It’s been quite the Whistler year.
We enjoyed two stays at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler Hotel for a ski vacation in February 2020, then two-night summer stay.
This past week, we spent two nights and three days at the Four Seasons Resort Whistler.
Whistler is an easy trip for us because it’s only 1.5 hours away. While expensive, it’s one of the best vacation spots in British Columbia so we go regularly.
The Four Seasons is one hotel we had not stayed at so thought it would be fun to try.
We booked an Executive Deluxe one-bedroom suite to enjoy the full suite experience.
Here’s my Four Seasons Whistler review.
The room-booking experience
I found the Four Seasons online booking system easy to use. While the website could provide more photos of each type of room, there were enough to get somewhat of an idea what we were getting.
Some of the room types offered a floorplan view, which is helpful. Unfortunately not all room types so I couldn’t fully compare.
Because this time it was just two of us, we didn’t need a two-bedroom unit; a one-bedroom suite would do. Moreover, we didn’t need anything palatial but at the same time we prefer suites that offer a living room separate from the bedroom.
Once we decided on a room, booking it was a breeze.
I really liked how the Four Seasons booking process includes a “preferences” area where you can set out expected arrival time for possible early check-in. You can also provide other preferences that they can provide for you upon arrival.
Once booked, we received an email with a confirmation number. This isn’t unique. Most hotels do this for good reason. It’s nice to have a confirmation number in hand in case there are any problems and so we can rest easy that the room is indeed booked.
The Four Seasons Whistler is located in Blackcomb, just outside the upper village area. It’s more or less next to the Chateau Fairmont.
As you’d expect at a Four Seasons, there was a large valet area under the enormous chalet-style portico. We pulled up at 4 pm, stepped out of our car, grabbed our suitcase and handed off our keys within minutes. The valet took care of the rest. Everything went smoothly despite them being very, very busy (cars all over the place). Since it was a short stay without kids, we had one small suitcase each. We wheeled it ourselves into the lobby.
The lobby is small relative to the size of the resort. Beautiful, but small. Fortunately, there weren’t many folks ahead of us checking in so it went quickly.
Our front desk person was super friendly and explained the basics to us quickly including telling us about a free wine tasting from 4 to 5 pm.
The check-in process took five minutes or so which is standard. I usually have a few questions which makes it take longer. I find it’s best to ask questions when checking in rather than calling the concierge later during the stay.
The Executive Deluxe Suite
The Four Seasons is a series of three buildings. One of the buildings is the “residences” portion that are units owned by individuals. It’s separate from the hotel buildings. The two hotel buildings are joined by a skywalk.
Fortunately, our room was in the building with access to the impressive pool area since the pool was a big draw for us.
As soon as we opened the door to our suite, we were impressed. I knew the room was 850 sq. ft. which is a decent-sized hotel room, but even I was impressed with the layout and decor.
Our unit was a corner unit, which made for a unique and attractive layout.
We entered our suite into a long foyer hall as follows:
It’s the largest foyer in a hotel suite I’ve had. I liked it.
Once you go around the corner, you enter the suite’s living room which is as follows:
As you can see it’s a corner unit and oriented as such with the wood-paneled fireplace in the corner. Behind the above photo is bathroom number one.
Straight ahead is access to the sizeable balcony with two comfortable chairs and a sizeable dining table. Here’s the balcony.
The balcony was magnificent. It was totally private. We were on the third floor so we enjoyed surrounding trees. There are tons of trees on the property which is a nice touch.
Once in the living room, the large bedroom with king-sized bed is off to the right. Here’s the bedroom.
When lying in the bed, you see the following:
Off the bedroom is a walk-through closet into the massive primary bathroom as follows:
When you walk out of the bedroom, you enter the living room again with the following view:
The second bathroom is at the far end. While not as big as the primary bathroom, it’s sizeable and just as luxuriously appointed.
The living room includes wood built-in cabinets/workspaces as follows:
As you can see in the photos, there are many large windows with attractive wood blinds. The views and light were spectacular throughout. Being a corner unit, we enjoyed more windows and light than non-corner units.
The in-room coffee maker is a Nespresso machine. They provide 4 regular coffee capsules and 2 decaf capsules. We drink quite a bit of coffee so asked for additional capsules. They gave us a bag full.
Our suite was very nice but not the most opulent in the resort. There are larger suite options available costing into the thousands of dollars per night.
If you want truly luxurious, it’s there for the taking.
On the other hand, there are more modest rooms available as well.
Location, location, location.
While beautiful, luxurious and offering all the trappings of a luxury hotel, the Four Seasons has one glaring problem for ski vacations and that is it’s located fairly far from slope access.
You can walk to the Blackcomb gondola, but it’s at least a five minute walk which isn’t fun with ski gear.
That said, the Four Seasons has a ski storage/concierge location next to the gondola where you can have your ski gear kept. That means you can hoof it without hauling all your gear.
Better yet, the resort offers a free shuttle to the their ski concierge area in the upper village next to the gondola.
Clearly the Four Seasons has done all it can to make it easy to get to the slopes, but that effort pales in comparison to the convenience of the Fairmont Chateau which has an exit 100 feet from the Blackcomb gondola.
In fact, taking the shuttle from the Four Seasons is easy, but when you’re done skiing, you get to wait unless you time it perfectly (unlikely). Yes, the shuttle is frequent but I take comfort in knowing I can get to my hotel room quickly from the slopes and back on the slopes.
The Pool Area
The outdoor pool area includes one large Y-shaped pool and three hot tubs. The patio area is nicely designed with trees. It’s spacious. The pool is large. The hot tubs accommodate 10 people each. All-in-all, our hours spent in the pool area were a delight.
The resort provides poolside drink and snack service as well.
A nice touch was free sunscreen.
As usual at such resorts, towels were provided.
The lounge chairs were very comfortable. Umbrellas for shade were everywhere.
There is no indoor pool. You must step outside to access the hot tubs and pool. While in summer this isn’t a problem, when it’s cold, it’s a cold dash to the water.
The Sidecut Restaurant
There is only one restaurant on the property. It’s called Sidecut.
The plus side is it’s considered one of the best steakhouses in Whistler. Having dined at Hy’s Steakhouse and now Sidecut plus many other restaurants including those in the Fairmont and the Hilton, I agree that if you like steak, the Sidecut won’t disappoint. I do prefer Hy’s overall, but my 6 oz. tenderloin at Sidecut was spectacular.
The prices at the Sidecut are high. Very high. Anything you eat there will cost a fortune. The steak dishes are a la carte. The plus side is the food is exceptional. During my stay I had the hummus plate (loaded with vegetables), tenderloin, Montreal smoked beef sandwich, Margarita pizza, oatmeal and cauliflower wings. Everything was delicious.
The Sidecut patio is huge. We enjoyed all meals on the patio which overlooks a creek. When sitting in the dining courtyard patio, you view the resort exterior as follows:
No other restaurants
The Fairmont Chateau offers 4 restaurants, including a coffee shop and casual dining restaurant. I really appreciated this.
The Four Seasons only has one restaurant. While it offers a more casual menu all day, it would be nice if they put in a coffee shop or kiosk with casual snack offerings.
We stayed during COVID so room service was limited in that they drop the cart off for you instead of bring it inside the suite and set it up. That’s totally understandable given COVID, but we did not get to experience the full service so I can’t comment on that.
The cart was nicely appointed with linen tablecloth which we took and put on our balcony table.
IMO the Four Seasons offers the most beautiful grounds of any hotel in Whistler. It’s large. There are walkways throughout lined with trees. There’s a man-made creek flowing throughout as well. Here’s part of it viewed from the Sidecut restaurant patio.
We enjoyed our stay at the Four Seasons Whistler a great deal. It’s a beautiful hotel with incredible suites, service and grounds.
It’s my favorite Whistler hotel for a summer stay. In fact, as a hotel and resort on its own, it’s my favorite in Whistler.
However, it’s not my go-to ski hotel just because it’s not as convenient to get to the slopes as other hotels namely the Fairmont Chateau as well as a few in the lower village such as the Pan Pacific Mountainside, Hilton, Westin and Carlton Lodge – all of which are next to the Whistler gondola.