The reigning royalty of Bermuda lodging, the Princess boasts some of the most comfortable rooms on the island and caters to its mainly business guests like no one else. It's the only full-service resort in Hamilton and is located right on the Harbour, just steps away from the liveliness of Front Street. Classy, contemporary rooms and suites have elegant hardwood furnishings and marble bathrooms. Fairmont Gold, the chain's exclusive boutique hotel within the larger property, is memorable for its regal lounge, set in the former ballroom. Take posh afternoon tea here complete with silver pots and fine china. Although at the Princess, as in all Hamilton hotels, there's no beach, you can walk off the dock onto a ferry (followed by a shuttle ride) to Fairmont's south shore beach. Because it caters to business, prices are lower on weekends.
Jul 15, 2010
We stayed here for 3 nights during the July Fourth Independence Day holiday weekend (Saturday to Tuesday). Our stay was a bit disappointing, and not representative of the Fairmont brand. Our main issue was with a request that we made several times prior to arrival and at arrival, but never received. Both my President's Club account and my spouse's indicate a request for a refrigerator. When we made our reservation, we reiterated that request. We e-mailed
the concierge two weeks prior to arrival to verify our request, and were assured that an alert was placed on our account for the refrigerator. At check-in, while we were given the room type that we booked (Bermudiana House), we did not receive the ground-level room that we requested, nor did we receive the refrigerator. (We checked in around 12:00 noon on a Saturday.) The desk clerk indicated that the refrigerator would be delivered later that afternoon. Several hours later, when it did not arrive, we went to inquire at the front desk. The same clerk indicated that all refrigerators were now gone, but that we could call housekeeping to empty our mini-bar. We did contact housekeeping, who never arrived to empty the mini-bar. We just wish they hadn't publicized the availability of refrigerators, and then basically lied to me multiple times about getting one. There was also a lack of lounge chairs at both the saltwater and freshwater pools on the Saturday of our stay. Guests were lying on towels on the grass. Again, I booked the Fairmont brand because I expected a minimum standard of what to expect. If we wanted to fight for pool lounge chairs, we might as well have gone to some all-inclusive party resort on a nearby island. Now for the good parts! The location was excellent for us, because it was an easy walk to town for shopping, sightseeing, and eating. The property is attractive and well-maintained for an older property, and the rooms in the Bermudiana House were nicely renovated, with pretty fabrics, flat-screen TVs, and nice bathrooms. (As a previous poster said, there is a frosted panel to the bathroom door, and although it does a good job of providing privacy, it does not lock, so I found that it would slowly inch open if my spouse was walking around in the room.) The weather was so lovely during our weekend, that we just lounged by the pool and relaxed, so I can't comment on the ferry to the other Southampton property. I believe it ran back and forth three times per day - TO Southampton at 10:00, 1:30, 5:30, and 6:30 or thereabouts and TO Hamilton approximately one hour earlier than those time (but don't quote me on that, my memory is bad!). There is a fair amount of green, grassy space at the hotel property, including a small putting green, an area with a fire pit and chimneas, Adirondack chairs, gazebos/pergolas, fish pond/waterfalls, etc. The view of the harbor is excellent, and it is fun to watch the boat traffic as well as to be able to see across the harbor to other houses and hotels. The town of Hamilton was very quiet on most days and nights, with the exception of Tuesday when a cruise ship was in port. It took about 30 minutes to reach the airport from this hotel, and it cost approximately $25 (plus 50 cents per bag/suitcase). The hotel could also arrange a shared shuttle for $10 per person, but we felt that the convenience of not making additional stops to pick up other guests was worth spending the extra $5. Smoking is allowed in outdoor areas of the property, including around the pool, which could bother to some guests. There is food and drink service around the pool, but it was better at the freshwater pool and more spotty at the saltwater, probably due to proximity to the bar/restaurant. I expected this hotel brand to offer more in the way of general pool service, similar to what other 5-star hotels do - someone to help you locate a chair, someone who walks around and mists guests, free ice water - but it was not to be. Miles Market is practically right next door (although out-of-sight), so it's possible to buy some drinks (alcoholic and nonalcoholic) and snacks for your room. We ate at Hog Penny, Barracuda, Bolero, Pearl, and Harbourfront, as well as at Harley's at the Fairmont. While food and drinks were expensive, they didn't really cost more than any nice lunch or dinner in any big city. (A few things were really pricey, though - for example, we paid $20 for a case of water at Miles Market, something that would have cost $5 in our hometown, and that was still a huge savings over what it would have cost at the hotel.) An automatic gratuity was added to every bill, but it varied from 15% to 18%. Service was fine everywhere, as was the food; perhaps my expectations were unreasonably high, but I had greater hopes for more inspired and creative meals. Dress for dinner was rather casual: Bermuda-length shorts and a collared golf shirts for men was acceptable. All-in-all, we enjoyed our trip to Bermuda, and we think we'll go back someday. I might even stay at the Hamilton Princess again because it was so convenient to the city, but I might try another location on the island so that I could explore a bit more. It was only a 2-hour flight from the US (which is less time than it takes us to fly to southern Florida), and we liked that we cleared U.S. customs before leaving Bermuda, so that it was as if our returning flight were a domestic one. The Bermuda airport is fairly small; there's a duty-free shop (outside of security), a restaurant/sports bar, coffee bar, two or three shops, a smoking lounge, and a first-class lounge. Most airlines have self-service kiosks for checking in. In summary, the people of Bermuda were friendly, the weather was perfect, and the island was gorgeous.
Aug 4, 2009
We stayed here the last two days of our honeymoon after spending the first 5 at the Fairmont In Southampton. In comparison, the staff is much less attentive, kind, and helpful. No one offered directions to our room (which were in a completely different building!) and staff was not very friendly. If you are looking for beaches- stay at the Southampton! The only reason to stay here is to shop in the city.
Jul 31, 2007
We had to stay at this hotel due to a flight being cancelled - I would definitely not stay here - no beach ! and the rooms are old ! The bathroom was very clean but so small - reminds me of an old motel ! I think Fairmont could do better ! The air conditioner was leaking all over the floor and noisy. Too many nicer places to stay. Sorry :(