Four Seasons: Baltimore

Old Nov 14, 11, 11:36 am
  #1  
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Four Seasons: Baltimore

Saved for stay next week. Hotel opens today, hopefully things are up and running smoothly.
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Old Nov 14, 11, 11:40 am
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Looking forward to your report!!
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Old Nov 15, 11, 9:17 am
  #3  
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looking forward to your report...
I looked at Wit and Wisdom's website... for Baltimore the prices seem pricey.. I hope that the food is top notch...
here's a local paper article

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/201...-upscale-hotel
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Old Nov 21, 11, 6:04 pm
  #4  
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Writing this from the FS Baltimore.

Hard product may be the best in the United States. Showers/tubs to die for, beautiful views, wonderful furnished balconies, and so on. Spa is comparable to the Dolder Grand Zurich.

Service has been incredibly positive and receptive to the feedback I've been giving. Only hiccups have been opening week things that I am sure can be rectified, and are not matters of attitude or competence.

Full review to follow soon.
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Old Nov 21, 11, 7:08 pm
  #5  
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Originally Posted by nba1017 View Post
Writing this from the FS Baltimore.

Hard product may be the best in the United States. Showers/tubs to die for, beautiful views, wonderful furnished balconies, and so on. Spa is comparable to the Dolder Grand Zurich.

Service has been incredibly positive and receptive to the feedback I've been giving. Only hiccups have been opening week things that I am sure can be rectified, and are not matters of attitude or competence.

Full review to follow soon.
Wow sounds nice.. can't wait to read your report...

I might have to try out Wit and Wisdom soon... definitely will try the spa out.. though their prices are even higher than the 4S in Georgetown...

FDW
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Old Nov 22, 11, 1:13 pm
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Originally Posted by nba1017 View Post
Writing this from the FS Baltimore.

Hard product may be the best in the United States. Showers/tubs to die for, beautiful views, wonderful furnished balconies, and so on. Spa is comparable to the Dolder Grand Zurich.

Service has been incredibly positive and receptive to the feedback I've been giving. Only hiccups have been opening week things that I am sure can be rectified, and are not matters of attitude or competence.

Full review to follow soon.
Sounds very nice. Baltimore is an underrated city IMO.

Mina is suppose to open one more restaurant (his signature one at the property, right?) early next year I think.
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Old Nov 22, 11, 2:14 pm
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Originally Posted by Shangri-La View Post
Sounds very nice. Baltimore is an underrated city IMO.

Mina is suppose to open one more restaurant (his signature one at the property, right?) early next year I think.
Mina is in charge of all the restaurants there it seems...
La Mill coffee is open already
and Pabu will open in February of next year..

It's a Japanese Pub food concept restaurant..

FDW
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Old Nov 24, 11, 5:08 pm
  #8  
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I'll post some brief impressions now, and will write my full report in the next week or so.

In short, this is a fantastic place, even more so considering that they have been open for all of ten days.

We arrived on Monday, having specified a 2:00pm check-in prior to arrival. The hotel is not yet FHR, but was willing to extend a complimentary breakfast and upgrade to me when I contacted them directly prior to their opening. I was informed that I had been upgraded to an Executive Suite (from my original booking of a Harbor King with Balcony) a few days prior to arrival, but noted that I would prefer the room with the outdoor space over the suite if that was all they could offer.

We arrived at 1:30pm, a bit ahead of schedule, and had a seamless check-in experience. The agent informed me that the room was about done being cleaned and would be done by 2, per my request. He escorted us to Lamill Coffee, the in-house coffee shop which shares the harbor-front of the lobby with Wit and Wisdom by Michael Mina. The coffee shop is excellent (I particularly recommend the double chocolate cookies!). At 1:59pm, the same agent came to check on us and hand me my keys. Very prompt and proactive service.

Upon arrival at our suite, 1011, we learned we had been upgraded further to a Harbor Suite. Now I will say that this review is partially biased based on the generous upgrade, but I did a tour of the standard rooms (~$300 price range) as well as Executive Suite (~$500 or so) and was just as impressed and found the finishes to be pretty identical. The suite itself is a true two-room suite with two full bathrooms. Full-length windows surround the width and length of the corner living room, and the bedroom has a furnished balcony overlooking the Harbor. The living space has a sofa and chairs, dining space, wet bar, and a very neat A/V hook-up and remote system for almost all devices I could think of (not sure if this is shared with lower categories). The bedroom was small, with a bed and small arm-chair, but comfortable. The balcony has two chairs and a table, and although the hotel is non-smoking, housekeeping provided me with an ashtray for my cigars proactively, so I don't think it's an issue upon the outdoor spaces. The closet area is segmented off from the bedroom and features a handsome dark wood finish seen in many of the public areas of the hotel. The bathroom had a very deep soaking tub (truly huge, too large for two people) with a separate shower (rain shower + regular head). Toiletries were large bottles of Bvlgari Green Tea, though we requested L'occiatane as they are our preference.

Service is fantastic. The few mistakes we encountered were, as I mentioned, matters of training and not attitude. Little problems with the plumbing, an undelivered newspaper, housekeeping tossing something I wanted, etc--were quickly rectified upon discussion with a very kind and receptive manager. Concierge service is still learning: two of the people I spoke to resorted to Google for simple requests, acknowledging that they had only been in the city for two weeks. However, Marama and Preston at the desk are true professionals, and were able to arrange to have one of the better places in Little Italy deliver a full dinner to us en-suite on a cold and rainy night.

At the current point, Wit and Wisdom is the most disappointing aspect of the hotel. I had terribly inattentive service the first night and spoke with a manager. He was very receptive (like most of the senior staff), but I was frankly very surprised that he made no effort to comp my drink nor even offer me a complimentary drink with my dinner the next night. Again, this isn't the kind of thing I'd expect from most places, but it's a restaurant in a Four Seasons and it's the right thing to to do build rapport with guests. I received similar feedback in speaking with some other guests at the bar and around the property as to the poor service. Nevertheless, the food is quite good.

Room service is inventive, prompt, and some of the best I've had anywhere. The Southern-influenced menu (chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, etc) is hearty and very reasonable at $28 for an item, coffee, juice, fruit, and toast.

The spa is one of the better ones I've encountered in North America. It reminds me quite a bit of the new Ritz Toronto, but more high-end (and free to use...ahem...). The mens and womens rooms each feature a wet area with steam, sauna, vitality pool, heated chairs, and experience showers. The pool area is not finished yet but is sure to be a hit in the warmer months.


All in all, this is a great hotel with a divine hard product backed up by individuals with truly friendly service attitudes and the willingness to help. I can't wait to go back in a couple months when they've sorted out their opening issues, but even at this time, it's highly recommended.
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Old Nov 24, 11, 7:43 pm
  #9  
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Originally Posted by nba1017 View Post
I'll post some brief impressions now, and will write my full report in the next week or so.

In short, this is a fantastic place, even more so considering that they have been open for all of ten days.

We arrived on Monday, having specified a 2:00pm check-in prior to arrival. The hotel is not yet FHR, but was willing to extend a complimentary breakfast and upgrade to me when I contacted them directly prior to their opening. I was informed that I had been upgraded to an Executive Suite (from my original booking of a Harbor King with Balcony) a few days prior to arrival, but noted that I would prefer the room with the outdoor space over the suite if that was all they could offer.

We arrived at 1:30pm, a bit ahead of schedule, and had a seamless check-in experience. The agent informed me that the room was about done being cleaned and would be done by 2, per my request. He escorted us to Lamill Coffee, the in-house coffee shop which shares the harbor-front of the lobby with Wit and Wisdom by Michael Mina. The coffee shop is excellent (I particularly recommend the double chocolate cookies!). At 1:59pm, the same agent came to check on us and hand me my keys. Very prompt and proactive service.

Upon arrival at our suite, 1011, we learned we had been upgraded further to a Harbor Suite. Now I will say that this review is partially biased based on the generous upgrade, but I did a tour of the standard rooms (~$300 price range) as well as Executive Suite (~$500 or so) and was just as impressed and found the finishes to be pretty identical. The suite itself is a true two-room suite with two full bathrooms. Full-length windows surround the width and length of the corner living room, and the bedroom has a furnished balcony overlooking the Harbor. The living space has a sofa and chairs, dining space, wet bar, and a very neat A/V hook-up and remote system for almost all devices I could think of (not sure if this is shared with lower categories). The bedroom was small, with a bed and small arm-chair, but comfortable. The balcony has two chairs and a table, and although the hotel is non-smoking, housekeeping provided me with an ashtray for my cigars proactively, so I don't think it's an issue upon the outdoor spaces. The closet area is segmented off from the bedroom and features a handsome dark wood finish seen in many of the public areas of the hotel. The bathroom had a very deep soaking tub (truly huge, too large for two people) with a separate shower (rain shower + regular head). Toiletries were large bottles of Bvlgari Green Tea, though we requested L'occiatane as they are our preference.

Service is fantastic. The few mistakes we encountered were, as I mentioned, matters of training and not attitude. Little problems with the plumbing, an undelivered newspaper, housekeeping tossing something I wanted, etc--were quickly rectified upon discussion with a very kind and receptive manager. Concierge service is still learning: two of the people I spoke to resorted to Google for simple requests, acknowledging that they had only been in the city for two weeks. However, Marama and Preston at the desk are true professionals, and were able to arrange to have one of the better places in Little Italy deliver a full dinner to us en-suite on a cold and rainy night.

At the current point, Wit and Wisdom is the most disappointing aspect of the hotel. I had terribly inattentive service the first night and spoke with a manager. He was very receptive (like most of the senior staff), but I was frankly very surprised that he made no effort to comp my drink nor even offer me a complimentary drink with my dinner the next night. Again, this isn't the kind of thing I'd expect from most places, but it's a restaurant in a Four Seasons and it's the right thing to to do build rapport with guests. I received similar feedback in speaking with some other guests at the bar and around the property as to the poor service. Nevertheless, the food is quite good.

Room service is inventive, prompt, and some of the best I've had anywhere. The Southern-influenced menu (chicken and waffles, shrimp and grits, etc) is hearty and very reasonable at $28 for an item, coffee, juice, fruit, and toast.

The spa is one of the better ones I've encountered in North America. It reminds me quite a bit of the new Ritz Toronto, but more high-end (and free to use...ahem...). The mens and womens rooms each feature a wet area with steam, sauna, vitality pool, heated chairs, and experience showers. The pool area is not finished yet but is sure to be a hit in the warmer months.


All in all, this is a great hotel with a divine hard product backed up by individuals with truly friendly service attitudes and the willingness to help. I can't wait to go back in a couple months when they've sorted out their opening issues, but even at this time, it's highly recommended.
Nice review....
I know that the construction dragged on a bit; and that the financial crisis took a big hit to the hotel/condo plans. I am very concerned whether Baltimore has enough well heeled clientele to support said hotel....

that being said, I can see good business from Legg Mason clients and from well heeled out of towners (ie Middle Easterners) using our local hospital system.

I think the Marriott next door stands to lose the most of all the hotels in the city... the high revenue customers would much rather head to the 4S.

I'll try to have a stacation there soon... some friends are checking out Wit and Wisdom this weekend; I'll see what they have to say...

FDW
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Old Nov 24, 11, 7:56 pm
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Originally Posted by FlyingDoctorwu View Post
Nice review....
I know that the construction dragged on a bit; and that the financial crisis took a big hit to the hotel/condo plans. I am very concerned whether Baltimore has enough well heeled clientele to support said hotel....

that being said, I can see good business from Legg Mason clients and from well heeled out of towners (ie Middle Easterners) using our local hospital system.

I think the Marriott next door stands to lose the most of all the hotels in the city... the high revenue customers would much rather head to the 4S.

I'll try to have a stacation there soon... some friends are checking out Wit and Wisdom this weekend; I'll see what they have to say...

FDW

Maintaining occupancy was something that crossed my mind as well.


Wit and Wisdom was jam-packed on both Monday and Tuesday nights, and the hotel is apparently sold out for two nights next week, so there must be at least some early demand.
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Old Nov 25, 11, 12:10 am
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It'll definitely be full when the Yankees are in town. There doesn't seem to be anything better for the local economy
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Old Nov 27, 11, 9:21 pm
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Sounds promising. I look forward to your full review.

Have you stayed at the FS-Seattle or RC-Toronto? Curious how this compares to those two gems.
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Old Nov 28, 11, 12:40 am
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Hurrah, finally a good hotel in Baltimore!!!

And it's not just Legg Mason that has Baltimore as its HQ city, so does T Rowe Price.
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Old Nov 28, 11, 5:05 am
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Originally Posted by damaxer91 View Post
It'll definitely be full when the Yankees are in town. There doesn't seem to be anything better for the local economy
I had the same thought!
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Old Nov 28, 11, 6:20 am
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Originally Posted by rfrost View Post
I had the same thought!
A bit too far from Camden Yards to walk though.

I remember going in '98 to Baltimore to see the Yankees and bumping into Bernie Williams who was walking back to the Marriot after the game.
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