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Clean but dated downtown Banff hotel with off-site indoor pool & hot tub at Banff Park Lodge

Pros
  • Free amenities: parking, bike and ski/snowboard storage
  • Rooms were clean and comfortable said guests
  • Guests liked being within walking distance of downtown and the Bow River walkway
  • Friendly and helpful staff, according to guests
  • Many guests enjoyed the river view from their rooms
  • Many guests felt that the hotel provided a budget-friendly option in an otherwise expensive hotel market
Cons
  • Wi-Fi is $5 per day
  • No air conditioning (except for River Suite)
  • Many found the hotel dated and in need of TLC
Freebies
Free Parking
This hotel is an Editor's Pick for...
Editor's Analysis
Updated Jul 14, 2016
Overview
This hotel provides a comfortable budget stay, a 5-minute walk of the shops and restaurants of downtown Banff.

The smoke-free and pet-free hotel has 57 rooms and one suite (called the River Suite). All rooms include Wi-Fi ($5 a day), cable TV, a coffeemaker, a mini-fridge, a dining table with two chairs, a hair dryer, an electric fan and a thermostat for heat control. Ironing boards, irons and kettles are available on request. Rooms are furnished with 2 double beds, 1 queen or 1 king bed. Room extras include a sofabed, 2 bedrooms, 2 TVs, a microwave, a balcony and walk-out patio.

The River Suite has 2 queen beds, 2 sofas, a 2-person rain shower, iPod docking, 2 flat screen TVs, a large refrigerator, a coffeemaker, a microwave, a wall of windows and air conditioning.

Free outdoor parking is available on site. 

The Banff Park Lodge (a sister hotel) offers dining directly behind Bow View Lodge at the Chinook Family Restaurant, the Terrace Dining Room and the Terrace Lounge. 

Hotel amenities include a 24-hour front desk, concierge, weekday dry cleaning, free ski, snowboard and bike storage, elevator and meeting rooms.

Access to an indoor pool, hot plunge pool, hot tub, eucalyptus-infused steam room and exercise room is available through Banff Park Lodge (right next to the hotel).

The Banff Park Museum is a 2-minute drive away, and both the Banff Springs Golf Club and the Banff Upper Hot Springs are under 10 minutes away by car. The ski shuttle to the area's major ski resorts can be accessed at Banff Park Lodge, a 4-minute walk away. (All travel times: Google Maps)

Confirmed with the front desk on July 14, 2016: all rooms have a mini-fridge and heat control, parking is outdoors
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The Good
Guests typically enjoyed their stay at this hotel considering it to provide a lower cost room in an expensive hotel market.

Guests loved the location. It was quiet, next to the Bow River trail and close to downtown shopping, a movie theatre, a Safeway store and good dining options (a guest recommended Melissa's for blueberry pancakes and good prices).

Guests typically found the rooms adequate. They were clean and comfortable, and guests were pleased to have a mini-fridge, a balcony and nice views of the mountains and river. The River Suite was very well liked, described as very spacious and clean with a kitchen and dining area, a 2-person shower and views of the river.

Many were pleased to have free parking.

Staff were usually found to be pleasant, although some guests remarked about staff displaying some unhospitable, lazy and impatient attitudes.
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The Bad
Some guests offered their critique of the hotel.

Extra charge for Wi-Fi was considered unneeded, especially at $5 per day.

Some said parking was limited and tight, but this was on occasion only.

Recent room complaints posted were: old TV, could hear guests next door through thin walls, small patio off the room dirty and had cigarette butts, bed too firm, in-room coffee too weak, room was small and not air conditioned.

Other complaints found were: hotel not clean and felt shabby, hotel very dated and in need of renovation, the reception area is old and tatty/depressing, surprized to find restaurant and pool off site, no laundry room at the hotel as advertised on some sites, fitness room had minimal equipment, the ski storage is not secure with no way of locking up the skis--just a room full of skis.
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Show Sources
Sources
TripAdvisor.com ranked the hotel #14 out of 32 properties in Banff. Guest ratings averaged 4 points out of 5 from 494 reviews.

Booking.com guest ratings averaged 7.9 points out of 10 from 957 guest reviews.

Expedia.ca guest rating average came to 3.9 points out of 5 from 717 reviews.

Editor's Analysis by Scott B.
Analyzed by Scott B.
With a keen interest in the flow of information and an eye for communication optimization, Scott is always looking for ways to finish this sentence...
Guest Reviews
7.7
Good
#
22 / out of 41
hotels in Banff

Rated 7.7/10 based on 2264 reviews

Ranked #22 out of 41 hotels in Banff

2264
Location
  • Banff Centre (1.3 km)
  • Sunshine Village (14.6 km)
  • Peyto Lake (87.5 km)
Map Marker Bow View Lodge Banff
228 Bow Avenue, Banff, AB