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Hotel Alma at the University of Calgary
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Reviews (353)
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Reviewed 6 January 2011

What a breath of fresh air from Motel Village in Calgary's NW. Tucked away at the University of Calgary is an amazing euro-styled hotel. Who knew? My wife and I had an overnighter away from the kids. We were going for dinner at Michael Noble's new restaurant NOtaBLE (5min taxi away and delicious!) and were looking for nearby accommodation. We were pleasantly surprised with Hotel Alma. The hotel offers understated luxury with friendly, helpful staff. Every detail in the room has been thoughtfully chosen and our stay was very comfortable. The continental breakfast is an amazing leap forward from the regular packaged baked goods and coffee usually offered at most hotels. This is a real European breakfast with fresh breads/pastries, hard boiled eggs/cold cuts, smoked salmon, yogurt, fresh fruit, cereals and fresh juices/coffee/tea. All included in the price. Great value and will definitely return!

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank GLeg72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CalgaryTed, General Manager at Hotel Alma at the University of Calgary, responded to this reviewResponded 26 January 2011

Hello GLeg72!

Thank you so much for your review! We're really pleased that you are so impressed with our service and our offerings, particularly the breakfast. We try very hard to ensure that our value proposition is in line with what our guests really require, and it's great to know we hit the bullseye as far as you're concerned! Having said that, we are always on the lookout to make things better, so I am hoping that if you have a chance to return, you will be even more pleased in the future.

Many thanks again for taking the time to write about your experience.

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Reviewed 2 December 2010

I stayed at the Hotel Alma because of it's location in the norht west. It is located right on the U of C campus and is a bit hard to find. The parking is not convennient at all. The heat was very slow and never got really warm at all. I would not rank this hotel above a three star at the most. The room was clean and comfortable besides being cold.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled on business
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1  Thank the990
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CalgaryTed, General Manager at Hotel Alma at the University of Calgary, responded to this reviewResponded 14 December 2010

Hi, the990. Thank you so much for taking the time to write a review.
While we are dismayed that our product was not enough to entice you to want to return, we do thank you for giving us some indications of areas that we may be able to improve upon for others in the future.
I'm sorry you felt the hotel was hard to find; we have as prominent a sign on 24th Avenue at University Gate as the city will allow us. Certainly we would hope that the lit signage and awning at the front of the hotel would assist our guests in travelling the block from 24th into the University, but we will examine it to see if there is any way we can make it brighter or more easy to see. While the parking garage is indeed a few hundred feet away, therefore necessitating a short walk, we chose that option as we felt that, given Calgary's inclement weather patterns throughout the year, a covered parking option for our guests was a better option than an open one. As charging parking to their room account is optional for guests, there is an open pay lot that is in front of the hotel, should guests wish to purchase that option.
Certainly we are aware of the challenge you faced with heating, as the entire building was suffering at that time of your visit from the unusual two-week deep-cold snap to hit Calgary at that time of year. As our system is one of the newest, greenest, radiant heating systems available, we did have some trouble having it serviced and returned to normal operating mode. We do apologize for the inconvenience and have taken steps to try to ensure that future guests will not be affected in a similar way.
Again, thank you for taking the time to write. All the very best for your future travels!

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Reviewed 2 December 2010

We arrived late on a snowy evening and parked in the little lot in front to check in. The clerk said we needed to park in the garage. I asked if I should move my car right away and she said we have 15 min to check in. After a quick bag drop, I went to move the car and it had a $50 parking ticket. The clerk then said she didn't realize I was in the lot and I would have to take care of it myself. I checked with the manager on duty who was more helpful but also said I had to take care of it. After being advised to leave the car there, I would have expected more support. The hotel is a little hard to find. The room was fine, but the breakfast area is limited and you may have to eat standing.

  • Stayed: November 2010, travelled on business
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2  Thank SyncDaddy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CalgaryTed, Manager at Hotel Alma at the University of Calgary, responded to this reviewResponded 14 December 2010

Hello, SyncDaddy. Thank you for your review.
I'm sorry to hear that you felt that we didn't assist you as you perceive we should have. As our private front drive with a loading zone sits between the hotel front door and the parking lot you chose, I believe the desk agent must have believed that you were in our loading zone, which is signed for 15-minute use (hence their indication of having that time period to be there). As the pay lot in front of us is not ours, you were given a ticket by the parking authority. When this happens, as the space is not ours, we will attempt to have the ticket reversed, but must ask our guests to contact the parking authority as we have no control over that space. It is well-signed and equipped with a prominent pay station, however we do find that guests have missed this, which is why we do contact the parking authority as well. Because we can promise nothing to the guest in terms of resolution regarding tickets not on our premises, we therefore must insist the guest also contact the parking authority. We are happy to report that in all cases we know of, the combined efforts in contacting the parking authority by us and our guests have been able to have these tickets negated or refunded; I am hoping that this is the case with yours as well.
In terms of the location, we are inside campus, but we do have as prominent a directional sign on 24th Avenue at University Gate as allowed by the city, as well as our lit signage by the front entrance. I'm sorry if you at first missed these.
We do find sometimes when the hotel is full that having only 34 seats in the restaurant for a 96-room hotel can be challenging, and as we have become very popular we are looking for ways to offer alternate seats or dining options.
Again, thank you for your taking the time to let us know of your concerns.

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Reviewed 13 September 2010

My partner and I stayed at Hotel Alma for a weekend conference held on the U of C campus. For our purposes, the location was ideal - walking distance to everything.

The hotel oozes swankiness and style at a fraction of the cost. The lobby and common areas were all well-kept and beautifully designed. Our room was small (to be expected - we wanted the euro-style studio) but had all of the amenities and comforts we have come to expect from higher end hotels. The staff was friendly, approachable and accommodating. We had a few special requests that were met with smiling faces... interacting with the staff was a pleasure.

Our room was sleek, contemporary and clean. The in-room coffee maker, coffee & teas and toiletries were fantastic! I truly felt like I was staying in a high end hotel... on a motel budget. Also included was complimentary cable TV, free long distance phone calls (national) and free wifi - everything we needed to manage work while staying here.

Lastly, the continental breakfast was beautiful. Fresh fruit, nuts, yogurt, berries, salmon carpaccio and all the coffee/tea/juice you can handle. The bistro is trendy and clean and was a pleasure to visit every morning.

I would highly recommend Hotel Alma to anyone looking for an affordable, clean and well-serviced place to stay in Calgary - only a 10 minute drive to downtown and 1 minute from main highways.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled on business
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1  Thank MissWindyMay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CalgaryTed, General Manager at Hotel Alma at the University of Calgary, responded to this reviewResponded 15 September 2010

Hi MissWindyMay! Thank you so much for your kind and generous review of our property. We very much appreciate getting feedback, as it helps us chart our course and ensure we are getting both the details and the big picture right. We are very pleased you seemed to really like the design and decor of the hotel; we wanted to reflect those stylish European hotels we so much admire, and we are very pleased you feel we have done that. We have a local roaster for our coffees, the teas are by Revolution, and the bath amenities are by Bath and Body Works. We're very happy that you felt we included everything you needed to be able to conduct business with no impediments or hidden or extra fees; this is something we also wanted to ensure our guests travelling for business would come to know us for and appreciate. Certainly our European deluxe continental buffet breakfast is also something we get many compliments on, and we're pleased to add your comments to the list! Finally, thank you for your mention of our team. We are very proud of them. Hope to see you sometime again!

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Reviewed 4 September 2010

Stayed 3 nights in Eurostyle room on vacation and was very pleased. The service was excellent (thanks Tobi). One of the quietest hotels I've stayed in - didn't hear anything from hall or adjoining rooms. The room was compact but had everything - micro, fridge, desk, comfy queen bed and chair. And the deluxe continental breakfast was very good - hard boiled eggs are hot (not cold like some places), yummy yogurt and granola, great mini pastries...great way to start the day. Free internet, local and long distance calls, DVD player (on request), parking only $7, I debated about staying downtown, but am very glad I didn't.. I really like the student / university atmosphere better than busy downtown (and I'm in my 40's). Only drawbacks were no toaster for continental breakfast and a short walk to parking. Overall, great experience - will definately stay again next time I'm in Calgary.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled solo
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1  Thank SoloTraveler1964
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CalgaryTed, General Manager at Hotel Alma at the University of Calgary, responded to this reviewResponded 14 September 2010

Hi SoloTraveler1964! Thanks so much for your comments. We very much appreciate hearing back from guests, as this always gives us a chance to celebrate what we are doing right, and recognize where we can improve. Thank you for the recognition of Tobi; I have passed onto her and the entire team that you felt the service was excellent. We're glad you liked the breakfast we include, especially the hot hard-boiled eggs - we tried to think of all the details that matter when we have breakfast, and incorporate them in Bistro Alma. Unfortunately, we lost a round with the Fire Inspector, who would not let us have a toaster for guests to use. But you bring up a good point, and perhaps there is a way for us to offer toasting in some other manner - we'll have a look at it and see what we can do. Many thanks again for taking the time to write about us. Hope to see you again!

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