Oak Bar and also saw a mouse in my room! It was awful! I travel very frequently to city hotels and have never seen one in a hotel before! This would lead me to believe that they have cleanliness issues throughout the hotel and there were room service trays that stayed in the corridor for quite some time. I guess Mickey runs around looking for those leftovers. When I saw the rodent in the bar, I mentioned it to the waitress who basically shrugged her shoulders and said it is part of being in a big city...so I guess they had these complaints before.

Would I go back? NO! Not with MICE! But if there were no mice and priced at $175 - $200 a night, I would consider it! I have heard great things about Jury's, right around the corner and will try that next time!

  • Stayed: March 2006, traveled on business
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13  Thank Eileen P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2006

Our stay in Boston was not helped by rain, rain and more rain. My fiance had a conference at the hotel which was the purpose of our stay. We found the rooms to be of good quality although the bathrooms were a bit dated (tiles falling off in some places). The bed was nice and comfy, and the room was large. The maid service was so-so. One day, they didn't come till 3pm so we said don't worry (just give us the towels). No other hotel can beat its location though. It is directly across the road from a large shopping mall.

2  Thank Jellytree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 18, 2006

We stayed here for 4 nights in May and enjoyed every minute of it! The hotel is grand and the staff are most helpful. The check-in was a breeze and Jason (who checked us in) gave us a map and marked out all the various tourist spots and walks for us (even without asking!) Have not got service like that in other 5 star hotels we have stayed at around the world.

The room was beautiful and had a separate lounge/sitting area - almost like a one bedroom apartment. The bathroom was well appointed with beautiful toiletries as one would expect from Fairmont chain. We were Fairmont Presidents members so had complimentary broadband internet.

The hotel is close to everything - easy walk to Park Plaza, Boston Common, Symphony Hall, shopping centers and is in the middle of two metro stops. Highly recommended.

  • Stayed: May 2006
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6  Thank SYD-YYZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2006

We just returned from a long weekend at the Fairmont Copley and I could not be more relaxed! We stayed on the Gold level floor (4th floor), which I highly recommend. This floor receives amazing catering- deluxe breakfast, a stocked kitchen with water and soft drinks that are out all day, your own concierge and evening appetizers- all included in the room price. We also loved Jim Carey- he is the main conceige over the entire hotel and really knows Boston and helped make everything happen! He got us tickets to the Red Sox game- 5th row behind 1st base! Also, we loved Catie the Ambassador- very sweet and obedient. The Oak room is a must as well- amazing food and wine! You have to stay here if you are going to Boston- it feels local and authenic, while surrounding you in the lap of luxury!

  • Stayed: May 2006
    • Value
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5  Thank crazyabouttravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston

Address: 138 St James Avenue, Boston, MA 02116-5002
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Massachusetts > Boston > Back Bay
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:
#12 Romantic Hotel in Boston
#12 Family Hotel in Boston
#13 Green Hotel in Boston
#14 Luxury Hotel in Boston
#15 Business Hotel in Boston
Price Range: $195 - $717 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston 4.5*
Number of rooms: 383
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This luxury downtown Boston landmark hotel has been a symbol of the city's rich history and elegance since its gala opening in 1912. Centrally located in Boston's historic Back Bay, Fairmont Copley Plaza sits steps away from the Boston Public Library, historic Beacon Hill, the Freedom Trail, and Newbury Street. Our Boston hotel offers 383 lavish guest rooms, including 17 elegant suites. Every room has a modern look, while keeping the downtown hotel's rich history and Back Bay location in mind. In addition to 24-hour daily in-room dining service, we are home to one of the hottest drinking and dining destinations in the city, OAK Long Bar + Kitchen ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fairmont Copley Plaza Boston Hotel Boston
Fairmont Copley Plaza Boston
Fairmont Boston
Boston Fairmont

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