After a beautiful drive into Whistler from Vancouver in our rented Volvo C70 convertible we pulled into the Four Seasons right behind a tour bus that already started unloading their baggage and the swoon of tourists were getting off the bus. Luckily my better half darted for the front desk to retrieve our keys as I put the car in park. I was expecting the tour group to have their keys handed out by their guide but no they swarmed the front desk individually.
I made the booking through a Four Seasons Preferred partner so got to enjoy daily breakfast, an upgrade and $100 resort dining credit during our stay. We booked the standard room and were upgraded one category. Our check-in agent wasn’t actually a front desk agent so when I asked what the breakfast credit was good for she wasn’t sure as well as if the room had a balcony.
She got one of her colleges who explained we were upgraded and we could enjoy breakfast in room or at the hotel restaurant. The only part we didn’t really get was how much the breakfast credit was for. My better half thought $46 and I thought he said $48 per person. I think it ended up being $36 and we had to pay for the taxes and tip on top of this.
As we walked into the room I was nicely impressed. The room had a great layout with large double vanity sinks, separate shower, tub and potty with an enclosed door with a closet on the opposite side. The balcony had a nice table, two chairs and an ashtray! It’s nice to see some hotels haven’t forgotten about smokers.
The room was a generous size and the only complaint I have is the lack of more windows since it rests on an interior corner or whatever a building planner would call this. I’ve stayed at Four Seasons now a few times and must say their open glass showers with that little ledge to put stuff on are fantastic layouts though.
Anyways it was our first night in Whistler and we were in the mood to just stay indoors since the weather was a bit nippy. We rolled into the lounge to spend our $100 credit. The food here is more tapas style since everything is small and most plates are in the $11 range. We had the oysters, crab salad, carpaccio flatbread and they ran out of the mussels after we placed our order. The food wasn’t anything spectacular but well done and we felt there was good value.
The following day she spent at the Scandinave Spa while I was at the Chateau Whistler golf course. Afterwards we walked into our room and the housekeeping department did a fantastic job as is the usual for a Four Seasons. We were hungry so took the house car for dinner in Whistler Village.
Now I’m not sure if a “house car” is a standard in true luxury hotels around the world but to me it should be. The house cars usually have a “10 block” limit which I fully understand and actually like. This way I know even if it’s out it will only be a 5 minute wait unless the roads are clogged. Not that house cars are any cheaper then cabs because I always tip a $5 or $10 but it’s nice to enjoy one of their luxury cars with an employee who can share some good knowledge about the city if I inquire. Needless to say it was a nice ride to the village for our dinner.
Both days we decided to eat in the restaurant for breakfast. Since occupancy levels aren’t high in mid September in Whistler the full buffet was limited to an “Alpine Buffet” where you could upgrade to the full buffet for an extra $6 where they would deliver hot food a la carte. I enjoy fruit and maybe a few slices of smoked salmon for breakfast so I opted for the Alpine buffet both days which was good. For $22 a person I may even be inclined to visit it in the future even if I weren’t staying at the hotel. Between me and my better half we can eat $22 alone in raspberries here.
The hotel has a nice outdoor pool with a few hot tubs scattered around it. The only real downfall was it would be nice if you could enter the pool from indoors like at many other ski village hotels. We enjoyed it one evening after dinner and were the only ones here.
We parked our rental car just up the hill past the hotel. During the winter when they need to clear snow off the streets this isn’t a place where you can park legally. Just be sure not to leave any food in your car or garbage in your pickup if you decide to park here. Of course you can always pay the $28 for parking too right at the hotel.
Overall the service and room experience we received while staying here was very good and what you would expect from a Four Seasons. Since we were staying after Labour Day the rates are close to the lowest for Whistler at this time and it’s an easy choice to spend an extra $60 a night compared to many of the 3.5 and 4 star options nearby while getting the Four Seasons Preferred partner benefits.
If you prefer to be in the middle of the action a hotel in Whistler Village will probably be more to your liking. It isn’t truly ski in or out either even though they have a separate ski building and ski concierge at the base of the Blackcomb chairlift a few hundred yards away. Since the hotel was built fairly recently it doesn’t have the perfect location but guarantees to be quiet compared to many of the other top hotels in this ski town. However keep in mind anything you may need is at most a 15 minute walk or 3 minutes by house car.
I’ve stayed at 20 different hotels, condos and B&Bs in Whistler and can easily say the Four Seasons is in its own class in this ski town. It is truly the only 5 star hotel and if you enjoy the finer things in life, plan to eat out every meal and want to get out of the relative hustle and bustle of Whistler village during the night this is your hotel. If you prefer to cook a few meals and have more living room space at the same budget as a room at the Four Seasons I would suggest you look into many of the 1 and 2 bedroom condos with kitchens available throughout Whistler.