Recently, I planned a trip with my family to visit Banff in Alberta for the Family Day long weekend. As it was a much-awaited trip for my family, and me, we decided to treat ourselves to an overnight stay at one of the most luxurious hotels in Canada – the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. I had been to the hotel before, but I felt a return was long overdue having had such a wonderful time the last time I was there.
We decided to give ourselves a complete luxury treatment – after all, it was family time, so we booked a King room on the Fairmont Gold Floor. The rate for a night stay that long weekend was $500 + tax/ night for a regular room and $700 + tax/ night for a room on the Gold Floor. For me, though, it cost zero, thanks to the 52,500 Aeroplan miles I had accumulated.
I would never be able to justify spending $700/ night for a hotel room if I had to pay out of pocket; luckily travel hacking allows you to do things and enjoy unique experiences you normally wouldn’t be able to.
Aeroplan covers everything
I enjoyed my entire stay in the King room on the prestigious Fairmont Gold Floor located on the 4th and 5th floors of the main building, where the view was simply wonderful. It has one king bed, and is suitable for a couple or individual.
My 52,500 Aeroplan miles were able to cover everything including:
- Hotel fees,
- Tourism Improvement Fee & Alberta Tourism Levy and
- Resort and Service Fees
Top notch service
The King Room at the Fairmont Gold Floor was simply awesome. Over and above the splendid décor we enjoyed the following services:
- Private floor with exclusive services and amenities.
- Private check in and concierge
- Private lounge with complimentary continental breakfast, and food & drinks throughout the day.
- Free WiFi
- Turn down service done with utmost care.
The hotel also had these nice touches:
- Before our arrival, the hotel staff sent me a text asking if I had any room preferences, or if there was anything I needed to be clarified.
- We were greeted with a private note and a treat when we checked into our rooms.
- We always dropped by the lounge on our way in and out of our room for snacks and drinks. They even had unlimited free oysters the day we stayed there.
Professional and friendly staff
The staff was not only respectful, but also went the extra mile to make us feel comfortable. A case in point was when they helped me make reservations at a fully booked restaurant within the hotel – believe me, it was well worth the trouble! I was also offered free valet parking which would have otherwise set me back $39 per night. I also liked the fact that all staff greeted us by name whenever we met.
Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel pool facilities are simply amazing. Apart from the Olympic sized pool, there was also a kiddie pool perfect for kids with toys, a waterfall hot tub, and an outdoor heated pool with a view of the mountains and trees. It simply felt like heaven on earth.
Honestly, I couldn’t really think of any negatives. If I had to be picky, I’d say the alcohol bar was an honour bar (where you fill out a piece of paper and the charges are added to your bill). I think it would have been a nice perk if they’d simply added the alcohol to the package.
The Castle in the Rockies – as the luxurious Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel is sometimes called – provided the perfect getaway from the city. Its service was above and beyond and reminded me why I love travel hacking so much.
Remember to read my Travel Hacking Guide for a foolproof, step-by-step guide on how to master the art of travel hacking, and learn how to travel for free.