NPR Reviews Provided by
Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge
steve_randomno from: Calgary, Canada
Published Date: Jan, 14, 2020 Travel Date: Jan, 1, 2020 Rating: 2
An underwhelming, if not poor experience
We stayed for one night on New Year's Day in a standard cabin.
We've been to the Jasper Park Lodge restaurant and lounge a few times, but this was our first and probably our only stay.
The resort has many cabins scattered around the grounds. We stayed in the basic cabin which was an 'adjoining room' to a larger cabin with poor noise insulation between the separating doors.
The cabin was well appointed but had an odd layout that meant the TV was not comfortably visible from either the sofa or the bed. Whilst the only view was of the parked vehicles lining the road, the blinds on the windows on two sides of the small cabin provided almost no privacy. With the lights on and blinds closed, you could see almost everything in the cabin from outside. It felt like being in an odd shaped, well appointed goldfish bowl.
We booked a basic cabin so were not expecting a scenic view (we were only there for a mid-winter night anyway), but the least we expect in a hotel of any modest standard is a functional room with a degree of privacy.
It's worth mentioning that the resort was at full capacity.
We attempted to take dinner in the main lounge. However, from the time we asked to be seated, to the time we were actually served some food was over two hours. The serving staff were completely overwhelmed. Everywhere was full of uncollected dishes, the floor was full of garbage.Service was down to the very essentials, so getting a second drink was an effort and forget about anyone refilling water glasses. We could see that it was best to play it safe and asked for burger and a flatbread which were worse than a mid range chain restaurant. 'Chaotic' best summarizes the atmosphere in the lounge.
This is a review of the hotel, not the beautiful surroundings or Jasper itself. The only redeeming features of the experience was that the service in the rest of the hotel was very good despite it being at capacity, but that's what you expect from a luxury resort.
In summary we arrived expecting a pleasant stay at an iconic luxury resort in an amazing setting, albeit at a busy time of the year. However, we left wishing we had just opted for a room in one of the many cookie cutter hotels in town.
The resort really needs to find a better solution to accommodating guest's dining needs when the resort is at capacity as there are no alternatives other than getting a shuttle or taxi into town.
- Value: 3
- Location: 5
- Service: 2
MMK13304 from: Edmonton, Canada
Published Date: Jan, 14, 2020 Travel Date: Jan, 1, 2020 Rating: 5
Nothing else compares
This is a perfect blend of rustic and modern luxury. Butler, why would we need a butler ? As it turned out , the butler team was extraordinary and took our stay to another level. They stepped in to help make new years fo our extended family extra special. Well done !
- Rooms: 4
- Cleanliness: 4
- Service: 5
WorldWideTravel88 from: Bangkok, Thailand
Published Date: Jan, 11, 2020 Travel Date: Jan, 1, 2020 Rating: 4
Fairmont Jasper = Luxury Suite is Great, Basic Room Not so Much
We stayed at Fairmont Jasper two years ago but it was during summer and this time we returned in the winter for something different. It was the tale of two stays: crowded and full hotel during New Year at the beginning of our stay in the subpar entry level room, followed by a fantastic lakefront luxury suite and staff less overwhelmed and more available to provide service in the second half of our stay. Regardless of the room type, this hotel has activities for all tastes and for all ages – it’s a big winter playground.
Fairmont Jasper is about a 4-hour drive from Edmonton airport so not the easiest access but the remote location is part of the strength of the hotel. The resort is in Jasper National Park (UNESCO site) with lots of wildlife on the property and vicinity; even in the winter we saw several elks, caribous, and deers. The hotel property is huge with over 700 acres of land, a golf course, and it sits besides a lake with hiking trails in the area suitable for all seasons. There is also a large ice rink loop for skating and a heated outdoor pool right behind the main building. The winter activities center provides several kinds of equipment to hotel guests: snowshoes, skates, cross-country skis, fat tire bikes, etc.
Because the first part of our stay was during New Year, the hotel was jam packed and there were no room types available other than the basic room. In our previous stay we had a junior suite which was fine particularly since the suite besides us was unoccupied so we had privacy. In contrast, having now seen the entry level room I am afraid it is not quite up to the level of Fairmont standards.
To start with the positive, the room was of a decent size unlike some hotels where the basic room is cramped. The problem was not size – it was weak soundproofing. Fortunately we had a room at the end of a building so we only had one neighbor rather than two. However we could clearly them, even when they talked with a normal tone of voice. The bathroom was quite small, had the shower in the bathtub which I am not a fan of, it had low water pressure, and no bathrobes available in the room (only upon request) – more on that below.
After a couple of nights we could move to our new room and the move was very smooth. When I called reception in the morning of the move they seemed to already be aware that we were changing rooms and they even knew our next room number. The bellman took care of our suitcases during the day which we had left in the previous room.
The “luxury lakefront suite” makes you feel like it’s a completely different hotel. First off those luxury suites are in the buildings at the far end of the resort so more private and less foot traffic outside. In addition they look more modern from the outside; they are probably a newer construction. The luxury suite is bigger and finished to a higher standard, not only compared to the basic room, but also compared to the junior suite we had two years ago. The bathroom was spacious, had a dual vanity, a stand-alone shower and a jetted tub besides it. Bathroom amenities are the standard Fairmont Le Labo products, but the luxury suite had the large version of bottles (90 ml) rather than the small ones (40ml) in the basic room. In the short hallway between the entrance and the bathroom there was a mini-fridge and a microwave, the latter of which was not in either the standard room nor the junior suite we had before. The bathrobes were also more fluffy in the luxury suite!
The bedroom can be completely separated from the living room via sliding doors on the side of the room and there are also sliding panels in front of the bed which you can open if you want to see in the living room and have the view of the lake outside. The furniture is more upscale throughout and there is a large fireplace in the corner.
In some hotels, I like having a suite upgrade but if I don’t necessarily need extra space I am ok booking the entry level room and if I get an upgrade great, if not then fine too. At Fairmont Jasper my takeaway is different. The luxury suite is much better in so many ways that I would book this room type outright upon returning, it is well worth the premium over even the junior suites.
Service during our stay was hit and miss. Part of the problem is that at the beginning of our stay the hotel was full and staff overwhelmed so I can partially give them a pass, but there were other problems which were unrelated to high occupancy.
I find it strange for a hotel of this caliber that they don’t have bathrobes in all rooms (especially in the winter) by default, rather than upon request. I called reception to ask for a couple bathrobes, after waiting a while, nobody came to the room so I called a second time and they apologized for being quite busy and said they would expedite my request. After waiting longer they still did not come so after about one hour I wanted to go to sleep; I called back to cancel the request and asked them to bring the robes in the morning instead. I put the do not disturb sign on the door and went to sleep. A while later someone from housekeeping came knocking at the door nonetheless, I ignored them and stayed in bed but they just would not let up and subsequently called me on the phone. After the call I got up and opened the door to get those infamous bathrobes, but the icing on the cake is that the bathrobes were both wet in some areas and would not have been usable even if I still wanted them that evening!
Breakfast is above average relative to other Canadian Fairmonts. The a la carte menu has some interesting options but we stuck with the buffet. There was a significant spread of hot dishes including ham gratin, a couple versions of eggs benedicts, frittata, even the sausages were non-standard – I saw “chicken and apple” sausages. Fruit selection could probably be better – most of it was standard hotel fruits, and the other downside is that the restaurant seating arrangement was a bit tight so when going to the buffet you would have to sneak between chairs.
We did not go to the gym; most rooms are scattered on the resort rather than in the main building which is fine in the summer, but in the winter you have to walk outside to go to the gym and change there. In the main building there is also a game room including shuffleboard, ping pong, electronic games, and billiards.
Overall we had a good stay with lots to do on the resort, and if there was ever a hotel where I would recommend stretching the budget to book a premium suite it would be this one. The entry level room gets you a place to sleep on a nice resort with many activities but don’t expect to be wowed by the room. The price premium to get a suite is not as high as many other hotels so next time we go there if there is availability for luxury suites, it will be our target. You get a bigger room, more upscale finishes, better soundproofing, and more privacy, in other words a 5* experience whereas with the basic room, the room itself struggles to reach 4* level and with deficient soundproofing sleep can be an issue – depends on neighbors. For us, the luxury suite is the way to have a fully enjoyable stay at Fairmont Jasper.
- Value: 4
- Sleep Quality: 3
- Service: 3
Published Date: Jan, 8, 2020 Travel Date: Jul, 1, 2019 Rating: 5
One of my favourites
I was on a Luxury Gold tour and this was a fabulous place. Not your normal hotel rooms but well spaced at lodges that were just lovely. Beautiful view. Lovely pool and spa. When people ask me about by Canada trip this is the first place I tell them about. So quiet and tranquil.
- Value: 5
- Cleanliness: 5
- Service: 5
Sandi S from: Brisbane
Trip Type: Friends getaway
Published Date: Jan, 8, 2020 Travel Date: Jan, 1, 2020 Rating: 5
After reading some negative reviews I was at first sceptical however my stay at the Lodge was fabulous. My accommodation was excellent, the room was very modern and spacious. The staff could not have been any more helpful.
I will definitely be heading back to the hotel in the warmer season on my next trip back from Australia.