Where to Stay in Toronto?

Discussion in 'Other North America/non U.S.' started by gleff, Sep 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Location almost doesn't matter, where I need to be is nowhere near decent lodging to everything is going to be a trek.

    I've only stayed at a few hotels in Toronto and really would appreciate some context about best choices. It's a personal trip, not business.

    I've stayed at the Fairmont Royal York which is ok, it's cheap over the weekend I'll be there ($170ish) and I could use a confirmed suite upgrade. "Meh." I really should branch out a bit.

    Park Hyatt Toronto is like $180, I've heard it's nowhere up to snuff as far as Park Hyatts go. Oddly the Hyatt Regency is going for slightly more, though that's a category 2 hotel and I suppose I could burn points. Hyatt Diamond makes either of those potentially attractive.

    There are two Intercontinentals, neither pricing especially expensively, am a Royal Ambassador but since it's a personal stay I'd be inclined to use a Friends & Family rate or some such. Don't know how either treats folks on such discounted stays, or what i'd have to book to get at least a club upgrade.

    I've had good luck at the Le Meridien King Edward but no longer an SPG Platinum. Do have HHonors Diamond status if there are any reasonable Hilton properties.

    Any suggestions on where to stay given that I'm coming out of pocket, and location doesn't matter a ton, I'll be traveling with my wife?
     
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  2. ACMM
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    Make the wife happy. Book into the four seasons. ;)

    [Sent from my milePoint enabled iPhone]
     
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  3. ACMM
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  4. From NYC
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    Agree, especially if you have Diamond status. If you still had your SPG status, I prefer the Sheraton one block away. Also prefer this part of town, also where Hyatt R is, because of the proximity to Queen Street and King Street West, with lots of places to eat, drink, shop. While I liked the PH, the area up there is just not as interesting to me.
     
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  5. roadwarrior365
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    roadwarrior365 Silver Member

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    The PH is not up to the standards of the chain and the HR is alright. In case you want a real luxury hotel I would suggest the Ritz Carlton, which in my opinion is right now the best hotel in town.
     
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  6. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    Of the hotels, I think the Hilton/Sheraton or Park Hyatt/IC would be the most centrally located (different parts of the downtown core). Although you are not SPG Plat anymore, if you stayed at the Sheraton, I would recommend upgrading using pts to Club level as the lounge is worth it, in my view (and it has a nice north-south view of the city).

    I have not stayed at the PH Toronto, but I suspect the Suite would still be nicer than a regular room in other hotels. Like the Four Seasons, the PH in Toronto is probably lacking the luxury seen in other hotels of the chain.

    Aside from the previously mentioned RC, which opened last year (and my brother and S-I-L like a lot), you may also consider the Windsor Arms (near the Hyatt) or Le Germain, which is near the RC in the theater district.
     
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  7. NYBanker
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    This is easy - the new Ritz Carlton. I've been to well over half of their North American flagged properties and can say this is one of the best in-city Ritz properties that I've been to in North America. While not quite at the level of the CPS or SFO properties, it is pretty darned good, and not too far behind those stars.

    At Tier 2 in the Rewards program, it is a remarkable redemption value for an RC property. Of the Tier 2 properties, this one stands out. If they put it in Tier 4, that would be a more fair placement. (Shh!)

    My notes on my stay earlier this summer are here: http://www.sitinfirst.com/2011/07/ritz-carlton-toronto/

    If you book using Marriott/Ritz points, a RC-Stars agent or FHR, I think you'll be happy here.

    Much of the chain-flagged hotel stock is pretty weak/tired in Toronto:
    • The Park Hyatt is one of the worst in the system.
    • The Four Seasons is tired, and being replaced at present (read: no capex spent in five+ years).
    • The Fairmont IS without question the worst in their system and should be avoided at all costs.
    To throw out a wildcard - http://www.thehazeltonhotel.com/index_main.php - Harper reviewed this one quite favorably. I've not been, and I don't think there's any points angle, but you should at least give this one a look too.

    If I were going to Toronto tomorrow, the RC would be my default choice.

    Let us know what you decide and how you go.
     
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  8. NYBanker
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    ...and for $100 per traveler, I'd be happy to help you with your booking! ;)
     
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  9. Quasiconvexity
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    The PH really is very unremarkable although I like the Yorkville location - just had a stay there last night and it was okay (our second stay here). Diamond upgrade is to a Deluxe King which is by no means a great room. I actually like the Hyatt Regency better - it is right downtown if you prefer that location and does not have the typical convention feel of a Regency. The LM King Edward has terrific Plat treatment and the best customer service I have experienced among SPG properties in North America. They also have a really nice club lounge. The Sheraton has a nice lounge but is a very large convention hotel that felt very impersonal to me. If a leisure stay I wouldn't stay here.
     
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  10. JetsettingEric
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    JetsettingEric Silver Member

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    As a warning, the HGI in downtown Toronto is a big party hotel on weekends as it's right in the club district. Probably not your thing.

    If you're in the mood for something different, there is a Renaissance that is built into the baseball stadium (Rogers Centre formerly known as the Sky Dome). I've gotten the hotel on a hotwire rate. The Hilton and the Sheraton are bland older business hotels - given the choice of the Royal York, the Four Seasons and the Ritz.

    There is also a Westin on the waterfront, less convenient location, but slightly more character. Le Meridian is my favorite SPG property in Toronto.

    You also didn't mention which part of Toronto you're going to... if you're in the burbs, North of Toronto I really like the Markham Hilton Suites. It used to be an Embassy Suites but now is under the Hilton banner.

    If you're doing a day trip - take a look at the Hilton in Niagara Falls attached to the Fallsview Casino. I had an amazing junior suite as an gold upgrade overlooking the falls.

    On the Hilton side - note that they haven't expanded their new toiletry collection internationally yet, and the Canadian hiltons still have the old stuff.
     
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  11. UA191

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    For most of my life, I've come to Toronto 3-5 times a year (I live here now).
    Most recently, the Thompson Toronto was built & it has quite an amazing product.
    The people there are also quite amazing, plus the prices are less that I would expect.
    It's the only place that Richard Branson stays when he comes to TO!
     
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  12. dgreen12
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    http://germainmapleleafsquare.com/en/home

    Gary, check out the Germain --- I've never stayed there, but you've got some high standards, and I'd like a review that compares and contrasts a non-chain hotel (well, they may be a chain, they have two hotels, apparently) with the chain experience.

    I'd also be interested in your review from a "compare to TripAdvisor" perspective, since this hotel sits on top of the TripAdvisor listings right now.

    I'm not a big fan of making hotel decisions based on the program (I do for airlines). Perhaps that's because I don't travel much for business. This opportunity seems to me to be ideal for you to run a "grand experiment" and break outside the box with respect to how you normally book hotels.
     
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  13. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    I would stay based on the price that I pay and whether I need the nights or stays for status requalification. Assuming the requal is not an issue for gleff, I would think that the price/value proposition is the most important and considering the HR is a Cat 2, I would think that's a great way to use points vs the cost of paying for the room..... not to mention that being a Diamond, you'll get all the nice benefits.

    However, if requalification is a factor, I'd consider staying out of downtown to get some of the cheaper hotels north of the city. I'm a big fan of the chinese food in Richmond Hill so the Sheraton up there has been useful in being close to the food as well as helping me towards SPG requalification in the past.
     
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  14. philatravelgirl

    philatravelgirl Silver Member

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    I usually stay at the Sheraton on Queen during the film fest as it's a good location to walk from. Travel agent usually finds me a great deal in advance. I didn't like the Marriott Yorkville or Soho Met. I book all of our business travelers at LeGermain or Hazelton both high end in price and service. All depends on whether you are walking, using public transit or cabs to explore
     
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  15. chef4u
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    I'll throw a couple of properties into the equation:

    Westin Harbour Castle....great views

    The Thompson...especially for the 'exclusive' hotel guest bar.

    King Eddy, Royal York, Park Hyatt and Four Seasons are all a little tired.

    Maybe we should have a MP get-together in honor of Gleff?

    As for where to eat...that's a different story.:)
     
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  16. Gary, I've had a few stays at Toronto Centre Intercontinental. And received exceptional upgrades, from c $130- 150 base room booking to a two bedroom suite with lounge, three minibars and three LCD TV's etc (marketed at c $850 via PC at the time), last stay in July they gave us the Royal Suite (rm 1020 from memory ), second only to the Presidential Suite. The General Manager there is a great guy, Renaud Payette, we had a meeting over breakfast, he comped all breakfasts due to a misunderstanding with our two nights in the Presidential Suite, the front line staff weren't inclined to provide breakfast when it was a condition of the Princes Charity Trust auction. Renaud quickly rectified and was very warm and extended welcome to reach out to him personally for any return visits. It's a great location near great restaurants on King st and the waterfront. You could also call or email him with a brief on yourself, your blogs, View From The Wing, MilePoint etc, have no doubt he would look after you. They've given us club on all stays, i think the give club to all RA's automatically. Vera in the lounge very nice. They also have a complimentary private car service up until 12pm daily for RA's, will take you anywhere and pick you up in the city
     
  17. ACMM
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    Gary. Let us know where you end up. Maybe more food for thought than you expected. :)

    [Sent from my milePoint enabled iPhone]
     
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  18. canucklehead
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    canucklehead Gold Member

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    I do think it is funny how we have all tried to upsell Gary from the King Eddy and Hilton! :D
     
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