Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise Review - Luxury on the Lake


The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise in Alberta Canada is more than simply a grand luxury hotel. Since 1890, it has played a considerable role in the colorful history of Canada's mountain West. Lake Louise is renowned as the “birthplace of Canadian mountaineering”. Although it was conceived as a summer-only resort, the Chateau Lake Louise opened for skiers on a trial basis during the peak winter holiday seasons of the 1970s, breathing new life into the luxury hotel.  A decade later the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics would showcase Banff National Park's ski resorts to the world and play host to tourists, business travelers, and sports enthusiasts from around the world.


Located in the heart of pristine Banff National Park, and within a UNESCO World Heritage Site, The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is recognized globally for its progressive environmental stewardship, responsible tourism, and deep-rooted values that are at the heart of this historic resort. In the summer season, the wilderness of Banff's National Park offers many activities such as hiking, canoeing, horseback riding, fishing, mountain biking and rafting. In the winter season, tourists are presented with a dramatic wonderland of unique recreation including ice walking, snowshoeing, ice skating, dogsledding, and world-class downhill skiing to name just a few.


Canadian Kelly VanderBeek at the World Cup Super-G at Lake Louise

The resort is one of the highlights of the international ski circuit, hosting the Lake Louise World Cup racers each November, and welcoming eager skiers, snowboarders and winter sport enthusiasts from as close as Calgary and the United States and as far away as Great Britain, Australia and Japan. Few resorts in the world rival its grandeur, situated on the shore of beautiful Lake Louise and surrounded by the majestic Canadian Rockies. Lake Louise was originally named Emerald Lake, and then later renamed Lake Louise in honor of Queen Victoria's fourth daughter, Princess Louise Caroline Alberta. The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise is also internationally renowned for it’s Canadian hospitality.


The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise winter season

Arriving in Lake Louise, (our 3rd day in Banff), Splash Magazine editor-in-chief Lawrence Davis and I checked into the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. The Hotel is complete with all the amenities you would expect from a world-class resort, luxurious accomodations, gourmet restaurants, spa faciltiies and more. Here's a Splash Magazine travel tip, upon check-in, ask to join the President’s Club and get free Internet, local calls, daily newspaper and more.


One of the Mountain View rooms at the Chateau Lake Louise


Choose from a selection of rooms, from standard to guest suites, and specialty rooms to the premier package, the Fairmont Gold. The Fairmont gold is a hotel within a hotel and features private 7th floor check-in and concierge service and access to the exclusive Gold Lounge, complete with complimentary breakfast, evening canapés and honor bar. Check-in, relax, and take it all in, you're on vacation remember?


The Poppy Brasserie serves up a delicious Breakfast Buffet daily

Every morning bright and early, we enjoyed the delicious breakfast buffet in the The Poppie Brasserie, which is designed with an open kitchen that provides an opportunity to see their talented chefs in action. The Poppie Brasseries sumptuous breakfast buffet includes a spectacular array of fresh fruits, omelets made to order, yogurts, freshly baked breads, pastries and more. I particularly enjoyed the French toast made with croissants instead of bread, and the authentic Canadian bacon and sausage is fantastic. If you prefer, you can still order all of your traditional favorites from their à la carte menu, but trust me, you’ll want the buffet so can sample a little bit everything.


The staff at the Chateau Lake Louise offer great service with a smile


One evening, Lawrence and I enjoyed an exceptional dining experience at The Walliser Stube where guests can select from a wide range of classic cheese and meat Fondues and & Swiss-German influenced dishes. The restaurants Old World design and style includes rich, wood-paneled walls and large picture windows, which look out to the forest and majestic mountains of Lake Louise.


The Wallister Stube is famous for its Fondue and Swiss-German cuisine

It’s easy to relax in this serene setting and get spoiled with the excellent cuisine and personal service. The Wallister Stube also boasts an impressive floor to ceiling wine library. Take in the view and relax with a delicious glass of wine. Wine not?


The seafood medley is also a popular favorite at the Wallister Stube

I started with the Poached Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail with baby shrimp salad, served with old world cognac cocktail sauce. Lawrence had the Swiss Onion Soup with caramelized white and yellow onions and a three-cheese melt. Delicious. We then moved on to the Feur Brothers Fondue experience, which includes classic salad, choice of cheese fondue, choice of meat fondue and of course the essential chocolate fondue. There are a number of other fondue combinations and experiences to choose from to satisfy any appetite, and are served for two or more people and are meant to be shared. Just be sure and save some room for their assortment of delectable desserts.


 The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise offers a broad range of other dining options  as well, from a simple gourmet sandwich at the 24hr Chateau Deli, to a fine dining experience at the Fairview Dining Room restaurant. Their philosophy is to ensure that all of their offerings reflect their heritage, while keeping up with the latest culinary trends. Local, fresh and innovative are Executive Chef Felix Pfister's pillars upon which he and his talented culinary team create new menus at our restaurants in Alberta at the Chateau.


One of the many elegant restaurants at Chateau Lake Louise

Any special dietary restrictions? The Fairmont chain of Hotels and Resorts also offer health conscious menus as well, using fresh and nutritionally balanced ingredients. Fairmont Lifestyle Cuisine dishes contribute to optimal health and wellness. Additionally, they are pleased to offer you Lifestyle Cuisine Plus, nutritious meals catering to guests with a specific diet-dependent needs such as diabetes, heart disease and gluten-free, as well as unique dietary preferences including macrobiotic, raw and vegan diets.


The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise also offers a monetary break for parents with the Kids Eat Free deal, which can be particularly important for families traveling with children and on a budget. Kids age 5 and under eat for free, while kids 12 and under can choose from a special kids menu, or order off the regular menu at 50% off. Now that’s what I call a happy meal!


For parents with children Kids Under 5 Eat for Free


Organizing the perfect family vacation is a no-brainer. The Fairmont’s rated one of the best family resorts, featuring activities, dining, and adventures suitable for all ages with a truly spectacular backyard to play in. Lake Louise is a breathtaking destination that makes for a truly memorable family vacation. Upon arrival, children are greeted with their own check-in and get to pick a surprise from The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise treasure chest.


Rent a canoe and experience beautiful Lake Louise up close


This summer vacation, bring your family to The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise and explore the great outdoors and enjoy all that Banff National Park has to offer your family, fresh air, wildlife tours, canoeing, white water rafting, hiking, and so much more. The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise makes family travel easy with a variety of family accommodations, kid-friendly dining and amenities, as well as activities that will keep everyone in your family happy and having a good time.


Banff National Park has a number of mountains to choose from for the beginner to the advanced

If skiing, ice walking, snowshoeing, hiking, fishing and a myriad of sports activities all year round aren't enough, try the heli-tours, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, ice skating and horse drawn sleigh rides. After spending an adventurous day outdoors, enjoy a memorable dining experience in one of our Lake Louise resort's eight outstanding settings. From afternoon tea in the shadow of a glacier, to an intimate wine bar or fine dining, you will discover a unique opportunity to please your palette and your pocketbook.


Take a relaxing sleigh ride around Lake Louise

The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise offers an assortment of hotel vacation packages, so you can experience the splendor and beauty of the Banff National Park, and then return home to your world-class accommodations. There are a number of year round activities where they will supply everything from champagne to lift tickets. Each Banff vacation package has been designed with your absolute comfort and enjoyment in mind, and guarantee that every attention to detail will ensure your stay against the backdrop of the Canadian Mountains will be exceptional.

Fairmont Hotels & Resorts provide partner programs making it easy for you to book your vacation or business trip with special partner rates when you make your hotel reservations online.  Check the Chateau Lake Louise rates and availability for CAA and AAA discounted rates. The Fairmont Hotels also offer Senior Citizen discounts and special travel offers. Take advantage of their hospitality and make your escape to any of the luxurious Fairmont Hotels & Resorts worldwide including the Fairmont Banff Springs.


The Fairmont Banff Springs in the heart of Banff National Park

Read my review of Fairmont Banff Springs here

For more information about any of the world-class Fairmont Hotels, or to make reservations, visit the website http://www.fairmont.com/

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