Entries in ‘Lodging’ Journal

Hotel Review: Fairmont Frontenac

Wednesday November 12, 2014 at 8:08 AM | 0 Comments

I had not yet set foot in historic Old Quebec, when I was warmly greeted by a Fairmont Hotel representative on Twitter, a social media platform. That’s the kind of customer service I have come to expect from Fairmont Hotels, and my stay at Château Frontenac was no exception. Bellmen welcomed me on a drizzly, gray night in early October. Texton, the tail-wagging Fairmont Ambassador had retired to his dog house and I was ready to dive into my bed, as well.

"Château Frontenac", Quebec, Canada

Hotel review: Château Frontenac. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

Château Frontenac

This 611 room iconic castle has recently undergone a multi-million dollar restoration and I was fortunate to stay in one of their renovated city view rooms. With nine miles of corridors running throughout the urban luxury hotel, replacing carpets and updating suites is no small task.
I like the way Château Frontenac blended the blue colors of the St. Lawrence River while hints of gold offered a historic European feel to the property.

"Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac", Quebec, Canada

Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac Lobby. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


"1608 Wine & Cheese Bar", Quebec, Canada

1608 Wine & Cheese Bar. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


Centrally located within the walls of Old Quebec, guests will feel comfortable strolling this pedestrian-friendly city day or night. I was also quick to notice that Canadians felt very welcome at the hotel when accompanied with their dogs. This was also true of my stay in the Charlevoix region at Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu.

"Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac", pool

Indoor swimming pool on 6th floor. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

I didn’t have a chance to try the spa, with its seven treatment rooms, nor did I manage any laps in the indoor swimming pool, but parents traveling with children should expect to spend some quality time on the 6th floor of the resort.
My king city view room (#4129) rented for $319 Canadian dollars. You’ll want to check the hotel website for current pricing and specials. I loved the feather and down pillows on my bed, but I was not thrilled with the location of the coffee maker on the bottom of a pull out shelf by the television. The Fairmont offers one of my favorite teas in room, Organic Kea Lani Orange Pineapple from Hawaii – maybe your coffee maker will be in a better spot?


"Le Chateau Fairmont Frontenac", hotel, hotel room

King City View. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

While there are plenty of things to see and do in Quebec City, one doesn’t have to go far for a good meal or cocktail. 1608 Wine & Cheese Bar is the place to congregate for wines from around the world, and, of course, local cheeses. Champlain Restaurant offers a lovely breakfast buffet ($24.62 Canadian dollars during my visit) with views of the St. Lawrence River, but the dinner service will keep meat lovers happy. I ordered the Quebec beef, a signature dish of the hotel – no regrets.
" Le Champlain", restaurant, Quebec beef

Quebec beef Le Champlain. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

Insider Tip
Whether you are a guest of Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac or simply enjoy history, you might enjoy the Historic Virtual Tour app available for download online. Like complimentary internet access and free local telephone calls? Don’t forget to enroll in the Fairmont President’s Club – it’s FREE!

For additional insider tips follow Luxury Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown on Twitter @Nancydbrown and follow @Fairmontfronten on Twitter.

Check-In Time: 4:00pm

Check-Out Time: 12:00pm

If You Go:

Fairmont Le Château Frontenac +1 418-692-3861 or (800) 257-7544
1 Rue des Carrières
Québec, QC G1R 4P5, Canada

Article written by and photos courtesy of Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown of What a Trip, Travels from Northern California. I was a guest of Tourism Quebec. All opinions are my own.

Review: Hotel Molokai, Hawaii

Friday November 7, 2014 at 7:07 AM | 4 Comments

If Hotel Molokai were any closer to the water, it would be considered a floating hotel. Literally steps from the Pacific Ocean, resting on the shores of Kamiloloa Beach, this Polynesian-styled hotel offers 57 air-conditioned rooms in Molokai, Hawaii.

"Hotel Molokai"

Hotel Molokai in Hawaii. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


Four ocean front rooms offer the best views, while standard rooms deliver the best value. Kitchenette rooms sleep up to four people – ideal for families or couples traveling together on vacation.


Authentic Hawaii

With Polynesian decor and shake roofs, the boutique Hotel Molokai is popular with locals and island visitors. Time your stay with a Friday night and you’ll experience Na kapuna – the elder’s jam poolside with guitar and ukulele. The singing and dancing takes place from 4:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

“We’re all about service,” says Hotel Molokai General Manager Michael Drew.

"Hotel Molokai" pool

Take a dip in the pool. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


"Kamiloloa Beach", Molokai, Hawaii

Kamiloloa Beach steps from your room. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


sunrise, "Hotel Molokai", Hawaii

Molokai sunrise. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


There is a $5.00 daily resort fee, but it includes internet, a computer kiosk in the lobby, free phone calls to anywhere in the United States, a light continental breakfast, movie lending library and the use of snorkel gear and beach towels. I liked the hammocks scattered about the property, the swimming pool and the Philosophy bathroom products.

"Hotel Molokai" king room

Ocean front king room. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


My king ocean front room, #136, rented for $269. per night. Check the website for current pricing and special package deals for this authentic Hawaiian hotel.

Insider Tip
Let manager Michael Drew buy you a drink on Monday evening at the hotel bar next to Kamiloloa Beach. For additional insider tips follow Northern California Travel Writer @Nancydbrown on Twitter and Hotel Molokai on Twitter @hotelmolokai.

"Molokai" hammock, hotel

Relax in Molokai. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

If You Go:
Hotel Molokai (808) 553-5347 or (877) 553-5347
1300 Kamehameha V Highway
Kaunakakai, Hawaii

Hotel review, photos and video courtesy of Luxury Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown. I was a guest of Molokai Visitors Bureau, however, all opinions are my own.

Review: Wavecrest Resort, Molokai, Hawaii

Friday October 31, 2014 at 7:07 AM | 1 Comment

If you are planning a visit to Molokai, Hawaii, there are plenty of things to see and do on the island, but not so many hotel choices. There is the Hotel Molokai and several condominium rental options.

"Wavecrest Resort"

Beach views at Wavecrest Resort. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown



I stayed two nights at the Wavecrest Resort by way of Molokai Vacation Properties. You’ll need to check the website for each individual rental, as condominiums range from clean and basic to recently remodeled. My one bedroom, #107, located in the “C” building did not offer air conditioning, but the full-size refrigerator kept my bottled water and healthy snacks cold during my stay. As an added bonus, there was a washer and dryer inside the condo, as well as beach towels to use at the beach and swimming pool on site.

"Wavecrest Resort", Molokai, Hawaii

Kitchen, living room combination. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

"Wavecrest" condominium

One bedroom condominium. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown

"Wavecrest Resort" condominium

Wavecrest Building C. Photo © 2014 Nancy D. Brown


As I typically stay in luxury hotels, I forgot to pack shampoo and conditioner on this trip – a gentle reminder that condominium stays are different than hotel stays offering those types of amenities. Fortunately, Molokai has several grocery stores on island with plenty of shampoo, fresh fruit and coffees grown on island – try the Muleskinner dark roast, locally grown and produced on Molokai.
My condominium required a three night minimum stay and rented for $105 per night. Check the website for current rates.

Insider Tip
If you are a light sleeper, bring ear plugs. I slept with the windows open in my bedroom and awoke to the sound of crowing roosters at 3:30 in the morning both nights of my stay. Good thing you are beautiful Molokai, as I do like a good nights sleep. For additional insider tips follow Northern California Travel Writer @Nancydbrown on Twitter and Molokai on Twitter @seeMolokai.

If You Go:
Wavecrest Resort
Molokai, Hawaii

Condominium review, video and photos courtesy of Lodging Editor Nancy D. Brown. I was a guest of Molokai Visitors Bureau while researching an article for another publication.