During a two-day getaway in Ottawa and the Outaouais region, we booked The Westin Ottawa to be at the heart of the activities and near Gatineau to go on a one-day mini-road trip in the Outaouais.
We had already stayed at the Marriott Ottawa Hotel, so we wanted to try another hotel and use a 35,000 points certificate obtained with my Marriott Bonvoy™ Business American Express® Card. The second night was paid with the same card in order to get 5 points per dollar spent at the hotel.
The hotel is conveniently located on Colonel By, across from the Rideau Canal, one block from the Byward Market and five minutes from Parliament Hill. You can get everywhere on foot.
Parking is a little more problematic: if you use valet parking, it will cost you $48 per day if you want to leave and come back. Pretty steep bill. If you wish to park the car yourself, you will be provided with very clear instructions to get to the underground parking lot at the Rideau Centre Mall. It will cost you $30 with no possibility of entry and exit, however there is direct access to the hotel, which is very convenient.
We had dinner at Café 1 Elgin (at the National Arts Centre) on the Rideau Canal, just across the street from the hotel. It’s a very pleasant place, two minutes from the hotel.
The lobby area and especially the high atrium are impressive, although not that big.
The hotel was very busy that day and yet there were no waits at the front desk and the staff is very helpful and friendly. They recognized my Platinum status and gave explanations for parking and other services.
However, there was no mention of breakfast, which is included with Platinum status. It wasn’t until I got to our room that I realized this and called the front desk to correct the situation.
I found the hotel staff a bit disorganized as I had to call back twice to get the breakfast vouchers.
I had asked for an upgrade, which I got: an executive suite with a view on Parliament. Our suite was located on the 15th floor, the Marriott Bonvoy Elite floor.
The dimensions of the suite and its view impress from the outset. The suite is actually made of two rooms, each with its suite number. The suite can easily accommodate up to four people.
There is a large king bed in a bedroom, two bathrooms, one with a large shower and the other with a tiny and uninspiring bath, a very large living room with a Murphy bed and two entrances each with a cupboard and a counter with mini fridge and coffee set. A note about the bed: we would like the presentation to be a little more neat!
A welcome gift awaited us: chips, candy, cookies, Belgian chocolate, sparkling water and four bottles of water. They gave us more water the next day. The classic coffee station was at our disposal both in the room and in the living room area.
We really enjoyed the view on the Parliament and on ByWard Market. In fact, we set up two chairs and a side table to make the most of the sunset. The room decor is not new and somewhat disappointing given that some suites have been renovated. By the way, I tried to get the Bonaventure or Colonel By suite but it seems that I don’t have Jean-Maximilien’s negotiating skills! It can therefore be assumed that the other suites and rooms will be renovated shortly.
The hotel services
Because of COVID, the breakfast buffet we would have been entitled to was closed. We were directed to Daly’s Express on the 3rd floor where we were able to order egg breakfast sandwiches, fruit and yogurt and granola cups from the counter. This type of meal was perfect for us and the vouchers offered with my Platinum status worth $15 per person per day covered the bill.
Next to the order desk, there is a small, rather creepy space to eat: we preferred to go back to the room to enjoy the view.
The swimming pool and the training room
On the 6th floor, there is a fairly large pool and a gym.
The space offers a beautiful luminosity, and with the gym equipment facing the large windows, training is very pleasant.
There is a good selection of equipment for a complete training.
The hotel also has a streakhouse-style seafood restaurant called the Shore Club which is located to the right of the lobby. We didn’t go there and the place didn’t seem very crowded.
Our general impression of the hotel
We really enjoyed the Westin because of its unbeatable location and for the view and size of our suite. The staff is very helpful and welcoming, although a little disorganized at the lobby desk; despite this we recommend it.
Cover Photo Credit: Marriott