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Embarc Whistler
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Reviews (323)
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All reviewsclub intrawestfamily poolvacation homeupper villagebedroom lodgeadult areatime sharevideo arcadediamond resortsarcade roomgreat family resorthuge jacuzzi tubtimeshare exchangefull kitchenminute walka small grocery storewasher and dryer
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Reviewed 8 February 2012

We have been Club Intrawest Members for 10 years and this was our second time staying at CI Whistler. This trip we used our points for 2 - 1 Bedroom Lodge units over 6 nights, friends of ours stayed in the 2nd unit.

CI is in a great location - just a few minutes walk with all your ski gear to the Wizard and Magic Chairlifts at the base of Blackcomb. We had 6 small children in our group and they all managed to carry their ski gear to the Whistler Kids centre every morning.

The children will love the outdoor heated swimming pool and waterside! The in house movie theatre was also a hit with the kids. CI Whistler has a wine, beer and spirits store just across the road and a good little convenience store inside the hotel.

Each unit comes with its own ski locker. The underground parking garage can easily accommodate large SUV's like Suburbans and Yukons....

The rooms are decent and maybe getting slightly dated but this was the first Club built back in 1994. They have upgraded the TV's to flat screens since our first visit back in 2008. The only annoying part of our room was just how dim the lighting was!

We arrived around noon on check in and our room wasn't ready until 4pm. Big Deal! Just head on down to Merlin's and have a few drinks and some nacho's and soak in the apres ski until they call your cell..... As for the previous posters's criticism of the having to take your garbage down the elevator to the bins all of the CI properties operate that way.... Hard to see how taking your trash down the elevator constitutes lousy service.

Stayed: January 2012, travelled with family
Thank FortyCreek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 February 2012

We are Hilton Grand Vacation Club members, which has an exchange with Club Intrawest. I had high hopes for the resort after staying at the Intrawest in Zihuatenejo, and was even thinking about buying a timeshare with Intrawest, but this resort fell far short - in large part due to the terrible customer service we received.

The good: Great location - you can walk to the bottom of the Blackcomb or across the street to the x-country ski trails. Free parking. The amenities - Large rooms and full kitchens; nice bathrooms; gas fireplace in room.

The bad: We arrived early on our day of check-in and asked for an early check-in - they said they would email the housekeeping staff to see if they could get our room cleaned earlier. We checked back in a few hours and it wasn't clean yet - no problem. We came back at 3:45 (rooms are available at 4:00) and they said it still wasn't ready. Other guests tried to check in at 3:55 and were told they had to wait until 4:00. So, at 4:00 there were insanely long lines of people trying to check in. The lady at reception said to us, "Oh, sorry for the wait, this is our busiest time." OMG lady, you created the problem by not letting us check in 5 minutes early! I got the sense that they didn't allow early check-ins. That's fine but don't lead us on by telling us you'll see if you can get us an early check-in.

Also, be warned that there is no daily housekeeping service at the resort. I wasn't expecting a full clean but every other HGVC resort we have stayed at has a daily service to pick up dirty towels, replace the toilet paper, and take out the trash. Not asking for a lot here. At this resort, you have to take your own trash out to a dumpster and anytime you need something like toilet paper or soap or new trash bags, you have to request it. Furthermore, I'm not really sure why they couldn't have a room ready earlier since housekeeping services are clearly only needed when customer's check out. The amenities are nice but there is NO service - you are basically paying to stay at a cabin, not a serviced resort.

This resort does not live up to the HGVC standard of a full-service resort. Other than the skiing, which was pretty phenomenal, it was a disappointing stay.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with friends
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4  Thank R R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2012

We love the Club Intrawest Whistler location.
It's proximity to the Blackcomb base allows you to walk to the hill.
The resorst has both an adult pool area and a family area.
Our routine was
- ski all day
- afterwards let the kids play in the pool
- make dinner in our unit
- take the kids to the Club Intrawest theatre for a movie

Accomodations are very comfortable and within walking distance to all amenities.

Room Tip: Based on where your room is located, your accomodations can vary. A few years back we had a room beside the door to the family pool area. It kept slamming all night and ruined our vacation. This last vacation, we have a room in the middle of the complex and it made fro a very enjoyable stay. Unfortunately the booking agents cannot give you any such confirmations when booking.
  • Stayed: February 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank travelling_cannuck
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 January 2012

I bought into the Club Intrawest time share in 1995 for $17000 for the sole purpose of access to the best skiing in the world at Whistler Black Comb. I was falsely misled into believing they actually had a working getaway plan where they stated if there is a vacancy still open within two weeks of the reservation, for $80 you can get the room. The reality is there are no vacancies even when they already checked out! They save money on cleaning and utility costs and WE don't get what we paid for. The anual fees have doubled since the 90's , I now pay $1300 american dollars annual maintenance for an overbooked resort. Any one want to buy my Club Intrawest rip off time share?

Room Tip: Don't get a room on the outside walls of the complex if you want to sleep past 5am because the garbage trucks back in every morning to the Chateu Whistler next door.
  • Stayed: January 2012, travelled as a couple
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14  Thank 5SKIDAVE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 December 2011

We were looking forward to a wonderful week in Whistler, but we were so disappointed with the studio room we were assigned that we left the resort after only one awful night, and paid for a superb suite at the Westin for the remaining six days of our trip to Whistler.

Originally, we chose a hard-to-book week at the Club Intrawest Whistler after being fooled by the highly rated reviews we read on this site. But the good reviews are very deceiving! When you look forward to a vacation for almost a year, and the actual conditions at the resort do not meet your basic expectations, then the entire experience is affected.
For us, we were extremely disappointed, especially when our concerns were not taken into consideration or any attempts made to rectify them...so we left....and we'll never choose that complex again.

To be specific:
We were given a Two-bedroom Bonus Week Certificate, and although it was low season for the week we booked our trip to Whistler, and the resort was practically empty when we got there, we were told that only a studio room was available.
* The room itself was microscopic (it's a locked off bedroom portion of the two bedroom unit). * You could barely walk around the small queen size bed.
* There is no spot to set any suitcases. They had to be placed on the floor blocking the door.
* The TV is tiny (about an 18" screen) set high on the wall opposite the bed, making it impossible to view unless you are plunked against the bed's tree-branch "headboard"....but there are only two small pillows which were not enough to make a comfortable cushion to lean against.
* It was very dark in the room and there were only two small reading lamps on either side of the bed....even during daylight with the blinds open it was hard to read. At night, the bathroom light was the only narrow light source.
* The "kitchenette" facilities were a joke. One two foot wide cabinet held a microwave & apt.size fridge, but there was nowhere to put groceries or dishes for preparing anything.
* One of the worst parts was that the only sink in the room was around the corner in the bathroom, so all food prep and dish washing had to be done amid the bathroom articles! Gross and inconvenient to say the least.
* Now, the BED .... absolutely one of the worst beds we've ever encountered around the world! The mattress was thin, narrow & short, skimpy, and lumpy....worthy of being dumped long ago! It was sooo uncomfortable that neither of us slept more than a few hours on it, and awoke with horrible back aches. Oh, and forget having any decent type linens or a comfy duvet for a snowy night's warmth. And the ancient quilted flowered bedspread gives you the creeps just wondering when it was washed last.

So after such a disappointing & frustrating night, we asked the desk clerks again to please change our room, but they were rude and very dismissive. That was the final straw, so we spent the day looking at rooms in multiple other hotels around Whistler.....all gorgeous & luxurious in comparison to the sub-standard one. Someone with authority should do the same to get some ideas on how to improve the Club Intrawest.
The Club Intrawest manager has commented on this site about others' low assessments of the resort by saying that he "would love to have the opportunity to serve you & your family again"....but obviously he has not addressed the features that people complain about. And note that there have only been 9 reviews on Club Intrawest Whistler the entire year!! I would like to know how many more people don't have the nerve to be honest about how awful the rooms are.

Whistler is an incredibly beautiful locale, but our week's vacation there wasn't enhanced at all by the deplorable accommodations at the cheap & nasty Club Intrawest.

Room Tip: Don't settle for a Studio room whatever you do!!
  • Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
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11  Thank sweetwise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ClubIntrawest, General Manager at Embarc Whistler, responded to this reviewResponded 20 December 2011

Dear sweetwise,

Thank you for taking the time to provide us with the opportunity to reply to your comments about your stay at Club Intrawest - Whistler. It is certainly with great pleasure that as per your request, I will address every one of your comments.

First of all I would like to start by addressing that, after reviewing your previous five contributions on TripAdvisor, it seems that you try to use this valuable tool to try to do everything possible to ruin establishments reputation. I still cannot see your valuable review of the superb suite you stayed in at another hotel in Whistler. But please do not take me wrong, as it is also good to know that fellow travelers have the opportunity and free will to decide whether or not to consider any reviews. I believe that after anyone makes a statement such as being fooled by previous reviews, it becomes openly disrespectful to those travelers who took valuable time to provide all of us with very valuable feedback.

As per your request - let's be specific:

As a timeshare owner you know that not all resorts and locations around the world have the same value. If you are given a two-bedroom bonus by a timeshare exchange company that is not part of the Intrawest Resort Club Group (which was your specific case), chances are that you will not get the same type of unit that you have on a bonus week. This is simply due to the fact that Club Intrawest Locations have usually a much higher demand and value than that of other resorts. You were very well aware of this situation prior to arriving.

I can only guess that your perception of low season in Whistler was based on what you saw around town and in the adjacent hotels; fortunately in our case, we were very busy and occupied during the night you stayed with us. I agree with you that Studios are far different in size from a two-bedroom, therefore your disappointment, which I totally understand. Still our Studios are of great size; remember those in 5-star properties in Europe? Those are indeed close to your description of microscopic.

I am sorry to say that there is enough space to place your suitcase, unless you were traveling with more than three. All Studios have enough and ample space above the dishwasher machine. However, I must tell you that foldable luggage stands would be beneficial in those Studios, and we will gladly look into it as a result of your candid comments.

The TV is definitely not a 42 inch. Based on Member's feedback that I've been gathering lately, the size is comfortable to watch from the bed, which comes indeed with two comfortable pillows; there is one more in the closet, and you can always request as many as you wish from Member Reception, available 24/7. The Tree Branch Headboard is a signature at Club Intrawest - Whistler, I am sorry to learn you did not enjoy it.

The lighting in every Vacation Home has been carefully revised to ensure we provide with a comfortable setting to all Members. It really is a surprise to hear that your Studio was dark even with the blinds open. During day time, Studios are well lit and particularly bright.

Our Studios feature what it's called a Mini Kitchen, which has a microwave, bar refrigerator, coffee maker, dishwasher, dishes and utensils for two. In none of our pieces or website we advertise a kitchenette. I guess you were misled thinking about the information you received from your bonus week certificate.

I am sure many travelers agree with you about the inconvenience of doing dirty dishes in the bathroom sink. Therefore we provide a dishwasher in every Studio. It is a small one that conveniently fits the dishes of two. We even provide the soap for it. It seems you also missed this feature.

I do not know how much you have traveled around the world, but it seems not enough to say our beds are the worst. If a 10 inch thick mattress is thin for you, then I -and fellow travelers- have no option but to agree with you. When you refer to narrow and short, well I guess your measurements of a queen size bed differ from ours. The mattress we feature is a Serta 266, which I invite you to take a look at the reviews of it on the Web. All duvets, linens and bed spreads are professionally cleaned.

Again, thank you for providing us with the opportunity to reply to your honest and well-thought comments. It will be a pleasure to have the chance to seeing you again in Whistler and to provide you with the opportunity to better serve you.

Sincerely,

Pablo Contreras -Rodríguez, Club Manager

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