• Ben M.


Updated: Sep 18

Guadalajara, Mexico.

Disclosure: Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links; at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you make a purchase. I do not accept payment for reviews.

I visited the Square Small Luxury Hotel after the Doubletree Centro. It was an Orbitz VIP property, which means with my status on Orbitz, I receive a collection of benefits for choosing this hotel. In this specific case, it was an upgraded room, free wine, and a late checkout. Ultimately, I did enjoy the stay, although there was mixed feelings regarding some aspects of the property.

I left the Doubletree with a late checkout at 1pm, then following an extremely long wait for an Uber, arrived at the Square SLH just before 2pm. It’s actually only a 10-15 minute drive from Centro to the Financial District, depending upon traffic. The lobby contains an attractive assortment of artwork and decorations. When I arrived, I was informed that the room wasn’t ready yet; no problem though, as the check-in began at 3pm. I took the elevator to the 5th floor where the restaurant and pool deck is located. The front desk representative assured me the hotel bar was open to receive guests.

I strolled around the pool area waiting for the bartender to return. The pool and outdoor lounge is attractive but the pool deck and the cushions were fairly dirty. After 10 minutes of lingering, I called back behind the bar to the dish area, where the dishwasher informed me the bar was closed. On my way through the small restaurant to the elevator, the server returned so I was able to get a Corona from their limited beer selection.

While the bar was closing, I re-located from the restaurant to the pool deck, so they could clean. One of the strangest things was when they moved the chairs and tables from the restaurant, into the gym. The gym is not that large to begin with, although it is serviceable and clean. I never ascertained if that was a regular daily process or once in a while occurrence, but it seemed strange to offer a gym, then remove the use of said gym.

Eventually after two beers and the bar closing, I returned to the front desk for check-in. I was seated in the lobby after 3pm, when there had been no movement for any guests. I did approach the same representative from earlier to examine the status of the room. At 3:15pm, the room was still not ready. In my opinion, there is never really a good excuse for a hotel to not have rooms completed at the listed check-in time.

I asked for the general manager and was told he was off property until 6pm. I book dozens of rooms on Orbitz and the partner Expedia, so I asked him to credit back the stay and I would change to the Hard Rock or Riu. The front desk agent tried to convince me to call Orbitz myself, but I told him that it was the hotel that was not providing the room at the contracted time. In due course, I was provided an upgraded suite with balcony, but it was an unpleasant start after a great stay at the Doubletree.

The room was very large and the bed was nicely appointed, plush, and comfortable. The closet was designed for me in a manner that actually makes sense, with drawers, cubbies, and closet rod all in once space. There was a good amount of seating area with a sizable desk and chaise lounge. The balcony was also roomy but it was partially obstructed with a weird cage over it, which I'm guessing is a security measure but kind of ruins the point of the balcony.

The sink was easily large enough to accommodate a couple if needed. The shower, which is honestly one of the most important things for me in a hotel or a house, was a tremendously grand rain shower. You almost felt as you were drowning which is perfecto. The water could be hotter, but that seems to be a common issue with hotels in Guadalajara and is probably not Square's fault.

I did go in the pool the first day (I was only there one night), and the pool was clean and well maintained. The water was frigid to say the least, but not a negative thing for me personally. There isn't much of a view from the pool deck, mostly encompassing other buildings although you can see the RIU hotel which is noticeably tall.

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