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“Awesome hotel awesome staff.”
Review of Swiss Hotel

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Swiss Hotel
Ranked #34 of 69 Hotels in Ottawa
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 16 August 2013 via mobile

Stayed in the Honeymoon Suite for two nights & we loved the room loved the jacuzzi tub and LOVED the bed. Thanks to the helpful & friendly staff for giving us all the information we need to be able to purchase one for ourselves. Just wished the suites had a fridge and microwave. Other than that it was perfect. Close to everything, we were able to walk to all of our destinations yet a very quiet location.

  • Stayed: August 2013
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1  Thank MissCStapleton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 14 August 2013

If you are looking for a lovely, boutique-style hotel close to all the attractions and are comfortable with the culture of an inner-city, then The Swiss Hotel is for you!

My family and I opted for the Traveler's Suite which was on the third floor, attainable only by a central set of narrow stairs. We absolutely loved the fact that there were two full-sized, very comfortable beds in an adequately spacious room. Every nook-and-cranny was utilized. For instance, the television was not hung on the wall, atop the fireplace mantle nor even on a desk...but instead in the window-sill. This made us chuckle; but, if you think about it, it was a very creative use of space! While there weren't any closets, there was in fact a stand-alone, cubistic storage unit on one side of the room that could hold several items needing hangers. Unfortunately, the style of the bathroom did not mirror the decor of the rest of the room, which was a bit disappointing as we had seen so many fun bathrooms depicted on the Inn's website and were looking forward to that "WOW!", which wasn't to be. As others have stated before, there was absolutely no place within the bathroom to place one's toiletries, beckoning the Innkeepers' reserved creativity to be used on constructing some essential shelving.

As other Trip Advisor Contributors have stated, be advised that you check in on the bottom level of the building. It's a bit deceptive when you walk in to the front of the building to find a desk at the base of the stairs with a computer and a chair, as you expect there to be someone manning that station; however, don't stop there...just head on down one more flight of stairs and you'll be right at the proper reception desk. My advice to the Innkeeper would be to place a visible sign stating what to do to avoid confusion. We travelers are often already "out of sorts" when we arrive as everything is still so new, so this courtesy would be much appreciated.

The owner and Innkeepers are absolutely the most friendly and gracious people you can possibly imagine. I cannot tell you the number of times I asked for assistance, from securing the safest possible walking route to the Byward Market to deciding upon which boat tour to take, and each time I was made to feel comfortable and confident with my new plans.

Parking is a bit of an issue, but you are in large city where land is at a premium. The price you pay to park on site is nominal compared to what you would pay in most cities per diem. If you are not able to get a parking spot on site, then there is another parking lot right across the street where you can pay to park. Prior to staying at the Swiss Hotel we were in Quebec City where we payed $25/night to park 3 blocks away. So, trust me...THIS IS A GOOD DEAL!

The breakfast area is impressive and the breakfast itself was even MORE so. My family and I loved all the options and especially enjoyed sitting outside in their beautiful patio with a plethora of comfortable and unique seating options. Adjoining the courtyard of the Swiss Hotel is the adorable Barefoot Hostel, also owned by those who run the Swiss Hotel. Check out the reviews on TripAdvisor for this immaculate hostel and you will see just how spectacular it is.

Also, by chance I came upon a little "cubby" of sorts on the second floor of the west wing that houses what must have been nearly a dozen french-press coffee makers that you can take back to your room to make your own yummy coffee. There is also a "Mr. Coffee" coffee maker for those of us who want a no-fuss caffeine buzz.

Okay...so here is the hard part. What I didn't like about our time in Ottawa has nothing to do with the Inn itself. Rather, it is an unfortunate (from my perspective) side effect of being in the inner-city, and my family and I are just not used to that. To explain further, what troubled me most was the extraordinary number of vagrants, vandalism, and angry people that are just BEYOND the safe harbor of the Inn. Let me very clear that the Inn itself is extremely safe from the doubly secured front entrance to the locked gates of the back yard. But, to get to the top rated tourist attractions, such as Byward Market, Parliament, the locks and canal, museums and all the wonderful restaurants, you had to walk through a very troubling part of town.

For example, within an hour of being in Ottawa, while walking on a sidewalk just a half-block away from the Inn, someone yelled out their truck window "[--]" to my husband. We know it was directed toward him as the person driving stared him down with such sinister eyes. We had no idea what we did wrong other than just simply "being". A few steps later, we encountered a drug addict vomiting in the recesses of a storefront. At that point, we were appalled and afraid and wanted to pack up our stuff and get out of the city as fast as we could. But, alas, it was getting late, we were tired and hungry, and we just had to summon up the courage to carry on. Yet, from that point forward, we could never fully relax as we were all extremely unsettled and always on edge. That night we did end up eating at a delicious Italian restaurant, but we hurried back to our Inn before it got dark as we just didn't know what to expect. So, when you see that I have given the Swiss Hotel a 1 for location, it is not because it is far away from the attractions (they are one of the closet hotels to the best that the city has to offer), but rather because of what I explained previously.

The next day, we did trek back and forth through this same path (as there weren't any better options) at least two more times to all the top-rated attractions, and each time we were always on guard and ready to act. Again, I fully acknowledge that the safety of the area is NOT the fault of the owners as they have done a spectacular job of creating a lovely haven in the midst of a lot of sadness. To be fair, I also have to mention that there were many individuals, young, petite women in fact, who walked alone even at dusk and who did not seem the least bit phased by the surroundings. I tried to take comfort in this, but I could never quite get over what I had already experienced.

I do believe, however, that when traveling, it is important to know the neighborhood and to be in tune with your own comfort level. I did express my concern to the young gentleman who checked us in on the first night and he explained that due to the extreme heat that the homeless shelters (church and otherwise) were filled to capacity. This I understand. I just wish the city could do more to revitalize the entire area and to make its inhabitants and visitors feel more welcome and safe. I know that other travelers have mentioned the same concerns and the owner has done a marvelous job of sharing her viewpoint. She has lived there for decades and loves the city as it is her home.

If I could pick up The Swiss Hotel and plop it down in the center of all the attractions, I would return there in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, due to our unsettling experiences, we will not be back to Ottawa...period.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank sunrise07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2013

Great location, only about a 10 minute walk from parliament.
The rooms were clean, and sharp. Nice touch with the iPad. And very cool bathroom layouts, considering they didn't have a lot of space to work with.
Don't get confused that the "front" desk is in the basement. ;)

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Chris G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 August 2013

I stayed here for 4 nights in May. The staff were very friendly and polite, as was the owner. Though I initially didn’t intend to have breakfast every day, I ended up doing so because it was great - lovely cappuccinos and French toast with maple syrup.

The room was clean, well-lit and nicely decorated. I’ve seen other reviewers mention their room was outdated – mine wasn’t. It was very spacious for one person, and the bathroom was fine too (although there was very little space to put cosmetics, toothbrush etc). The WiFi signal was always strong, and I found the iPad in my room very useful since my phone screen is too small to read emails easily.

I did think it was a bit expensive, but many of the other hotels I looked at in Ottawa seemed equally expensive, so I presumed this was just an expensive city to stay in. There are some nice restaurants nearby, and you can walk to the city centre within minutes.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled on business
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Thank JellyBaby24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2013

Tripadvisor is a helpful platform...... mostly. Sometimes I am very surprised how some people reviews hotels. I call it the tripadvisor trap.... This hotel is one of these traps, unfortunately. The location is good. But you can have better hotels for the same money or much less. Our so calles traveller's suite was a big room, far away from a suite. The bathroom was tiny, I have no idea how they planned to accommodate 4 persons here and sharing a tiny place where you cannot even turn around. In the bathroom there were no any place to place your cosmetic stuff. In the so called suite not enough hangers, not garderobe but I pad!! Who needs an ipad these days, we all have our smartphones. We missed a small fridge as well. For 200 Dollars+taxes, I expected much more than this. I would book another place if I'd be back again.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank amenhotep
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 August 2013

This is a lovely hotel located in the heart of Ottawa. It is perfectly located for sight seeing. Our first surprise was the parking. There are only a handful at the side of the hotel and if you go out for the evening chances are really good you do not get a spot when you return. In a neighbourhood that has scarce parking this is an issue. The reception desk is downstairs and there is no sign telling you to leave your luggage in the foyer so we ended up lugging everything down narrow stairs. No one helped us with our luggage going back up either. However, once in our room we were pleased with the cleanliness and comfort of the bed. The bathroom is outdated and awkwardly made so showers, shaving and going to the bathroom were difficult to do. There are very few electrical outlets. One was directly above the sink which I suspect might not be up to CSA code. Our toilet had very little pressure and plugged after every use. We were given a plunger and told to plunge away! This was not what I expected and for this reason I gave this hotel a 3. We opted to have the breakfast added to our package. Muesli, yogurt, cheese, salami and some bread and desserts...I was not impressed. The staff were lovely and the owner is quite charming. In conclusion, if you stay here, expect a good night's sleep in a clean environment and pleasant staff. If you cannot climb stairs, or have difficulty in narrow stairwells, then this is not for you.

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank beenhereforever
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 July 2013

Where to stay in Ottawa need not be a question you ask because the answer is The Swiss Hotel! This little Inn is so close to all the action, why would you stay anywhere else? Very walkable to all the Parliament area tours, Rideau, walking/cycling paths, and of course the Byward Market! And owner Sabina is so gracious and a delight to chat with, very helpful and accommodating. We stayed in a King suite on a Saturday night that had gorgeous refinished hardwood floors, very comfortable firm bed with just enough cushion (although a little high off the floor, I had to run at it to get on). Light coming through the windows woke me up in the morning but otherwise we had a good sleep. Quiet, very clean and refurbished. The bathroom had a tub with shower curtain going all the way around it, old fashioned style, and you couldn't help all the water that would leak out when you tried to reach outside for shampoo (no shelving inside shower enclosure). I found this to be a little awkward, hence the 4/5 rating, otherwise I'd give this place a full 5 stars. Breakfast didn't offer much protein options except a large selection of cheeses (yum!) but Sabina made us some fried eggs no problem. We enjoyed Muesli, the creamiest Brie ever, cereals, nuts, juices, fresh fruits, and breads with jams, buffet style. Very tasty, and excellent fresh brewed coffee too. Delightful!

Room Tip: Choose King Sized suites. We stayed in Rm 102. Quiet, private.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Sandy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Swiss Hotel

Address: 89 Daly Ave, Ottawa, Ontario K1N 6E6, Canada (Formerly Gasthaus Switzerland Inn)
Region: Canada > Ontario > Ottawa
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #34 of 69 Hotels in Ottawa
Price Range: £99 - £156 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Swiss Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Swiss Hotel is ideally located in downtown Ottawa in the heart of the Nation's Capital within easy walking distance to tourist attractions, shopping, restaurants, bars, and convention sites. This European-style boutique hotel has modern flair and offers its clients a warm, cozy and intimate accommodation experience with friendly service in a quiet, stress free environment. Each of the 22 rooms has private bathroom, A/C, European style white bedding that is 100% cotton with plush duvets, hardwood floors, free hi-speed wifi internet, a Nespresso coffee machine in every room. For business or pleasure, choose from standard, superior, deluxe rooms with a fireplace or our romantic getaway suite with a double Jacuzzi. The hotel offers an optional healthy Swiss buffet breakfast, as well as opportunities for small meetings. The hotel also has a pretty courtyard garden patio for relaxation - a true oasis in the middle of the city. ... more   less 
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