Vancouver might be the darling – it’s the better-known city.
But Victoria, the beautiful capital of British Columbia, Canada, is equally lovely and gets its fair share of tourism ink too.
There are oodles of fab things to do in Victoria. And the downtown Inner Harbor – with its yachts, sea planes and small ferries – is one of the most picturesque in the world.
There are some lovely luxury hotels in Victoria too.
We know! We live in the city – and we’ve checked out the best hotels in Victoria, BC.
Best hotels in Victoria, BC
When it comes to deciding where to stay in Victoria, BC, you’ll find lots of choice.
If you’d like a self-contained suite or house with your own kitchen, we’ve sussed out some charming Airbnbs in Victoria.
But if you want more amenities and services, then the most pleasurable way to visit is by staying in one of the city’s luxury hotels.
We’ve bedded down in (or inspected) all of the following 10 Victoria, BC, hotels – and can personally recommend them.
1) Inn at Laurel Point
Best Victoria Inner Harbour hotel:
For that close-up Inner Harbor experience, we love the Laurel Point Inn.
One of the best luxury hotels in Victoria, it sports a brick and glass look that’s modern and futuristic.
All of its 200 rooms and suites have harbor views.
There are two wings at the inn, Arthur Erickson and Laurel.
They’re connected by a large public area which includes the hotel’s restaurant, bar and indoor pool.
Accommodations in the Arthur Erickson Wing are more luxurious, Zen-like and filled with light.
The smallest are 400 sq. ft. studios. Suites range from 560 sq. ft to 1,105 sq. ft.
Marble bathrooms have deep soaker tubs, separate glass walk-in showers, L’Occitane bath products and sliding shoji doors.
Colorful Canadian landscapes decorate the walls.
And expansive balconies with glass railings are perfect for soaking up the sunshine, glass of wine or coffee in hand, as you gaze at the sea planes splashing down and taking off.
Laurel Wing guest rooms are more traditional (and a little darker) – but less expensive.
Standard Laurel Wing rooms are 300 square feet in size and feature Juliet (standing only) balconies, dark brown leather club chairs and soothing neutral décor. The bed in our room was totally divine.
Laurel Point Inn, Victoria: Check rates and availability
2) Abigail’s Hotel
A top bed-and-breakfast Victoria, BC:
This romantic adults-only hotel, with just 23 rooms, nails the heritage bed-and-breakfast experience, blurring the lines between B&B and a small boutique hotel.
There are several room types at Abigail’s, and each is decorated individually.
But all have bathrobes and fresh flowers.
In the Main House, “Ruby King” rooms (300 sq. ft.) offer claw-foot soaking tubs and king-size beds.
“Rose” rooms on the top 3rd floor feature double-sided gas fireplaces between the bathroom and bedroom.
We especially like the elegant “Emerald” rooms in the separate coach house. They offer king-size beds, marble bathrooms with rainshowers, Malin + Goetz bath amenities and wood-burning fireplaces.
Rates include a delicious three-course breakfast – spinach frittata with chicken apple sausage and fried yams anyone?
You’re also welcomed with freshly-baked cookies. Complimentary appetizers are served in the lobby in the early evening.
Abigail’s Hotel, Victoria: Check rates and availability
3) Oak Bay Beach Hotel
Best seaside luxury hotel in Victoria, BC:
Want a seaside holiday just a few minutes’ drive from downtown?
Then the Tudor-inspired Oak Bay Beach Hotel is the place to stay in Victoria for you.
Outdoor pool and beach access:
We love the hotel’s heated outdoor mineral pools, set on a rocky outcropping jutting out into the Juan de Fuca Strait.
Watch kayakers paddle by and eagles soar overhead as you sip on a glass of British Columbia Chardonnay from an acclaimed Okanagan Valley winery. Waiters offer food and drink service.
Step outside the hotel and walk along Beach Drive (one of the most scenic walks in Victoria), and you reach Willows Beach.
Willows Beach is a lovely long curve of sandy beach, perfect for spending a beach day in summer.
If you’re looking for beach resorts in Victoria, BC, the Oak Bay Beach Hotel is the closest match.
This luxury boutique resort has 100 rooms and suites – you’ll want to book a room with an ocean view and private balcony or terrace.
Choose from rooms (375 to 500 sq. ft.) to one-bedroom suites (600 to 760 sq. ft.) with kitchens and dining areas. But even the rooms have small galley kitchenettes and fireplaces.
There are also two top floor, two-level penthouses with two bathrooms that sleep four guests each.
The latest addition to the hotel’s dining offerings is FARO, a café-cum-bistro specializing in serving hand-crafted pizzas from a wood stone pizza oven and local BC wines.
You can sit at the tasting bar inside or on the outdoor patio with heaters and fire pits.
The Snug Pub – Victoria’s first neighborhood pub – is an attractive place for fish-and-chips or a burger and brew.
Its outside patio has fabulous sea views.
(But it loses the sun and can be cool in the evenings, so bring a warm sweater. Or go for a late lunch instead.)
Oak Bay Beach Hotel, Victoria: Check rates and availability
4) Fairmont Empress
Best 5-star hotel in Victoria, BC:
With 464 luxurious rooms and suites, the Fairmont Empress Hotel is the most famous hotel in Victoria, BC – and the grande dame of 5-star Victoria hotels.
Opened in 1908, the Empress is one of Canada’s legendary railway hotels. These historic hotels were built by the Canadian Pacific Railway company to encourage visitors to ride their trains across the country.
If you want to be in the heart of downtown Victoria, then the Empress boasts the perfect location for you.
(You’ll note we sometimes use the Canadian spelling of “Inner Harbour” – as we’re Canadian. But we sometimes use the U.S. spelling too, in deference to all our American readers who love visiting our city.)
The elegant rooms range in size from 230 sq. ft. to 430 sq. ft.
Signature harbor view rooms have lovely views over Victoria’s Inner Harbor and come with a small sitting area in a nook by the window.
Suites vary in size from 420 sq. ft. to 850 sq. ft. for the Signature one-bedroom harbor view suites to 1,600 sq. ft. for the Royal Suite.
Afternoon tea in the Empress’ renovated and elegant Lobby Lounge is legendary.
For summer, you can ask for the “Empress Tea to Go” box (with iced tea instead of hot tea) – so you can enjoy a delicious picnic by the sea at one of Victoria’s best beaches or on the Empress lawns.
Empress Hotel, Victoria: Check rates and availability
5) Villa Marco Polo Inn
A sumptuous B&B in Victoria, BC:
Built in 1923 as a gift for a young bride, this boutique B&B is a beautiful place to celebrate a romantic getaway.
(It’s often booked for weddings.)
Hardwood floors dressed with Persian carpets, ornate gold-framed mirrors, Italian and Chinese ceramics, fine antiques – the Renaissance-style mansion wows the minute you set foot inside.
And then there’s the Italianate garden with a reflecting pool and fountains, a sanctuary really – providing an outdoor space to rest and relax.
We walk by this inn often, as it’s just a few blocks from our house. It’s also within walking distance of Craigdarroch Castle. (You can tour this opulent mansion, which looks a bit like a castle, built in the late 1800s by a wealthy industrialist.)
The Villa Marco Polo truly is one of the most special and best places to stay in Victoria, BC.
Choose from five individually decorated suites.
The Alexandria is a cozy choice if visiting in cooler weather, as it features a gas fireplace and adjoining sitting room to relax with a book.
The Zanzibar suite (favored by honeymooners) is light and bright. It has a Juliette balcony plus a huge ivory-and-gold bathroom with a claw-footed double soaker tub and romantic lighting.
On the top (third floor), the Penthouse Shiraz evokes feelings of being in an exotic far-away land with its Persian décor and furniture from Damascus.
It features a full balcony (you can see the ocean from here), beamed ceiling, king-size bed and a spare queen-size bed in the living area.
Multi-course breakfasts are delicious.
Perhaps a smoothie, fresh fruit and muffins hot-from-the-oven to start. Then a hot savory dish – maybe spinach-and-cheese souffle or scrambled eggs and asparagus vol au vent.
And there’s always something sweet to finish off, like lemon tart with blueberries.
Need to know:
Located in the Rockland residential district, the Marco Polo Inn is a 5-minute drive (20- to 30-minute walk) from the city center, so you’ll want a car if staying here.
Villa Marco Polo Bed-and-Breakfast Inn: Check rates and availability
6) Villa Eyrie
One of the most unique places to stay in Victoria, BC:
For a little bit of Italy just a 25-minute drive up the Trans-Canada Highway from Victoria, say hello to Villa Eyrie!
Wrought-iron railings, porticos and Tuscan-inspired columns all make you feel like you’ve been transported to a fine hotel around Lake Como.
Except then you see the views.
Set high on the Malahat mountainside 1,880 feet above sea level, the boutique hotel has gob-smacking views of the Saanich Inlet and Vancouver Island.
That’s when you realize, no this isn’t Italy. But it’s just as heavenly.
No two spaces in the 38-room Villa Eyrie resort are decorated the same way.
For instance, the Cielo Junior Suite has hardwood floors, hand-woven area rugs, a fireplace and probably the best views.
But all rooms at Villa Eyrie (a member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World) have pillow-top mattresses and deep-soaker tubs.
If you’re a light sleeper, ask for a top floor room so you don’t hear sounds from above.
The Alpina Restaurant gets rave reviews as one of Vancouver Island’s best restaurants.
Indeed, it makes Villa Eyrie a foodie destination.
The chefs blend the flavors and cuisines of Europe’s Alpine regions to create an ever-changing menu.
Perhaps you’ll start your day with crepes, stuffed with roasted pear and pecans, or a three-egg omelette filled with goat cheese, bell peppers and house-cured back bacon.
If you stop for lunch, you might dine on simmered pretzel dumplings and four-hour braised short ribs in a celery root puree.
For dinner, how about mushroom ravioli to start, followed by seared scallops with lemon-mascarpone risotto – are you drooling now?
Also popular is the resort’s Tuscan Spa, with three treatment rooms and 180-degree views of the Malahat mountain range.
Villa Eyrie Resort: Check rates and availability
7) Magnolia Hotel
Best boutique hotel in Victoria, BC:
You can’t beat the central location of the aptly-named, 64-room Magnolia Hotel.
It’s located a few steps from Victoria’s pedestrian-friendly shopping avenue (Government Street) and two blocks from the Inner Harbour.
Rooms are serenely decorated in dove-grey and silver hues.
Book a “Diamond” harbour-view room for smashing views and a gas fireplace to cozy up to when temps dip.
Nightly turn-down service and chocolates round out a deluxe stay.
Its Courtney Room has been named one of Canada’s best restaurants by Air Canada’s enRoute magazine.
We confess we haven’t eaten here yet, but it’s on our list!
Magnolia Hotel, Victoria: Check rates and availability
8) Fairholme Manor
Possibly the best Victoria, Canada, bed-and-breakfast
Fairholme Manor is tucked away in a park-like setting in the Rockland neighborhood, right beside Government House, where BC’s Lieutenant Governor lives (and occasionally entertains royalty).
And if you love gardens, you’re in for a treat, as the gardens at Government House are one of the most beautiful gardens in Victoria.
The inn has its own claim to fame too – it’s been written up in numerous publications, from The Globe and Mail to Where magazine.
Rated the #1 Victoria B&B inn on Tripadvisor, the 125-year-old Italianate mansion is owned and run by a charming couple, Ross and Sylvia Main. Stay here, and they’ll welcome you warmly.
When it comes to luxury accommodation in Victoria, the Fairholme Manor’s six rooms and suites are some of the most beautiful.
There’s the Olympic Grand Suite on the second floor, with large bay windows, a wood-burning fireplace and private ocean view balcony (complete with a table and chairs for two, shaded by an umbrella).
Light and bright, with all-white décor, it has a king bed, polished wood floors and gilt-framed mirrors.
Or perhaps you’ll stay in the Fairholme Grand Suite, with lofty ceilings, a king-size sleigh bed and a separate spa room with double jetted tub.
But no matter the room, you’ll delight in the antique furniture, Persian rugs and welcome chocolates.
Elaborate breakfasts are served on the porch or inside in the art-filled dining room.
You may start with fresh fruit, French vanilla yogurt and fresh-baked cinnamon scones. A hot entrée follows – maybe Eggs Benedict, cheese soufflé or fluffy lemon ricotta pancakes with fresh berries, crème fraiche and Canadian back bacon.
Rose petal garnishes from the garden are a lovely touch.
Sylvia is a cookbook author, and her breakfast and brunch recipes can be found in her bestselling books: Easy Elegance From Fabulous Fairholme: Breakfast, Brunch and Lunch and Fabulous Fairholme Breakfasts and Brunches.
Fairholme Manor, Victoria: Check rates and availability
9) Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort
Modern upscale waterfront resort in Victoria, BC
A little further away from the main downtown area, this Marriott hotel is located right on the waterfront – just a 15-minute walk (very scenic!) over the Johnson Street Bridge to downtown.
With 236 rooms and 4 suites, a large indoor pool (big enough for laps), fitness center, electric scooter rentals in the lobby and even squash and tennis courts, the Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort feels more like a year-round resort than an urban hotel.
For this reason, it’s one of the best resorts in Victoria, BC.
Joggers and walkers will appreciate the Delta’s location right on the beautiful Songhees Walkway (aka Westsong Walkway or West Bay Walkway).
From the Delta hotel, it’s about a one-hour (return) waterside walk on this scenic pedestrian path to the boats and floating homes of Westbay Marine Village.
Fresh and contemporary in design, the rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows that allow natural light to stream in.
Definitely book a waterview room if you can! You’ll get views of the Parliament Buildings (which are lit up at night) and Victoria’s Inner Harbour.
All rooms feature flat-panel TVs, free Wi-Fi and large desks with ergonomic chairs and plug-in panels for charging all your gizmos – making the Delta the ideal hotel for a business trip.
We’ve eaten a few times at LURE, the resort’s on-site restaurant and lounge. It offers knock-your-socks-off waterfront views, especially if you sit outside on the outdoor patio (hands down, one of the hottest patios in Victoria).
Chilly weather? No problem. Firepits and heaters warm the space, and if it rains, there are cool plastic-covered domes that can be set up over each table.
Delta Hotels Victoria Ocean Pointe Resort: Check rates and availability
10) Parkside Hotel & Spa
Best hotel in Victoria, Canada, featuring suites with kitchens
The last in our list of the best hotels in Victoria, BC, is the Parkside Hotel & Spa.
An upscale all-suite hotel with 126 suites, it’s just two blocks from Victoria’s Inner Harbour and also only a short walk to Victoria’s signature Beacon Hill Park.
Swim in the 82-foot indoor lap pool, soak in the hotel hot tub and maybe take out one of the complimentary bikes to explore the bicycle-friendly city. Also check out the koi pond in the plant-filled lobby.
We regularly pop in to the hotel’s casual café-cum-wine-bar Tre Fantastico for coffee or a light bite on the patio (good espresso, good food and good wine).
As part of its effort to be carbon neutral, the hotel doesn’t have air conditioning. But you don’t really need A/C in Victoria in summer – with the windows open, the ocean breezes should keep you cool.
Clean and modern in décor, the Parkside also happens to be good value for money.
The one- and two-bedroom suites range in size from 550 sq. ft to 1,000 sq. ft. (and there are several room types for the one-bedroom suites). The two-bedroom suites feature two bathrooms.
You’ll feel right at home here, as all suites have fireplaces, private balconies, European style washers/dryers and full kitchens with granite countertops.
The hotel is ideally suited for longer stays.
No matter whether you plan to whip up complete dinners (using the stove and oven) or just want to order Indian food or lasagne from one of Victoria’s top take-out restaurants, you’ll find the kitchen and dining room very convenient.
Bring your furry four-legged friend too – the Parkside is pet-friendly.
Parkside Hotel & Spa: Check rates and availability
That’s our list of the best Victoria, BC, hotels!
Have you stayed at any of these? What’s your favorite bed-and-breakfast or hotel in Victoria?
We welcome comments, and you can share your thoughts or ask questions about any Victoria (Canada) hotels in the Comments section below.
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Photo credits: 1 Marco Polo Inn | 6, 11 © Janice and George Mucalov, SandInMySuitcase | Other photos courtesy the respective hotels