When I returned from Thailand, I had an overnight layover in Vancouver with an early flight the next morning, and logically, I opted for the convenient option of booking a stay at the hotel in the airport: the Fairmont Vancouver Airport Hotel.
This hotel is located landside at the Vancouver International Airport, and its location makes it an easy choice for the tired traveler, albeit at an elevated price point (as you would expect with the Fairmont brand). While it was a brief stay, I think this hotel presents a unique value proposition and wanted to showcase what it’s all about, should you find yourself in Vancouver in a similar situation.
Let’s dive into my review of the Fairmont Vancouver Airport.
Booking & Check-in
For this stay, I was able to take advantage of an industry rate which gave me the opportunity to try out the property at a reduced nightly rate. The rate, paired with the convenience of not having to physically leave the hotel during my layover, made it an easy decision to book.
Standard rates for this hotel hover around $400 CAD per night, so I would recommend considering if a stay like this is worth your money compared to many of the other hotels located near Vancouver International Airport. There are many other options nearby, including those that fall within the Marriott Bonvoy program.
After a long transpacific flight, I was welcomed by the lobby and staff at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport. The lobby itself is pretty nice for an airport hotel and has quite a few seating areas that I noticed were used during my stay.
I had checked in online in advance of my arrival, so after a quick check of my ID and credit card, I was handed my room key and I headed upstairs. Of note, as an Accor Gold member, I was given two complimentary cocktail vouchers to be used during my stay.
These vouchers are good for any cocktail at the bar, so each voucher is worth a rough value of $16 CAD. Not bad, considering you can purchase Accor Gold status for a nominal fee.
The Fairmont Vancouver Airport hotel is located landside, meaning that you do not need to clear security to access it (as opposed to the airside Oryx Airport Hotel at Doha Hamad International).
If you are accessing this hotel upon arrival from an international or domestic destination, you will need to head to the departures level (level 3) once you exit the secure area of the airport. From there, you want to walk towards the USA departures terminal; keep an eye out for signs that direct towards the hotel as well. After walking through most of the departures level, you will arrive at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport Hotel.
Once you arrive at the hotel, you can take either an escalator, elevator, or staircase up to the entrance.
From there, the lobby is located at the end of a walkway spanning the terminal below. You can also see the on-property gym to the left of the check-in area; more on that later.
Room – Deluxe 1 King Bed
After checking in, I headed up to the 11th floor to check out the Deluxe Room, 1 King Bed room I was assigned.
The hotel room itself is fairly standard from a design standpoint. Immediately on the right is the bathroom, whereas walking straight ahead takes you to the bedroom.
There is a closet in the hallway which contains an iron and ironing board, robes, and the in-room safe.
The bedroom itself has a king sized bed, complete with a nightstand on each side. Of note, both USB chargers and traditional plugs were easily available on both nightstands in addition to a variety of controls to easily change the lights in the room.
Directly in front of the bed is a flat screen tv and storage space for luggage.
Directly below the tv is where the minibar is kept. Of note all of the beverages are on sensors meaning that if you pick something up, you will be charged for it, similar to the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas. Minibar prices are not reasonable, as should be expected with the Fairmont brand.
There is also a Keurig coffee machine with complimentary pods, in addition to a kettle, additional glassware, and a few minibar snacks available for purchase.
To the right of the tv is a standard desk, perfect for getting work done. The small plant on the corner added a small touch of life to the room.
Four macarons were placed on the desk as a small welcome gift and were quite tasty.
One of the neat features of this airport hotel is that many of the rooms have gorgeous views of the apron, providing a unique viewpoint for planespotting.
A chair with a footrest is located directly beside the window, complete with a planespotting brochure if you were interested in learning more about the aircraft just outside your window.
Of note, this room definitely had an aviation theme going on with a few of the art pieces. While the theme of course made sense, it was also just a cool vibe and greatly appreciated.
The bathroom has two different sliding door entrances: one near the entryway and one near the bedroom. Upon entry, a single vanity with a massive mirror is prominently placed.
To the left of the vanity is a walk-in shower, complete with full-sized bottles of shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. The shower pressure was fantastic, and this was actually one of the best hotel showers I’ve ever used.
A bathtub was located beside the shower and opposite the vanity.
Finally, the water closet contained not one but two rolls of toilet paper; talk about a luxury experience!
On the whole, the room served its purpose but wasn’t anything special for what one would consider a luxury hotel, especially when you consider the rack rate of $400 CAD per night. At those prices, you would definitely find yourself in at least an entry-level suite at many other hotels.
Restaurants & Bars
The Fairmont Vancouver Airport Hotel has a few options for dining. Of note, there is a food court nearby in the terminal that has options such as Wendy’s, Freshii, and more if you are looking for something cheaper that can be easily brought back to your room.
Jetside Lounge & Globe@YVR
Jetside Lounge & Globe@YVR are located side-by-side and are the hotel’s two main dining options. During my visit, I opted to check out the Jetside Lounge and sat at the bar to cash in my complimentary cocktail vouchers.
Of note, I was able to order off both the Jetside Lounge and Globe@YVR menus while sitting at the bar in Jetside, which doubled the number of choices available. I had a grilled cheese sandwich with fries which hit the spot after a long flight.
The cocktails were expertly crafted, and I had a great chat with one of the bartenders in selecting the couple of drinks that I ordered. The bartenders here are very knowledgeable in regard to the menu and can make great suggestions if you are feeling a bit indecisive.
The Fairmont Vancouver Airport offers 24/7 in-room dining should you wish to take advantage. Of note, prices are what you would typically expect for room service at a luxury brand in North America and all orders come with a $6 CAD delivery charge and 18% auto gratuity.
You can view the room service menu here.
The Fairmont Vancouver Airport has a full fitness center that is open 24/7 and is complete with a variety of cardio machines, weight machines, and free weights.
While the fitness center is located on the fifth floor, the same floor as the lobby, it is accessed by taking an elevator to the sixth floor, scanning your room key, and walking down a set of stairs to the fifth floor.
The hotel also offers a three-hour drop-in rate for non-hotel guests who want to take advantage of the fitness facilities. This could be an option if you have a longer layover and are looking to kill some time by working out.
There is also a resistance pool, whirlpool, and saunas available right beside the fitness center.
On the whole, the Fairmont Vancouver Airport shines in one main area: convenience. If you find yourself at YVR Airport, having access to a hotel located physically in the airport is a massive win for any layover, albeit at a price premium.
The food and drink options were a standout as well, especially at the Jetside Lounge, but be prepared to pay a premium as is typical with not only airport food but the Fairmont brand. I did enjoy my stay, but it would be hard to consider staying here again at the existing price point.