Now in my defence, who actually checks to see if a hotel has air conditioning these days? I just assume that all hotels have invested in central air, or at least those loud, rickety, one room air conditioners you find in the cheaper lodging options. In particular, I expect places that routinely make the list of the Top 500 hotels in the world to be capable of leaving temperature control up to the guest. The Fairmont Empress in Victoria, BC does not follow that line of thinking however. Built in 1908, it's main method of keeping you cool is ceiling fans which while effective, are not what my family has come to expect from our typical accommodations on the road. In fact, once it became apparent that there was no way to immediately lower the temperature of the room, there may have been some over-dramatic reactions from some of my children.
|Ummm...if you're that hot, maybe don't wear jeans?|
On the other hand, that meant that Lori and I were sleeping in the living room....on the pull out couch. Yeah, that's strike two.
Now I'm sure nobody is surprised to hear that I've been to strike two quite a few times in the past. The key here is to try and turn the situation by focusing on the positives. Things like the fact that there was coffee readily available in the room...
Or the fact that the toiletries in the bathrooms were by some company I've never heard of, which almost guarantees that they were of very high quality...
There was also the really nice view of the Empress grounds and the BC Parliament Building, although I think I only got a half point for that since the best view was out the bathroom window.
Perhaps the best feature of the Empress however is it's location. You are steps from the harbor, parliament, and just about every other attraction in Victoria. I can't think of a more central place to be, and with it being the Canada Day long weekend during our visit, being that close to all the celebrations and activities was invaluable.
In fact, despite the air conditioning oversight (and the room cooled down nicely once we opened the windows and let the ocean breeze in) our first day went so well that I was convinced I was going to earn one of my two strikes back. Of course that's when it all fell apart. Apparently while not doing enough research into the air conditioning situation or the number of beds in the room, I also forgot to check whether or not the Fairmont Empress gets HBO. On a Sunday night. When the new episode of True Blood is on.
|Sorry you can't watch True Blood, but is that Batman's silhouette in the TV?|
|Yes dear...1+1+1=2. I still have one strike left.|