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BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel
Ranked #6 of 19 Hotels in Nanaimo
GreenLeadersBronze level
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“They Made Our Stay Perfect ...”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2014

From the View, to the upgrade, to the Great Staff , Everything was so good ,
we are thinking of moving to the Nanaimo area. The staff gave us
recommendations on where to go & what to see, to where to take those
perfect Pictures and where to find the best and Coldest Beers on Protection Island.

Thank you , We'll be Back

AL & Michele Swanky ( Calgary )

Room Tip: Call ahead and look at the ePrices on line , contact to confirm , we had ZERO issues.
See more room tips
  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Aswankster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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495 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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    107
    49
    20
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (90)
Date | Rating
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English first
tsawwassen, Canada
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 June 2014

Great rooms, great service, friendly people and an umbrella provided for the rain. Wonderful location on the water. This was the second time at the Dorchester in the past 6 months and I will certainly stay there again when visiting Vancouver Island.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Best Western

Helpful?
Thank Maryann L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
canada
Level Contributor
47 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 June 2014

never would I stay here again-no parking unless you are very lucky to get a spot on street outside the hotel,otherwise you park way down the end of the block in a unpaved,overfilled spot-thus you must drag your luggage-hopefully you only have a backpack to the front doors.the other parking option is to drive around to a street called anchor way and pay for the parking spot-the hotel does reimburse for it.this the rooms are small -I was upgraded to a larger room for the inconvenient parking-sorry to say it was pretty tiny-cant imagine what they had me in before that.you are convienant to the old city quarters;walk don't lose your parking spot if you have secured one.cleanliness was ok.a very maze like feeling to the place. they should offer to take and park your car and alleviate a rather frustrating experience.you can unload in front of the hotel,then go park-the whole is experience in my opinion was awful.restaurant opens at 8-to late to be useful for breakfast.wifi difficult..not the way I want to spend my time

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank bitsme
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NanaimoResponse, General Manager at BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel, responded to this review, 10 June 2014
Dear Bitsme,

It is a regret to hear that you were challenged with our parking situation. Due to our location being in the heart of downtown, even though we provide our own parking facility at no cost, there're not enough to cover all guest's vehicle at times, and we came up with providing reimbursement for guest's parking costs at other locations. I understand it is challenging sometimes when the parking lot gets full, we'll try our best to accommodate our guest's needs as much as we can.
In regards to the internet, we recently have installed enhanced new service and it has been working perfectly for most of the guests. If you have any issues with internet, please feel free to call our 24hour tech support. I'm sure the tech will be happy to assist with your difficulty.

Thank you for sharing your experience and we'll implement your feedback to enhance our service for our future guests.

Sincerely,

Julie Park
General Manager
BEST WESTERN Plus Dorchester Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Nanaimo hotels

Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
40 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 June 2014

I was torn between rating this as poor and average, but the number of cons tipped the scales for me at poor.
The best thing about this hotel is the location, it's close to the ferries (if that's how you're arriving) and steps away from coffee shops, restaurants and quaint boutique shopping. The service by the staff was also good, very friendly whenever I encountered them.
Now for the cons. The parking is extremely inconvenient and really should be exclusive for the hotel. Yes, it's free. But it's a bit of walk if you're carrying luggage and the lot also dubs as a pay parking lot for public, so I can imagine that getting a spot could be tough at times.
The hotel itself seems old, not in a heritage way, more of a dingy way. The room decor is average but I found the common areas to be the most in need of a facelift.
Wifi was challenging, I was visiting for work and kept getting disconnected. It was free at least.
I was facing the harbour, which allowed for nice views but was super noisy. Float planes taking off, busy street traffic below, etc. And due to the lack of modern air temp. control (it was an old school heater) I had to keep windows open to cool down the room. My coworker was on the bottom floor in a smaller room than mine (I had two beds, he had one) and he complained the room was too tiny and his view was dismal, the parking lot.
I never ate here so can't comment on the food.
Overall, if I was coming back to Nanaimo I would look to stay elsewhere, the Coast Hotel right across the street is much cleaner and more updated/modern (I visited the Coast lounge/restaurant).

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Caribbean_Zingara
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Eugene, Oregon
Level Contributor
212 reviews
90 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 May 2014 via mobile

This place is a heritage hotel!? I wonder if it is falling down? Just about everywhere you go there are creaky stairs. The hallways feel like you are in the fun house of a carnival with the floor shifting and spongy in places. The room was nice enough, a bit small, but again spongy floors in some places not in others. Creaky steps. The bathroom was small, main problem was the tub wouldn't drain... Or at least it took a long time. So trying to have a shower, firstly waiting for hot water while the tub fills with cold water. Then once the hot arrives you have a choice of stepping into a tub with 6" of cold water or waiting 5 minutes+ for the tub to drain a bit. Ugh.

Room was quiet though. No breakfast. Probably won't stay here again.

Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
Helpful?
Thank RFA2249
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NanaimoResponse, General Manager at BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel, responded to this review, 2 June 2014
Dear RFA 2249,

Most of all, I'd like to appreciate your time to write us a review. And I'd like to apologize for not meeting your expectations. We're looking into some areas that needs more attention at the same time when we're replacing corridor carpets. We'll definitely use your feedback to enhance our service.

Sincerely,

Julie Park
General Manager
BEST WESTERN PLUS Dorchester Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Australia
Level Contributor
34 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 May 2014

We originally booked the Best Western Northgate Inn and when we arrived there we realised we had booked the wrong hotel. They were kind enough at the Northgate to cancel our booking allowing us to stay at the Best Western Dorchester. Our room at the Dorchester was lovely over looking the harbour and is in the heart of downtown Nanaimo. The hotel has an old world charm about it and we understand this would not be to everyone's liking but it was to ours. We had not issue with parking our vehicle in the their car park. We only stayed the one night and as it was a Sunday and we arrived after 8.30pm there wasn't very much left open within the hotel or in the surrounding streets so best to arrive earlier on a Sunday evening if possible.

Room Tip: We had a room overlooking the harbour which we loved.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CanadaAlison
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NanaimoResponse, General Manager at BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel, responded to this review, 22 May 2014
Dear Canada Alison,

Thank you for sharing your experience with BEST WESTERN Plus Dorchester Hotel.
I agree that the location and beautiful harbor view is one of the most favorable factor for our guests. It is pity to hear that you didn't have much chance to enjoy all fun things that "Old City Quarter" of Downtown Nanaimo has.

There're so many fun stuffs to enjoy just around the hotel, various theme shops, handcraft stores, boutiques, and all kinds of restaurants including Greek, Japanese, Indian, French. There's also Nanaimo Art gallery, Museum, Bastion and Harbour Walking trail, ferry to New Castle Island and Protection Island, everything is within walking distance from the hotel. I can guarantee that you won't find this unique environment anywhere else in the World. We provide complimentary parking pass for our in house guests as well. Our front desk staffs will be happy to assist with you to find any information to make your trip more joyful.

Sincerely,

Julie Park
General Manager
BEST WESTERN Plus Dorchester Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 May 2014 via mobile

Tried staying here, but couldn't handle the smell of old, stuffy hotel.

The first room we got had stains on the carpets and walls, and the view was of bird poo and pipes.

Drew at the front desk was awesome and very accommodating. He moved us to another room which was much nicer and had a great view of the harbour.

Unfortunately, when our kids lay on the bed to rest, we saw at least one bug on the bed with them. Granted it may have been the only one, but combined with the damp smell that persisted in this room as well and the hair in bathroom - it was too much for us considering the price we paid (including some hard earned Air Miles).

Once we decided to leave, Drew was again beyond helpful and promptly refunded our expenses and apologized for the inconvenience.

Parking was ridiculous, and the amount of detritus near the headboards was suspicious.

Final verdict - hotel needs major freshining up and an airing out. But don't lose your staff. Awesome location and great potential.

Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
4 Thank YYCAB5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NanaimoResponse, General Manager at BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel, responded to this review, 22 May 2014
Dear YYCAB5,

First of all, I'd like to apologize on behalf of our team for not meeting your expectation and any inconvenience that it may have caused you and your family member. I'll share your comments with our team and implement it to enhance our service for future.

Being a heritage building and located at front of the harbour, there are some days that we encounter odor issue with higher humidity or wind. In an effort to eliminate the issue completely, we're in the process of replacing carpets and using specialized machines. I hope you would consider staying with us again in the future.

Sincerely,

Julie Park
General Manager
BEST WESTERN Plus Dorchester Hotel
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel

Property: BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel
Address: 70 Church St, Nanaimo, British Columbia V9R 5H4, Canada
Phone Number:
Region: Canada > British Columbia > Vancouver Island > Nanaimo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Nanaimo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2.5 star — BEST WESTERN Dorchester Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 70
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The BEST WESTERN Dorchester Nanaimo Hotel is conveniently located in the heart of downtown Nanaimo over looking picturesque Nanaimo Harbour. Our charming heritage boutique-style hotel is decorated in a style that blends old world class with modern conveniences to make your stay at this Nanaimo hotel a comfortable and memorable one! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Best Western Nanaimo
Nanaimo Best Western

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