The Strathallan Rochester is located in the heart of Rochester’s cultural and historic districts, and since it’s a DoubleTree by Hilton property, you get a warm cookie when you check-in. Sweet! Especially after realizing everything at the hotel closes up rather early on a Thursday night, and I’ve just landed at Greater Rochester International Airport. JetBlue flight took just over an hour, but all we had on the flight were chips, and a drink. Mama Sunflower devoured the warm cookie in record time!
The Strathallan Hotel
As I quickly learned from my driver, people refer to the hotel as The Strath, or just Strath. Works for me. I landed late at the airport, and as someone who lives in an area where things are open until way after midnight, it was a little spooky only one person was around to check me in. She was on the phone, taking an order for someone’s breakfast in the morning, I think. I just patiently waited, I was too wired to really sleep, so getting to my room wasn’t urgent.
Once her focus was on me, she was a delight. We had a little snafu when checking in, as the credit card was charged with the wrong amount, but it was resolved in minutes. We chatted, she told me about all the great stuff within walking distance of the hotel, and how excited everyone was for the spa to be opening up later in November.
DRAT. I missed out on the spa there, but I fully intend to check it out over the summer! Checking in is done at a fairly small counter, which is located right across from the first floor restaurant. Char Steak & Lounge, is open to the public, and throughout my stay, was a fairly busy place. Totally closed when I arrived. Still very pretty.
My favorite part when my car pulled up? The attendants were super fast to offer assistance, but it was all good, I just had my little carry-on. The entire weekend, I was known as the girl who travels super light.
I didn’t stay in just any room, I stayed in a suite. Opening the door, I was shocked at how large the suite was. I dropped my bag, and took it all in. Sitting room to the left, with a balcony overlooking one of the many outdoor sitting areas for guests. Down the hall, a bedroom, with yet another balcony, with a view of the building next door….still not sure what the building was.
A kitchen-type set up sat at the end of the hall, with a sink, microwave, coffee maker and fridge. Straight across from the bedroom, the bathroom. Huge, but my one thing with the bathrooms in hotels: when I travel with other people, I like bathrooms to separate out the toilet. If you’ve got four people hanging in the room, having the toilet separated from the shower area, just makes all the difference. It was one of my two issues with the suite. THE other issue? Room safe was too high in the closet for this shorty.
Bed was huge, and comfortable. Pillows were perfect. I had separate thermostats for the suite, and the bedroom. I like a cold sleeping environment, but when I’m just chilling on the couch watching some television, warmer is better.
Visit Rochester kept me pretty busy, so I didn’t get to explore the hotel as much as I wanted to. I did take advantage of the 24 hour business center on the second floor, easily accessed from the lobby by a set of stairs. Or, if you’re coming from your room, head to the second floor. It’s in a little area off the elevator bank, and I printed my boarding passes for my flight home.
Pool is and indoor heated gem, and there’s a great spot on the 9th floor, Hattie’s. You can get sushi, or just head to the bar for amazing cocktails, or some scotch off of their scotch menu. The views are amazing, but I was there on a not so great evening of rain and cold, so none of my pictures worked. Sad Panda. However, if you head up there on a nice night, or during the day, it offers an insane view of Rochester – so it is a must do when visiting The Strath.
Fitness? Covered, there’s a little gym. Gift shop – got that, too. Snack spot, plus they now serve Starbucks at the hotel!
Staff is amazingly friendly, helpful, and always happy to offer a good morning. It’s a large hotel, but the entire staff seems to remember those they check-in, or help with luggage, or, in my case, don’t need to assist with luggage. Hotels should feel like a home-away-from-home. The Strath definitely makes you feel like you’re welcome, and taken care of. It’s also insanely clean. I don’t have those special black light gadgets to check, but for me, it was clean.
One thing I don’t totally love? People not staying at the hotel, but are attending a wedding, or just going to one of the restaurants, have access to all the floors of the hotel. I’d love them to change the way people can get around the hotel. Many hotels require your room key card to get to guest floors when you get in the elevator, but The Strath doesn’t. Perhaps I’m just too paranoid? Must be the NYC in me.
Also, perhaps because I’m used to a faster lifestyle, the elevators are a bit slow for me. Long waits aren’t my thing.