About two and a half years ago I watched a travel report about Tallinn. Since that moment the city dominated my city trip list. A few months ago I finally found a vacant spot in my work schedule and that of a good friend. We planned our trip from 27 till 30 October 2011.
We decided to book our trip via a touroperator, because they offer deals (free nights and such). It also meant that our choice of hotels was limited, we only had 4 hotels to choose from. After calculating the prices, checking reviews on Tripadvisor and comparing we decided that Hotel Clarion Euroopa offered the best price for the highest quality.
We had done our research well, so we knew in advance that Clarion is located just outside the Old Town, overlooking the ferry port and a small marina (which at the time of our visit was almost empty, but it should present a lovely view during the summer). To go to the Old Town we walked through the Rotermann quarter to Viru Gate, that stroll took about 10 minutes. To reach the Town Hall square itself, the city center, it was about 15 minutes walking from the hotel. Although it usually took us a bit longer, because of all the souvenir shops in Viru!
Our room (FYI: 532) was very spacious. We had twin beds put together, a nightstand each, a large writing desk, well stocked minibar, a couch soft chair and low table at the window, safe, telephone, ironing board, 2 large (from floor to ceiling) closets for clothes and other stuff, a large mirror, luggage storage and a flatscreen tv. There was a very good hotel information folder, with the breakfast times, but also some background information on the hotel, a list of tv channels and some other practical information. There were no coffee and tea making facilities in the room.
I didn’t sleep well, the bed wasn’t my thing. One of the pillows was too hard, the other was soft enough but too thick. The blankets came undone each night, I had to “bike” in my bed otherwise my feet would be uncovered. It was annoying especially because my friend had 3 good nights!
The bathroom was small, with a toilet and sink on the left side and a shower (which took up half of the bathroom) on the right. There was a huge crack in the sink, some people might be annoyed by this, but hygiene is much more important to me and the bathroom was simply impeccable. I especially liked the tiles, it never took more than an hour for them to dry on their own after I took a shower. A takes all day for my shower at home to dry on its own! There are several towels, 2 glasses, some shampoo, a hair dryer, large mirror and make-up mirror.
Our room overlooked the marina and some sort of shopping center (in front of us), the ferry port (on the right) and the north part of the Old Town with the St. Olav’s Church (on the left).
And last but not least there is Sammi, the hotel mascotte. It’s a cute fluffy sheep, he welcomes you in your room. You’ll find that many souvenir shops in Tallinn sell products related to sheep and sheep’s wool, so it’s probably a very Estonian thing…… you can buy Sammi (which I did), he costs € 10.
I had read many things about breakfast (limited and crowded when there’s a group staying), so I knew not to get my hopes up for this most important meal of the day. Now, after having stayed in Clarion, I think it depends on what type of breakfast person you are! People who like or prefer English breakfast will have no problem at all. However, if you, like me, can only stomach continental then it’s indeed quite limited. The first morning the only thing I could find was a dark baguette. It improved on the next mornings during the weekend, but we didn’t change our breakfast time (we went down at 9h15 every day).
Not to worry though, as many reviews have already mentioned, there is a shopping center behind the hotel (just across the street) with a large supermarket. They have everything and many many many different sorts of bread and sandwiches.
Check-in and check-out went very smoothly. Upon check-in we mentioned that our luggage had missed the connecting flight from Copenhagen to Tallinn and that the airport would send our luggage in the evening. We asked if the luggage could be delivered to our room and the hotel staff made sure that happened. At first I thought the staff were kind, but in a reserved manner. According to my guidebook that’s part of the culture. The last two days they (especially the male staff) were more open and we actually had a good laugh with them.
Even though you can easily walk to the Old Town the hotel has a shuttle service. There is a bus departing the hotel to the Old Town at 11h00, 13h00 and 18h00. The same bus returns from the Old Town at 11h10, 13h10 and 18h10. You have to register at the hotel reception. We didn’t use this service. We did use the hotel transfer service to the airport on our last day. Prices are mentioned throughout the hotel, we paid 7 euros for a 10 minute ride.
The luggage room is free to use.
You can buy postcards and small souvenirs at the hotel reception, but be aware of the prices. The same products cost – 50% in a souvenir shop!
There is a computer with internet in the lobby, it's free to use.
THE VERDICT – on the plus side
+ spacious hotel > lobby, rooms, breakfast room
+ clean bathroom, terrific shower
+ friendly staff
+ free wifi (first time for me, I just loved being able to read my morning paper on my phone)
+ location > quietly located, nice view, shopping center ATM and mailbox behind the hotel, one of the sightseeing buses stops a bit further down the road
+ enough power-points in the room (I counted 5) to charge and use all our electrical equipment
THE VERDICT – on the down side
- breakfast > too little continental options
- the décor of the rooms > to me it looks like a room from ….. (fill in the gap yourself) that could use an update, but the reception told me (I didn’t complain about the décor, it just came up in the conversation) that the décor is very Estonian.
Do I recommend Clarion?
Yes, if you don't mind being somewhat outside the Old Town.
Would I return?
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The unique design and spacious rooms of Hotel Euroopa makes it the most loved newcomer of the year by businessmen, holidaymakers and conference guests. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Despegar.com, Travelocity, Odigeo, TripOnline SA and Tingo so you can book your Hotel Euroopa reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Clarion Hotel Tallinn
- Tallinn Clarion