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“My go-to hotel in Ottawa”
Review of The Metcalfe Hotel

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The Metcalfe Hotel
Ranked #21 of 68 Hotels in Ottawa
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 25 May 2012

Whenever I visit Ottawa I stay at the Hotel Indigo, largely because it is a relatively stylish hotel for a reasonable price. Ottawa really lacks in the department of nice boutique hotels so this might be the closest you can get for under 250$ a night.
Every time I've visited, the service was been really friendly and accommodating. That's perhaps the stand out of this hotel. The rooms are relatively modern, though some may call them a bit tacky (the photo wall as an example). The beds are comfortable. They used to have aromatherapy coming through the vents which I really didn't like however I believe they have stopped doing that. I had a really disappointing experience in terms of cleanliness; the last time I stayed, I found a half-empty pizza book hidden behind the drapes, which means that area wasn't cleaned. The staff was apologetic and provided us a coupon for two complimentary drinks at the bar. However, that is pretty bad for a hotel of that calibre. On the positive end, it did introduce us to the bar and the bartenders who were all very nice.
Location is great for all the main sites of Ottawa. All in all, would stay there again.

  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled with friends
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6  Thank eclipze006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 23 May 2012

We stayed for two nights over the Victoria Day long weekend. The hotel is fine for what it is, but perhaps not for what the hotel (and some reviewers here) represent it as being. That is to say, the hotel is not a "sophisticated boutique hotel" (as the website states), but really just a smaller-scale Best Western. The hotel received a Travellers Choice 2012 Award for "Trendiest", which suggests that the people voting for that award either (1) were voting ironically or (2) just don't understand what it means to be a trendy hotel in the 21st century.

If you go there expecting a sophisticated boutique hotel you will undoubtedly be disappointed. A few of the reasons I say this:

- The parking situation is unusual, as you have to park under an adjacent hotel, and then either go outside to re-enter the Hotel Indigo, or take some sort of trek through the other hotel. I never took this trip, but I believe it would have involved at least two elevators, some sort of corridor and an escalator. I think a proper boutique hotel would have offered valet parking in light of the confusing access of the parkade (especially when they charge $19 per night for parking).

- The decor is a bit tacky and dated. Our room had a feature wall that included a wallpaper mural of what I believe was a field of wheat. I did appreciate the hardwood floors in the room rather than carpeting. The walls are quite thin, so be prepared to hear pretty much anything that goes on in an adjoining room or hallway other than quiet conversation.

- Our room was advertised as having a jacuzzi tub and a spa-like shower. While technically true in that the bathtub did have a couple of air jets, the tub was quite small and not necessarily comfortable for the purposes intended. Also, the bathroom linens were a disappointment, as I don't believe I have ever seen a smaller bath towel than those provided. At a boutique hotel I would generally expect to see bathrobes provided, and also over-size bath towels (rather than large hand-towels masquerading as bath towels). The bathroom fan and light were operated by a single switch, which meant that you couldn't have the light on without the fan, which was very, very loud. This was quite annoying and, I think, demonstrates a carelessness of design. Aveda bath products were supplied, which was nice.

- The room had a fridge, but it was empty. I would generally expect a boutique hotel to offer a mini-bar, some snack options, etc.

- We had breakfast at the "bistro" both days as it came with the package we had booked. The restaurant is not much more than a Denny's or equivalent. The food was fine but nothing special. The service was atrocious. I can't speak to the bistro for other meals or cocktails, although do note that it closes quite early so is obviously not intended as a spot to hang out.

All of that said, I did not hate the hotel at all, I just think that it has created unatainable expectations based on the way it has been marketed and reviewed here. I would recommend the hotel to others, although probably not at the price we paid, and definitely not unless they had appropriately-lowered expectations. The hotel is in a great location - just a few blocks south of Parliament, and about a 10-15 minute walk to the Byward Market, which is the only part of town that is really worth spending time in anyway once you have completed the obligatory tour of Parliament. Our room was large and clean, and the bed was quite comfortable, although the pillows were a bit undersized for a king-size bed. The front desk staff were polite and helpful, although as mentioned, the service in the bistro leaves a bit to be desired.

I realize that "Expect Less" isn't exactly a great marketing slogan, but I think that it is what you should do in the case of the Hotel Indigo. Not sophisticated or boutique, but certainly serviceable.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank steve-034
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 4 July 2012

Dear steve-034,


We appreciate that you took the time to leave a comprehensive review, highlighting not only the bad but also the good. I am pleased to know that you liked our clean and comfortable rooms. I am sorry we were not able to exceed or at least be at par with your expectation. Your review will be used to reconsider improvements needed and I hope that you can give us a chance to show what we have done.

Sincerely,

Irish V.
Case Manager
IHGCare

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 May 2012

The room was comfy and the location is great; easy to walk to just about everything. The cafe is okay, but the bar closed early on Saturday night (10ish). We stayed three nights and the room was not cleaned at all either of the first two days. We had to loudly complain (at the end of the day both times when returning for the day) that not even a clean towel had been put in the room. I've never had this happen ever at a hotel. It's true the parking is not convenient, and it's $19 a day extra. But the dealbreaker was the extraordinary high pitched whine from some kind of machinery, maybe a big clothesdryer or ventilation fan, that started about 9:45 and continued all night until about 5am. Sometimes we heard it in the day, too. We complained at the desk and were told 'no one had ever complained of this before'. Same story the next night. Had to leave the air conditioner on all night to mask the horrible noise.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank rebelDi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 7 July 2012

Dear rebelDi,

We appreciate your feedback regarding our property. I am so sorry to see you did not enjoy your overall experience with us. We’d like to obtain some additional detail regarding your experience so we have sent you a private message. I look forward to hearing from you and being of further assistance.

Sincerely,

Karen G.
Case Manager
IHGCare

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2012

Hotel Indigo appealed ro us on the "boutique hotel" hype and was a hufe ler down. It was horrendus to park, a route march through another hotel , up elevators across lobbies down esclators - with luggage a real thrill. Our room as dirty, we called room service to get something that looked like blood splatter off the shears and I cleaned the same looking stuff off the bathroom walls. We were told it was make up, Really? And I don't care, clean it before I get the room. Tired decore, not funky or trendy. Was probably nice when it was new but that was a while ago. Went to the attached bistro for breakfast and sat at a dirty table and had to ask wait staff to remove the gross uppolstered chair it was so filrhy with stains! Can't be the best Ottawa has to offer for the price. Wish someone had been a bit more honest in the reviews before we booked there.

Stayed: October 2011, travelled as a couple
5  Thank Linda B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 24 June 2012

Dear Linda B,

Thank you for staying with us. Our hotel is very proud of its level of service, cleanliness and quality of its product and for this reason your comments are very troubling and will certainly be looked into. While we understand that your stay was not 100% satisfactory, we would hope that you would give us another chance to make your stay as best as it can be.

If there is anything we can do to make your next stay more comfortable, please do not hesitate to ask the Manager on Duty.


Sincerely,
Jaime W
Case Manager
IHGCare

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 May 2012

I liked just about everything about this place - it has a great location, the room was a good size, bed was comfortable and service was good. I particularly liked that the floor was not carpeted. I plan to go back for sure.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled on business
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2  Thank pimmingswool
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 May 2012

Hotel Indigo is right in the center of it all - very close to the market and other downtown attractions. The hotel itself is in good shape. Everything is clean and well maintained. The rooms are spacious and have a boutique feeling to them. The staff seemed pleasant as well. We stayed for two nights and would definitely return.

  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Barb S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 May 2012

Awesome downtown location for business or pleasure, excellent customer service and great rooms!

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled on business
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2  Thank BDRobertson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Metcalfe Hotel

Address: 123 Metcalfe St, Ottawa, Ontario K1P 5L9, Canada (Formerly Hotel Indigo Ottawa Downtown)
Phone Number:
Region: Canada > Ontario > Ottawa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#20 Business Hotel in Ottawa
#23 Family Hotel in Ottawa
#23 Romantic Hotel in Ottawa
Price Range: £104 - £276 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — The Metcalfe Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 106
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Metcalfe Hotel is a trendy boutique hotel located in downtown Ottawa and is ideal for those traveling for business or pleasure. Discover what our vibrant neighborhood has to offer! While staying at The Metcalfe enjoy our indoor pool, 24 hour fitness centre and complimentary high speed internet. Leisure travelers who are seeking a unique hotel experience can escape to our Ottawa hotel, which is conveniently located near a variety of local attractions. The Metcalfe Hotel, located in the Ottawa City Centre, places you within walking distance of Rideau Canal, the National Arts Centre and Parliament Hill. Our hotel is just minutes from many local parks, outdoor malls and shopping centres. The Metcalfe Hotel is ideal for business travelers since we're located just minutes from companies such as Shopify, Bell Canada and NAV Canada, as well as many government offices and the Shaw Centre. Our hotel in downtown Ottawa is also convenient to the British High Commission, the Ontario Court House and the World Exchange Plaza. Guests of the hotel can enjoy our onsite restaurant, The Rox, where the food is locally sourced and the service is inspiring. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ottawa Hotel Indigo

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