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“Never again”

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The Historic Hotel Congress
Ranked #56 of 130 Hotels in Tucson
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Tucson
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Never again”
Reviewed 2 February 2012

I stayed one night at the Hotel Congress two months ago and will never stay there again. My company had booked their holiday party there. After the party was over, the staff would not let me or my colleagues use the restroom off the cafe....they said "Party's over, leave" The rooms were small and antiquated...that maybe what some people are looking for but not me. No TV and no shower...only a bath. The no alcohol in the room policy is a farce. I received a bottle of wine and bottle of liquor as holiday presents at the party. Hotel employees saw the bottles in my room and confiscated them. They would not let me watch as they disposed of the alcohol...I believe they took it home for themselves. As for the pours in the hotel bar, they might be the worst ever. For the price you pay, you don't even get an ounce of alcohol. Finally, hotel employees were smoking dope near the dumbsters at the rear of the hotel. Never again

Room Tip: Don't take a room above the nightclub
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  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Lizzy F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DaraHC, Manager at The Historic Hotel Congress, responded to this review, 3 February 2012
Dear LizzyF,

Thank you for your feedback. Your experience described is very disappointing to us. We are looking into this situation and are discussing with staff and management ways to better serve our clientele. Clearly we had a breakdown in communicating to you exactly what liquor law dictates to us, what house rules were being enforced and how we balance this with basic guest experience. I can only tell you that we agree that this wasn’t handled correctly, and we are sorry. You are also correct that our rooms are from another era, but we actually pride ourselves on this. No question, this is not for everyone, but I feel confidant to say that if you had a great time that evening you might have regarded them differently. We are very sorry you had this experience and we are working hard to correct it.

Sincerely,
Dara Oseran
Hotel Congress
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (91)
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English first
Phoenix, Arizona
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 December 2011

I just recently stayed one night at the Hotel Congress and was not impressed. For the money I spent, we did not get much. The hotel itself has some nice history and was fun to look around, but I would never stay there again.

First off the hotel makes you sign a waiver stating you are not allowed to bring any alcohol to your room. I mean, come on. That is ridiculous. When I go somewhere for the night I want to bring a beer to my room and have a good time...well not here. They want you to go downstairs to their bar and pay an upsurd amount for a drink. No, thank you! The room also had no t.v. I understand it is a historic hotel. I have stayed at many historic hotels and I have never seen a place have no t.v. That is pretty dumb. Also, the foundation of the hotel...(the floor, door frames) were not straight. When walking around the room you would literally trip and fall because everything was off kilter. Very weird feeling.

All in all, if you don't plan on spending much time in your room, it might be an ok place to stay, but the hotel is in downtown Tucson. So, watch out for all the crackheads wandering the surrounding streets and the bus station that is right next to the hotel.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank azgirly82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DaraHC, Manager at The Historic Hotel Congress, responded to this review, 3 February 2012
I’m sorry that we were unable to accommodate your expectation of having alcohol in your room, but our license under the Arizona Liquor law prohibits alcohol not purchased on our premises from being consumed on our property. To clarify, if you bought your beer at one of our bars, you surely could have brought it to your room. Our alcoholic drinks are reasonably priced and we offer incredible drink specials every night. I am sorry you did not take advantage of these drink specials. The Hotel is listed on the National Historic Registry and we stay true to the design and architecture of the time period. It was built in 1919 and still has the original structure, rooms, and bathrooms. We strive to maintain the historic feel of the hotel. Our rooms feature period radios and rotary phones that connect to the original switchboard. We do have a television and a computer with free complimentary internet in our private lounge for our Hotel Guests. In regards to comments about downtown Tucson, urban areas are diverse and the charm of the urban setting is inclusive of all.
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santa barbara
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 December 2011

My friend and I recently stayed the weekend at Hotel Congress and were so happy we chose to stay there. From the moment we walked in, we had a great experience.
The rooms are small and old, but clean and nice. It is a historic site, and seems to have had very little remodeling or upgrading. It is not "fresh" but it has charm if you can appreciate it.
If you plan to turn in early, make sure you request a room on the side which is not above the bar, which has live bands nearly every night.
The hotel staff is very helpful and friendly. The penny floored restaurant was amazing and filled with locals, which is always a good sign.
There was a Bloody Mary Bar set up in the lobby/lounge on Sunday am, where there was live music and bar tops inlaid of backgammon and checkers for added fun.
The location is great, walking distance to 4th Avenue.
A fun, hip place to stay.

  • Stayed December 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank missadventuresb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level 5 Contributor
77 reviews
75 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 November 2011

The Congress is in a convenient neighborhood, it's clean, the staff is ok, the rooms are small and spare (no TV) but overall the joint lacks the things I value in a hotel room - comfort and calmness.

The walls are paper thin, the bathroom is cramped, there's an active bar scene in the lobby and the train tracks are out back This makes a restful night difficult if you want to go to bed before 1am.

With its vintage charm and history I can see why people find it appealing but it's just not my thing. Not bad, just not my thing.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tobeginwith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Phoenix, Arizona
Level 4 Contributor
37 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 October 2011

I stayed at the Hotel Congress on the same weekend that there was a streetfair/"bar crawl containing numberous loud, amplified bands and tons of happy (and loud) attendees. My room (129 - the largest one in the hotel) was right on the main street that this "fiesta was held on (Congress Street, naturally). Needless to say, sleep was not really an option before 2AM, but that was expected. For those who are young or young at heart, I highly recommend the Hotel Congress.

The inadequately named "Cup Cafe" is really an excellent gourmet restaurant (I'd say 3 star at least). The menu contained many out of the ordinary offerings. (Try the "duck tacos" - they're great).

If you read the accomodations book in the room carefully, you'll learn that if you ask the front desk you can get 2 free drink tickets for staying. So don't forget. Note to the management - The bartender at the tap room on Friday night (9/30/2011) was taking my cash payments for drinks and ringing them up as "no sales". You might wanna look at your cash register records for an excessive amount of these "non-transactions" if you know what I mean.

The plumbing does suck and the place is old, but they have made some MAJOR improvements judging from older reviews. The new room AC works fine and my room had a very comfortable and obviously new(er) bed. Final note. I have kids. Don't take them here. This is an adult environment and they'll be bored to tears (although my 15 year old loved the street music and had his I-Phone to keep him company in absence of a TV.)

Room Tip: Room 129 has the best views of Downtown Tucson, but street traffic noise is going to bother light sl...
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JerryPPhoenix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Historic Hotel Congress

Property: The Historic Hotel Congress
Address: 311 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701-1811
Region: United States > Arizona > Tucson
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Tucson
#33 Romantic Hotel in Tucson
Price range (per night): ₹ 5,326 - ₹ 8,856
Hotel Class:2.5 star — The Historic Hotel Congress 2.5*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Congress is listed on the National Historic Hotel Registry. We pride ourselves on the many unique features we offer that you'd be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. This historic Tucson hotel transports you back in time. Some cynical city-slicker types might notice the absence of a television in any of our 40 rooms and feel slighted. But it's intentional - we strive to maintain the Hotel's original ambiance - from the iron bed to the vintage radio, from the comforting rumble of the nearby iron horse to the retro-style phone that actually connects to a switchboard at the front desk. All rooms are uniquely designed offering an original experience every time and unlike most historic hotels, all rooms have private bathrooms, free high speed internet, and a private guest lounge.The lounge offers our patrons a large-screen television with unlimited channels as well as free computer access. You can also enjoy the exclusive outdoor patio, where you can soak-up the Tucson sunshine year round. We have new upgrades for our guests, to ensure an amazing experience during your stay at Hotel Congress. *Bike Program - We now have bicycles that our guests are able to check out to explore Tucson during their stay! We recommended guests to bike the Santa Cruz River Trail, and the Train Trail behind Maynards Market and Kitchen. Let us help you explore Downtown Tucson in a new way! *Snacks from local vendors - Enjoy some treats from our local vendors. Every room has a tray filled with a variety of snacks that are available to purchase. We have: Cactus candy, Rbar Energy Bar, Spunlight Cotton Candy, Green Valley pecans, Essentia Ionized Water, POPPED Artisan Popcorn, Cerreta Candy Co., and the Kobito Hangover and Love Kits. *Guest Room Internet - We now provide super high speed wireless Internet in our guest rooms that is 10x faster than before! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Congress Hotel Tucson

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