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“I love the Hotel Congress”

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The Historic Hotel Congress
Ranked #56 of 130 Hotels in Tucson
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Tucson, AZ
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“I love the Hotel Congress”
Reviewed August 31, 2010

I've stayed at the Congress four times over the last six years. I love the Congress. It's funky, and capitalizes on its old time appeal. Staying in the Congress is like a trip to the 1930's, when there were no in-service coffee pots, nor was there AC. I'm happy to report it now has AC. Things are as noisy as ever, so request a room on the quiet side. If you want a peaceful desert experience, don't stay here! My only complaint was the overly attentive cleaning staff, who knocked on my door in the middle of my Southwestern Siesta. Needless to say, the room was as clean as a whistle. I'd stay there again.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank On_Holiday_154
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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275 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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English first
Punta Gorda, Florida
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed August 15, 2010

i have been staying at the Hotel Congress whenever i am in Tucson since 1997. i first stayed here with a high school friend on our road trip from PA. We stayed in the hostel part, when i was 17. Since then i have returned to this great blast from the past hotel with my husband throughout the years! i still love it as much as i did as a teenager! i couldn't go to the club back then, but now i appreciate the happening nightlife in Tucson and really enjoy the bands at Club Congress. The Cup Café is a favorite of mine and they offer veggie burgers and other vegan options. i love sitting outside in the early morning to have a cup of tea and watch the sunrise.

The ambiance takes me away every time and i feel like i stepped back in time. i love the hotel interior paintings, pictures and atmosphere. The radios in the room are nice to have, and i don't miss the clock at all! There is however a communal computer which i do appreciate!

The rooms are as described and very clean. i like the lack of TV and since i live in FL the swap cooler suits me. Room is a comfortable temp in July as well as October! As stated the shower water does fluctuate a bit but it doesn't bother me at all. i rated the sleep quality a 3/5 only because i am a very light sleeper and have required earplugs to sleep here because of the music below. A few times i did request a quiet room and was accommodated with no issues. The staff are friendly and helpful.

i will be back next time i am in AZ!

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Chrisy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Zealand
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed June 19, 2010

We travelled around Arizona/Nevada for a month and both agreed that this hotel was the worst value for money of all the places we'd stayed. The website makes it look very interesting and certainly the ground floor is, but upstairs is completely ambiance-free. We stayed here two nights while live bands were playing but didn't notice the noise at all, it clearly stated on the website that it can get noisy above the club so we booked the furthest room away and had no problem. Very basic rooms, I get that it's meant to be retro but retro doesn't mean boring! Some old pictures of Dillinger or even a cushion on the bed might have made it look like someone was making an effort but alas...

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank NataNewZealand
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
DaraHC, Manager at The Historic Hotel Congress, responded to this review, September 25, 2010
We apologize for your experience here at the Hotel Congress. During the summer, the hotel was undergoing renovations which explains the lack of decor upstairs.

The rooms upstairs have now come to life with artwork, new desks, new mattresses, new carpeting and the installation of AC for the first time in 91 years. The vintage furniture has been refurbished as well ans we've added new beautiful pieces from the 1920s & 1930s.

We hope you are able to come back to Tucson and stay at the Hotel Congress to share our new and improved vibrant atmosphere with us.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, TX
Level 5 Contributor
75 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
Reviewed June 17, 2010

We stayed in Hotel Congress for one night while we visited Tucson and it was a great way to experience the city. We ate at the cup cafe for both lunch and breakfast and both times the food was really good and it was fairly priced. The hotel is interesting because of its mixture of both historical decor and its show case of new, local modern art throughout the hotel and rooms.

I have stayed in another 'historical' hotels in the United States and while I enjoyed my stay at Hotel Congress I feel like it is a one time visit because the hotel is not updated to the highest quality. The mattresses in the room felt old and lumpy, the frame of the bed looked like it was going to bend in half due to the lack of support to the box-spring and mattress. The sink and the shower worked well enough, but the water pressure was lacking. They have not updated the piping in the building which I thinks shows that they are not so much interested in keeping the hotel 'historical' as much as they are trying to save as much money as possible. Quality design and service is in the details, which I believe this hotel is lacking.

The sound was not really a problem for us, but they were not having a show the night that we stayed in the hotel. I could see how it would get loud in the evenings because even when there is not a show the bar and the cup cafe were both very busy between 6pm and 9pm. (The windows have also not been updated which contributes to the amount of noise entering the rooms.)

I would not recommend this hotel for families because there isn't really a lot to do in the rooms besides read, listen to your ipod, and play cards. There is a very small lounge area upstairs with a television, but it would be difficult to hear due to the open floor plan and the bar and lounge down stairs. It is located inside the downtown area and just like any other downtown there are clubs, nice restaurants, very few outdoor activities, and limited parking so it would be difficult to entertain kids and difficult to find things are them to do.

I would recommend this hotel to people without children, looking to stay in an interesting place and who are willing to forego a few luxuries to experience an interesting place to hang out and rest without the distractions of tv's, radios, ect.

I am personally of the opinion that truly amazing hotels find ways to include all the luxuries of the 21st century without hindering the details that the history of the hotel provides. This hotel has a long way to go in this area.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank vjack0887
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
canaan, nh
1 review
Reviewed May 2, 2010

When I made reservations to stay at the hotel there was no mention of the fact that it was an extremely loud place to stay. Had I known that I never would have stayed. Instead, when we arrived we were forced to sign a waiver stating that we understood that it was an "urban" hotel and that it could get noisy. Noisy is an understatement. At one point during the night my wife got up to close the window to keep the noise down (as the bar/club patrons are allowed to hang out right below the room windows) only to find that the window was already closed. This brings up the next disappointment- this place is old and outdated. I understand the whole idea of keeping it historic, but historic buildings can be brought up to modern standards with amenities such as windows that close tightly and doors that function properly. Our bathroom door would not stay closed. The person in bed would have a great view of the person sitting on the toilet. The plumbing system could use some updating as well. Hot showers are out of the question. The night time "security" staff is extremely rude. They wouldn't let us go into the lobby without standing in line, and then they tried to get us to pay a cover charge. They wouldn't let my wife in because she didn't have ID on her and told me that I had to go to the room to get it before they'd let her in. I told them that it didn't matter who she was- I had paid for the room and I could bring a guest to my room if I felt like it, took my wife by the arm and walked past them. In short, I would have left after the first night had it not been for circumstances that were beyond my control. I'll never stay there again, and wouldn't recommend it to anyone.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ace1981
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
Reviewed April 28, 2010

I came into Tucson on Amtrak's Texas Eagle (Sunset Limited) from Chicago at around 10:00 p.m. on a Thursday evening. The Hotel Congress was less than a hundred feet away from the station. The ground floor was buzzing with a hip, vibrant crowd with music, dancing, cocktails and much merriment both inside and out. For a price of about $90 all in, I got a perfectly comfortable and acceptable room looking out toward the train station. Anyone considering arriving in Tucson by train should definitely consider this hotel given its location. I had an excellent breakfast the next morning in the hotel restaurant before walking a half mile or so to the nearby Hertz location to pick up a car for my drive to Phoenix and Wickenburg.

I didn't have a problem with noise but others in a different room might have. I give this property such a high rating because I believe, especially on a price adjusted basis, it was just tremendously good value for a downtown hotel with a happening nightlife.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank RailwayHobo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Colorado Springs
Level 5 Contributor
68 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed April 3, 2010

Can't say we were not warned. My adult daughter and I stayed there on a Friday night. We had the room with twin beds over the club. From midnight until 2 AM the music was so loud we could feel it pounding in our chests (felt like the baby alien was trying to emerge from our bodies.) And then there was the guy directly outside on the sidewalk with a bullhorn trying to convert the club sinners to find Jesus. At 2AM, the bar crowd spilled out into the street for another hour or so and then there was quiet, for three hours until the street sweepers came. The hotel is rich with history and my daughter and I agreed that the on-site restaurant served us one of the best breakfast meals we have ever had. Would we stay there again...yes, but we would get a room at the other end of the hallway. The price is right for this unique piece of history.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Calamityjan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Historic Hotel Congress

Property: The Historic Hotel Congress
Address: 311 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701-1811
Location: United States > Arizona > Tucson
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Tucson
#33 Romantic Hotel in Tucson
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2.5 star — The Historic Hotel Congress 2.5*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Congress is listed on the National Historic Hotel Registry. We pride ourselves on the many unique features we offer that you'd be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. This historic Tucson hotel transports you back in time. Some cynical city-slicker types might notice the absence of a television in any of our 40 rooms and feel slighted. But it's intentional - we strive to maintain the Hotel's original ambiance - from the iron bed to the vintage radio, from the comforting rumble of the nearby iron horse to the retro-style phone that actually connects to a switchboard at the front desk. All rooms are uniquely designed offering an original experience every time and unlike most historic hotels, all rooms have private bathrooms, free high speed internet, and a private guest lounge.The lounge offers our patrons a large-screen television with unlimited channels as well as free computer access. You can also enjoy the exclusive outdoor patio, where you can soak-up the Tucson sunshine year round. We have new upgrades for our guests, to ensure an amazing experience during your stay at Hotel Congress. *Bike Program - We now have bicycles that our guests are able to check out to explore Tucson during their stay! We recommended guests to bike the Santa Cruz River Trail, and the Train Trail behind Maynards Market and Kitchen. Let us help you explore Downtown Tucson in a new way! *Snacks from local vendors - Enjoy some treats from our local vendors. Every room has a tray filled with a variety of snacks that are available to purchase. We have: Cactus candy, Rbar Energy Bar, Spunlight Cotton Candy, Green Valley pecans, Essentia Ionized Water, POPPED Artisan Popcorn, Cerreta Candy Co., and the Kobito Hangover and Love Kits. *Guest Room Internet - We now provide super high speed wireless Internet in our guest rooms that is 10x faster than before! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Congress Hotel Tucson

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