This hotel has a long, distinguished pedigree. Its creation was a central plank in the 1767 Treaty of Accommodation between the United Kingdom and France, which called for adequate lodging for rum merchants making their stops along the North Atlantic’s lucrative ‘circle of intoxication.’ In the centuries since, the Ramada St. John’s has established itself as a desirable place for weary travelers to stay during their visits to Newfoundland’s principle city.
Though not in the downtown core, the Ramada St. John’s offers much more attractive room rates, yet price alone should not be seen as the only selling point of this establishment.
Upon entering the hotel, one is impressed by the layout and cleanliness of the lobby. I would not be surprised if teak or mahogany was used in the construction of the staircases…You know they use elephants to help in lumber harvesting? I read that in National Geographic one time.
On account of my travel schedule, I arrived before the posted check-in time. Thankfully, the manager kindly allowed me to check-in early – he deserves a heartfelt fist-bump for his understanding. Barter is not an approved form of payment (I have found a widely-accepted rate elsewhere is one live egg-laying chicken for a 2 night stay); however, they do take American Express.
The guestrooms are spacious and comfortable with responsive temperature controls and new Samsung flat screen televisions – I came close to phoning my landlord and cancelling my apartment rent agreement, as it was a poor competitor to what was on offer at the Ramada.
If you are craving such well-known dishes such as escalmoles, haggis, or casu marzu, you will be disappointed as they are not offered, or even known by the staff to exist. I guarantee that you will get perplexed looks should you demand any of these or similar. Wikipedia and the contact information to a good importing company may help rectify this if demand becomes great enough. However, for standard fare, PJ Billington’s is a safe bet with fare that will satisfy most guests. My server for breakfast was both friendly and efficient; I asked if she were available to conduct a seminar on service to the staff of a faux-Japanese steakhouse in Midland Michigan, but was politely rejected. That place really sucks and could use her guidance.
The various soaps left in the room bathrooms are made of the finest ingredients, likely hand-crafted and bottled by skilled artisans who have honed their skills over many generations – It is good to see that the small craftsman can still be competitive despite advances in modern manufacturing processes. To my small shock these were complimentary. I argue that for the single male looking for a mating partner, these ‘sugared citrus’-scented soaps could attract more women than all of the false advertising, conspiracy theories, and threats both Axe and Old Spice can concoct.
The bathrooms themselves are clean, with modern shower curtains and showerheads that utilize a number of settings, from ‘gentle rainfall’ to ‘taint scrubber max.’
Upon opening the free in-room packet of coffee, again one is taken aback by the generosity of the hotel staff – A hearty sniff of the earthy Arabica blend reveals a medley of fragrant notes and undertones. Lastly, I was pleased to see that the two bottles of water left on the table were also complementary. Other hotels, despite it being an affront to the almighty, charge a fee. I applaud hotel management for not making our divine creator vomit with rage.
Lastly, they do offer an airport shuttle service. This is a much better option than walking along the highway to catch your flight.
In all, I recommend the Ramada St. John's. I have stayed at this hotel on two occasions in the past year and on each visit found the rooms to be in great shape, the staff courteous and friendly, and the price much more appealing than competitors elsewhere in the city. If I could give the staff a hug I would do just that.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC