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“Top-notch accommodations, but don't upgrade to "harbor view"”

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InterContinental Boston
Ranked #4 of 85 Hotels in Boston
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 29 June 2009

I took my husband to Boston for a surprise birthday getaway, and we truly enjoyed our stay, with a few exceptions.

Pros: The "standard" room was beautiful, new, and unique, with modern decor and and a very comfy bed. We got a kick out of the shutters above the bed that opened into the bathroom. The bathroom was exquisite with a deep soaking tub and separate shower. I bought the "breakfast" package, which was a good value. Breakfast was delicious, and the service was great. The main restaurant was never crowded, and there was an outside terrace on which we could dine. We found the concierge very friendly and helpful as well, since we had never been to Beantown before, and needed some guidance.

Cons: The front desk personnel was snooty, fake, and didn't seem to care one bit that this was a special weekend for us. We stayed at the Williard Intercontinental in DC for my birthday a few months prior, and upon check-in we found a birthday note from the management with a delicious little birthday cake. I expected the same level of service at the Boston IC, and even after making it very clear to the staff that I wanted something special like that prepared, my request was ignored.

At check-in, I inquired about a water view room, and was told that it would be an extra $40 per night for the upgrade. I accepted the upgrade, but was thoroughly disappointed with the "water view". You see, the hotel is constructed in 3 sections. The 2 outer sections are condos. They rise higher, are built out further than the middle section, which is the hotel section. Therefore, when we looked out our window, most of the view was of the side walls of the two outer towers, with a little glimpse of the channel, which was just plain ugly. Not worth $80. We stayed in the room, but if we could go back in time, we would have just downgraded back to a regular room.

The location is good, but not ideal for this hotel, as there are plenty of nice hotels closer to the "action" of the harbor, South Side, and markets. But, Boston is a walking city, and I wouldn't say that it was "inconveniently located".

All in all, if you like really nice, luxurious hotel rooms, like we do, then this is the place to stay.

  • Stayed: May 2009, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank panzergirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ICBoston, Carrie Flynn, Asst. Marketing Manager at InterContinental Boston, responded to this reviewResponded 16 July 2009

Thank you very much for taking the time to review the InterContinental Boston. It is wonderful to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. We do apologize for the issues that you did encounter during your stay and although we always strive to make every stay extra special, it is clear we did not fully accomplish this for you. I am sorry that the upgraded room did not meet your expectations. Thank you again for your review of our hotel and we hope we will see you again soon.

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4,247 - 4,251 of 4,690 reviews

Reviewed 22 June 2009

Pros; Spacious rooms, very cozy, beds/pillows were comfy and had a wonderful bathroom with seperate shower and tub. Lots of marble and granite. Staff were mostly friendly and helpful and the location was really great; only 10 minutes to Quincy Market and another few minutes to the North End.
Cons; I wonder why they don't have 2 robes in the room, as most of the time there is more than one person staying. Also, there was no coffee machine. I know you can ask but it is always a hassle!
We were also disappointed with the Breakfast buffet. My husband was really looking forward to bacon and they had run out. Several people, including my husband compained but there was no effort to replenish it. As previous posts have said, the charges here are pretty high so you expect good service. However, despite a few hiccoughs, we would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank susanperrin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ICBoston, Carrie Flynn Asst. Marketing Manager at InterContinental Boston, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2009

We are sorry to hear that you encountered some problems during your stay with us. It is certainly within our standards to deliver a coffee machine to the room when requested and we apologize for any inconvenience that this may have caused. We do our best to keep the breakfast buffet replenished as quickly as possible and I apologize for the delay and not meeting with your expectations on this particular day. We appreciate you taking the time to review our hotel and we hope to have you visit us again soon.

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Reviewed 22 June 2009

We stayed at the Intercontinental on a Thursday and Friday evening. We had also booked our room for a Wednesday night stay. Unfortunately due to travel circumstances we were unable to check in to the hotel until Thursday. When I had found out that we would not be checking in on time I called the hotel to inform them that we would be late. I did not want them to cancel our reservation if we were late. We had booked our room through Hotwire. The lady that I spoke with kept insisting that we could not get a refund for the missed evening. What is weird is that I never asked. I knew the hotwire policy and just wanted to make sure my room wasn't given away.

Anyways, when we finally arrived on Thursday there were no rooms available. Our reservation was there but no rooms. I guess they gave away our room when we didn't show up even though I called. We could not check in to our room until after 3pm. So basically we had to forfeit the entire day because we were a few hours late. It was very annoying.

Eventually when we were given a room we were given one that looked at a building being constructed. No big deal, I wasn't there to enjoy the view I was there to sleep and play. Well that night when I got back to my room at 11:15pm to sleep there was construction pounding that continued throughout the entire night. At midnight I called the front desk and they stated that I could have my room switched in the morning that guaranteed to be away from the noise. They did offer to move us then but the room that we would move to would be only slightly less noisy. I was so not in the mood to pack up everything at midnight to only have a slight improvement that was not guaranteed to remove the noise.

The next day we had to pack up by noon and leave our bags in the room. So we weren't allowed to hang out in the room from 12-3pm. When we returned at 4:30pm they had moved our bags to a new room that was away from the construction. That night I slept awesome!

Pros-Beautiful hotel, nice finishes, beautiful lobby, tasty room service menu, nice location, awesome water pressure in some of the rooms.

Cons-Poor customer service relating to our late check in but still paying for the room, construction noise

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank jpod1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ICBoston, Carrie Flynn Asst. Marketing Manager at InterContinental Boston, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2009

It is wonderful to hear that even though you experienced some problems, overall you enjoyed your stay. We understand that the construction noise was bothersome during the first night of your stay. While our newly redeveloped urban location is very desirable, at times one of the challenges is the noise from the adjacent building as that project is entering its final phase. I am pleased to hear that we were able to better accommodate you the second night of your stay with us. We apologize for any confusion regarding our policies for the first night of your reservation. Your reservation was handled as a cancellation, to which a fee is applied equal to the rate of the reservation. Therefore, your new reservation was for the next day and the check-in time of 3pm applied. We hope that you will stay with us again in the future and we will have the opportunity to exceed your expectations. Thank you for taking the time to review our hotel.

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Reviewed 16 June 2009

The location is good; on the water, roughly on the site of the Boston Tea Party, and about a ten minute walk from Quincy Market. The hotel is newer, with a cavernous (echoing) lobby and bar (The RumBa) with sound levels reminscent of a train station. The rooms are modern and comfortable. There is NO in-room coffee offered. Swimming pool is indoor lap pool. Be aware, also; the extra charges are staggering. Parking $39/night. Once you check-out and then go get your car from the garage, it's an additional $20.00. Internet is a whopping $14.95/night. Use of clunky public computers is $6 per fifteen minutes. Printouts are $1.50 per page. Charges for receiving packages in the "business center" start at $9.00, and go up to over $60.00! If you bump or examine anything in the ensuite minibar, sensors will automatically bill your room for the items. As nice as the property is, dealing with all of these extra charges becomes a real hassle for the unaware guest, or even the well-heeled traveler. But hey, you do get a chocolate on your pillow. Sometimes.

  • Stayed: May 2009, travelled on business
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3  Thank riprussell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ICBoston, Carrie Flynn Asst. Marketing Manager at InterContinental Boston, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2009

Thank you for taking the time to review our hotel. We sincerely apologize that we did not exceed your expectations and can understand your frustration with some of these extra charges. For future reference to you and other visitors, if you would like an in room coffee maker, please request one at the front desk and we will be more than happy to bring one to your room. Our mini-bar does indeed run off a sensor system to detect when an item is removed and the front desk is able to assist with any discrepancies regarding mini-bar charges. Hopefully we will have the opportunity to see you again.

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Reviewed 14 June 2009

This was our second stay at the Intercontinental Boston. Due to some minor hitches we experienced with baggage handling during our previous stay, the management kindly upgraded us to a beautiful suite that overlooked Boston Harbour and the Children`s Museum. We were travelling with our one year old son and my parents, and a very comfortable cot was provided for our son, in which he slept very well.

The rooms are very modern, beautifully appointed and tastefully decorated with luxurious bathrooms that have granite countertops. Although we had a suite this time (with two bathrooms and a sitting room), we had stayed in a regular queen sized room before and the decor was still fabulous. The beds are super comfie.

The lobby and atrium have a modern, open, nouveau Euro feel to them. All marble and dark wood, earth tones and modern art. When you step into the hotel you have the feeling that if the rooms are as nice, you made the right choice.

The valet and bell service were fast and efficient and the counter staff were very professional, courteous and polite.

The restaurants were gorgeous and Miele, one in particular, had great food with a terrace that overlooks the harbour. The terrace on the harbour is well worth having a drink and appetizers, just for the view, especially on a sunny day.

The location, while a little quiet on the weekends (it`s in the corporate centre and most surrounding business who cater to the 9-5 crowd are closed), is great for walking along the harbour. The Aquarium is a short walk and if you walk along Atlantic Avenue, you will eventually easily find your way to Faneuil Hall and Quincy Market and eventually, Little Italy. If you are looking for great coffee on a Saturday morning, there is a lovely little place that is a little slice of Europe, not far away. Just walk up Pearl Street (across from the Hotel) and at the end of it, at Postage Square, you will see a glass kiosk called ``Sip Cafe`` located in a beautiful park with fountains, which has a real oasis in the City feel to it. Awesome coffee and croissants.

We took the subway to get a feel for the city, and felt very safe; the South Station subway stop is a 5 minute walk if you decide to take the transit.

The only hitch we ran into was some confusion with the concierge, who although very helpful, had some outdated taxi tariff info when we tried to find out how much it would cost to get to a suburb of Boston to visit friends. Minor stuff.

Overall, we had a great stay and left well-rested and happy.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled with family
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Thank Acornart
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ICBoston, Carrie Flynn Asst. Marketing Manager at InterContinental Boston, responded to this reviewResponded 6 July 2009

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with our hotel in such detail. It’s always a delight to hear from guests who obviously truly appreciated all that our hotel has to offer. Your comments about the minor glitches are also well taken as they give us an opportunity to improve upon or service. I have shared your comments regarding outdated taxi information with our Chief Concierge and can assure you that this issue has been rectified. If you visit us again, I suggest researching taking a water taxi from the airport which will drop you off on the dock located directly behind the hotel. It’s a very convenient and fun way to get to and from the airport. Thank you again for your review.

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Additional Information about InterContinental Boston

Address: 510 Atlantic Avenue, Boston, MA 02210-2210
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Massachusetts > Boston > Downtown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Boston
#3 Spa Hotel in Boston
#6 Green Hotel in Boston
#7 Romantic Hotel in Boston
#7 Business Hotel in Boston
#8 Family Hotel in Boston
Price Range: $273 - $685 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — InterContinental Boston 5*
Number of rooms: 424
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This breathtaking, modern Boston waterfront hotel stands on the site where a late-night tea party ignited the American Revolution. Located between the financial district and the booming Fort Point Channel, find yourself at the heart of the city and take in waterfront views from Miel, Boston's first Provence-themed brasserie. An urban retreat, relax and revive with an indoor lap pool and full-service spa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Intercontinental Boston Hotel Boston
Boston Intercontinental

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