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Fairmont Hotels

Long Island, NY
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72 posts
30 reviews
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Fairmont Hotels

Hi, we are interested in booking a Tauck tour of the Canadian Rockies for next year but I see that most of the Fairmonts got bad reviews here. Can anyone tell me what they thought of the Fairmonts Palliser, Chateau Lake Louise, Jasper Park Lodge or Banff Springs? We've stayed at the Grand canyon, Bryce & Zion so somewhat rustic is ok. Can anyone offer any reassurance? Thanks in advance!

Calgary, Canada
Destination Expert
for Calgary
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86 reviews
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1. Re: Fairmont Hotels

I think the main thing to keep in mind is that these are all heritage hotels, which were originally built 80-90 years ago. So don't expect large modern rooms and all the rest, although there are newer wings on the hotels at Lake Louise and Banff. But they all have prime locations, since they were the first luxury hotels to be built in Calgary, Banff, Lake Louise, and Jasper.

Jasper, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
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18,664 posts
107 reviews
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2. Re: Fairmont Hotels

I think a lot of the lukewarm reviews happen because people have very high expectations of a hotel with rates like the Fairmonts do, especially in high season (summer). It's a "perceived value" kind of thing. Fairmont rooms are nice, but not always very spacious. Also, you are paying not just for the room, but also the location, ambiance, hotel facilities etc. Here in Jasper, for instance, the Fairmont JPL has extensive grounds (700 acres?), hiking trails, a golf course, tennis, an outdoor pool, stables, lakes with boat rentals etc. etc. It is the only hotel in the area that is truly a "resort" hotel (although many others call themselves a "resort"). JPL is the only "luxury" property in the Jasper area.

Also, be aware that if not included in your tour, eating at Fairmont properties is very expensive (but the food is usually very good and the service levels are very high). If you are on a bus tour, you will not have the option (in Jasper) of eating elsewhere (unless you want to take a taxi or walk into town - about 1/2 hour).

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2,335 posts
60 reviews
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3. Re: Fairmont Hotels

Hotels that have high rates often get bad reviews from people who cannot afford them. They pay the money and expect the world, in reality for this situation, they get an older hotel that is pricey based on location and heritage. This easily creates disappointment as they were anticipating the best experience of their lives, since they have upgraded from the super 8 motel... Obviously a bit of an exaggeration, but keep that in mind when reading tripadvisor reviews.

San Antonio, Texas
Destination Expert
for San Antonio
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2,208 posts
23 reviews
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4. Re: Fairmont Hotels

Lets look at some history. As already said they are old lotels that means small rooms by today standards. Next, they were never Fairmont hotels to begin with. They where CP hotels. You had two main railroad in Canada, the CP & CN both had old grand hotels. CP bought most of the CN hotels and they became CP's. Then CP bought the Fairmont chain and renamed all the CP's Fairmont. They dumped some of the Hotels into the Delta chain that they also own. Most notably, the Delta Airport Calgary, the Delta Airport Vancouver, and the one I do not understand Delta K Country.

They are super large hotels, you are staying or visiting those mainly for the history of the hotels and the park. The CP built those hotels to bring eastern tourist out west. Just like the railroads did in the USA.

Let me assure you they are far from rustic and nothing like the lodges that you have stated. I do not know your age, but these are parks that you really not a group tour to enjoy, just a car and a place to stay. The parks are about the outdoors, hiking, walking, bathing at hot springs, fishing, horseback riding, etc.

London, Canada
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69 reviews
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5. Re: Fairmont Hotels

Hi~We just stayed at the Banff Springs and loved it! We opted for a larger room with a view after I found a sale online which made the difference. I have stayed at the Jasper Park Lodge before (though not recently) and can tell you it is very much the incredible setting of all of the hotels/resorts you mentioned which make them very special--and expensive.

If the tour guarantees a certain level of room (eg. with a view) and some meals onsite are included then you will enjoy it. As has already been mentioned, expectations are everything.

Here's my review:


It is a worthwhile suggestion to look into independent travel if the planning/driving is something you can manage.

Destination Expert
for Seattle
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18,993 posts
108 reviews
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6. Re: Fairmont Hotels

I'm a tour guide and on my way to Vancouver on a rockies trip. Points already made are fine. Hotels from that era have a wide asst of rooms. I've had closet size rooms at Chataeu or Banff Springs up to suites. They do vary a lot but Tauck almost always gets view rooms. Since you are paying a real premium for Tauck your expectations should be met.

north carolina
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49 posts
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7. Re: Fairmont Hotels

The fairmont Lake Louise had the most unbelieveable view from our room it brought tears to my eyes.By far the most comfortable beds ever! We loved it.Great hiking also

Chia, Colombia
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100 posts
1 review
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8. Re: Fairmont Hotels

One thing you don't have to worry about is tauck tours. They are fantastic. They always go the extra mile. When I was a river guide, taking a tauck group was my favourite. Things were orginased really well and the clients were always happy.

Both the company and the clients would tip me big too ;)

If you opt to pay more for a nicer room, you will be happy. The presidential suite at the Banff Springs is the nicest hotel room I hsve seen. Views in every direction and a grand piano.

Fairmont staff tend to be really good. I can tell you that they are the best hotel staff in Banff. The rooms really are not what the hotel is about.

9. Re: Fairmont Hotels

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