Comfort. Class. Convenience.
The Sheraton Gateway may very well be the most convenient hotel near Toronto International Airport considering its direct attachment to Terminal 3. Connected by a short indoor walkway and an escalator, travelers can quickly check out of the hotel and into their respective airline within minutes. Getting to Terminal 1 is made every bit as easy via the Terminal Link train, which additionally services Viscount Station in order to access the Value Park Garage. All terminal stops are indoors, so there’s no need to venture outside in inclement weather. Running 24 hours a day — every 4 minutes during peak hours — there’s never a reason to be late for a flight.
The pluses of the Sheraton Gateway are pretty obvious. It’s time-saving serviceability clearly ranks as number one. The name Sheraton is also favorable — the famous hotel brand is known far and wide so travelers feel confident they know what they’re getting due to the hotel’s pedigree of service and guarantee. That pedigree is seen in spades in the upscale lobby that sets the tone for the hotel.
There is also the added attraction of it being a great place to start a vacation, considering half the rooms oversee the hustle and bustle of the airport. Whether looking directly into Terminal 3 and watching travelers scurry about, watching the Link Train scoot back and forth, or viewing the planes as they take off and land, it’s undeniable that the atmosphere will fuel excitement for a vacation about to happen. However, if you’re traveling for business purposes and are tired of airports and the commotion, you can pull the blackout drapes and get a good and quiet rest. When you awaken, there are 25 meeting rooms and a lobby-level business center, as well as in-room desks and Wi-Fi to make your business trip easier and more effective.
The handiness of this hotel extends to a 24/7 fitness center, an indoor pool and a spa, and a small convenience store in the lobby for magazines, treats, and small-sized versions of any toiletries you may have forgotten at home. There is also a bar and lounge and a restaurant located on the lobby level.
An excellent winter incentive employed by Sheraton Gateway is the Boots and Coats program, where registered guests can store their heavy winter coats and boots before embarking on a vacation to a warmer climate. Simply drop them off before heading into the airport and pick them up on your way back, without ever having to go outside. This certainly beats having to lug a heavy coat all the way to the Caribbean.
As for the rooms, they’re likely what you would expect from a Sheraton, with the same basic set-up as most big chain hotels. With a typical choice of a king-size bed or two doubles, the rooms are also equipped with flat-screen TVs, as well as coffeemakers, and typical complimentary toiletries. Special rooms for guests with disabilities are available, as are rollaway beds upon request (for an additional fee). Children under 17 years of age are not charged for their stay if using the existing beds in the room.
As for the condition of the rooms, you can expect cleanliness and upscale amenities, not to mention friendly service from staff should you require anything above or beyond what is already contained in the room. We did encounter an issue where we required help with the thermostat and were quite impressed with how quickly maintenance staff was dispatched and solved our problem with a smile.
No matter which floor you might be assigned to within the hotel, the big surprise is how amazingly quiet they are. With the Link Train running directly below plus taxis, airport shuttles and limos conducting pick-ups and drop-offs at all hours, one would expect a certain level of ongoing noise. But somehow the sound is negligible. Of course, there is a hint of airport noise but only if the runways close to the hotel are active, and this decreases as the night wears on and late night flights grow fewer. As for any noise of planes taxiing to their respective gates or out to runways, surprisingly there is none. You can watch as entertainment but the sound is on mute.
For some travelers, runway activity might contribute to the excitement of an upcoming trip, especially for children or plane enthusiasts. For others; however, it might be bothersome. If that’s the case, you can always opt for accommodations with a City View instead. Either way, the rooms are rather quiet but for the odd door opening and closing in the hallway. Even the elevators are a non-issue considering they are situated in a short, offset hallway of their own.
Like most businesses these days, Sheraton offers a membership club —Marriott Bonvoy, which can help rack up points for free stays and special perks, such as accommodations on the Club Floor of the hotel. At Sheraton Gateway, this translates to free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, complimentary all-day snacks and evening hor d’ouevres, all of which are available via keyed access to the Club Lounge.
As for on-site restaurants, the lounge offers a limited but excellent menu with a mixture of appetizers, sandwiches, and a handful of entrees, as well as a few desserts. It’s perfect for couples and business travellers.
The Grill restaurant, located adjacent to the lounge, is lovely for lunch or dinner, with a more extensive and varied menu, and dimly lit for ambiance. However, it might be a little too fancy for guests with young families. If that’s the case, room service is available, or there’s always the option of taking the convenient walkway across to Terminal 3 and hitting up the Wendy’s located inside. Problem solved!
Actually, when you think about it, Sheraton Gateway solves a LOT of problems when travelling. In addition to everything we’ve already discussed, it even offers registered guests a parking option while they’re away, rather than using the airport parking levels or the Park & Fly down the street.
- Brand name
- Signature beds are very comfortable
- Very helpful and friendly staff
- plenty of onsite facilities and perks
- Marriott Bonvoy program allows for extra perks
- Having undergone it’s last full renovation around 2009, the hotel decor may seem a little dated. However, Sheraton is currently undergoing a re-branding period, which comes with a new look. As such, Sheraton Gateway will be undergoing a full renovation in 2020 to update their look, colour scheme, and signature logo.
All said, this hotel has a LOT going for it and definitely is one to consider if you have an upcoming flight in or out of Toronto.