Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City in a Nutshell:
Located inside a former bank building just a few blocks from Temple Square, Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City is an oasis of style and sophistication in a strait-laced city. The hotel's decor is as whimsical as a stage set, yet the staff are as friendly as folks in a midwestern burg. Appealing to both out-of-towners and locals, Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City provides a comfortable refuge for those hailing from other places and a breath of fresh air for those who live nearby.
Accommodations at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City :
Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City contains some 225 rooms and suites. Room 605, where we stayed, was nice and cozy for one but would be too small for all but the tiniest (or most intimate) of couples. Those traveling alone needn't be bereft of company, though: At this pet-friendly hotel, room service can deliver a goldfish in a bowl. Amusingly furnished with bright colors and stripes, rooms are reminiscent of Pee Wee Herman's Playhouse. Bathrooms are small, but amenities by L'Occitane and a magnifying makeup mirror are great touches (a nightlight also would be welcome). Wi-fi and HBO are available at no extra charge.
Dining at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City :
Bambara, the in-house restaurant, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner and features comfortable upholstered-booth seating. The menu lists a variety of grilled meats, seafood, and pasta dishes. Those who prefer simple to elaborate fare (example: cider glazed barbeque duck breast, soft corn polenta, grilled radicchio, hazelnuts, blackberries, brown butter, pinot syrup) can order any dish without the specific flourishes described on the menu and the chef will comply. The bar adjacent to the restaurant is designed to resemble a Parisian watering hole.
Weddings at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City :
Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City is a popular spot for Salt Lake City wedding receptions, and its banquet team can help to customize and cater an event. The largest space is the hotel's Paris ballroom, which can hold up to 225 guests. Family and friends who need to stay over can lodge at the hotel for 15 percent off the best available rate.
Honeymoons/Romance Packages at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City :
The hotel's romance package is dubbed "Guilty In Love." (What's there to be guilty about, we wondered: Does this target the infidelity market? Or those breaking vows of chastity?) Regardless, it includes a room for two, a bottle of red wine with two glasses to keep, free valet parking, a free appetizer in Bambara, and a $25 room service credit good toward breakfast in bed. The concierge can assist couples by securing tickets, making reservations, and offering suggestions on how to spend time outside their room. There's also a "Best Friends" package if your significant other pads around on four paws.
Activities at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City :
Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City gets around Utah's odd liquor laws by paying for guests' "memberships," which entitles them to imbibe red or white wine at the free daily manager's wine tasting from 5 to 6 pm. The afternoon relaxation fest also includes free neck-and-shoulder massages. Continue to unwind in your room, where you can order up an aromatherapy, hot stone, or custom massage. Do-it-yourselfers can tune into the mind-body-spirit TV channel, call up for a yoga mat, and snap each other silly with the wide rubber bands provided.
Nearby Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City :
If you're traveling as a couple, wind your way past the panhandlers who hang out near the hotel and walk the two blocks to Temple Square, world headquarters for Mormons. You won't be allowed inside the temple itself (that's reserved for those of the faith), but you can sit in on a free MoTac rehearsal (that's the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, for the uninitiated) if you're around on a Thursday night. Across from the compound, the Family History Library will fascinate new couples interested in one another's genealogy. The Gateway Mall lures shoppers. And the nearby mountains draw outdoors lovers in every season.
Is the Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City Right for You? :
Mid-January to the end of the month, Salt Lake City traditionally fills with skiers and Sundance Film Festival
attendees (Tom Hanks has been known to secure the hotel's top suite). Still, if that's when you want to visit, it's worth trying to book early. During the rest of the year, the hotel provides a sexy but less star-filled respite from the tee-totaling town (e.g. due to local ordinances, no alcohol is available in the minibar). But room service food is affordable and you'll find a leopard-print cami, boxers, and robes in your closet. How you intoxicate one another will be up to you.
What Could Be Improved at Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City?:
The best thing Hotel Monaco Salt Lake City could do is address the problem of panhandlers surrounding the building. Working with either the local police department or using its own security to patrol the perimeter of the building, the property should be able to create a safety zone outside where guests can walk without being harrassed by Salt Lake City's least desirable elements.
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