Hotel Le Germain Maple Leaf Square
Hotel Le Germain has recently opened its second location in Toronto - this time mere footsteps from the ACC inside Maple Leaf Square. It's an odd choice for a boutique...but then again, Le Germain has never aggressively coveted the pinko arts/culture and fashion crowds. Unlike the westward Thompson, Drake and The Gladstone, Le Germain feels more refined and more welcoming to a straight laced sports fan (or athlete), or a businessman in town for some meetings in the nearby Financial District.
When I stayed at the hotel last month construction was still in its final stages. Not yet ready was the fitness centre but in its place we were allowed to sweat in the sparse gym provided to condo dwellers in the tower above. All we needed to do was navigate a series of doors, hallways and elevators and squeeze past residents queuing for the morning rush.
As part of the Maple Lead Square complex, this latest edition of the burgeoning Le Germain chain almost feels like a large hotel. 167 guestrooms is pushing the upper limit of the boutique category and the hallways feel noticeable more extensive than what I remember of my experience at the Montreal original.
Staying at such a hotel in the cold of January definitely has its advantages however. Aside from the hotel and the condos, the Maple Leaf Square complex has two restaurants - the award winning Real Sports Bar and the overpriced e11even as well as a massive Longo's with an extensive selection of prepared foods, fresh fruit and all the usual grocery items.
All this is to say that the Le Germain Maple Leaf Square is a worthy option if the agenda of your Toronto stay is centered around Bay Street, the ACC or the Harbourfront. For those looking to be closer to shops, restaurants and other attractions, the location on Mercer St. would be the better bet.
Beyond location, I almost only have great things to say about Le Germain Maple Leaf Square. Similar to my experience at the Montreal hotel, service here is excellent. Check-in and check-out was efficient and friendly; and when late at night we called downstairs because we forgot our toothbrushes and toothpaste, a staffer promptly brought up some travel-sized versions on the house.
Our standard room offered way more room than expected. Aside from the King bed, there was room for a small sitting area, plenty of storage/closet space and the hotel's signature glass enclosed shower that overlooks the bedroom. Hand and bath soaps came courtesy of the British brand Molton Brown, towels were eco-friendly bamboo and there was filtered water and free WiFi everywhere we went.
Other perks? A decent room service menu (certainly a worthy - and cheaper - option that the nearby e11even), a well-equipped breakfast bar with cheeses, fruit, eggs and espresso; and a decent lounge off the lobby that is totally serviceable for a pre-dinner cocktail.
A couple other things worth considering: (1) Parking is a hefty $35 a night. Because of the location there really isn't any street parking anywhere reasonably close so other parking lots are really the only options - and these can get expensive on game nights; and (2) Prices start at $229 which is on the higher end of the price scale in Toronto.