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All reviewsboutique hotelglass of sparkling winevalet parkinggreat boutiqueslater streetdowntown ottawabyward marketrooms are smallbottled waterparliament hillbusiness districtvalet servicequeen roomcomfy bedcentral locationupon checkmajor attractions
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Reviewed 21 March 2012

I recently spent 4 nights at ARC The Hotel as the hotel I normally stay at could not accomodate me that week. The ARC lobby, though smaller than many other lobbies, looks fine perhaps even rich with all of the marble. However, the entrance door does not open automatically. From experience, I can tell you that in a parka and carrying a couple of small items such as an audit bag and laptop, it's not easy to navigate the door when the doorman is absent. Let it be known that this absence happens regularly as he's also the valet for the parking.
The staff were almost friendly once or twice, but generally indifferent to me. I didn't notice that they treated others any better. Fortunately, I usually only dealt with them for wake-up calls and the odd request for directions.
The free WiFi advertised turned out to be only available in the lobby, which afforded little privacy to either check or compose email. I was informed that wired internet service was available in the room for a daily fee. I was disappointed that none of this was clear online while booking. Starbucks also offers free WiFi, and you don't even need to book a room.
One elevator was extremely slow and the other, if you can believe it, even slower. I couldn't believe how long it took to climb three stories; to me it felt as if other hotels I'd been in could move you 20 stories in the same time.
The room was average in size, but felt small when compared to the suite hotel I normally stay at. There isn't a chest of drawers or any drawers of any description for clothing in the room, but there is a small coat closet without doors. So all of the stuff that you bring into the room is on view at all times unless you leave it in the suitcases; which was all that was left to me to do. The furnishings are very basic and functional, and include, an inexpensive flat screen TV (without HD service or perhaps it was just a poor-quality picture), a desk, queen-size bed (or it may have been a doudle bed), and a few other pieces (such as smallish end tables, a sofa and small coffee table).
The complementary coffee and tea that was advertised was apparently for the first day only. No one replenished the tea or the milkettes the remaining three days! But perhaps this was a good thing as the only way to make tea was to run water through the old small coffeemaker which imparted a strong taste of coffee into the tea. The tea as a result was undrinkable.
The battery in the bedside cordless phone would no longer hold a charge. This resulted in diving across the bed to get to the other phone in order to try and save my first incoming call, which occured at 10:30 p.m. of my first night.
In my opinion and based on my stay, the four star rating is not deserved and travellers should look for well-reviewed 3 star hotels instead. Ironically, my cost would have been identical at the 4 star suite hotel I normally stay at, since both hotels have negotiated identical rates with my employer. The suite hotel, in contrast, offers a well-equiped kitchenette and almost twice the space in many of it's rooms along with drawers and closets with doors. Thankfully, it also provides both a kettle and a coffeemaker and replenishes both coffee and tea daily.
Needless to say, I was back at the suite hotel the following week, and they appeared very pleased that I was back. They even upgraded me to a slightly larger suite with a separate bedroom, TV, and ensuite bathroom. Though my normay incremental cost on the upgrade would be negligible; it's their thoughtfulness that counts.

Room Tip: I'm not sure if there are any good rooms as the hotel is only about 5 stories high and on a major downtown street.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled solo
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5  Thank 5Wearytraveller3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ArcGM, General Manager at ARC The Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2012

Thank you for choosing ARC The.Hotel and for providing us with your feedback. Your comments are very important as they help us pursue continuous improvement. In fairness however, drawing a comparison of a boutique hotel to an all suite hotel is similar to comparing an Audi coupe to a Cadillac Escalade; both are fine automobiles but serve very different purposes. We appreciate your candor and will ensure that all of our points of service contact are consistent with a fine boutique hotel.

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Reviewed 18 March 2012

We stayed here as part of a HotWire mystery special. We would not have tried this hotel otherwise, but we were pleasantly surprised. It is central to downtown and a short walk to the Bytown Market where shops are open longer. The sidewalks seemed to roll up at 6pm on Saturday night. There are many good restaurants within walking distance.
The room was cozy and comfortable with a fridge and big screen TV. Others have said "compact" which is accurate. The bathroom was well equipped and the towels fluffy.
We were greeted with a glass of complimentary wine at reception. They were very concerned that we not exceed our 5 minutes of parking in the loading zone, but check-in and check-out were very efficient. We would stay here again.

Room Tip: Wifi in the room is an extra charge. However, if you get a room on the second floor, you can access the free wifi from the lobby or meeting rooms for free. There didn't seem to be a swimming pool. Parking is free on the streets on weekends ($20 through hotel).
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank GinSoup
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ArcGM, General Manager at ARC The Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2012

Thank you for your complimentary review of ARC The.Hotel. We are pleased that you enjoyed our hotel services, as well as, our unbeatable location. We would be honored to have you stay with us again in the near future.

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Reviewed 13 March 2012

I travel to Ottawa every couple of months for a few days, and have stayed in most of the downtown hotels over the last few years. This boutique hotel has become the one I return to (although sadly last time to Ottawa they were sold out) and I'll be back in a few weeks.

For someone travelling alone, the rooms are the perfect size. I feel very comfortable--in fact snug is word I'd use just for this! A couple I know stayed here, and felt they were bumping into each other. If you're looking for a big room, it's not here. But if you're looking for upscale decor and luxurious amenities, close to Parliament Hill, this is the hotel.

  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled on business
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2  Thank mkm6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ArcGM, General Manager at ARC The Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2012

The management of ARC The.Hotel would like to offer our sincerest thanks for your glowing review of our property and for choosing to stay with us time and time again. We look forward to welcoming you back when you return to Ottawa.

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Reviewed 10 March 2012

Absolutely beautiful hotel. Well-maintained and decorated in a sleek and sophisticated style, but with no pretentiousness. I made the reservation through Priceline, so I'm not sure how much it differs from making the reservation directly through the hotel, but we paid $103 + tax, which I think is good for the quality and location of the hotel. There was a small problem with booking through Priceline though - somehow the reservation didn't show up in the hotel's system, but it was handled very well by two gentlemen who were busy running the hectic front desk. They were exceptionally polite and friendly, and upgraded our standard queen room to a king to compensate for the booking trouble.

The linens on the bed are divine! I can't tell what they're made of but they feel luxurious and we both slept like rocks. The bathroom is equally splendid, with a fancy shower head. Also liked the Thann cosmetics that were stocked in the bathroom (the standard small hotel bottles) - there was soap, shampoo, conditioner, and hand cream, and they were a nice touch. (As a sidenote, I googled this line of cosmetics and they are NOT cheap).

Another pro is how close this hotel is to Byward market. We walked there in about ten minutes. Lots of great restaurants to choose from there.

Now, a few cons: I really expected a place like this to have a hair dryer in the bathroom, but there wasn't. I didn't bother asking at the front desk, although I feel like this is the kind of place that would get you a hair dryer if you asked for one. Also, there's a charge for wifi Internet (around $9/day) which I think is kind of a rip off. One more small thing: the doors of the TV cabinet are a bit awkward. In our room (713), when the TV is visible (therefore the cabinet doors open), that makes it awkward to access the bathroom, since the cabinet door sticks out too far. It'd be nice if they slid in somewhere out of the way, or could be opened all the way to be flush against the cabinet.

Other than that, this is a great place that I'd recommend if you're looking for a bit of affordable luxury in Ottawa.

Room Tip: Where we were in 713 didn't provide a view of any sorts - just a brick wall.
  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Kalina C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ArcGM, General Manager at ARC The Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2012

ARC The.Hotel appreciates you taking the time to review our property. We are pleased to know that our location suited you and that you were well attended by our staff. We hope for the opportunity to welcome you back to ARC.

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Reviewed 5 March 2012

I have to say that I wouldn't have picked this hotel had it not been for a blind bid on Priceline. Having said that, it would have been my loss. We just needed a place for 1 night, didn't want to pay huge money. I bid what I wanted to pay. Our room was "compact" but had everything we needed. For a longer stay, I would want a larger room. The bed was comfortable, the towels Lux, room was clean. The green apple, water bottles and chocolates were a really nice touch! We weren't there for the view, but outside our window was a lovely brick wall. The only complaint, and this is not the hotels fault, someone on our floor had a barking dog.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank CrusinfromMiami
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ArcGM, General Manager at ARC The Hotel, responded to this reviewResponded 22 March 2012

Thank you for your complimentary review of ARC The.Hotel. We are pleased that you enjoyed our hotel services, as well as, our unbeatable location. We would be honored to have you stay with us again in the near future

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