We got an excellent deal here so it's hard to be critical. Firstly, service was excellent. Everyone from the valet, to the front desk, to room service, ski shop, etc, was great. They even take your skis down to the shop for you, or take your bags back up if you bring your stuff down yourself. The valet gives you water for your drive out of town. Perhaps service in the bar off the lobby could be a bit friendlier, but overall fine.
The location can't be beat - this is the first time I've done ski-in/ski-out and it was amazing. You literally have to walk down about 10 stairs (right off the slope) and drop off your gear. They store your shoes/boots during the day while you're skiing.
Parking is $35 valet, $30 self-parking, but we used the garage under the Glacier Lodge which is about 10 steps from the Fairmont and paid $15 per day. The only downside to this is that there are only about 10-15 public spots - so if you plan to keep your car down there the whole time, and there's a spot when you get there, you're fine. there were plenty of spots when we arrived midday, but we decided to take a cab to dinner one night as we didn't want to get back from dinner at 10pm without any parking (to be honest though, I didn't check to see if it does fill up though, so maybe it's not an issue regardless).
The room itself was fine, but did have some flaws. We booked a mountain view room and had a lovely view and even a small step balcony, but unfortunately it was an accessible room. I don't know how much of a difference this made, but the closet bar was lower, only one sink and the bath was rather dated. It was nice they had robes, but they really need to have slippers. Everyone was walking through the hotel to the spa barefoot, b/c of course people only have boots with them for winter. The spa itself was okay - there were tons of kids in the pool and multiple hot tubs outside. If you want it hot, go outside as the indoor hot tub is really only lukewarm. You can get to the spa via floor 3 but this was a bit odd as you're walking down what appears to be a service stairway. Not a big deal though.
Back to the room - I was appalled with the comforter, or lack thereof. I know it was the end of March, but it was still snowing - I don't know if they changed out their bedding to summer stuff? It was the thinnest blanket ever, barely more than a sheet. I used the spare blanket in the closet and cranked the heat up, but the heat didn't work well either, Even when I had it high up, it seemed to have cool air coming out. The TV had quite a few stations that didn't come in properly. The shower was terrible, basically a shower head on the end of a hose - again, I don't know if this is just because of the accessible room though. The room was well-cleaned each night though.
We had drinks and snack in the bar off the lobby one day after skiing. Warning - their $20 nachos are not overprice - they're HUGE. My husband and I are big eaters, but these should come with a warning. We saw another poor group of 4 who had ordered 2 orders between them, that looked ridiculous.
We ate dinner at the Fairmont's Chalet/Golf Club one night for their fondue special. I wouldn't go back. We lived in Switzerland and fondue should not cost $65pp. Unfortunately it's a set menu, so you have to get a minimum of a starter, fondue and a dessert. I have to say, the salad that was the starter was excellent. The bread used for the fondue was not great, but they did replenish the veggies we were out of. My husband got the meat fondue and while there wasn't a lot of it, it turned out to be enough. The service here was just okay - the woman who seated us came around a few times throughout our meal and was much more helpful than our actual waitress, and the place was pretty empty. it is nice that they give you a ride over from the hotel though.
We also got room service one more and this came fairly quickly. My husband liked his egg white omelette, but the Austrian breakfast was way too greasy (I should have known with rosti, bratwurst and eggs).
I think all hotels should have filled mini-bars, what a missed opportunity! This one had a fridge, but it was empty - you could order stuff for it if you wanted. It's much easier to rack up charges if the water, beer, coke, etc, is right at your fingertips.
The location is good for walking around too - there is a small grocery store and liquor store, a few ski shops and small restaurants. Whistler Village is a shuttle ride away, but the hotel does offer this (we never used it).
Overall, I would give this 3.5-4 stars, but mostly because of the room itself. The service and location were excellent, a few updates in the rooms could make a big difference (and slippers in the room please!)
We loved Whistler though and hope to come back skiing again.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located at the base of Blackcomb Mountain, Whistler's landmark ski-in ski-out hotel, Fairmont Chateau Whistler resort hotel defines mountain luxury. A classic 12-story Chateau-style resort hotel with Health Club, Spa and the largest pool deck in Whistler - offering indoor and outdoor swimming pools, four whirlpools and breathtaking views of Blackcomb mountain. Situated a five minute walk from village center. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Fairmont Chateau Whistler Hotel Whistler
- Fairmont Whistler
- Whistler Fairmont
- Fairmont Chateau Whistler Resort