Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor's Club
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Historical Traveler Reviews Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor's Club
First let me state that I am not a picky traveler - I have stayed at many budget hotels and at many luxurious hotels, and have had good and bad experiences at both types of places.
But when I made my reservation for my stay in Madison, I thought I was booking a room at one of the most top-notch places in Madison. Boy was I wrong! This place was awful and goes down as one of my worst hotel experiences.
Our room smelled. The furniture, carpeting and window treatments were extremely ugly. The lobby was nothing special. There were spiders in our room. The bed was uncomfortable. There was mildew in the bathroom tub/shower. The "concierge" couldn't tell us where to eat breakfast besides the hotel dining room, where they charged $16.95 for a breakfast buffet with no a la carte menu. The parking lot was full so we had to pay extra for parking a couple blocks away.
I guess the reason I was most disappointed was the exorbitant rate we paid for the unsightly room.
The only good thing about it was the central location.
Near Capitol and State Street
I stayed at the Concourse Hotel on June 21 and 22. No problems with check -in. They have a business office with Internet that is free to guests. Excellent restaurant. If you are in town for business at the capitol, this hotel is perfect as it's only one block away. Free shuttle to and from airport was prompt and drivers friendly. The only problem I had was that the walls are thin and I could here neighbors talking and television.
Great place for the money
For the room rate charged, this hotel is certainly above average. The service was great across the board, aside from a surly waitress in the bar downstairs. The Governor's Club provides free drinks & light food, and is a great place to relax in the evening. The staff went out of their way to provide great service - from arranging transfers to ensuring the room was to my liking. Would definitely stay here again.
Great Hotel - Only 1 or 2 inperfections
I was very impressed with this hotel. Even though we had a reduced rate through an auction and we were there for a conference, we were given the room we wanted and it had a view of the Capital. I was also impressed with the friendly people everywhere I went in the hotel. I only stayed one night and didn't try any of the 2 restaurants in the hotel or the bar. There are many other eating/drinking options within even as close as 1/2 block. The bed was comfortable and the room was clean. There was the usual chair and desk and armoir with a tv. The tv had all the usual cable channels, no free movie channels though. Also they had a video game setup in the room if you wanted to pay for it. There also was a coffee pot and coffee/tea in the bathroom.
On the 3rd floor is the fitness room which was small and the equipment was not new but it worked. There were 3 treadmills, 2 stationary bikes, a stepper, a rack of dumbells with benches and a large machine for a variety of exercises. I didn't notice if that was chain and pulley or something else. There was a tv and water in the fitness room and there was a glass wall looking into the pool area. The pool was larger than I expected and had a jacuzzi attached. The temperatures of both were perfect. There was a sauna but it wasn't hot when I tried it. There were plenty of lounging chairs around the pool. It was a clean and bright space. There are towels at the desk and a person manning it who can order massages. There are also bathrooms with lockers and showers in the area. Oh there is a game room across from the pool/spa area that kids will like. I noticed fusball, air hockey and maybe 6 or 7 video games.
I really liked the fact that they only had one elevator that went up to the rooms and down to parking. No moving to a different elevator carrying all your stuff. Parking was free!
I was surprised that they have no place you can park while you go in to check-in. You have to go to the underground parking lot and take the elevator upstairs then check-in and get a token to get out of parking. I missed the parking sign the first time around because it's on a very busy street and the entrance to the parking lot is actually BEFORE the hotel sign. Well then I had to drive all the way around the Capital. Not a bad drive anyway.
While this hotel advertises itself as a high end hotel, it certainly needs some work. Experienced problems with the toilet in one room, and the shower in new room when we requested a move. There was strange, floating fuzz in the whirlpool. The walls are thin, and we could here everything in the other room. Breakfast buffet was disappointing and service was poor. Don't know if I would go back. Location is good, but the service and overall conditions aren't that great
Love this Place!
My husband & I stayed here early May, 2004. We loved it!
The hotel is right across from the Capitol, within walking distance of all of the great things in downtown Madison.
For an extra $30.00 per room, you get exclusive access to the top 3 floors of this nice hotel, referred to as "The Governor's Club". It was WELL worth it.
The perks of the Governor's Club include; thick terry robes, complimentary bottled water, fruit juice and soda in your room, concierge service, turn down service (which includes refilling of the ice bucket), and exclusive use of The Governor's Club.
The Governor's Club has continental breakfast in the morning, including Bloody Mary bar. Then, at 4:00 pm, it opens with appetizers and top shelf cocktails until 10:30 pm--all complimentary. From 9 to 10:30 they serve the most delicious and wonderful looking desserts. Our bartender, Brian, was almost like a concierge himself. He had wonderful tips on where to dine in the area, or anything else that you would want to know.
The rooms were very nicely appointed and had the nice design element of strategic placement of mirrors, so that you could see out of the window from all angles to look out over the lake. Our room was quiet and just down the hall from the Governor's Club.
The first night that we were in town, we had tickets to a concert, but the next day, Friday, we did not even leave the building. Everything we could have wanted was right there. We had continental breakfast in the Governor's Club, went down to the pool area for swimming, hot tubbing and the sauna, then to the resturant for a lunch that featured one of the best salad bars I have ever seen. After lunch, we thought about going out exploring, but a nap sounded better. After nap-time, we went into the Governor's Club for appetizers and cocktails (Brian makes an awsome Chocolate Martini), then back down to the resturant for dinner. (The dinner was over-priced, but not that bad.) Then back up for after-dinner drinks and dessert. We also visited The Bar, which is in the hotel. We had a WONDERFUL time!
We would highly recommend this hotel to ANYONE (adults) staying in Madison, and are actually trying to plan a group trip to enjoy this great place!
As I said, the Governor's CLub is for adults only. If you are traveling with children, stay downstairs.
Not a bad hotel, independent owned
The hotel is in a great location, just around the corner from the capitol, a short stroll to shops and restaurants on State Street, and a couple blocks from a nice park and scenic views at Madison's lakes.
The staff was friendly and professional. Maid service was excellent.
The rooms are large; the bathrooms small to average size. However, the walls are like paper, you can hear outside and the next room much more than any hotel I've ever stayed. This is the worst feature of this hotel. The furniture is in great shape. The windows open and that is nice. The common areas are fine, nothing spectacular. Wireless internet is available throughout the entire hotel. I am posting this sitting in my room typing on my laptop - you have to love that. The food in the hotel restaurant is actually excellent.
The business office seems sufficient with a printer and large copier available, if these are needed.
The indoor pool is fantastic and there is a good size fitness center adjacent to the pool. A sauna is available and all of this is complimentary. There is also a very large hot tub. They have massage service as well but i did not use it.
Bottom line, if you get a good rate ($99 paid in summer), this is a nice, independent hotel, and worth staying but the thin walls may be too bothersome for some guests.
My husband and I stated at the Concourse this past weekend. We chose a downtown hotel as my husband ran in the Mad City Marathon and we wanted to be able to walk to the race start.
My instinct told me that my 129+ dollar room would be mediocore....and unfortunately I was correct. The room we were assigned to was very small, crowded, poor view (not their fault!), and, though the furniture and bedding was nice enough, there was writing on the wall, and the room clearly needed some updating. In addition, it was terribly noisy! We were next to the starwell door (which was well-used, as the elevators were unbelievably slow), and all night we heard the door slam shut, and any kinds of conversations in the hallway and in the rooms nextdoor.
In addition, there was some kind of unique :)conference in the hotel, and they were using the beautiful landing on the second floor...it was filled with brochures and convention-type materials, and it was a bit unsettling to burst from the second story stairwell landing (again, because the darned elevator is so slow!) to a group of grumpy-looking convention goers...the gorgeous stairway and landing is probably the best thing the hotel has going for it, and in my opinion, should be a gracious and comfortable sitting area.
Another complaint...all over the hotel and elevators, they had used masking tape to the four corners of announcement brochures and taped them everywhere...very cheesy looking.
The staff was fairly indifferent...I don't think anyone said hello or offered to help with a door. We did have a kind and accomodating housekeeper.
All in all, a bit of a dissapointment. The hot tub was heavenly after the marathon...it rained almost the entire time! Another plus was the coffee you could buy from a self-serve counter in the waiting area of their restaraunt.
Madison's food scene is always a treat! We had dinner at a steakhouse called The Tornado Club...on 116 South Hamilton. Wonderful! It's a 70's looking supperclub...with outdated decor, incongruously fine linens and china on the table, and superb food. We both had one of the fillets, and it was worth every penny! Also, check out the swanky Opus Lounge...on 116 King Street...very hip, cool decor and architecture, and an enormous drink menu. After two speciality martinis...my husband and I toddled back to the Concourse (on foot, of course!) and sank into sleep, blissfully unaware of the probable slamming doors and teenagers' shrieks.
In conclusion, the Concourse, in my opinion, is suffering from a bit of an identity crisis. It wants to be elegant and happening; but falls quite short. Much could be done to improve this property; and I hope they do. It's such a perfect location to enjoy the Madison State Capitol scene...perhaps they are aware of this and don't feel the need to make improvements.
The Concourse is the best hotel in Madison
Madison is my hometown so we travel there often and always stay at the Concourse. We stay in the Governor's Club--the executive level floors at the top of the hotel which are generally only $10-$25 more than a standard room (we've paid between $125-$150 for a Governor's Club room over the years). All rooms on these floors have a view of the Capitol or the lake (perhaps with an apartment building under construction in the foreground--this is an urban hotel!).
The rooms are fine--clean, pleasant, not superlative--but the service is what makes this hotel great! The concierges (there is one desk in the main lobby and a separate one for the Governor's Club) know every restaurant in town and don't automatically direct you to the hotel dining room, the bell staff will shuttle you to any place within reason and the front desk folks will take care of any other request you may have.
No review of the Governor's Club at The Concourse would be complete without mentioning Jackson--the bartender in the private bar for Governor's Club patrons only. If a friendlier, more knowledgeable bartender exists, we have yet to meet him. Like the concierges, he can provide information on and get you a reservation for practically any restaurant in town and generally can tell you about a meal he's eaten at any of them within the past month. He doesn't force himself on those who don't want interaction but is always ready for a conversation otherwise. Cocktails and appetizers are complimentary in the Governor's Club bar from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. daily (as is breakfast in the morning) so, if you are a couple and accustomed to a cocktail or two before dinner, you can easily make up the Governor's Club surcharge.
We've traveled all over the world and stayed in many five-star hotels but we truly enjoy The Concourse for what it is--a very serviceable physical plant with a great staff of friendly, Midwestern kids (they all seem so young) eager to meet any needs you may have.
Better than Expected
We recently traveled to Madison, Wi to visit my son who had just started a job there. We wanted to stay downtown near his apartment. He suggested we stay at the Madison Concourse where he had stayed during his job interview. We were a little skeptical having read a negative review at this website. We were pleasantly surprised that the staff was very friendly and accomodating and the room was nicely decorated and spacious. The rate was reasonable and the location excellent. It is 1 block to the State Capitol and walking distance to many fine restaurants and shopping. I would stay here again.
TripAdvisor Reviews Madison Concourse Hotel and Governor's Club
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