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by Lindsay MacNevin, The Daily Telegraph, November 2, 2016
Calgary’s first Relais & Chateau property, opposite the beautiful Bow River. Once a b&b, it's now a luxury inn focusing on personalised service, creative dining and a wealth of amenities. Art throughout the inn, as well as a burning wood fireplace in the large open lounge makes it feel sophisticated, yet comfortable.
- Lindsay MacNevin, Travel writer
This beautiful boutique hotel is located steps from the Bow River in the charming and lively neighbourhood of Kensington, just north of downtown Calgary. Surrounded by shopping and restaurants, without the hustle and bustle of downtown, it is a great location whether you are travelling for pleasure of business. A 10-minute cab ride takes you directly into downtown Calgary.
Style & character 8/100
The inn is welcoming, with a small individualised check-in area that opens into a large lounge featuring high ceilings and a wood-burning fireplace. Plenty of comfortable couches and chairs surround the fireplace, and tables are dotted with scrabble and chess boards for guests to enjoy. Throughout the hotel, visitors will find paintings and sculptures ornamenting the walls. Rooms are lit with plenty of natural light making them warm and inviting. The Riverside Inn manages to create a serene environment while still establishing a luxury ambiance.
Service & facilities 8/100
The service at this hotel is a step above most, with a focus on making each guest feel special. Return visitors are greeted by recognition and new guests are made to feel part of the family. Small personal touches are present throughout the hotel and include things such as nightly turn down service and fresh flowers throughout. Concierge service is available by email or by stopping by the front desk.
There is no fitness room on-site but each reservation includes free access to the Kensington Fitness Studio for the length of the stay. The Fitness Studio is a fully loaded gym located just a two minutes’ walk from the hotel. Kensington Riverside Inn partners with RnR Wellness to bring guests in-room spa services that range from manicures and facials to a variety of massage options. Complimentary cruiser bikes are available for guests of the Riverside Inn and can be borrowed from the front desk.
Over half of the 19 rooms are standard-luxury. The other eight rooms are spread across three different categories including two types of suites. All standard rooms come complete with either a king- or queen-sized bed, rainfall shower, balcony or outdoor patio and work desk. Local Skoah toiletries are in abundance in each bathroom. Free Wi-Fi is included, as well as free bottled water. Upgrading to a higher level room will garner you a fireplace, extra seating space and extra-large bathroom. Fridges are available on request.
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Food & drink 8/100
The on-site restaurant Chef’s Table has been recognised for its culinary creations and currently has a Four Diamond rating. It seats just 24 guests in an intimate but open kitchen-style dining room, with service as top-notch as the food. A seasonal menu changes every few months and includes items such as local lamb and Ocean Wise seafood. Dinner is served Monday to Saturday and guests can enjoy their meals in their rooms if they'd prefer. Breakfast is served Monday to Friday, with brunch being offered at weekends. Booking directly though Kensington Riverside Inn will garner guests a $20 (£16) dining credit to be used at Chef’s Table during their stay.
Cocktails, wine and small plates are served in the lounge area during weekdays from 5pm to 7pm for Happy Hour. One of the most popular small plates is the flights and bites, a pairing of three wines with hand-selected cheese, meats and baguettes.
Value for money 8/100
Double rooms (King) from $189 (£116) in low season; and from $329 (£203) in high season. Breakfast Excluded. Free Wi-Fi
Access for guests with disabilities?
Accessible rooms are available.
Children are welcome. No kids' menu available. Cots can be requested.
This article was written by Lindsay MacNevin from The Daily Telegraph and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.