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“Teeny-tiny problems add up to one big "Next time, I'll go somewhere else."”

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Knickerbocker on the Lake
Ranked #40 of 56 Hotels in Milwaukee
Wisconsin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Teeny-tiny problems add up to one big "Next time, I'll go somewhere else."”
Reviewed 16 October 2013

My husband and I stayed here because a block of rooms were reserved for a wedding we were attending.

The first impression of the hotel is that it is very nice. I walked through the main entrance and looked for the registration desk. There are signs, so I followed them, which led me to a teeny tiny built-in counter with a woman sitting behind it. The sign saying "registration" showed an arrow as if there were another area beyond this teeny tiny counter. I asked, "Is this registration?" and the response I got was rather patronizing. I ignored it. I asked if we could check in early and was told that the good news was yes, we could check in early but the bad news was that there wasn't any parking available in the lot. There was a lengthy, convoluted explanation as to how we could manage parking on a Saturday with about 4 hours left while the parking meters were still in effect, while we tried to attend the wedding. "Park the car...move after two hours...then there are only two more hours left for valid meter parking..then move the car..." It was as if I was hearing a skit from Saturday Night Live about a bad hotel experience.

The room was a suite, I suppose, because it included a small refrigerator, sink and stove, which we did not use. There was a double-sized bed (small), a sofa and a large chair. They tried to make a very old room look modern through bedding, window treatments and pictures, but the fact is, this is an old hotel that smells old. The bathroom was teeny-tiny, but very clean and well maintained.

There was just one mirror in the room, and it was in the bathroom. No full-length mirror, which would have been handy considering we were going to a wedding, and two of us were trying to get ready.

I wanted to check out other amenities that might be available in the hotel, but the pages of that information were missing from the hotel book kept in the room.

Given a choice, I probably would not stay here again, unless the room rate was teeny tiny, and even then I'd most likely spend the bigger bucks and go someplace where the staff is a little friendlier, the hotel a bit better smelling and where, when I leave, I feel I got a pretty good experience for the money.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank one4wanderlust
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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149 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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  • Value
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
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English first
Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 4 October 2013

My husband and I were planning a weekend getaway and we decided on the the Knickerbocker. The pictures on their website looked great, so we booked it for Friday and Saturday. When we walked in the hotel it seemed charming, but when we got to our suite not so. The room's are very run down and need updating. The bathroom was not good at all. It was very old and it did not look like it was cleaned very well. Since we had a suite, it had a working kitchen. The floors in the kitchen were sticky, not sure what from, plus it smelled like mold. We decided to only stay for one night and leave on Saturday, because we did not feel comfortable. The hotel did refund us for the Saturday night and seemed not surprise that we were leaving. The hotel itself is in a nice location downtown, close to the lake and restaurants within walking distance. The hotel itself really needs some TLC.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Donna A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Milwaukee hotels

Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Level Contributor
195 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 September 2013

If you are looking for great hotel services, this is not it! If you like the feel of staying in your Aunt Mary's apartment in Milwaukee, this is perfect. A little shabby but serviceable. The baths could use some updating as could the furnishings. The housekeeping services are spotty, you can get everything you need if you ask but the service is not consistent on a daily basis. If feels a bit like an old residence hotel vs. a "real" hotel, but we like that! Fantastic location near the lake, great dining in the building and close by and easy parking (they charge extra for that). Terrible internet service. Lovely bath products.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank FunTravelerForSure
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rock Island, Illinois
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 September 2013

I often stay at the Knickerbocker when I visit my son in Milwaukee. Every time I've gone, the staff has been friendly and attentive, the rooms clean and the atmosphere... I feel like I've stepped back in time to an era when gentlemen tipped their bowler hats to ladies wearing long white gloves. This is a classic city hotel with the bonus of being next to Lake Michigan. I look forward to my next trip.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank DaisyJaneIowa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 September 2013 via mobile

We booked our room at The Knickerbocker because there were literally no other rooms available in Milwaukee due to the NML convention in town. The photos on line looked good so we decided to take a chance. Don't be fooled. The photos do not represent the property accurately. As we made our way to our room and got off the elevator and walked down the hallway we smelled urine immediately. We should've turned back at that point but, we didn't have another option so we continued on to our room. We opened the door to find a space that looked like it had been furnished with findings of some random garage sale! The furniture was old, warn and didn't coordinate at all. They were even using a wooden stool as an end table for the sofa in the living area. Classy. The huge bleach stain on the carpet in the same room looked as if it could be the scene of some past homicide! I walked into the kitchen, I noticed personal notes from the previous occupant held with a magnet on the fridge. In the bedrooms it was more of the same. More garage sale type furniture and the quilt on the master bed wasn't even large enough to completely cover the bed. Though we had a three night reservation, we stayed the one sleepless night we had to. Thankfully we found another room for the next two. Take my advise and avoid this property! YUCK!

Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
Helpful?
3 Thank L J J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oak Brook, Illinois
Level Contributor
44 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 August 2013

Stayed at the Knickerbocker and should of read the reviews. The front desk check in - the woman was on the phone stood there forever waiting to find out about parking and was not friendly. Came back later after the fest room was no very cleaned. Asked for a King Bed had two hard double beds. The outlets did not work - had to find one in the room that worked. Bathroom was just plain icky Price was expensive and was terrible -I was expecting as another reviewed an upscale hotel -Just plan bad -

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Sharen210
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Indianapolis, Indiana, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2013

I travel a lot for work and was pretty excited about going to the Knickerbocker for a wedding. Online it looked adorable and for the expensive price; I was sure this was going to be one of the best hotels ever. Oh dear god... was I wrong.

When we arrived the desk clerk said she wasn't sure if our room had been cleaned could we wait. Sure, no biggie. Then she said... I'm sure it was, go ahead up and call if it hasn't and we'll take care of it. When we walked it, I thought ooops hasn't been cleaned. The bed sheets didn't look washed, there was trash on the side table and everything was just kind of rundown.
THEN, I walked into the bathroom and there was pubic hair all over the shower and the toilet seat. There was a used bar of soap that apparently had been used by Sasquatch-covered in hair.

I called down to confirm it had not been cleaned. A different clerk told me it was but he would send housekeeping up. The housekeepr was incredibly rude and told me she had cleaned. When I showed her the bathroom she said: Oh I must have missed that! EWWWW. what else did you miss. I went down to demand a new room and a discount for the trouble. (We were now late for the rehearsal dinner.) We were switched to the room next door. It was just as rundown but at least clean (at least that's what I'm telling myself.) I called hotels all that night to see if we could change hotels but everything was booked.

They gave us a $20 discount for the trouble - $20 on a nearly $200 room GIVE ME A BREAK. That barely pays for your $15 parking fee. I felt dirtier sleeping in the bed than I did after 5 hours of dancing at the wedding.

If you have a reservation here... GET OUT NOW.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Jaime K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Knickerbocker on the Lake

Property: Knickerbocker on the Lake
Address: 1028 E Juneau Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53202-2933
Region: United States > Wisconsin > Milwaukee > Downtown
Amenities:
Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Milwaukee
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Knickerbocker on the Lake 3*
Number of rooms: 160
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Knickerbocker On The Lake Hotel Milwaukee
Knickerbocker On The Lake Milwaukee

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