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“A charming oasis” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Kellys Courtyard

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Kellys Courtyard
No.25 Xiaoyuan Hutong of Bingmasi Hutong, Xisi South Street, Xicheng District, Beijing 100034, China (Xidan)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #22 of 5,124 hotels in Beijing
UK
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“A charming oasis”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 25, 2013

If you're looking for a modern, cosmopolitan city dwelling, this place is not for you. If you're looking for a taste of China and a homely, traditional place to stay, then look no further. Set in the 'back-streets' of a hutong, Kelly's doesn't look like much from the outside - in fact, you can hardly see its exterior. However, once you step through the main entrance into a peaceful courtyard you really feel like you're a million miles away from the nearby bustling city streets.

Bob, the owner was a fantastic host - from communications prior to our arrival, through to our departure, he helped us with all our transer, travel and sight-seeing enquiries; recommending places to eat and writing down Chinese translations when he thought we might need them. Bob arranged a trip to the Great Wall for us, and gave us a quick call during the day just to check that all was well and that we met our drive/tour guide ok.

The rooms are quite small and a little old fashioned, but they have everthing you need. The communal space provides guests with a place where breakfast is served and a roof-top garden that is great for relaxing after a busy day sightseeing. Snacks are available to purchase on an honesty basis - beer, water, soft-drinks and crips etc.

Kellys is a short distance from 2 subway stations so its very easy to get around the city and see the attractions. There are plenty of places to eat near the hostel and Bob directs you to the best ones to try. We really felt like we'd had a real taste of China after our stay here.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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131 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Newcastle
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 22, 2013

I didn't really know what to expect from Beijing and arriving in a small alley with a driver who doesn't speak English does feel a bit dodgy at first!

However when I realised where Kelly's was situated it became clear that we couldn't drive any closer. We really were in the heart of a Hutong!

The place doesn't look very special from the outside but the interior is great.
Bob was very helpful and gave us lots of good advice about where to go and what to eat.

The rooms are quite old fashioned which is nice to look at but the bed was ancient. It really must have been on its last legs and creaked with every tiny movement!

The bathroom area was OK but because there is no window in there it does smell a bit damp and mouldy.

Its not the cheapest place to stay but the location was spot on for getting around the city. Very close to Tian'enmen Square and the Forbidden City and also very easy to get to the Summer Palace and other sights.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Homer, Alaska, United States
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

Kelly's isn't a 5 star hotel, but that wasn't what we wanted. Kelly's is in a Hutong (traditional alley that Beijing development is eliminating), rooms are compact (it's China, spaciousness is NOT de riguer). But rooms are well organized, each room had its own shower and loo, a wardrobe and beds were good and rooms clean. The staff was friendly and helped us find local restaurants (Peking duck just down the street), arranged a tour of the wall with a friend who took us to a great restaurant on our return. They even helped us find a tea store before we left and had drinks and snacks to purchase. Continental breakfast was included, we could relax in the courtyard with magazines, books or enjoy the goldfish pond or sit on the roof patio. Major attractions are easily accessible and they were always willing and able to help or offer suggestions with our plans.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
shanghai
Top Contributor
67 reviews 67 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2013

This place is a great deal, if you are looking for a cheap accommodation close to the center of Beijing. But that's about it. The rooms are very small and basic. There is an open shower in the middle of the bathroom, which means everything will get wet. The location of the hotel is central but hard to find. Breakfast is as poor as you can get with one piece of toast and jam. In general, the place is clean and simple but lacks quality. I recommend it if you want to save some money, but I will not stay here next time.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Glasgow, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2013

Stayed for 7 nights, really enjoyed our stay. The staff were very helpful always willing to help, breakfast was included continental. Good place to relax quiet accommadation close to the metro with easy access to most major attractions.

Bob was always on hand to check if we needed any help with planning that days activity without trying to sell us anything. We did take his advice and go to the great wall at Mutianyu rather than the closer more touristy Badling section. This worked out at CNY750 for a taxi for the day plus our admission and cable car fees, all in all we were happy to go to a quieter part of the wall and didnt have the hassle of negotiating buses to get there though it probably is at the more expensive end of great wall trips.

If your looking for a taste of how people actually live in Beijing as well as a tranquil and comfortable hostel this is the place for you. If your looking for a backpackers in a traveler bar area then maybe try somewhere else.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
happy place
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2013 via mobile

Kellys is the place if you want great value for your money. I enjoyed staying there because it did not have the typical touristy/expat vibe and/or overtly tacky Chinese decor for tourists who want to experience the "real" China. In my opinion, it's perfect for the yuppie on a budget, the older flashpacker, or travelers who want to feel "at home".

Interior: The courtyard is tastefully decorated with a small fountain and Chinese wooden furniture; my Mom even spotted an antique chair. There are also books and guidebooks you can browse/read in the common area. The bedroom we were in had a vineyard countryside feel to it. Really nice.

Location: It's in a no-fuss hutong in the shopping and financial area of Xidan so banks and ATMs are not a shortage.

It is also a 5-7 min walk to the Xisi Metro (closer to Xisi than Lingjing station) that runs quickly through essential lines you need to access the main tourist points.

Unlike in the Dongsi hutongs, where the main road is mostly boutiques, there are plenty of good quality local food choices on the main road. A little further walk (or a metro stop away) by the row of malls are plenty of Western, various Chinese, Japanese, Korean & Thai restaurants.

As mentioned in a previous post, the hutong (alley) may look dodgy upon entering Bingmasi as there is a food stall with street sitting and a recycling stall at the entrance but it is completely safe.

Also, if you're taking a cab, don't expect to be dropped off at Kellys door (like we did). Cars don't fit into many hutongs, you have to walk a few meters from the corner of Bingmasi hutong and Xiaoyuan.

Service: The service offered by John (Bob was on holiday) and other staff members were impeccable. It starts even before your arrival. They send a map and if you exactly follow the map they email you upon booking, you/your cab won't get lost. When we were not yet at the hotel much later than the time we indicated, John called to check in on us and also talked to our cab driver to make sure we don't get lost.

Since we checked-in past dinner time, John asked us if we've had dinner and if we would like to order food from a nearby restaurant that delivers. He arranged everything for us! The food was also very affordable and quite okay.

John also arranged a car for us to take to Mutianyu Great Wall. For us to save costs, he even asked other guests who may be interested to go to Mutianyu. We shared the car with two other guests.

If you ask John any question, he'll be happy to answer and give you a tip. The staff also always greets you. Kellys makes you feel like a guest in a very hospitable home.

Room for improvement:
The beds we had can be a bit sturdier, which is a common issue you'll read about many Chinese accommodations.

Room tip:
If you want to avoid hearing the neighbours request for the inner rooms. The neighbours are not constantly noisy, but if you're in one of the 3 rooms facing the hutong you'll hear an occasional conversation or two when people are outside their homes. Though this actually makes you feel you really are in someone's home.

If these don't bother you, Kellys is highly recommended especially if you're on a budget!

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, Israel
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2013 via mobile

Stayed here for 4 nights. Very quiet, not the regular backpackers hostel you would expect...
Home like feeling, great for couples.
Wouldn't go there if you are looking for company or new friends...

Because of the great location (inside of a regular hutung), you will be able to eat breakfast in the local food stand with the workers, just 2 minutes walk and see how the people of city live.
The breakfast in the hostel is simple, so go out and try to enjoy the food outside.

John, the guy that works there is a great help, always with a smile and very welcoming. He can help a lot with planning and organizing time. But, if you want arranged tours(to the wall, i. E), I recommend to book it through one of the international youth hostels. You don't have to stay there for that...

We loved the place, and had a great time in Beijing.

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveler and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.

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Additional Information about Kellys Courtyard

Address: No.25 Xiaoyuan Hutong of Bingmasi Hutong, Xisi South Street, Xicheng District, Beijing 100034, China
Location: China > Beijing > Xidan
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi )
Hotel Style:
#27 Romantic Hotel in Beijing
#37 Family Hotel in Beijing
#44 Best Value Hotel in Beijing
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Kellys Courtyard Hotel Beijing
Courtyard Hotel Beijing

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