a traveler from Travelocity.com
on August 20, 2008
We stayed at the Empress in Victoria because it truly looked like the best place to view Victoria from. Were we wrong!! The room cost a small fortune, there was no air conditioning, no high speed internet and our room overlooked an enclosed back courtyard that included parked cars and garbage dumpsters. All this for over $ a night! The front of the Empress is impressive and so is the high tea but if you do not book a reservation in advance for the tea you better make other plans. The staff were unhelpful and didn't even ask how our stay was. This is an obvious sign that they know what the answer will be. We stayed in a number of different hotels on our two week vacation and the Empress was the most expensive and by far the worst hotel of the bunch. I have stayed in my last Fairmont hotel. Every time I do so I leave disappointed. The chain tends to purchase historic hotels and then does nothing to update them. They simply use the historic nature of the property to sell it. My advice is to take something from the name. If your stay is "fair" then you've done as well as you could possibly hope with a Fairmont. If you go to Victoria stay in one of the many newer hotels which provide excellent service and amenities and visit the outside of the Empress for a quick photo.
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