The hotel was built in 1956 and was updated 6 years ago, the room we got had high ceilings and crown mouldings. I don’t understand what other reviewers called outdated, as our room was very comfortable and upscale though the bed was harder then we like. Free wi-fi and also had a wired connection in the room, flat screen TV but limited English programming (CNN). A small fridge and room safe was a nice touch. It’s also equipped with 2 pairs of slippers and 2 robes, bath scale, emergency flashlight, hair dryer, umbrella, kettle but no coffee or tea. Bring an expired card (Coffee, Subway) to insert into a slot near the door to keep the power on in the room while out. Don’t forget the power converter and adapter!
The included breakfast is from 6:30 to 9:30 and has perfectly cooked bacon, potatoes, hard boiled and fried eggs, cooked and raw vegetables, fried rice or noodles, 2 types of sausages, toast station, cereal, fresh fruit and juices, the mandarin orange segments are not canned and you can really taste it, get it early as it exhausts quickly. If travelling with larger groups, the seating is communal, just sit where there is a vacancy so some planning may be required as earlier would be better.
This hotel has good bones and has been updated to 4* Canadian standards, our bookings changed a few times so we reviewed both locations and this one was better by far overall. This location was one of the original first hotels in Beijing and is still highly regarded as the place to stay both for location and prestige.
There are shops across the street for liquor, smokes, and a corner store for pop and water. There’s a great restaurant 2 blocks from the hotel, go left 2 blocks and right for ½ block called Little Snowflake, very tasty and recommended by our tour guide. We went there 2 nights and it was handy as the menu had photos and some English. The other restaurant we went to was directly across the street and was adequate, we got surprised as several of the selected dishes were cold plates. Please Google tipping practises (none, with very few exceptions) prior as I tested it at this restaurant and it was returned to me before exiting.
We did the standard Beijing bucket list excursions and the Great Wall has a tram (80 Yuan-$12 CDN) to bypass the steepest lower parts, this wasn’t available when I was here 30 years ago and was a pleasant surprise as I had a sore knee prior to the trip. Mind you it’s still very strenuous and the terrain is broken and uneven before you get to the Wall, they have installed handrails on the steeper parts of the Wall and the rise of the steps are irregular, where solid footwear for certain.
Overall this is a fabulous hotel and the room we had was more than expected, would definitely recommend it.
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