There are a few “chain” hotel brands on which you know you can consistently depend. The InterContinental is one of them. Whether you’re staying mid-town at the InterContinental Yorkville or need a room right down in the heart of attraction action (think CN Tower, Ripley’s Aquarium and the Rogers Centre) and choose the InterContinental Toronto Centre, you can’t go wrong.
And that’s just Toronto.
Thanks to a lovely invitation from IHG, we managed to sneak in a visit to the latter after a wedding in The Distillery, and I only wish we could have stayed longer.
Location, location, location. Taking in a baseball or basketball game? You’re there. Heading up the Tower for dinner at 360? You’re there. Going to the Convention Centre? Yep, you’re there. Steamwhistle Brewery, Roy Thomson Hall, Mirvish theatres, Second City — it’s all right there.
Sleek, modern decor in every room awaits. It feels luxe but business-friendly. It’s not over-the-top contemporary but it has strong, clean lines and a bit of edginess.
We must now pause for a moment to talk pillows. I have a small pillow obsession (I sleep with six surrounding me) and they’re very important to me. The way they hug my body, the way they tuck under my neck when I’m on my side. I want them to be fluffy but not too high. I am, how you say, particular. Particular about pillows, I am. And no matter which IHG hotel I’ve stayed at — even beyond the InterContinental brand — they do pillows well. In fact, I loved being able to request extra pillows during our online registration. Pillow perfection.
Speaking of requests, as I was booking our room, I noticed something I hadn’t with previous IHG reservations: upgrade options online. I could select upgrades for nominal amounts that, if available upon check-in, would be applied to my final bill. This ranged from a $15 charge for a CN Tower view to $30 for late (3 p.m.!) check-out to $74 for a king bed club room with private check-in, upgraded amenities and Club Lounge access, which serves breakfast, lunch and evening apps. I really liked the ability to customize my stay.
Our room was beautifully quiet. I couldn’t hear people in the hallway, doors closing — nothing. And I managed to sleep until 9:35 a.m., which is unheard of for me since having kids.
We were on a high floor, so we had an awesome view of the city and the lake, and — of course — our beautiful CN Tower glowing in the night sky.
The valet is in kind of an odd spot — one floor down from the front desk. And it took us a minute to find it. This is a curse of being literally in the heart of a very busy city. I know it’s by design to make the process as fluid as possible considering its bustling location, I do. I’m just saying that it’s not as seamless as some other hotel valets.
Upon check-in, we were in a mad rush because we had just landed at Pearson after a trip to San Diego and we had to do a quick shower and change and RUN to a wedding. Make that a wedding reception because we were too late for the wedding itself. I let the front desk agent know this before requesting a razor (something I do at every hotel so I don’t have to carry one with me); she apologized for not having any at the desk but said she’d call someone right away. Well, we both managed to get to our room, unpack our nice clothes,have a shower and get dressed. As I was putting on my makeup, there was finally a knock at the door with my razor. Good thing Big B had one I was able to use. This was easily a 15 to 20 minute time gap from when I made my somewhat urgent request.
DISCLOSURE: IHG is a client of the firm where I work. I do not work on the business nor am I encouraged to stay at IHG properties or write about them as a matter of the work we do with them. I do so because it’s a brand I trust. And, therefore, all opinions are my own.