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Fairmont Empress

    Fairmont Empress
 in Victoria


TripAdvisor Traveler Rating:
4842 Reviews
Latest TripAdvisor Reviews

  • Overbooked and Sterotyped

    by jakesteele2020 on 2020-02-27 09:39 pm

    Stayed here for gfs birthday and Valentine's Day. We came over for a special weekend so I booked an upgraded deluxe room. While we were in line for checkout a lady walks over to us and says she can help us check in (lucky us?). She talks with the lady behind the counter in private a few seconds then says they've overbooked the hotel and they would have to downgrade our room, odd as no one else in the checkin seems to be getting told this. Then they offered me a few cheap freebies like parking which oddly when you subtract those costs comes out to about the cost of the cheaper room. I reject there is some back and forth and wow look at that they have a room. Only it's still not the room I booked and it's a downgrade but they don't offer me any money cause it has the same bed... pretty annoyed at the hotel already after this, especially when no one else was told this while we were standing there. Overall after that we did breakfast and the high tea and everything felt like it wasn't worth the money, could be the bad start to the hotel or maybe the novelty quickly left and it was just expensive for what you get. Hotels ok, my room wasn't as nice as what I paid for but was alright, a bit dated but decent for a hotel room, not a $500/night room by any means.

    I won't be going back there, experience is ruined and I will be advocating people I know to avoid it when they ask about our weekend or for advice of where to stay in Victoria.

    I'd suggest you stay somewhere where they respect their customers and avoid this place, so many good options near by for cheaper too.

  • Nice character hotel--not for the light sleeper

    by natml88 on 2020-02-23 06:41 pm

    We recently stayed at the Fairmont Empress for 4 nights on the first floor above ground level. The hotel is very impressive in its size and decor, and the location is stunning. The staff was knowledgeable and courteous, and have nothing but good things to say with all our interactions with them. The rooms are well-appointed for the most part. The only things we didn't like were the "rain shower" type of shower head in the bathroom, as they lack water pressure, and the beds/bedding retained too much heat (ie. we were overheating and uncomfortable). The mattresses have a squishy pillow-top and the duvets are thick, which makes it difficult to stay cool at night.

    We mainly had one big issue with this hotel: the windows in the rooms are large and impressive, but they are old, single-pane, and have leaky seals. Our room was ice-cold near the windows, and we could hear EVERYTHING from the street (ie. cars, trucks, street cleaning equipment, people's conversations, you name it). I think I slept for a grand total of 12 hours during my stay because of the constantly interrupted sleep. It was very frustrating.

    I would stay at this hotel again if they upgraded the windows and had different beds.

  • Was hung up on thrice!

    by wisemanm2017 on 2020-02-18 09:52 am

    Usually we have a fantastic stay here, however it wasn't as lovely this time around. When we requested a few plastic toothbrushes, the operator said "you've had enough already!" then hung up on us. I was shocked by this treatment. I actually believed it was an accident until it happened twice more. After calling back again and asking his name, he hung up again. Sure, we had requested the disposable plastic toothbrushes the night prior, but due to my children having strep throat we threw those out and asked for new ones. I called twice more to place my request and before I could finish my sentence, I was hung up on not once, but thrice. You'd think that as a gold lounge guest spending money at the spa and $500/night that they could spare a few extra no name white plastic toothbrushes without question. I've stayed at hotels around the world and have never been treated so rudely or hung up on by any staff member. This is truly the most unprofessional behavior I've encountered anywhere.

    Owner Response
    Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback. I am sorry to hear that your stay was not as memorable as we would like. We strive to provide the best guest service possible. I will personally be following up with our teams about your comments. We sincerely hope we shall have the opportunity to serve you again sometime soon.

    Kind regards,

    Indu Brar
    General Manager

    ManagerEmpress, General Manager at Fairmont Empress, responded to this review

  • Renovated modern room in a classic railroad hotel overlooking the harbour. What's not to love.

    by johnwC6546ED on 2020-02-13 03:09 pm

    I have stayed here a couple of times for conferences. It's a very comfortable pied-a-terre for visiting Victoria, and the connection to the conference centre makes it very convenient. I always get a good night's sleep, and the renovated bathroom includes a new rainfall shower. The bar in the hotel is a gathering place for conference-goers and has a reasonable selection of local beers and wines.

    Owner Response
    We are pleased that you enjoyed your stay us with and look forward to welcoming you again in the near future.

    Kind regards,

    Indu Brar
    General Manager

    ManagerEmpress, General Manager at Fairmont Empress, responded to this review

  • (Sadly) It's really just a Hilton with some old touches

    by Adam S on 2020-02-12 08:03 pm

    The Empress Hotel is okay, but it's like all of the Fairmont Hotels I've been to - they look best from the curb.

    It's like they realized a few years ago that they were getting old and needed to do something. They had a choice between going "upscale boutique", with quirky features but retaining all the old charm and history, or just updating them to be more like a contemporary Marriot or Hilton while holding onto just a few of the things that made them famous.

    They chose the latter. There are no cool, old, quiet lounges in any of them - just the standard noisy, semi-hip places that insist on live music although I don't imagine anyone ever goes there specifically because of the music. The rooms are okay, but unremarkable and often not well thought out. The decor is bland with a few old touches. They're not bad, they're just not what they once were.

    The Empress does have its famous "afternoon tea" which, while expensive, is at least well done, with excellent food and service. And the reception staff were friendly, polite, and enthusiastic about helping. There's not much to complain about - it's just not a unique experience any more.

    Our room was a bit odd. We had a "harbour view" from an upper floor, which was a room that was very wide, but quite shallow - there was just enough room to get around the foot of the bed. The window on the harbour was quite small, but at least it was placed well to allow a view from the bed. At night, the floodlights that illuminate the hotel's room also, bafflingly, shone directly into the room. I can't believe no one noticed that, or has complained about it since. A perfect example of how the design was just not thought through.

    Would I stay there again? If it was offered to me, I'd take it. It was clean, comfortable, and the staff were very good. If I were looking for a place myself, I'd look to see if there was a character hotel with a good view of the Empress. It's an impressive building from the outside.


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