During a two-night stay in Saskatoon, we spent the second night at the Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon after an entirely ordinary stay at the Delta Saskatoon Downtown. I was hopeful that our second night would be superior to our first.
After a post-marathon brunch at the other hotel, I hobbled down the street, past the Delta Bessborough, and soon arrived at the Sheraton.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Booking
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I booked a base-level room at the hotel on a Member Exclusive Rate. For one night, the room priced out at $149, which I felt was reasonable.
The cash cost of the hotel hovers around $160 on weeknights and, oddly enough, around $140 on weekends, throughout the year. I’d expect the rates to be the other way around, but this appears to consistently be the case.
If booking using Marriott Bonvoy points, the price fluctuates between 15,000 and 20,000 points per night throughout the week. Based on our valuation of Bonvoy points at 0.9cpp, cash rates tend to be a better deal, as Bonvoy points can be redeemed at a much higher value.
I paid for the stay using my Marriott Bonvoy American Express Card and earned five points per dollar.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Location
The Sheraton Cavalier is situated in an ideal location in Saskatoon’s Central Business District. It’s steps away to the gorgeous River Valley and within walking distance to shopping, restaurants, bars, and attractions.
Across the street from the hotel, you won’t miss the grandiose Delta Bessborough perched on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River.
Along the river is the Meewasin Trail, which is a 20km trail along the riverbanks. It’s a fantastic trail to stretch your legs and enjoy a coffee on a morning walk.
The University of Saskatchewan is a short distance from the hotel, and takes around 30 minutes by foot or only four minutes by car to access.
Many of Saskatoon’s bars, restaurants, and shopping are accessible by foot, including Broadway Avenue across the Broadway Bridge.
From the airport, the hotel is around 15 minutes by car or 30 minutes by transit. We wound up taking the bus back to the airport when we left, and found that it was entirely easy.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Check-in
Our short commute from the Delta Saskatoon Downtown brought us to the Sheraton Cavalier. The hotel’s exterior hasn’t changed much over the years, as evidenced by this wonderful advertisement from 1982.
The interior of the hotel appears to have been renovated in the recent past. The lobby has a few seating areas available, including oddly-shaped pillar couches, a living room, and a nook with four armchairs.
As we arrived early on a Sunday afternoon, the hotel lobby was quiet as most guests had likely already checked out. We were greeted with a warm smile from the staff at the check-in desk.
Although I had booked a base-level room, I put in a very small effort of “suite-talking” on the app before checking-out of our other hotel. Much to my delight, after acknowledging and confirming my Platinum Elite benefits, I was informed that we had been upgraded to a river-facing Junior Suite.
The associate also informed me that the Club Lounge was open, and that we could enjoy access there during our stay. In lieu of breakfast and even hors d’oeuvres being offered in the lounge, the hotel applied two $30 food and beverage credits to our bill, which could be redeemed for anything at either of the hotel’s in-house restaurants.
Dogs are welcome in the hotel, and incur a reasonable fee of $30 per stay. On-site parking is available for $18 per day.
Happy with our good fortune so far, we headed up to the eighth floor of the hotel to check out our room.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Junior Suite
Room 804 is located on the hotel’s top floor. This part of the hotel was a glimpse of the past, with tired carpet, wallpaper, and dull brown hues.
Upon entry to the suite, there is a small foyer that is home to a closet. Inside the closet were bathrobes, additional bedding for the pull-out hide-a-bed, and an ironing board.
Next to the closet is a mini-fridge and the coffee machine. We wound up using the automated coffee machine in the Club Lounge instead of the standard in-room machine.
The bathroom is immediately to the right of the entrance. The small space had textured wallpaper, and featured Gilchrist & Soames refillable amenities, a toilet, and a walk-in shower with good water pressure.
The foyer opens up into the spacious living room, where a grey couch sits against one wall. Across from it is one of two flat-screen TVs, two lounge chairs, and coffee tables.
A small work desk with a comfortable leather chair is tucked against a side wall, with a lamp and telephone on the glass desktop.
From the living room, there used to be access to a small balcony, which I assume is a vestige of a time where people would smoke. The balcony is no longer accessible from the room, but wouldn’t offer much space to enjoy the view anyway.
The living area wall with the TV acts a partition between the living area and the bedroom. There is another TV on the opposite side of the wall, but since there is no door to separate the two spaces, having the TVs playing simultaneously would result in a cacophony of noise.
The king bed rests against the wall, and has side tables with rectangular lamps on either side. A small, dated dresser rests underneath a dog-bowl shaped mirror on the wall.
The bed was quite comfortable, and we enjoyed the view of the River Valley and the Delta Bessborough during the morning sunrise. There is another, sealed-off balcony connected to the bedroom.
When we returned in the evening, we found a small dessert and a can of beer waiting for us.
While this wasn’t necessarily the nicest or newest suite I’ve stayed in, I appreciated the complimentary upgrade to what I assume is one of the hotel’s better rooms. Had we spent more time in the hotel, it would have been a perfect space for one of us to work in while the other relaxed undisturbed.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Breakfast
Since the Club Lounge wasn’t offering breakfast, we instead ordered from the regular menu at Scarlet on the hotel’s main floor. Breakfast is served here from 6:30–11am Monday–Friday, 7am–12pm on Saturday, and 7:30am–12pm on Sunday.
Knowing that we would be eating at the Maple Leaf Lounge at the airport and on our flights back to Vancouver Island later that morning, we had used some of $60 credit toward drinks and appetizers the night before. We left enough credit to mostly cover a modest breakfast that would tide us over until we reached the airport.
My wife ordered the breakfast sandwich with bacon ($5.50), and I went for the matcha coconut power bowl ($12).
I rarely order cold dishes for breakfast at hotels, but I was pleasantly surprised with my dish. The breakfast sandwich was quite standard, although it helped resolve the remnants of a visit to the Prairie Sun Brewery the night before.
Had we not used some of the $60 credit towards other items during our stay, it would have been more than sufficient to cover a full breakfast for two.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Dining
We popped by Scarlet after checking-in to celebrate finishing a marathon. We snagged two seats out on the patio and enjoyed the intermittent spring sunshine.
Our waitress let us know that the $5 brunch drink specials were about to close, and quickly rang through our order, suggesting we grab two each.
We also stopped by later on for a snack before heading out to meet with some friends. We split an order of the avocado tacos ($16), which although quite strange in appearance, were tasty enough.
Aside from Scarlet, there is a small coffee shop called The Express located in the lobby lounge. The Express offers standard coffee-shop goods and beverages, and is open from morning until night every day of the week.
Carver’s Steakhouse & Lounge is the hotel’s finer-dining establishment. We didn’t get a chance to pop in, as it is closed on Sunday and Monday, but it open from 5–10pm from Tuesday to Thursday and from 5–11pm on Friday and Saturday.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Club Lounge
The Club Lounge is located on the eighth floor. Guests staying in any of the hotel’s suites, as well as guests with Platinum or higher status, are welcome to use the lounge.
Entry is granted by swiping a key card.
It appears as though the lounge was recently renovated, as it was modern and clean in its apperance.
To the right of the entryway is a small workstation, with a computer that was in need of some attention.
The space then opens up to three two-person dining tables next to a window overlooking the courtyard.
The main part of the lounge has two large islands, with bar stools at one. Along the back wall is a counter with heating elements, where I imagine hot food will be served for breakfast and evening hors d’oeuvres once the hotel returns to full service.
There is an automated coffee machine serving a variety of hot beverages, a wide selection of tea, and a mini-fridge full of soft drinks for guest to consume.
The rest of the lounge has comfortable, softly lit seating areas. There is a faux fireplace in a seating nook to the rear of the lounge.
I grabbed a coffee here in the morning, and some snacks in the evening, but didn’t otherwise spend too much time making use of the facility.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Pool
One of the hotel’s main attractions for families and waterpark enthusiasts alike is the River Country Waterpark – Saskatoon’s largest indoor waterpark.
The area features a swimming pool, hot tub, and large waterslide.
There is also a small poolside café, although it didn’t appear to be operational during our stay.
The hours for the pool and the hot tub differ from those of the waterslide.
The pool and hot tub are open from 6am–9pm Monday–Friday, and from 6am–10pm on Friday and Saturday.
The waterslide is open from 4–9pm Monday–Thursday, 3–10pm on Friday, 8am–10pm on Saturday, and 8am–9pm on Sunday.
Unfortunately, we didn’t get a chance to check out the waterslide, because it sure looked like a blast. I spent some time soaking in the hot tub a couple of times, and had the whole space to myself on both occasions.
Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon – Other Facilities
To the left of the check-in desks is the Sheraton Link, which is an area where you can use a computer to check your email, look up local attractions, or print something off. There is also an ATM and an arrivals/departures screen for the airport.
The hotel rents bicycles from the lobby, should you wish to go for a bike ride along the river trails.
The fitness centre is located on the hotel’s third floor, opposite from the entrance to the pool. It’s a fairly simple space, with a few treadmills, bikes, and a small free-weight strength training area.
If the weather is nice, I’d suggest hitting the trails and using some of the outdoor workout areas located along the Meewasin Trail instead.
Our one-night stay at the Sheraton Cavalier Saskatoon was surprisingly pleasant, and felt like a mishmash of past and present. I felt appreciated as someone with elite status, and all of our interactions with the hotel’s staff were great.
I also appreciated the generous food and beverage credit, which we stretched out to cover drinks, an appetizer, and a light breakfast during our stay. Once the Club Lounge resumes regular operations, I’d surely make use of the hot breakfast and evening hors d’oeuvres, too.
The River City Waterpark is a nice attraction for the hotel, and we saw plenty of families with happy kids going up and down the elevators. Just be sure to check the waterslide’s opening hours, which shouldn’t be a problem on weekends.
When I return to Saskatoon, I’d definitely stay at the Sheraton Cavalier again, although I’d likely consider a stay at the Delta Bessborough, too.