You don’t usually think “fun” or “personality” when you think “airport hotel,” do you? At best, airport hotels are convenient places to catch a few hours of sleep before an early flight or after a late-night landing.
Canada’s ALT Hotel chain aims to change that no-fun image. Owned by Groupe Germain which runs chic boutique hotels in several Canadian cities (including the sexy Hôtel Le Germain Maple Leaf Square in downtown Toronto), this Montreal-based brand offers stylish rooms, high-tech necessities, fun amenities, and moderate prices.
I recently landed for a night at the ALT Hotel Toronto Airport to sample this blend of convenience and style. This 14-story tower is a quick ride from the Pearson terminals on the free airport LINK train.
Guest Rooms and Amenities
The 153 rooms come in two types: the compact “focus” rooms measuring 250 square feet, with one queen bed and a bathroom with shower only, or the slightly larger (330-square-foot) “versatile” rooms with two queens and a tub/shower combination.
All units have crisp white linens, down duvets, handy bedside reading lamps, flat-screen TVs, and iPod alarm clocks. They’ve very technology-friendly, with free Wi-Fi and lots of outlets at the desk and by the bed for plugging in your various devices.
The well-designed bathrooms have large mirrors, lots of hooks to hang your clothes and towels, and Fruits and Passion bath products.
One of my favorite amenities was this cool reading chair, with arms that fold and unfold, so you can lounge in different positions.
Facilities and Services
To keep their rates moderate, the ALT brand doesn’t offer concierge services or other deluxe services. What they do have is a helpful staff who can answer your questions, give directions, and look after your basic needs.
Although the ALT Hotel Toronto Airport doesn’t have a full-service restaurant, there’s a laid-back bar on the lobby level that also serves “grab-and-go” meals, from coffee, fruit, and pastries in the morning, to sandwiches, salads, and snacks later in the day.
There’s a small fitness room on the top floor that’s open around the clock, so you can work out whenever your flight gets in.
And as the hotel says in its promotional materials, “We don’t have a pool, but we do have a pool table.”
Hotel review by Vancouver-based travel, food, and feature writer Carolyn B. Heller, author of the books, Moon Handbooks: Ontario and Living Abroad in Canada. Photos © Carolyn B. Heller. The ALT Hotel Toronto Airport hosted my stay for review purposes.