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“Love the setting but service & facility need help”

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Loews Ventana Canyon Resort
Ranked #7 of 129 Hotels in Tucson
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed 1 January 2014

I've been here several times on my own as well as with my family. The setting is phenomenal as always; landscaping is beautiful. Something hasn't gone right with the service since I was last here.

The room was run down - wallpaper was peeling from the wall. The carpet in our 2 rooms and hallway was stained and very well worn. Service, however, was bad enough this time that I am compelled to share a review after this stay. Something systemic is wrong about how staff are being trained and managed.

The ONLY true representation of 5 star service were the head valet/bellman. He greeted me with a wonderful smile and warm greeting while welcoming me and holding the door. Seems like he is proud of his resort and loves his job. The concierge was super helpful in providing information on hiking Ventana Canyon. The lady in the spa who helped us with setting up tennis court reservations was nice. This is where the great service ended.

The front desk staff couldn't have been older than 22 and the guy checking me in didn't even look at me or smile - not once - while checking me in. The pool guy manning the towel table seemed like he was on a break from college at his first job and was overly chatty and giddy. Don't get me wrong - young folks can absolutely provide fantastic service. These folks, however, did not get the right training to be helping people at a 5 star resort.

Wait staff in the Cascade restaurant in the evening was average for my family. We were trying to pick a place to eat with our older boys who were very hungry. Menu options were fairly limited and our waitress - although patient - wasn't super friendly or helpful about our options. We decided against staying.

For the Saturday night of our stay there was an hour-long S'mores by Firelight event which was well advertised throughout the resort. Lots of families (including us) were gathered prior to the start time of 7pm and were excited for the event. By 7:20 nothing was set up and several folks had to go into the Cascade (lobby) restaurant to inquire about what was supposed to be happening. One waitperson finally came out and set up everything in the pitch dark. One of the 3 fire pits wasn't working, so families were crowded around the 2 remaining fire pits to roast their marshmallows. The one waitperson left the unlit table of supplies to go inside to get someone change (the charge was $5/person!!) and left everything unmanned. It turned into a free-for-all with supplies that ran out. We decided to bag it and left disappointed. Do it right or don't do it at all.

Something about the cleaning crew isn't working either. Small bits of litter were visible around the property. Every time we got into an elevator it was covered in nasty handprints and had a different item of trash (coffee cups, wine glass, etc.) lodged onto the handrail. Maybe there needs to be more trash receptacles or places for dishes available for guests? Gross. These are details that, when thoughtfully taken into account, make properties truly 5 star.

The management here would benefit hugely by visiting with the general manager at Greenwood Village Athletic Club in Colorado. They have a fantastic service model which gets these things right for the type of clientele that Loews Ventana Canyon gets - and should hope to get again and again.

Interestingly enough, I've seen a few reviews on Trip Advisor about how people who have booked the cheaper rooms have gotten sub-par service. These were less expense rooms on this stay than I often book when I come on my own to get away. Although I book cheaper rooms on one stay, who's to say that I wouldn't look to book a convention for my company here based on my personal visit experience? If they got the quality of service that I did on this particular visit, I'd definitely think twice.

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank JanetMc_CO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MarketingSlsGuy, Director of Sales at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, responded to this reviewResponded 27 January 2014

Thank you very much for your TripAdvisor review on your recent stay at Loews Ventana Canyon. We appreciate feedback from our guests and your comments will be shared with senior management. We are constantly improving our property and apologize for not meeting the 5-star service we strive to provide. Please give us another try if your travels again bring you back to the Tucson area. Sincerely, Mark Lindsey

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Reviews (2,821)
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1,832 - 1,838 of 2,822 reviews

Reviewed 30 December 2013

Hi. This is the second time that my husband and I decided to use Priceline for a staycation at Lowes Ventana Canyon Resort. We were given a room in the same location both times - to the rear of the resort above (what I am guessing) is the furnace area. The view from the balcony was of the top of a building only accessible by staff. I believe the resort's heating unit is housed there as we would hear a loud noise as the furnace kicked on and then our room vibrated until the unit turned off again, which was almost an hour each time. It was hard to sleep because of the vibrations - similar to a very, very loud heartbeat. Also, on their website, under the Loews Promotions tab, then offer "Tasty Credits," they were offering a $25 credit for a one-night stay. I asked about this promotion as we had booked a one-night stay and was told that we didn't qualify since we booked through a third party. So, the message that I got from this is that if you book through Priceline and get a better rate per night you will get a less than average room and none of their promotions apply to you. Sad. I will most probably go elsewhere next time. Also, I'm rating the breakfast as poor as I didn't see any gluten free options other than a fruit cup.

Room Tip: Don't accept a room in the area of room # 4100's in the north west of the building.
  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank QueenB1110
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 December 2013

After 4 visits over an 8 year period (every other year) our families have gathered at Loews Ventana Canyon Resort in Tucson to spend some Christmas holiday time together. This most recent trip was pretty much a disaster over all. Room reservations and requests were screwed up, service in the dining room, poolside and bar was very much sub-par for this resort, sewer smell in hallways on various days and poor response to simple maintenance requests like TV's not working in the rooms (took 4 requests to finally get one TV swapped out for one that actually worked). We had a total of 7 rooms booked and all reservations were done months in advance. Not sure what was going on this trip but, in my opinion, the blame rests with management and not the staff.....how can the staff know what is expected if managament does not provide adequate training, information and expectations. Very disappointing for a Loews property !!!

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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Thank gbondOklahoma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 December 2013

We stayed there the night of our wedding. Beautiful location but was not impressed by the hotel itself. Room was nice, nothing exciting or made say ..... WOW.... Beautiful view which is what you really pay for. The experience was awful as the bed was as hard as a rock.... Woke up at 3am to the sound of water.... My wife was taking a hot bath as her back was also killing her. The bath is remodeled European style....or so we were told as shower only had one door... Water spilling all over the floor thus not allowing a relaxing shower......you have to pay for parking.... Use of gym etc. we live in Tucson and have stayed at most resorts but this was our first time here.... Sadly we were disappointed and felt our wedding night was ruined ;(

  • Stayed: December 2013
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Thank Jophisr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 December 2013

Loews Ventana Canyon Resort is nestled right into the foothills of the beautiful Santa Catalina mountains in Tucson, AZ, allowing visitors an up-close view of the Sonoran desert, and beautiful city views below. The hotel offers self-guided nature walks on the property, and plenty of great hiking nearby. It is a fantastic place to learn about Sonoran desert life and experience it firsthand. I can't think of another Tucson resort that blends so well into the unique landscape known as the Sonoran desert--chock full of majestic saguaro cacti. Additionally, there is a good selection of restaurants, a nice spa/work-out facility, a pool surrounded by desert plants, and a hot tub adjacent to a fresh water pool fed from a stream that trickles right down the mountain. It is a great place for families and exceedingly pet friendly. There is no separate "adults only" pool, so be aware that you will likely be sharing the pool deck with kids who splash. LIke I said, it is great for families, and there are kiddie programs for parents who need a little break. Ventana is a fantastic place to enjoy Tucson.

Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
1  Thank rismoezzi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 December 2013

Starting with the positives-
The facilities are really nice. Great views of the city at night, the building itself is pretty nice, though a bit dated on the inside. My family and I enjoyed the path to the waterfall through the surrounding desert landscape. The view of the Catalina mountains from the pool never got old. The pool is nice and heated enough to comfortably swim during December. The staff we encountered were very nice and mostly helpful.

The negatives (or maybe mediocre)-
Our room was kind of dated in appearance. I've stayed in Holiday Inns with the same or better level quality. The room we stayed in is supposed to be a $400 plus per night room (we paid substantially less), I would expect something nicer for that kind of cheddar. Maybe it was the time of year (week of Christmas), but it seems the resort was manned by a skeleton crew. The biggest complaint about the room was the cleaning service. I was (am?) completely confused about the room cleaning. They did a nice job of making the beds, but never replaced the towels until asked to do so. Even then, they never picked up the old ones. Even worse, the cleaning crew never emptied the trash from the room. We try to keep our room clean, and what little trash we did accumulate was neatly left by the door. To my amazement, it kept growing until we left.

We ate at the restaurant twice- the second time out of necessity. Service was slow for both breakfast and lunch. This was surprising considering how empty it was. Food was pretty good quality, though I was surprised at how small the portions were... C'mon man! $17 enchiladas? I didn't order lunch expecting to seek another meal afterwards. I found more value in driving 3 miles to Mickey D's, and I knew what to expect from them.

$10/day for basic (2 devices) wifi. Standard practice for the year 2003. I wonder if they know even Ronald McDonald offers this for free.

There is a free shuttle to Sabino Canyon, though they only leave at certain times. In 2013, I figured a luxury resort would have one or more shuttles on standby. My $100 Comfort Suites room did.

Gotta end this somewhere... The place is nice. I think it would be perfect for a golfing couple in their mid-fifties or older. I hope this doesn't come off as "old people bashing", but due to the service and overall setup, it seems this resort is not the best suited for a younger or middle aged couple with kids.

I may return one day when my wife and I are empty nesters and aren't in a hurry. Hopefully they will have free wifi by then.

Room Tip: Be sure to ask for a room with a pool or mountain view.
  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
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Thank mruta1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 December 2013

We always enjoy are stays at this resort. The pool is well kept and beautiful. The restaurants are all good with the Flying V being extremely well managed by H."Rock" Saul is our favorite. Entertainment on the weekend is usually first class in the lobby lounge. The rooms are all well maintained and clean with great city or mountain views. The spa and fitness center is also great.

Room Tip: ask for city view and suite if possible, second choice would be mountain views or dessert views.
  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank John N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Loews Ventana Canyon Resort

Address: 7000 N Resort Dr, Tucson, AZ 85750-1341
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Arizona > Tucson
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Business Hotel in Tucson
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Tucson
#3 Spa Hotel in Tucson
#3 Romantic Hotel in Tucson
#5 Luxury Hotel in Tucson
#6 Family Hotel in Tucson
#8 Green Hotel in Tucson
Price Range: £164 - £245 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Loews Ventana Canyon Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 400
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tucson's spectacular 'Ventana' or 'Window' to the Soul of the Sonoran desert-is Loews Ventana Canyon. Discover a magical perspective high above Tucson's Catalina Mountains, where this stunning natural retreat offers a variety of activities, signature services and experiences to relax, energize and inspire guests. A playground of visitor delights includes: the luxurious Lakeside Spa & Tennis Center; Canyon hiking; professional stargazing; 2 Tom Fazio-designed PGA golf courses and lighted tennis courts; 2 swimming pools; a fitness center; nearby riding trails and more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Loews Ventana Canyon Hotel Tucson
Loews Tucson
Tucson Loews
Loews Ventana Canyon Resort Tucson, Arizona

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