For those who don't want all the details, here is the short version: This is a rather large style hotel for travelers on a budget that are here for a short stay and will not spend a lot of time in the hotel. If you are a "Four Seasons only" person and travel with your Louis Vuitton luggage, this is not the place for you. But if you are like me and "rough it" occasionally by reserving a relatively clean, and inexpensive place to stay that is easily accessible by a major rail or bus line that is easy to get to from the airport, this is a great buy. This is a bargain hotel and I am sure that when you arrive you will think that if they simply changed the furniture the hotel’s ratings would increase inordinately. Seriously, if the owners of this hotel spent a mere one thousand dollars per room it would make a significant difference.
Getting Here – The Easy Way
Getting to the Hotel Arthur from the Helsinki-Vantaa Airport is easy. First, almost everyone speaks English and appears well informed. When you leave the airport you can take the local bus 615 or the Finnair Bus to the Helsinki Central Railway Station. I suggest the latter because the Finnair buses are new buses made by Volvo and have cloth seats which sit high, large luggage racks, and huge windows. The local bus is 4.5 Euro per person, the Finnair bus is 6.30 and the drivers make change. The bus ride is twenty-five minutes and there is not much to see along the way except a lot of birch trees. Take the bus to the last stop. When you exit the bus walk north or straight toward the major street that the bus will be facing. When you get to the major street, do not cross, simply turn left (east) toward the building with the huge “Fox sign” on top, walk two blocks past the huge Finnkino Sign and you will also pass Molly Malone's Bar and the Best Western Hotel which will be across the street. When you get to the corner turn left and the Arthur Hotel is two blocks up on the right.
Getting Here – The Short cut
I.Via Finnair Bus
The Finnair bus ends on the west side of the Helsinki Central Railway Station so when you exit go through the station to the east side and when you exit you will see a huge square with a many bus stops and a huge statue of Alexsis Kivi. Head toward that statute and if you look up you will see the Plaza Hotel on the left and the Casino Helsinki on the right. Take the street that splits these buildings one block. When you get to the corner turn left and the Arthur Hotel is sixty yards on the right
II.Via Local Bus 615
The 615 bus ends on the east side of the Helsinki Central Railway Station so when you exit the bus look to the left and you will see a huge statue of Alexsis Kivi. Head toward that statute and if you look up you will see the Plaza Hotel on the left and the Casino Helsinki on the right. Take the street that splits these buildings one block. When you get to the corner turn left and the Arthur Hotel is sixty yards on the right
The furniture in the lobby and rooms is really dated. The room and shower doors open outward, there is no bathroom vent, no view to speak of and the beds are narrow. The heavy linen is as narrow as the bed which makes no sense. If you prefer soft toilet paper, bring your own. If you need to iron you must do so on the fourth floor. If you have a view of the grade school courtyard across the street and school is in session prepare yourself for screaming children wake-up call at about 8:40 am.
There are quite a few positives. The hotel is near major railway, subway, and bus stations. The people at the front desk speak perfect English and are the friendliest people you will ever meet. The hotel is well insulated and the windows open wide if you like fresh air. The bathrooms are brand new and I could swear that my bathroom had a heated floor. The toiletries are minimal but not bad. There is a mini bar, ample closet space, a work desk, free Wi-Fi and a really wide toilet. The WI-Fi was excellent from my seventh floor room and I was able to access my home slingbox and watch NFL games with ease.
The breakfast buffet, which was part of my package, was nice and included eggs, bread, fruit, hot and cold cereal, coffee and different types of juices. This hotel is well located and you can walk to almost all of the major attractions and shopping areas. Again, this is a bargain hotel but for my money, it was a bargain. There is a dollar store on the corner, a sushi restaurant and beauty salon kitty corner from the dollar store and the front desk sells soft drinks.
Here are my suggestions and Tips:
1. When you retire for the day bring soft drinks;
2. Bring your own toilet paper and soap;
3. Spend some time at Stockmann's Department Store (bring the platinum card only) and the Market square;
4. Visit Senate Square, The Helsinki Cathedral, Uspenski Cathedral and the Swedish Theatre; and
5. Have drinks at The Virgin Oil Company, Café Piritta (for picture taking), Molly Malone’s on Sunday night (for free folk music) and get candy from Fetzer;
6. the duty free shopping at the Helsinki Airport is amazing and if you are eligible to gain entrance to the Finnair Club go very early and spend about three hours there before your flight. Trust me, this is one great club;
7. The streets in Helsinki are made of stone so this is no place for old luggage with bad wheels;
8. The streets in Helsinki are made of stone so this is no place for Italian loafers, you need comfortable shoes. You can forget style here, the Finns do not appear to be that fashion conscious; and
9. If you like to have alcohol in your room remember, alcohol is not sold in Finland on Saturday or Sundays so stock up on Friday or you will either have to use the expensive mini-bar or go to a pub and the pubs do not use the “free hand pour technique” they use a regular size shot glass.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Thank you very much for your feedback. This rewiev is actually the whole truth about our hotel; old building, friendly and nice staff and the food also gets very much good feedback. It is true that it would be very nice to have the lobby and some of the rooms refurnished, we hope to get there soon. Welcome to stay with us again!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.