Review: Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver | Prince of Travel
Earlier this summer, we headed into Vancouver for a weekend in the city. Our wedding anniversary also happened to fall on this weekend, so we decided to stay downtown for our first night.
After searching around, we opted to give the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver a try. Its central location and reasonable rate led me to book here rather than any of the other, more expensive downtown properties.
Here’s a review of our stay.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver – Booking
Prior to our stay, we had actually booked two nights at The DOUGLAS on a travel agent rate. After hearing about the relatively poor soft product from other members of the Prince of Travel team, we decided that we’d be better off elsewhere for this visit.
Furthermore, we were offered a stay with friends in North Vancouver for our second night, so we just needed a place for one night instead of two.
Given that our booking was relatively last minute, I scoured the available options. After some shopping around, we settled on the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver.
I wound up using a Free Night Award from my Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card to book a base-level room. The Free Night Award covered 35,000 points, and then I topped it up with an additional 10,000 Bonvoy points from my account.
Cash rates for this hotel fluctuate from around $240 in the low season to over $400 per night in the summer months. In our case, the price was up over $400 due to the last-minute booking.
Using Marriott Bonvoy points at the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver costs between 40,000–60,000 points per night.
When compared to our valuation of Bonvoy points at 0.9 cents per point (cpp), we didn’t get particularly excellent value from our Free Night Award. I was just happy to save some cash for other ventures over the summer.
Pets can stay for an additional $50, and parking is set at $48 per day.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver – Location
Located in the heart of downtown, the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver is steps away from transit, attractions, and plenty of dining.
While this hotel doesn’t offer stunning ocean views, it is ideally situated close to many of Vancouver’s downtown amenities.
Waterfront Station, only only eight minutes by foot, is the terminus station for both the Expo and Canada SkyTrain lines. Here, you can also catch the SeaBus, which takes you across the Vancouver Harbour to Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver.
Vancouver City Centre and Granville stations are even closer by, at three and five minutes by foot, respectively.
Many fine dining and drinking establishments can be found in Gastown, which takes less than 15 minutes to get to by walking or five minutes by car.
From the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver, the massive Stanley Park is only five minutes by car, 10 minutes by transit, 20 minutes by foot, or five minutes by bike.
On the English Bay side of Downtown Vancouver, you’ll find Sunset Beach. It’s a leisurely 30 minute walk from the hotel, or alternatively seven minutes by car or 10 minutes by transit.
Lastly, Vancouver International Airport is easily accessibly by the SkyTrain from Vancouver City Centre station. You’ll be at the airport in less than half an hour.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver – Check-in
We arrived at the hotel in the late afternoon, after a ferry ride from Vancouver Island with some friends. The parking garage required a key to enter, so I quickly popped inside to check-in.
The hotel was originally a Mandarin Oriental hotel, and then operated under the Metropolitan Hotels Group until Marriott took over in 2018. There are statues outside that serve as a vestige of the hotel’s past.
The lobby is quaint, with a small seating area highlighted by a colourful carpet and two sets of chairs and couches. The check-in desks are tucked away to the side, next to the elevators and by a small hallway.
I was slightly confused about the hotel’s branding, as I’d seen it referred to as a Renaissance property. In fact, the hotel has confirmed that it is indeed a Renaissance property operating as the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver.
Nowhere inside or outside of the hotel was Renaissance mentioned, so I imagine the complete rebranding might be something in the works for the future. It looks like the lobby is even ready to host a Renaissance Navigator, but the desk wasn’t staffed during our stay.
Using the chat function, I had proactively done some low-key “suite-talking” to see if any suite upgrades were available. Upon check-in, they confirmed that we had been upgraded to a One Bedroom Suite, which is the second-highest room tier at the hotel.
After confirming my Marriott Platinum Elite status and the hotel’s amenities, I parked the car and headed up to room 1201 on the hotel’s 12th floor.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver – One Bedroom Suite
Parts of the hotel have been recently renovated, while others haven’t seen an update since Marriott took over.
For example, the elevator lobbies on each floor have been revamped, but the doors to the rooms and the key card readers are from an older era.
The suite immediately opens up to a small foyer, which then leads to the living room.
You can book adjoining rooms, and the door to the adjacent room is located in the foyer.
Upon entering the living room, there is a mini-fridge housed in a cabinet underneath the television. On top of the cabinet, you’ll find a Keurig coffee machine and an ice bucket.
There’s also a tall standalone closet in this area, with an ironing board, safe, and coat hangers inside.
The carpeted living room has a grey couch flanked by two stone side tables. There’s also a blue lounge chair, as well as a large wood and stone coffee table in the middle.
One of the suite’s two Juliet balconies may be accessed from the living room, with the other just off from the bedroom.
The view from the suite looks out over Howe Street and some of Downtown Vancouver’s tall buildings.
A desk is tucked away against the wall that separates the living room and the bedroom. When we arrived, we were delighted to find a cheesecake and a welcome note from the hotel.
I spent some time working at the desk during my stay, and I wasn’t a big fan of the bench. It was difficult to sit at for long periods of time, and I found myself wanting more support.
Sliding doors open up to the suite’s bedroom.
The king bed occupies most of the bedroom’s space. I appreciated the accent pillow, which had a map of Vancouver on it.
I found the bed to be quite comfortable, and I enjoyed the overall aesthetic of the bedroom.
Opposite from the bed is another television, which stood on a wooden desk. The Juliet balcony opened up to the same view of Howe Street.
Connected to the bedroom is the suite’s only bathroom.
In the bathroom was both a shower and a bathtub. The shower had incredible water pressure, but the bathtub looked rather uninspiring.
The vanity was surrounded by three large mirrors, and came stocked with standard amenities.
A single bathrobe was found hanging on the wall next to a telephone, which was within reach of the toilet. There was also a mystery dial, whose function I could not surmise.
The room wasn’t fancy by any means, but neither was it bland.
There was plenty of space in the suite, and the layout was functional enough. Josh from the Prince of Travel team popped by for a meeting the next day, and we were able to get some work done, even if the living room wasn’t really set up to be a comfortable working area.
In fact, we spent most of our time during the stay in the living room.
Ashley and I wound up ordering in some sushi for dinner and toasted the occasion with some sparkling wine. My dog Blaze couldn’t resist the beef and scallop roll from the spread on the coffee table, and helped himself when our backs were turned for a celebratory picture.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver – Breakfast
Breakfast was included with my Platinum status. Since we had our dog with us, we ordered take-out from the hotel’s restaurant, Diva at the Met.
Breakfast is served from 6:30–11am from Monday to Friday, and then from 7am–12pm on weekends. The restaurant is also open from 3–10pm every day, after taking a brief hiatus during the lunch hours.
After scouring the menu, we both opted for shakshuka, which came with grilled bread. Ashley went with the avocado version, while I opted for the lamb merguez version.
We also ordered cappuccinos and some orange juice.
We were both very pleased with the breakfast offering, which felt like a proper brunch.
Furthermore, the meals were prepared relatively quickly, and the bartender made the cappuccinos when I came down to grab the meals. Because the food and the cappuccinos were still piping hot when I returned to the room, it contributed to an overall great breakfast experience.
Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver – Other Facilities
After our meeting, Josh and I headed down to Diva at the Met to use up a $10 food and beverage credit the hotel offered me before I checked out. We ordered drinks and then split some Thai chicken wings.
While the appetizer was quite small, the tamarind-based sauce was delicious. Based on my experience with breakfast and the appetizer, I’d consider trying something else from the restaurant, should I return here in the future.
The hotel has a small indoor pool, which is housed under a visually-pleasing dome. I resisted the urge to jump into the pool, and headed to check out the sauna and steam room instead.
Much to my surprise, there was a television inside the multi-tiered sauna. This was something I haven’t come across at other hotels, and I very much enjoyed watching some tennis while I relaxed in the sauna after a Points Consulting call.
There was also a steam room in the men’s change room.
Apparently, there’s a squash court hidden in the hotel somewhere, but I didn’t know about this until afterwards.
A small fitness centre is connected to the pool. In here, you’ll find some treadmills, free weights, and a strength training machine.
In the pool area, there is more cardio equipment tucked in the corner.
Lastly, there’s a business centre on the same floor as the fitness centre and pool. Inside, you’ll find some seats, a printer, and a single computer.
Our one night stay at the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver was surprisingly delightful.
I appreciated the overall quality of the food offering, and in particular, the tasty shakshuka breakfast.
The room was spacious, and it was nice to be offered a suite upgrade without much effort. Furthermore, the hotel’s location made it easy to get to anything we wanted to see during our stay.
I’d consider coming back to the Metropolitan Hotel Vancouver on another stay, especially if it’s priced at the lower end of the cost spectrum.