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“Not what we expected”
Review of The Fairmount

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The Fairmount
Ranked #191 of 358 Hotels in San Antonio
Scottsdale, Arizona
Level 6 Contributor
99 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Not what we expected”
Reviewed April 1, 2013

This hotel was a real disappointment for our family trip. To be fair, I was expecting this to be a FairMONT (my husband booked it :)), so it was definitely a surprise when we checked in. The hotel is quite old and historic (it's even in the Guinness Book of World Records, which impressed my kids since we had just been to the Guinness Museum). Because I usually like old hotels with character, I really wanted to like this hotel. I did enjoy the quirky and mostly elegant common rooms where you could sit and have a drink or read a book.

Our room, however, was not great. The windows were small (understandable in an old building) but there was barely any lighting provided so at night it was almost impossible to read. The bathroom windows didn't open and there wasn't a fan so the bathroom got quite steamed up and was moldy around parts of the ceiling. In fact, the whole room smelled a bit musty (or like someone's grandma, as my tween daughter uncharitably described it). With better care and some thoughtful upgrading to wiring, lighting and bathrooms, this hotel could be a real gem. As is, it seemed to be sinking into inelegant disrepair.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank DawnM160
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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158 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Houston, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
165 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed March 20, 2013 via mobile

Oh, how I wanted to love this hotel! I thought that possibly some reviewers just had over-the-top expectations. But, if I'm honest, I must say that we were disappointed overall...

First, the Good- The Staff were absolutely Wonderful, we never had any problems with them. Check-in & Check-out were both very quick & easy. Upon check-in, we were given a choice of rooms, even though we had booked through a 3rd- party site. The valet was speedy, & everyone was always very pleasant. They did seem overworked though, at all times. Sad, but True...

The "In-Between" Points... The hotel itself is older & is showing its age. Carpets & Wallpaper are frayed & peeling, exterior could use some paint, & the baths could use a good re-caulking. Also, there was always a strange "food" smell throughout. I understand that an Italian Restaurant is in the same building, but it was very strong- always...

You must request ice- was fine 2x out of 3, but on a Friday afternoon we called the front desk for 45+ minutes & never got a response. So, no ice. That evening we came back late to a Wedding Reception being held in the Courtyard... A bit "unrelaxing" to say the least. Music ended at a decent hour for us, but those w/ kiddos might think otherwise...

Our biggest beef, however, was with the cleanliness. Just do yourself a favor & DON'T look behind the toilet! Dust Bunnies- Really?!? Also, we found a chewed dog bone tucked in a corner... We laughed, as we are dog owners (the pups stayed home this time), but it did make us question how well anyone had looked over the room since the last occupant. Also, as the Hubs said, the room was "Grandma Style". I thought it was charming, he felt that it was lame. Antiqued- Out & Frilly, to say the least. Oh- and the Icing on the Cake... No Hot Water AT ALL when we came back Saturday night (leaving Sunday). Called & talked to Front Desk, they were "on it", but didn't have anything until after 1:00 a.m. A Very Disappointing ending to our trip...

I really hope that someone can turn this place around. It's a BEAUTIFUL Property in a great Location & deserves better than what it is. So Much Potential, just waiting... Hope to see some Improvement... Otherwise, we will not be back...

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank cdh713
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, PA
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed November 25, 2012

All the mixed reviews on this site and others really had me worried. I got a great deal on a room via expedia and ultimately decided to keep it even though the reviews were scaring me a bit. I arrived late on a Monday evening - check-in took about 5 minutes - no problem with my reservation. The lobby is imaculate and the whole property, in general, looks like it was recently renovated. FYI - it appears the Fairmount mascot - a dog - has passed; I had been looking forward to that unique aspect of this property.

My room was on the second floor - streetside. San Antonio is pretty quiet after-hours, though I still had a bit of trouble getting to sleep because of a loud car/truck every once in a while. The room is spacious; reminded me of a room that would be in a rich grandparent's house. The room appeared recently renovated - new linens, curtains, everything but the carpet was new. The bathroom was "spruced" up, but definately was definately showing its age - great water pressure though and high quality shampoo/soap/etc.

I never saw another hotel guest while I was there for 3 nights/4 days - during the week; that concerned me a bit as a single female traveler. On the other hand, I never felt concerned for my safety at this property. There was always someone at the front desk - one of whom kept my key while I went for an early morning run. Another of whom called a cab for me and gave me directions to another hotel where I had a meeting.

This hotel's location is execellent for getting onto the riverwalk - half a block from a set of riverwalk stairs. The restaurant at the property looked great - I never had the opportunity to enjoy it - and there is zero pressure to go there for breakfast.

I would come here again if I got a good deal and if I was on a business trip. It is close to the convention center and other hotels/meeting/conference places and near the Riverwalk.

Room Tip: street side rooms may be a bit loud if you are a light sleeper.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank PhillyCityGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level 5 Contributor
45 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed November 21, 2012

The reviews from this and other sites are all over the map, and now I understand why:

We arrived in San Antonio after 1 a.m. Lost (There is a North and South Alamo—something our GPS didn't quite understand), we called the hotel to get directions. "What is your name? Do you have a reservation? When did you make it? What is your name? (He asked multiple times.) Despite the clerk saying he didn’t know the area (we stopped police officers for directions), we arrived—only to have the clerk meet us outside the hotel with our room key—which he tried to thrust into my hand as I was still trying to get luggage out of the trunk. (Uh, how about asking for some ID?)

Some "senior" friends arrived much earlier. Anxious to see the sites around town, they asked where the Riverwalk was (a major attraction, literally across the street through a park), but the desk clerk shrugged his shoulders.

Yet, the weekend day staff was quite helpful and courteous. And strangely, two piles of local maps—including the Riverwalk—were available on the counter.

The hotel furnishings are a bit run down—beyond "shabby chic" (The rug in my room was well-worn with the edges a filthy black. Ick.), but the rooms are spacious—especially the suites—and “could be” charming.

BOTTOM LINE: Would I stay there again? Probably not. For not much more money there are hotels with better amenities. Perhaps The Fairmount was once the "Jewel of San Antonio," but now it needs a good cleaning—and some staff training.

Room Tip: If you're allergic to pets, ask that you have a "pet-free" room. The hotel accepts pet...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Tracy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed October 2, 2012

This place is In a good spot, but very creepy I wouldn't recommend and I would never go back. They keep your card on file like most places do, and then charge 21$ a night for valet parking, which isn't an option.. It's mandatory and they only do valet parking. Disappointed

  • Stayed September 2012
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Brittfeeney2124
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these San Antonio hotels

Midland, Texas
Level 6 Contributor
337 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 142 helpful votes
Reviewed September 17, 2012

In over 20 years of booking rooms, we last stayed at the Fairmount on September 13 - 16, 2012. We truly enjoy the quiet, the ambience, the antique furniture and plush furnishings. Staff are very helpful and very accommodating. Yes, it is a bit frayed and worn, but warmer and more inviting than the mega boxes. Will definitely stay again and hope that renovations to update are in the works.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank BillM551
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio, Texas, United States
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed August 23, 2012

Stayed here and was amazed at the size of the suite for the great bargain price. Also the restaraunt has fantastic food and drinks and excellent service. Located right next to LaVillita and a short walk to the Riverwalk or the Tower of the Americas. The suites are very large and comfortable.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Margaret B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Russell E, General Manager at The Fairmount, responded to this review, August 29, 2012
Thank you for your kind words and we look forward to seeing you again!!Thank You Russell.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Fairmount

Property: The Fairmount
Address: 401 S Alamo St, San Antonio, TX 78205-3201
Location: United States > Texas > San Antonio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#21 Luxury Hotel in San Antonio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Fairmount 4*
Number of rooms: 37
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Intimate, European-style hotel built in 1906 and located on San Antonio's River Walk. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Fairmount Hotel San Antonio
Fairmount San Antonio
Fairmount Hotel San Antonio

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