A home away from home in Canada's capital Ottawa
Luxury hotels are nothing new to me - in the past, when I was still traveling as a tour guide, I often stayed in such, and now as a travel journalist who writes hotel reviews, among others, this is also part of my job. Over time, you get used to the luxury, but also get a glimpse of the subtleties that make the special of such a luxury hotel.
And you become demanding. In any case, you get to know the differences and put the hotels in those that offer the normal service that you can expect in expensive upscale hotels and in those that surprise even more and with a focus on special details and a courteous service ,
One hotel that has managed to do this is the Chateau Laurier in Ottawa - one of the hotels that is itself one of the city's attractions, with its façade more reminiscent of a French chateau than a hotel. The location right in the center - actually at the navel - the city of Ottawa between Parliament Hill and Byward Market and right on the Rideau Canal is an excellent reason to choose this hotel as a location for its Ottawa stay.
You can not live centrally in Ottawa. Almost all the major attractions of the capital of Canada are in the immediate vicinity of the hotel or just a short taxi ride away, so you do not even need a car - good, if you want to save the expensive parking fees in the hotel garage. These are better served in one of the innumerable and varied restaurants in the city.
Magnificent lobby and reception in the entrance of the Chateau Laurier
Glittering crystal chandeliers, thick oriental rugs and stylish, upholstered seating areas are the first thing that strikes the guest in the lobby of the hotel - cozy corners where business partners and friends can wait, or simply spend time with a good book or a recent newspaper while waiting for check-in or a table in the breakfast restaurant.
Fairmont Gold - a class of its own at the Hotel Chateau Laurier
But we don't have to wait. This time we have booked a room in the "Fairmont Gold" category and are immediately surprised when we check in at the reception. "Monika Fuchs? Yes, we are already waiting for you ”, the nice lady at the reception greets us without asking for a reservation number or other office work, almost as if she already knows us. "Do you still have your bags in the car? No? Then I immediately inform the reception on the fourth floor that your suitcases will be brought into the room straight away, ”the extremely friendly receptionist tells us.
A reception on the fourth floor? Why that, I think, perplexed. Curious, I ask about it straight away and find out that “Fairmont Gold” means that the rooms in this category are looked after by their own receptionist. Why, remains a mystery to me for the time being. In any case, we immediately receive our room keys and drive to the said floor, not without first knowing that we can eat both upstairs and in the main restaurant.
At first glance, the "Fairmont Gold" area on the fourth floor of the Chateau Laurier looks just like any other lift area in a hotel. However, when we turn around the corner into the hotel corridor, the first thing we see is the announced reception, where we are greeted very friendly - and again with our name. The lady explains to us that the cozy room behind her is the small breakfast room for "Fairmont Gold" guests and that we can - depending on what we want - have a small breakfast in it or - because we had booked this - the large buffet in the large restaurant could choose on the ground floor. Our suitcases are already in the room.
Petar and I look at each other in surprise: that really can not be. We only picked up our key downstairs - the concierge is never that fast otherwise. But actually, when we come into the room, the suitcases are already neatly at the room entrance.
The room is of the standard expected of a luxury hotel: a desk with internet access, a large bed with good mattresses and comfortable linens, a sitting area with comfortable armchairs and a bathroom that is not very big but all things contains, which one needs for a hotel stay.
A hotel in the hotel - almost like home
What makes the "Fairmont Gold" category so special for me is the very personal service provided by my own reception in the hotel hallway. After five days in this hotel, we feel that we are in excellent hands. We never had to wait when we had questions or requests. The tone of the ladies at the reception was always friendly and professional, but also personal. We never felt like a number, but always as welcome and well treated guests.
And when, on the last day of our road trip through Ontario, we have to vacate our room a few hours before our evening flight despite a free extension of several hours, we spend a few more comfortable hours with a cup of tea and a daily newspaper in the “Fairmont Gold” lobby , before the taxi takes us to the airport. When we finally got on the plane at 20.00:XNUMX p.m Frankfurt sitting down, I say to my husband: "That was the least stressful departure of all my trips." And he nods in agreement.
Fairmont Chateau Laurier
1 Rideau Street
Ottawa K1N 8S7
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Source: On-site research supported by Chateau Laurier and Ottawa Tourism
Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline
Video © Copyright Petar Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline