I have a soft spot for the Kensington Riverside Inn since I used to live in the neighbourhood and love the area. The Kensington Riverside or KRI is a very pleasant boutique style hotel in a fantastic neighbourhood with lots to offer the business traveller or those in town for a weekend.
For the business traveller, with good shoes you can walk to the downtown core, or take a cab for under 20 dollars to most of downtown. Running paths are steps outside the KRI door and there is a host of activity within walking distance to satisfy your evening social needs. The downside for the business traveller is the distinct lack of electrical outlets and adequate working space in a hotel that was designed to be a bit of a romantic get away. The installation of a reachable power bar behind each bed would go a long way for those of us who want or need to work in the evenings while watching the telly. The small desk beside an immobile flat screen just doesn't do the same job. And, to be honest, the free internet is frustrating to use, requires multiple log ins (nearly constantly) and has a very very weak signal. Needs to be upgraded.
For the weekend away person, the ambiance of the hotel is good, but folks it is time for an update of those carpets. The luxury of the modern atmosphere in the main lobby is immediately spoiled by the sad state of the upstairs carpeting. From hallways to guest rooms, the condition of the carpeting has deteriorated to a sadly detracting vision. Even I found it hard to overlook. Additionally, the shower head in my room ( a different room and the same problem from my last stay), generated one of those frustrating circles of water with nothing in the middle that leaves one annoyed rather than refreshed. It is difficult to have a satisfying shower when trying to arrange oneself to stand under the running part of the water.
Beds are super comfortable, I had no issue with the pillows. The fireplace is a wonderful addition for winter stays. Free bottled water in the room had good appeal.
The restaurant at the KRI is heavenly. Breakfast is included in your room rate and you would be foolish not to take advantage. Really good, made to order and done in reasonable time. Excellent coffee. Similarly, evening service boasts wonderful food but be warned about exorbitant prices. Don't say I didn't warn you. Wine on the patio while working on a presentation was particularly enjoyable with friendly, knowledgeable and efficient servers. Dare I say there are other excellent and cheaper places to go in the immediate neighbourhood if you don't have work to do....
A note about the parking. I have noted a lot of complaints about the parking. KRI has a small underground parking lot at a rate of less than 20 dollars a day. Yes, it is small but your vehicle will fit in and you can access your trunk and doors without getting smeared. It is underground and heated and if you stay in Calgary in winter, you will really appreciate it. The rate is substantially lower than all other parking in the city, street or otherwise. If all you have to complain about is a small parking structure, you shouldn't be writing reviews.
Staff service and attitude I found to be exemplary, including lending me paperclips for a presentation I was preparing (no they didn't want them back!)...
Overall, I will stay here again but will be very glad when there is a firm date on carpet replacement. KRI, we want you to look as beautiful as you feel.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Kensington Riverside Inn is Calgary's premier luxury boutique Inn located steps from Downtown Calgary along the banks of the picturesque Bow River in Kensington Village. This 19-room boutique inn features upscale accommodations for the discerning traveler, as well as the renowned Chef's Table restaurant. Your "Inn" experience will include evening turndown service, morning coffee/tea tray with newspaper, as well as complimentary high-speed wireless internet and bottled water in the guest room. When booking with the Inn directly, guests will receive a $20 per person food and beverage credit at the Chefs Table. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Kensington Riverside Hotel Calgary
- Kensington Riverside Inn Calgary, Alberta