NPR Reviews Provided by
Banff Caribou Lodge & Spa
janicepringle from: Innerleithen, United Kingdom
Trip Type: Friends getaway
Published Date: Mar, 16, 2019 Travel Date: Feb, 1, 2019 Rating: 4
Ski trip 2019
This hotel is great, just what you need when skiing. Reception staff , sorry I don’t know your names but the most friendly helpful staff ....EVER , thank you guys you helped me enormously. Now onto The Keg , good good food , a wee bit pricey ,but my son says the best burger in Banff, and he had a few plus he’s very fussy, BIG BIG SHOUT OUT for Marc, brilliant man very very good, thank you sir for our service. Next to Jody at breakfast , we as a group of 8 loved this man, great service ,friendly we tried to confuse him many a time and failed , he is truly a lovely man. The caribou in general has everything you need, good staff, basic but good rooms, good place for your skis at the end of the day, good bar and restaurant, wee bitty pricey for food , but good , give it a wee shot , we’ll worth it , we will be back for visit number 5 , yes it is that good folks , think about what you need and this place has it. Thank you caribou, see you soon, I hope
- Value: 4
- Cleanliness: 4
- Service: 4
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Mar, 15, 2019 Travel Date: Mar, 1, 2019 Rating: 1
Terrible Kings- dark, cramped and gross
Everything about their King rooms is depressing- if you’re coming for a couples weekend book elsewhere. The Queen rooms are fine, and the hotel itself is fine, but all the King rooms are set up to “take advantage” of the otherwise wasted space that would be the 4th floor under the roof buttresses. What this means is that half your roof slopes inward, taking up almost half your room headspace. Because of the buttress, you also get shorted a window, so now your room is cramped and dark. To top it off, they’ve wedged the bathroom in a tiny little space behind the door- it disappears when you open the door. Our room also came with the lumpiest duvet I’ve ever seen- it is disgusting. No other options were available from the front desk.
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Mar, 10, 2019 Travel Date: Mar, 1, 2019 Rating: 4
Stayed at The Carabou for 11 nights for a ski holiday. It’s located towards the edge of town (about a 10 min walk) but this is quite good if you are here to ski as the ski buses stop here first or second on the way out to the ski resort and on the way back so always able to get a seat. In fact the ski buses / coaches are really well run and frequent (although they don’t run to the resorts all day the last one too sunshine village is 1140am and takes about 20 mins and the one to Lake Louise is 1049am and takes about 45 mins).
Back to the hotel, the staff were helpful and friendly, free ski lockers are available in the underground parking area, first come first served and big enough for a couple of snow boards - either bring your own padlock or you can borrow one from the hotel. Our initial thoughts were that the hotel decor felt a bit tired and dated but it was ok. Our room had two queen beds a single arm chair, a small table with two chairs, a coffee machine (coffee bags provided), kettle, small fridge, safe, hair dryer, towels provided, and small bottle of shampoo, conditioner and moisturiser. Bathroom had a bath and over bath shower which was hot and powerful. The was a small wardrobe, two sets of 3 drawers and a coat rack. Certainly enough room for ski stuff and clothes for two for 11 nights.
The hotel also provide a free bus pass for the town bus (roam bus) which you can just hop on and off when you want.
There is a laundry (2 cad to wash and 2 cad to dry), free coffee available 1st thing whist you wait for the ski bus and Keg steakhouse attached to the hotel. There is also a nice spa area which consists of a small gym ( treadmill, static bike, cross trainer and some free weights), a large jacuzzi pool and a steam room. The chlorine in the pool was quite strong but it was nice and warm. The steam room was a decent size but hardly ever full as it is the hottest steam room I’ve ever been in! Nice after a day on the snow. Towels are provided in the spa but no gowns or flip flops in the rooms so take some if you don’t want to walk back to your room in your swimming costume... although most people do!
Would stay here again and it seems plenty do return.
Andrew W from: Winchester, United Kingdom
Trip Type: Family
Published Date: Mar, 5, 2019 Travel Date: Feb, 1, 2019 Rating: 5
Quintessential Canadian Ski Lodge Hotel
We had a fabulous 10 night ski break at the Caribou Lodge in February 2019. It's a very atmospheric place with a typical lodge feel. Staff were universally very friendly. Our sleep quality was great in rooms that were as expected in a lodge style hotel. Ski storage arrangements were excellent and the Caribou Lodge has the advantage in its location of being one of the first pick-up and drop-off stops for the ski bus.
The walk into town is around 10 minutes but there is a free roaming bus to get you there, although it's only every hour or so.
The on site Keg restaurant is also highly atmospheric and service is excellent. Breakfasts feature a very good variety of options, reasonably priced. Our one complaint was the lack of vegetarian choices on the dinner menu and we felt a little insulted that we had to order a variety of starters with fries for our main meal.
Overall however this was a definite 5 star stay.
- Location: 5
- Cleanliness: 5
- Service: 5
CaptTrouble from: Hudson, Wisconsin
Trip Type: Couples
Published Date: Feb, 23, 2019 Travel Date: Feb, 1, 2019 Rating: 3
Very cold and also dirty
My husband and I stayed here a week in February 2019. We won’t make that mistake again.
When we checked in, it was quite cold in our room. Our room was on the second floor just a short walk up (slippery) tile stairs from the reception area and front door. There was one electric baseboard heater on the far side of the room next to the part of the wall with the windows. There was a table and chairs in front of the windows, and my husband and I had separate beds. The baseboard itself was cold to the touch when we moved our things in. We turned up the thermostat and the baseboard took a couple of hours to respond, but it did slowly emit a little heat after that. As it didn’t heat it up very much, we set the thermostat at 76 degrees. It may have gotten to 66 in the room.
During our stay, outside temperatures went below 0 F. Our room was very, very cold the first night. We had both looked outside at the next door accommodations and car park underneath. I put the drapes together so that there were no gaps and we wore clothes to bed. There had been a filthy orange bolster on each bed that we immediately removed; I used them that week to hold the drapes together and we never had sunlight in an attempt to keep the room livable. We both felt like we were going to freeze the first night. The room was also quite noisy. The people at the next door accommodations were screaming and carrying on at midnight.
The next day we went skiing at Lake Louise. It had been noisy in our hotel since early in the morning so we didn’t get good sleep. When we returned to the room it was very cold again and the baseboard was completely cold to the touch. My husband was getting sick during this time and our frigid room was miserable. We spent as much time away as we could but did have to sleep there. There were two rooms of people just a door down from us who liked to party all evening and then get up early and be loud.
The next day my husband was too sick to ski so I volunteered to take the bus downtown and get cold medicine and sandwiches, etc. As I walked down the hallway toward the steps down to the lobby, I went past a room being cleaned. The housekeeper was a young girl with rubber gloves on and there was literally a wind coming out of the room. It was an arctic blast of cold air! She had the window open!
After I got back from my errands, I decided to double check the window in our room. It had looked closed when we were looking out it but I wanted to make sure. When I checked it, I discovered that the screen was bent and was just standing in the space. The locks that catch the window and keep it closed were down but the window was OPEN! Whoever had last been in the room (housekeeping??) had had the window open and didn’t get it closed. My husband worked on it until he got it closed; not easy as the window sill was warped.
With the window closed it was a little bit less cold in the room (it was never warm all week). The hallways were quite cold too; we turned up the thermostat to 80 just to get the room temp up to about 69. It showed that it was 77 degrees in the room. There is not a chance it was ever even close.
It may have been cold in the hotel also because the front door was broken. Guests had to pry open a side door and turn sideways to walk through it. Most people we saw were too lazy to turn around and close the door so the lobby would get very cold. Also, there was no one to assist with the door or to assist guests with luggage. There was usually a luggage cart near the door but not always. The people at the desk NEVER closed the door while we were in the lobby or offered that anyone could assist with luggage. Tough luck if you were older, mobility impaired, or ill. There was also a slippery build up of ice near this narrow side door. My husband slipped and fell.
The loud doors-open partying on our floor continued until those people checked out on Friday. Then people with children checked into a room across the hall for the weekend.
Not only did we have a cold room but we now had two nights (Friday and Saturday) with small children screeching, not screaming, while running up and down the hallways at MIDNIGHT. And also during the day. These people left a large deflated pool toy in the hallway for 2 days. Everybody had to walk around it, and then a discarded boot box wound up in the hallway. Now we had a stack of garbage to walk around for yet another day. Hotel staff did not seem to be in a hurry to get rid of it.
We had housekeeping service while there, and we tip well. The housekeeper did not even tuck in the bottom sheet on the bed much less change the sheets. Also, the carpet was not vacuumed.
During our stay we discovered the carpeting was coming apart and winding up on the down coverlets on the beds. These coverlets themselves should’ve been thrown away as the filling was in wads so they weren’t warm. I used the one dusty blanket in the closet and my husband wore fleece.
The furniture was very cheap and was coming apart. The drawers were all dirty inside. The top drawer of a stack of three that I was using would not completely open or close. The top drawer of the stack my husband was using fell off the parts holding it in and fell out in my husband’s hands. The chairs were covered in cheap vinyl and the table was nicked up. The arm chair in the corner was blanketed in dust (yuck). The table between the beds was banged up. The lighting in the room and bathroom were the worst and the dimmest I have ever seen. The mirrors in the bathroom were distorted. The room safe, in the closet, was filthy inside and so dark you needed a flashlight to see in. Their were small sharp items in the carpet when we first got there which wound up in our feet and the edges of the room clearly showed it hadn’t been vacuumed at all. There were visible food pieces near the table and chairs set, and we hadn’t had food in the room. The toilet and tile floor in the bathroom were unbearably cold to the touch all week. The hangers in the closet were rough wood and should have been thrown away. The light next to my husband’s bed would not come on.
The shower head was coated in hard water minerals. If you stay here, bring something for frizzy hair and your own shampoo and conditioner. I could not completely wash out those provided until I got home.
We got room service while we were there, and the person delivering it was great. However, the food was cold, and the tray with dishes stayed in the hallway for almost two days along with another tray up the hallway.
The young women at the front desk were nice and professional otherwise this rating would be at the bottom. I am horrified that this is where people in the standard class on the Rocky Mountaineer train trip stay in Banff. Upgrade to the Banff Springs!
We will never stay here again!