An honest review
The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is a dreamy, castle-like structure tucked into the Canadian Rockies on the shores of some of the bluest glacier water you have ever seen. It’s a place I’ve dreamed of since I was 16, when dear friends of mine traveled there and returned home bearing photographic evidence (before blogs and Facebook existed- oye!).
Lake Louise lies within Banff National Park and is a little over 2 hours from Calgary International Airport. We rented a car at the airport and first visited Emerald Lake Lodge, then traveled south to Lake Louise.
While Brian parked the car, I headed into the lobby to get our room keys and take a few photos. Because I’m very mature and refined, the stairway reminded me of the movie Titanic. Haha. #jackandroseforlife. No, really, it is a grand staircase. Stately royal blue carpet says, “this place is fancy” while mounted elk and moose heads say, “but we’re in the mountains, eh.”
The Chateau felt stuffy, but down-to-earth (oxymoron, I know!). Even though we consider ourselves “travelers on a budget” we didn’t feel as though we didn’t fit in. The staff is overly friendly and accommodating AND there are people visiting from all over the world, so lots of different styles and tastes. The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is also an outdoor playground in the sense of all the hiking trails, ski trails, and the like, so even though the decor in the resort is very upscale, most people are just dressed for the weather!
The room was adequate. Even though we *ahem* stayed for free, I thought the room was a little small for the nightly rate of $669 Canadian. When we ordered room service (twice! also free!), they could hardly even get the table around our bed, and one of us had to sit on the bed to eat it. Only one chair would fit. #firstworldproblems
The bed was super comfy though, and the complimentary robes and slippers were a plus. There was also a small fridge in the room- just down the road in Lake Louise Village there are a few shops so if you wanted to save money on snacks and drink this could be helpful.
The hotel‘s location right on the shore of Lake Louise can not be beat! You’re less than a 5 minute walk from your room to kayak and canoe rentals, hiking trails, and more. Unfortunately we hit Lake Louise right as winter hit Alberta, so we did not partake in any of the guided hikes or activities (mostly because we weren’t packed for snowshoeing, dangit)!
We enjoyed dinner at the Lakeview Lounge on our first evening. This business casual dining option is great for the scenery AND the people watching (Hey you, people on their phones when you’re at one of the most beautiful places on earth, I’m talking about YOU. GRRrrr). The prices are mid-range.
As I mentioned before, we enjoyed the in-room dining for breakfast and appetizers and ate two rounds of poutine. Have you had poutine? Your taste buds will thank you, but your gall bladder will not. I digress.
As much as I dreamed of this place, I wasn’t as awestruck by the resort as I was by Emerald Lake Lodge. While the views and the service are excellent, it felt like really any major worldwide resort. However, we did find a big perk in those extra amenities like room service, that allowed us just to relax and enjoy some peace and quiet away from the hustle of family life. We didn’t expect the weather to leave us wanting just to unwind, but sometimes those big resort treasures are worth the extra cost.
What do you think? Have you been to Lake Louise? Stayed at a Fairmont Resort? Eaten poutine?
*This is not a sponsored post*