We stayed at the Hotel Rialto for three nights this week and had an amazing experience. We usually stay at budget hotels when we travel, and this was somewhat more expensive than our norm but still affordable and turned out to be great value. It is incredibly central in Victoria - corner of Douglas and Pandora, with valet parking or alternatively two city parking lots within a block and a half. Parking at those lots was a steal - $2 an hour but first hour free, after 6:00 pm free, and all day Sunday free. We parked on Saturday evening and went everywhere on foot exploring, until Monday morning, then used the car Monday and parked again in the late afternoon (another hour free!), and ended up spending very little on parking.
But the hotel - what a find. Boutique quality at almost budget prices. Not a flaw to be found. The staff are, without exception, friendly, competent, and extremely helpful. Need your bags loaded in your car? Someone seems to read your mind. Heading for the elevator? Someone appears to push the button for you! (Okay, not every time, but still impressive!). On arrival, we were given a coupon for a cheese plate to be used on any evening (we indulged on day 1 - can be in the tapas bar or in the room). If you really want to be in the bar, make a reservation - it seems to be a very popular place and may not be able to accomodate you without one - especially when Elton is in town!
We had three adults in our room, and we were given 9 coupons for a drink and pastry, one for each person for each day. Amazing value as the coffee is delicious (coupons can be used for special coffees as well as brewed). Selection of pastries does diminish if one isn't an early riser. One can also use the coupons for the free coffee plus $3 off breakfast instead. We availed ourselves of the "green" benefit - no room cleaning for two nights = $20 credit in either cafe or tapas bar, and two of us had a really delicious fresh fruit salad and toast breakfast on the final morning ($20 off + $6 off from the coupons plus free coffees), for absolutely nothing.
The hotel happily stored our bags both on arrival and departure day (and we had lots of little bags!), and the process was smooth. Slight backlog on arrival as there was a rush of people, so our bags were delivered to our room after a few minutes so that we wouldn't have to wait. We also had ice packs to be frozen for our journey home (no freezers in the room, just a bar fridge), and the front desk was happy to take them and freeze them overnight for us (again, no fuss, easy to collect on departure day).
Room was clean, stocked with wine glasses and comfy robes, and basically had everything we could want. We had a standard queen so no sitting area, but that was choice on our part in order to sleep three without anyone being on a sofa bed.
Our previous hotel stays in Victoria have been located behind the museum, and far less central. Having now experienced this location, we definitely would never stay anywhere but the Rialto in future - both for location and for the amenities that we felt added so much value. And kudos to the staff for all their over-and-above treatment!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A charming heritage building located right downtown Victoria. Close to shopping, restaurants and attractions. Minutes walk from Inner Harbour, Market Square and right beside China Town. Rooms are quaint and nicely appointed with flat screen TVs with movie system, in-room fridge, microwave and I-home alarm clocks. On the main level is Cafe Veneto serving all day breakfast and fast fresh lunch. Veneto Tapa Lounge is also on the main level of the hotel which is a stylish urban "restro-lounge" serving delectable small plates and a wine and cocktail menu that is among the finest in the city. ... more less
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