I stayed at the Golden Tulip Hotel de Ville for 5 days and used it as my base in order to see the rest of Lebanon. First up the hardest part was actually trying to find the hotel (two taxi drivers didnt know) but when we got there (it is kind of in the middle of a residential area - opposite the French Embassy) all was good.
The room was not ready when we arrived but that was okay as we left straight away to catch some of the sights around Beirut. The twin room we had was small though very modern, well maintained and neat. The view was of another nearby apartment, but on the other side it overlooked suburban beirut to the mountains.
As mentioned the room was small - however it was clean. The bathroom was also clean and appeared to have been recently renovated (still some fine tuning required like filling in gaps where the old taps and resiliconing some areas where some mould was growing) The shower was tiny (about 1.5 times shoulder width) but again didnt need a football field size. The TV was an old CRT but it did have over 100 channels.
On the downside - as with all hotels I think in the region - smoking it permitted pretty much everywhere- the business centre, breakfast area, lobby etc. Considering the hotel has a small footprint (the breakfast area was the size of 2-3 bedrooms), the lobby maybe twice as much (and decorated rather funkily - but it works!) - it did feel cramped. There is a convenience store (small) attached to the hotel as is the laundry (which was a day late in returning my washing, but again no big deal) .
To see the rest of Lebanon (Byblos, Baalbeck, Sidon, Tripoli) were used the hotel to organise taxi's. Not the cheapest exercise (around 200US / 8 hours) and the cars ranged from a late model Jaguar, 90s large mercedes and a new economy-type car. The drivers had very poor english, but were all very genuine and sincere and did their best. Despite asking the hotel reception staff for one of the drivers to return the next day, we were told the driver was not available (despite the driver telling me he was) and that was it - which may suggest the hotel has a commerical arrangement and that they put their commercial interests ahead of the guests. The Hotel was also not aware that Jeita Caves & the Jounieh Cable Car was closed on the day we went there (you need to tell the hotel reception in advance of your destinations for the day in order to price the taxi) - that aspect was disappointing.
Some of the staff were excellent and friendly, whilst there others at reception who were kind of frosty (didnt catch her name). The business centre (3 computers with internet access ($) and some shop) was directly above the breakfast/cafe - which filled with cigarette smoke when in use- and the gym was cosy (large bedroom size that did have a bit of an odour and needed a revamp). We used room service and the food was quite reasonable and well priced.
All being said, I enjoyed my time at the hotel. Admittedly it was a good 30min walk through some very busy traffic and average streets to get to downtown and the main Beirut sights (Nejmeh Place etc), restaurants etc. But, if you want a nice, clean, modern hotel in Beirut, with breakfast, to use as a base you cant go past this place for sheer value-for-money.
- Also Known As:
- Golden Tulip Beirut
- Beirut Golden Tulip
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel de Ville, where luxury and hospitality conveniently blend to provide you with atmosphere of modern elegance. Only 2min away from the national museum, 10min from Beirut international airport and a walking distance to downtown and night life. ... more less
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