Alt Hotel St. John’s Staycation
The best part about a staycation? There’s no pressure to leave the hotel! I’ve spent a lot of time taking photos of hotels, and I usually don’t get to enjoy them as much as I should because I’m busy Instagramming my stay. But I still love hotels. I still get excited walking through the lobby, my head on a swivel trying to take it all in. While I’m all about AirBNB for longer trips, the magic of a freshly made bed, a chocolate on my pillow and a fluffy bathrobe get me all riled up (I still always check if there’s a pool, my eight-year-old self insists). As part of a media event, I was lucky enough to win a stay at the Alt Hotel St. John’s, so Adam and I decided it was the perfect opportunity to enjoy a night in a hotel without leaving the room!
Alt Hotel St. John’s
I’ve only stayed in a few brand new hotels — one still had the new paint smell that wasn’t appealing — but Alt Hotel is still shiny and new in the best kind of way. The lobby is bright with great views of St. John’s famous Narrows, with Signal Hill perched high above the Atlantic. The furniture is modern with vibrant blues and reds dominating the colour scheme. There’s plenty of space to lounge while you snack on your chips and local bars from Newfoundland Chocolate Company at Atlcetera, the cute little shop right next to the checkin counter. If you’re feeling like some billiards before dinner, there’s also a pool table.
This hotel is magic!
Well maybe not magic, but highly technological to say the least. The 148 rooms of Alt Hotel St. John’s have panels right next to the entrance and right by the bed, giving guests the ability to control the lights and the curtains from bed, and you can even push the do not disturb button without getting up! A red light outside your door alerts housekeeping to stay away.
We stayed in a Harbourview King Room with a huge bed, but there are Queen Rooms and Double Queen Rooms for travelling families. While I might not recommend it for longer stays (the lack of any type of kitchen, fridge or microwave doesn’t allow for it), the hotel has a modern feeling with all the tech bells and whistles you could want. For the business traveller this spot is ideal with a large desk, lap desk and ironing equipment, but luxury travellers be warned, like most Alt Hotels, these lodgings don’t come with the fancy bathrobe or slippers like those charming boutique hotels.We took full advantage of the ice bucket though, and damn the beds are comfy.
The bathrooms have a spa vibe going on with wooden benches and lots of white fluffy towels. I love when hotels give you more towels than people staying in the room! There are full-sized bath products by Montreal-based Bella Pella. There’s more tech the bathroom with the iconic puffin window in the double head shower (rain head and massage) and some flashy multicolour lights setting the mood for…well, for whatever you want to be doing in the bathroom.
Someone like view
The Alt Hotel St. John’s has a foolproof location downtown. They are close to all the amazing local restaurants and shops: renowned Raymond’s is right next door, so you can stumble home from your seven course meal, and the newly-expanded Posie Row offers a plethora of treasures and gifts just around the corner. Floor to ceiling windows in all the rooms showcase views of Water Street shops or those infamous Narrows. Come on, you cannot, will not beat those views.
For me the most important morning necessity is coffee. It’s one of the first things I check when I’m booking a hotel. I really loved the to-go cups for mornings on the run, but a glass coffee mug would have been appreciated for enjoying those views. There’s no on-site restaurant (yet), but there is a free continental breakfast. The lobby spread features cereals, fruit, yoghurt, juice and a selection of fresh pastries from Rocket, the standout downtown bakery. We opted to grab a couple pain au chocolat and enjoy them in our room with plenty of hot coffee.
The best thing about mornings at Alt Hotel St. John’s? There’s no set check out time!! All they ask is if you plan on staying past noon, you let the front desk know. We stayed past midday enjoying the sunshine and the coffee in bed (hey, it’s a staycation right?).