I picked this property as my usual corporate option was too expensive at short notice, whereas a good rate was available here for the small trade-off of a slightly longer walk to the office.
Firstly, I must say that La Defense is a nightmare concrete jungle which is often difficult to find one's way around due to poor signage, hideous 70s layout and constant construction work. However, the Fraser suites are well signposted from Esplanade metro station, and simply require negotiating some stairs. The property looks reasonable from the outside, and reception is smart and efficient.
I booked a one bedroom suite and was upgraded to a two bedroom suite for no apparent reason. This is kind of a pointless upgrade - when travelling alone on business, is there really any merit to this? The hotel appears to have 2 wings - one for the studios and smaller suites, and a separate one for the larger suites, each accessed by their own elevators. The elevator lobby was very dimly lit, I could barely see the door lock to insert my card. Upon entering the suite, my first reaction was disappointment. Nasty cheap red carpeting throughout, and barely any wall decoration or other soft furnishings - a completely empty hallwaywith identikit rooms leading off it. Some walls had pictures hanging, but other walls were completely bare. Overall, the place needs an interior makeover.
Equipment-wise, no real complaints. Small flat screen TV, DVD player and stereo, reasonably equipped kitchen and decent toiletries on the plus side, but the usual lack of spare plug sockets was evident throughout the suite. Breakfast was pretty good, especially as it was included in my rate.
The biggest complaint is the area where the hotel is located - not their fault of course, but La Defense rubs up against Courbevoie, a pretty downmarket Parisian suburb. Given that La Defense is possibly the world's most bland and sterile business district, one thing it lacks is neighbourhood shops - something you need in a self-catering aparthotel. It wasa good 15 minute walk to the nearest supermarket to buy provisions. This property should take a leaf out of the Candlwood book and open its own pantry or small shop stocking snacks, drinks and microwave meals - that way, guests arriving in the evening can at least get something to eat and drink without having to leave the hotel. It wouldn't be hard to do, and given how far down the quality scale this property appears to be compared to other Fraser properties, it would certainly be a major boost.
Overall, whilst it was a novelty to have such large accommodations, attention to decor and some kind of in-house refreshment centre would improve the guest experience vastly. I would choose the Mercure over this property in future.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Ideally located at the entrance of the business district of the La Defense, the residence Fraser Suites Harmonie is 50 meters away from the subway station Esplanade de La Defense and will allow you to reach directly the tourist attractions of the capital. You will join Place de la Concorde, Champs-Elysees and Arc de Triomphe in 10 minutes only.Our 134 comfortable and spacious Suites have a contemporary design and include all a completely equipped privative kitchen.Going from 38 to 70m ², most of the suites have a balcony offering a view on the Esplanade or the Seine. Whether it is for one night, several weeks or several months, our 134 suites associate perfectly the services of a hotel with the comfort of completely furnished apartments. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Fraser Suites Harmonie La Defense Hotel Courbevoie
- Fraser Hotel Courbevoie
- Fraser Hotel Harmonie La Defense