If you saw my special Hot Spots 2012 on the Travel Channel, then you know that I featured a couple of brand spanking new luxury hotels in Toronto. One of them was the Trump Toronto. Unfortunately, the editors cut our few hours of filming to less than a minute of airtime so you couldn’t get a real feel for the luxury this hotel offers guests. But a few days ago, Natalie and I got to experience the hotel that just recently opened on January 31st for a couple of nights as a guest of the GM. Here are 10 reasons why you would want to stay at the Trump Toronto:
1. Location, location, location
You know Donald Trump couldn’t agree more with this famous line about the importance of location and his Toronto hotel proves it. The hotel is located at the corner of Bay and Adelaide, which is in the heart of Toronto’s financial district. It’s also just a short walking distance from the Hockey Hall of Fame, CN Tower and the Eaton Centre shopping centre, which most tourists hit on their visit to Toronto. Trump Toronto is also a just five-minute drive (without traffic) to Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (YTZ), which is where Porter Airlines flies to and from 20 cities including New York (EWR), Boston, Chicago and Washington D.C.
Most Americans know how much prestige the Trump name carries and it might even have more allure for Canadians. I had dinner with a group of Natalie’s Canuck friends the other night and when she told them we were staying at the Trump Toronto, they all said, “Whoa … that must be swanky!” Although Trump doesn’t own the building, his hotel company manages it – and it lives up to the expectations that come with the Trump name.
3. Modern, comfortable rooms
To me, the 261 rooms feel more masculine than feminine, even though Ivanka Trump had a lot of say when it came to the design. Bottom line: they are comfortable and modern with classic touches that make the design enduring. There are touch controls for the lights, bedroom drapes and an electric fireplace. There are two flat screen TVs with more satellite channels than you have time to watch, a large working desk with a leather blotter and a comfortable swivel chair, which makes for easy working.
The minibar, complete with gold-and silver-wrapped, Trump-branded chocolate bars, is tempting but I rarely indulge unless I’m desperate for potable water. But of course in Canada, you can drink straight out from the tap so that wasn’t a problem. But there’s really no need as the night maid leaves two small glass bottles of Evian. The only annoying thing is that the bottles require a bottle opener, which they leave on just one side of the bed. I don’t want to name any names, so I won’t tell you the name of the girl who woke me up at 2:30am, when she suddenly got thirsty, didn’t realize the bottles couldn’t be opened by twisting off the cap and couldn’t find the opener, which was on my side of the bed.
4. Beautiful bathrooms
The bathrooms are floor to ceiling white marble and are just beautiful to look at. But the real treats: the oversized showerhead, deep soaking tub, heated floors, mini flat screen TV embedded in the mirror, long soft towels, Trump signature toiletries and luxurious, soft robes. I especially liked the heavy wood doors to the two private toilet closets in our room, so your partner can’t hear you do your business. The maids even leave a large embossed ‘T’ on the edge of the toilet paper each day for that extra special Trump touch.
5. Views of the city
The building is 65 stories. Floors 1-31 are for the hotel and the rest are for the 118 condominium residences that each sold for well over a million dollars. Natalie and I were on the 23rd floor and the sweeping views of the city were incredible so I can just imagine the stunning views from the higher floors.
Most of the workers wear little secret service earpieces so when the friendly valet or bellmen take your bags for the first time, they alert their colleagues so they know who you are and call you by name. Hello Mr. Jet! For a few seconds you feel like Mr. Trump.
7. STOCK Restaurant
The restaurant is beautiful with impossibly high ceilings, attentive service and great food that includes farm-raised steaks, chops, sustainable seafood and locally procured seasonal fruits and vegetables. Visitors to Toronto aside, the who’s who of Toronto dine here as well, so it’s loud and popular, especially with the young, hip, after-work crowd. Chef Todd Clarmo, who opened the famous Toronto restaurant Canoe, brought out a 48oz rib eye ($145), which he thought would be a novelty that might sell maybe once a week. But to his surprise, they go through about five or six a day. The guests at the table next to us, with their big financial expense accounts, ordered two! Yabba dabba doo! Afterwards, a table with handcrafted chocolates or other sweet treats from pastry chef David Chow will tempt your will power.
8. Quartz Crystal Spa
The two-level spa has everything you need: manicure and pedicure stations, hair stylists, a fully equipped gym, a lap pool (which is not yet open) and most importantly, talented masseuses. They have 10 treatment rooms named after minerals, including two suites where they offer a couples massage. What’s nice is that they realize most of their customers are businessmen and women who are tight on time so there are no long waits in the lobby … unless you dawdle while scooping out some of the tasty jelly beans (in the spa’s theme colors of black, white and purple) they have in the waiting area. Note: They do have one of the longest spa forms to fill out that I’ve seen: two pages with multiple choice questions like how does stress affect your skin, hair, etc. But they assure guests that once you’ve filled it out once, you won’t have to do it again on subsequent visits.
9. Free Internet
I hate the fact that most luxury hotels charge for Internet while most budget hotels don’t. It makes no sense to me … and the Trump’s GM, Mickael Damelincourt agrees! That’s why Internet is not only free, but when you register for the first time, it’s for a week – not just 24 hours so you don’t have to keep registering every day.
10. Trump chocolates at night
The night maid leaves a cute little box (it looks like a jewelry box) on each beside table with a single, delicious truffle to make sure you have sweet dreams … or at least a fix for your sweet tooth. It’s the perfect way to end your day.
Trump Toronto: Good to know
-Rack room rates begin at $395
-I found the light on the electric switches too bright when I went to sleep so I would cover them with my clothes.
-The hotel is still not completely finished so you might be able to hear (and see) some of the construction workers. The work will be finished by August 1st.
-The fire alarm went off twice one morning but it was the construction workers who set it off so if it happens to you, don’t panic.
-A round of drinks for three cost $70 in the STOCK bar. It’s not cheap but you’re paying not just for your drinks but for the energetic atmosphere and Trump experience.