We stayed at the Golden Apple on my first trip to Russia (my partner's umteenth trip). I must say, after hearing horror stories about Soviet-era hotels with dishonest staff and abhorrent service, I wasn't expecting much. But there's no way I could have expected this even in Paris or Barcelona: a reasonably priced boutique hotel with excellent amenities, superb location, and friendly staff. In fact, the Golden Apple is on par or better than most other boutique hotels I've stayed at in the the US and Europe. The Golden Apple was easily the best hotel I stayed at during our trip to Russia.
The location is excellent. You are in a posh, little Bohemian neighborhood within walking distance of Red Square, Patriarch's Ponds, the embassy row, and countless picturesque Pushkin-statued squares. There's an amazing high-end supermarket around the corner if you like to have the occasional snack and meal in your room. You can stock up on bottled water there, too, even though the hotel provides enough to brush your teeth and take a swig. There are restaurants all around, too.
The hotel offered some nice amenities. There's a very small, but clean gym. The bar and bartenders are reasonably friendly. The restaurant that is the hotel's centerpiece. The food was excellent. In particular, the breakfasts, which are included with the room price, were incredibly tasty. There's a buffet of meats, cheeses, pastries, cereals, juices, coffee, and pastries. And you also get a selection from the hot entree menu. I'd be tempted to say it was the best hotel breakfast experience I've had if it weren't for the restaurant's mediocre service. There weren't enough servers to handle the breakfast rush. And the servers, when they finally got to your table, were irritable and impatient. Even after breakfasting for four days straight, the same waiters failed to recognize us and continued to treat us with a fair amount of contempt. The dinner menu is nice albeit grossly overpriced.
The hotel front desk staff was very excellent and not like you'd expect for a Russian hotel. All young, attractive, and English speaking, the staff is very polite and accommodating, even with navigating all the various Visa and governemnt bureaucratic requirements. In particular, they called another hotel we stayed at in Russia and scolded them for treating us so poorly and neglecting to fill out our Visa papers properly.
The rooms are small, but quite nice and very quiet. They are minimalist/modern in style. There are great black-out shades that come in handy for naps during jet-lagged days. You have to pay for wireless Internet, but it's quite reliable. The bathrooms are well-stocked and chic. Maid service is fine. There's a great selection of TV channels from around the globe. On our last few nights, we were upgraded to a suite, which was incredibly posh, with a kitchenette, suana, living room, and business area.
Overall, the Golden Apple is a great bet for discerning travelers looking for boutique chic in the heart of Moscow. The hotel is aimed at young professionals and business travelers young at heart--as such, families should steer clear.
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- Also Known As:
- Golden Apple Boutique Moscow
- Golden Apple Hotel Moscow
- Hotel Golden Apple Boutique
- Golden Apple Moscow