Recently I began the search for a hotel sponsor in Toronto for an extended stay. Hotel choice is always important for the overall success of a trip for business or pleasure, but when it is your home for months at a time- there are many things to consider.
In the greater Toronto area alone there are over 183 hotels and over 36,000 hotel rooms. I was determined to find the ideal hotel and room for my stay. Initially, when I set out to find my ‘home away from home’, I had planned on approaching one of the larger hotel chains I have stayed at on previous trips to Toronto for possible sponsorship. Then I started asking myself some key questions and my thoughts dramatically changed.
Location, Location, Location- When you are in a ‘foreign’ city the location of your residence is second to none. It's essential not to have to travel across town to meetings, appointments, shipping, for entertainment etc as it wastes time and adds stress. This can also be very important if you have a significant other, friend or family member traveling with you so they do not feel stranded at the hotel during the day.
Service- When you are staying at a hotel you have expectations. For example, cleanliness, and friendly, accessible, accommodating staff. This is the expectation, when it is surpassed, you become a loyal customer.
Amenities- It is important to make sure the hotel of choice has the amenities that are important to you. For example for business trips to have Internet access and any other technology necessary, or for the health conscious individual an adequate fitness facility as well as access to convenience health foods.
When I was browsing through hotel options Cambridge Suites (http://www.cambridgesuitestoronto.com/) kept coming up. I was skeptical at first never hearing about them before, I was not sure of their reputation despite being an avid business traveler. I was on their website and the more I learned, the more I was impressed. The location was great, they offered extended stays, the amenities I desired, but still I was not convinced.
I started reading the tripadvisor (http://www.tripadvisor.com) reviews to get a better sense of the hotel. To my amazement the general manager had taken the time to respond to each comment made, good or bad- an indication of great customer service.
My office approached them for sponsorship, still slightly hesitant. The result surpassed all my expectations. The general manager and the director of sales and marketing were quick to respond, professional, accommodating, enthusiastic and a pleasure to work with.
Within days the deal was negotiated and I, my staff and family was welcomed with open arms to my home away from home.
I'd highly recommend that you check out this lovely hotel on your next visit to Toronto.