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“Washed Up”

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The Westin Harbour Castle
Ranked #32 of 136 Hotels in Toronto
Certificate of Excellence
North Bay, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Washed Up”
Reviewed 12 August 2014

Scents spritzed all over lobby, carpets threadbare and stained. In room: "spots" all over mirrors chaise had "suspicious" spots and carpets were less than bare foot friendly. Restaurant $$$$ and blah.

Room Tip: If you really want a good room, book somewhere else! While the harbour views are stunning, the rooms...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Dian P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 13 August 2014
Dear Dian P,

First of all, let me thank you for staying with us recently and for your review. It concerns me that your recent visit was not flawless and we didn’t deliver on our promise of ensuring our guests leave feeling better than when they arrived. Please accept my sincere apologies for the unacceptable condition of your guestroom and rest assured I have sent your concerns to my leadership team. In the meantime I would appreciate it if you could email me personally at experienceteam@westin.com with a phone number where I can contact with you to further discuss.

I look forward to connecting with you,

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manger
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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St. Catharines, Ontario
Level Contributor
25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2014

Westin Harbour Castle

I decided to pay an extra $100 to stay at this specific hotel mainly for convenience as I was volunteering at that hotel at 8 am and because it was our wedding anniversary that night I thought what the heck. I was volunteering all day and night at the soccer stadium and then again in the Westin hotel itself for 9 hours the next day. My husband and the kids checked in earlier in the day, but I did not get to the hotel until 11:15 pm. My husband mentioned our anniversary and the fact that I was volunteering (for an organization that had plenty of people staying there). The clerk asked when I would arrive and he told him sometime after 10:30 pm. Nothing was done for our anniversary. I mentioned it to front desk when I came down for my volunteer shift at 7:55 am and the person said he would check with the person who checked my husband in. Upon check-out my husband had made some complaints (see later) and I mentioned the lack of recognition for our anniversary. Jerry apologized and gave us our valet parking worth $45 complimentary.

The shower in the room was not working well. The diverter was not separating the tub water from the shower water so you were getting a couple of inches of water in the tub as you showered. For an expensive, fancy hotel, you would expect everything to be working well. Our view from our room was a partial harbour/lake view where you saw more of the buildings and construction than you did of the harbour. There also seemed to be a charge for everything such as the internet in rooms ($14.95/day) as well as internet in the business center -$6.95/15 min. Most other hotels have free access in the business center and free wifi in public areas. The lobby says you are only allowed one hour free, but it seemed to work for longer than that. Checkout at 12 noon is much better than other hotels at 11 am. We also did not get a newspaper in the morning as indicated on the website. I didn’t think of this until a few days later so it was never mentioned to the front desk staff.

The hotel was nice and fancy, but we were not impressed with the value. We ended up staying at another hotel a few nights later and although it was not fancy, it included free wifi and free meals for kids under 12 and still ranked higher than this one in our minds. We expected more from a $300/night room with many things included rather than having to pay on top. Yes, the Westin might cater more to the business people and conferences as well as the rich, but it certainly does not suit the middle or upper middle class families. I had booked another hotel for this occasion, but decided at the last minute to switch to the Westin and pay the extra $$$ for convenience. Now I wish I hadn't.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank soccerstar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 13 August 2014
Dear soccerstar,

Thank you for posting your review I appreciate you letting me know where we fell short on our service standards. I’m pleased to hear that you enjoyed the look and feel of the hotel and that Jerry was able to take care of you even in a small way. What you describe certainly isn’t what we are known for here at the Westin Harbour Castle and my apologies we didn’t exceed your expectations. I have forwarded your concerns onto my leaders so we can look at improving our guest experience so our guests feel welcome and cared for during their stay. We are currently undergoing some changes to improve efficiencies to our internet services and I’m sure you will be pleased with the end result. Our promise of ensuring our guests leave feeling better than when they arrived is still of the utmost importance to me and I deeply apologize for not delivering on that promise. In the meantime I would appreciate it if you could email me personally at experienceteam@westin.com with a phone number where I can contact with you to further discuss.
I look forward to connecting with you,

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manger
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Highland, Michigan
Level Contributor
89 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2014

This was our third or fourth stay at the Westin Harbour Castle over the past 10 years, and I'm sad to say that I doubt we'll ever go back.
The location is great. That's part of the reason why we've stayed there so many times. The view along the shoreline is beautiful in the summertime. And typically I enjoy Westin hotels because the beds are comfortable and you can count on high quality and service.
What was supposed to be a relaxing weekend getaway for me and my husband started with an awful check-in experience. After fighting through Toronto traffic (not sure if it's really bad now due to construction or if it's always this way in the summer), we arrived at the hotel around 4:00 p.m. The line to check in was about 10 people deep. No big deal, except that it took another 30 minutes before we made it to the front of the line! It seemed as though everyone checking in was having a problem. Meanwhile, the line behind us kept growing and growing.
To add to the irritation level, whenever the line for Gold and Platinum Starwood Preferred Guests grew to 3 or 4 people, one of the 3 or 4 employees waiting on the "coach class" customers would shift over to help out that line. Never mind the 30 people waiting in our line! I am a regular Starwood Preferred Guest, but I get the feeling that doesn't mean anything. They certainly never acknowledged it at this hotel.
Once we finally made it to the check-in desk, I was fuming. Great way to start out a weekend vacation. The staff member never apologized for the long wait. In fact, I got the odd feeling that this wasn't an unusual situation.
When it came time to check out 3 days later, I didn't receive a bill in my room so I went downstairs to find out how to confirm my bill. Because the wifi in the lobby never seemed to work the whole time we were there, I didn't receive my "e-folio" so in order to verify my bill, I got to wait in my favorite line again. And this time it was even longer! After waiting in line for 10-15 minutes, I went over to the concierge to see if there was any way that he could just confirm my bill amount -- even without printing it out -- and he couldn't on his system. He did, however, direct me over to the shorter Gold and Platinum SPG line. Once in that line, things moved along pretty quick and a manager came along before I even reached the front. I told him my situation, and he said that most people just get the e-folio (don't get me started on the wifi again!) or check out on their TV screen. WHAT?????? We didn't see anything in the room that said you could check out on the TV or we would have done just that!
Overall, this stay left a very bad taste in our mouths. The next time we return to Toronto, I am going to do some serious research on TA for a better hotel option.

  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Emily F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 13 August 2014
Dear Emily F,

Firstly, I want to thank you for posting this review of your recent stay we view all feedback as a gift. It’s great to hear that you have been a loyal guest of ours for the last 10 years so it deeply concerns me that we didn’t exceed your expectations on this trip. Your experiences while not typical of the service levels we normally deliver to our guests at the Westin Harbour Castle they are very concerning to me. I have forwarded your feedback onto my leaders and have asked them to review the check in process. Regarding the internet we are currently undergoing some changes to improve efficiencies and I’m sure you will be pleased with the end result. Our promise of ensuring our guests leave feeling better than when they arrived is still of the utmost importance to me and I deeply apologize for not delivering on that promise. In the meantime I would appreciate it if you could email me personally at experienceteam@westin.com with a phone number where I can contact with you to further discuss.

Again, thank you for taking the time to share your review to let us know where we have fallen short in our service delivery and standards.

I look forward to connecting with you,

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manger
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fenwick, ON. Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2014

Service at this hotel is excellent and if you are a SPG member you have separate check in and perks such as room upgrade to a view of Lake Ontario and the Toronto Islands. Check in staff and Concierge were excellent.

Breakfast at the on-site Mizzen Restaurant was buffet and a la carte and both were excellent with very attentive wait staff. Our stay was only for 2 nights so did not avail ourselves of the pool, gym or spa facilities.

Located at the Toronto Harbour Ferries makes Toronto Island a 10 minute ferry ride. Your options for transit include the ferries and water taxis.

You are a 10 minute 1 block walk from Union Station for Go Train and TTC services, as well as the Air Canada Centre. Hop on the Go Train at Union Station and take the train to Exhibition stop for a 2 minute walk to BMO Field and Exhibition Stadium.

CN Tower, Ripley's Aquarium, Hockey Hall of Fame and AGO are all within walking distance and other attractions such as the Distillery District, Eatons Centre, numerous festivals, Toronto Beaches, etcetera are all accessible via transit.

If you are not comfortable paying the prices for the on-site restaurants, there is a plaza directly across the street with a very nice grocery store, Chinese take out restaurant (limited seating available), Tim Hortons, etcetera.

To sum it up, the location and service makes this hotel a no brainer.

Room Tip: Your Lake Ontario/Toronto Islands view is your best best.
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank kozuh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 13 August 2014
Dear kozuh,

Thank you for taking the time to share some thoughts on your recent visit. This is exactly how it should feel and I am happy to know that our team exceeded your expectations. It’s great to hear that you were able to take in so much of our great neighborhood in just a few days. I will share your comments with the team as a great reminder of what we do best at The Westin Harbour Castle. Hopefully on your next visit with us you will be able to enjoy the pool and westinWORKOUT.
I look forward to welcoming you back sometime in the future.

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manger
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
36 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 August 2014 via mobile

I must have stayed at a different hotel to many of the reviewers.....or else I'm just used yo a very different standard of hotel. I'm not usually a complainer (see my other reviews to confirm this!) but we didn't have a positive experience at this hotel.
I researched our family trip to Canada many months ago and spent a lot of time looking at hotels in Toronto before booking the Westin Harbor.

Positives are the hotel has a good waterfront location, nice enough lobby area and is within a 10 min walk of the CN Tower, neighbouring aquarium and the Rogers Centre.
Negatives are the rooms are all a bit jaded and worn and there are a lot of roadworks going on nearby (not the hotels fault but definitely effects the location). These two issues alone would opt me off staying again in the foreseeable future. I agree with another reviewer that the hotel is no more than 3.5 stars.

The main problem for us though was the hotel clearly messing up our booking. I booked and prepaid for 2 lake view rooms many months before with a specific request that the rooms had to be either connecting or next door to each other as we are a family of 5. I reiterated this request again shortly before our trip and said we would not be arriving until late on in the day as out flight did not get into Toronto till early evening. When we checked in, not only were there no lake view rooms available at all , but the only 2 rooms they could offer us were miles apart in separate towers of the hotel. Eventually after pressing the issue they at least found 2 rooms in the same tower and said we could have 2 lake view rooms next door to each other for the next 2 nights after that. This meant moving rooms and all the associated hassle. It took more than half an hour to sort it all out when we were tired from traveling all the way from the UK and just wanted to get to our rooms.

However, I could have forgiven all the above if the attitude of the check in staff had been more pleasant. They made no attempt to apologise whatsoever, put no effort into trying to resolve the issue until I really started to kick up a fuss and were very complacent. What's really galling is that they said they had no connecting rooms in the hotel at all for our first night which resulted in myself and my husband having to separate and sleep with the children in rooms as they were far away from each other. Yet in the middle if the night an alarm kept going off in the connecting room to mine and I had to call housekeeping to come turn it off as it was clear there was no one actually in the room!
In fairness the hotel did after this give us a small room credit to reflect the inconvenience caused, but I would much rather have just been given the rooms we had booked and paid for in the first place.

We really only booked the Westin as it was the only supposedly high quality hotel on the waterfront with a pool. However, the pool area wasn't great (cold water that was dirty and have me pool ear after just one swim! And hot tub didn't work)and waterfront location not that great either (hardly any decent eateries nearby) with all the roadworks going on in Toronto. If I went again soon would just stump up the bit extra and stay at the Park Hyatt (much better location) or the one that One D stayed in on their recent tour (can't recall name but looked great from tour bus!).

  • Stayed August 2014
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Voyage_Jules1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 12 August 2014
Dear Voyage_Jules1970,

Thank you for for taking the time to share some thoughts on your recent visit with us. I was happy to hear that you enjoyed the location of the hotel with our great views of Lake Ontario. What you describe in your review is certainly not the quality of standard that we are famous for at The Westin Harbour Castle and it really concerns me. What you describe is totally unacceptable and rest assured I am personally following up with my team so we are able to avoid this situation in the future. In the meantime, I would really appreciate if you could send me an email me at experienceteam@westin.com where I can contact you to further discuss.

Again, thank you for taking the time to share your review to let us know where we have fallen short in our service delivery and standards.

I look forward to connecting with you,

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mississauga, Canada
Level Contributor
62 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2014

Stay here for the location by the water and the lakeview rooms. We needed a place that was close to the harbor and Distillery District (25 minute walk), so this hotel was in the perfect spot. Do pay extra for the lakeview room.. it's worth it to watch all the boating activity and for the beautiful view. One unique thing that this hotel offers is exercise apparel rental (clothes and shoes by New Balance)! in case you want to work out in the Fitness Centre or make use of the Tennis Courts. It was a busy weekend at the hotel with multiple wedding parties staying.. otherwise I think our overnight stay would have been more quiet.

Room Tip: Pay extra for the lakeview
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 12 August 2014
Dear Jen P,

Firstly I wanted to thank you for taking the time to post your review about your recent stay with us. I’m delighted to hear that you enjoyed our spectacular views of Lake Ontario and our great neighborhood. Our mission here at Westin is to ensure that you leave feeling better than when you arrived and our great partnership with New Balance with the Gear Lending program helps us achieve that, great way to pack light and stay fit plus you get a new pair of socks. Again thank you sharing your comments with me and I hope to welcome you back soon.

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ft lauderdale
Level Contributor
40 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2014

A massive convention center style hotel, fantastic staff, inspired views from rooms on lake side, awesome in summer with ferry at your door to take you to toronto island and the beach, great indoor pool and outdoor tennis court, stylish, very good room service. I would say in winter maybe not the best location as there are not shops and restaurants in the near area and not a vibrant part of town except for the lake in summer, as well westin hotels are know for there good workout facilities and for a hotel this size the fitness room was very inadequate. Overall a very good choice and a very nice stay.

Room Tip: lake front rooms
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank garyblue99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
GeneralManagerWestin, General Manager at The Westin Harbour Castle, responded to this review, 12 August 2014
Dear garyblue99,

First of all thank your for taking the time to post your review we appreciate the feedback. What you describe is exactly what we strive for at the Westin ensuring all our guest leave feeling better than when they arrived. I’m delighted that enjoyed the hotel amenities and local area. Just so you are aware coming in October a new PATH connection will be opening across the street exactly 145 steps from the hotel, this will connect us with everything from the Air Canada Centre to Union Station all the way up to The Eaton Centre. I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t find out westin WORKOUT facilities up to standard I will ensure to pass on your concerns to the team. I hope to have the opportunity to welcome you back soon and hope you enjoy the rest of the summer.

Be well,

Tim Reardon
General Manager
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 The Westin Harbour Castle

Property: The Westin Harbour Castle
Address: 1 Harbour Square, Toronto, Ontario M5J 1A6, Canada
Phone Number:
Region: Canada > Ontario > Toronto > Downtown West , Harbourfront
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#16 Spa Hotel in Toronto
#23 Luxury Hotel in Toronto
#27 Family Hotel in Toronto
#28 Romantic Hotel in Toronto
#40 Business Hotel in Toronto
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Westin Harbour Castle 4*
Number of rooms: 977
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to The Westin Harbour Castle, Toronto. Our downtown Toronto hotel is located on the vibrant waterfront of Lake Ontario, where you can enjoy Toronto's seasonal events. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Westin Harbour Castle Hotel Toronto
Westin Hotel Toronto
Westin Toronto
Westin Harbor Castle Hotel Toronto
Toronto Westin
Westin Harbour Castle Toronto

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