I must start by saying that despite what you have heard or read or been led to believe by the star rating - this hotel is terrible. From my recent experience, I have learnt that there some aspects that just cannot be helped for e.g. Air-conditioning (there isn't any - and only the house-keeping staff or the service engineers will tell you this), but there are others that the staff can actually change for you and unless you are an experienced traveller who knows how to navigate his way through a hotel's workings - you have a huge challenge on your hands. Here are some of the things I encountered...
- on arrival, despite having booked an all taxes & charges inclusive tarrif, I was told by the front desk that I would be charged extra for registration tax (around 200r per person). I refused to pay this amount and showed them my correspondence with the reservations. Having just stayed at the Radissonblu Blu at Moscow and not having had this charge there, I was sceptical. After some protests, the Manager came out and waived the charge. also we were told that they would keep our passports overnight. Again, I refused and insisted that they take copies and return them immediately. They took some time but gave it back, not happy with being able to take their time.
- the first set of rooms that we were given we're no better than university hostel rooms. Given the experience at check in, I was in no mood for a second argument and decided to accept it. The rooms though were very hot and I switched on the machine in the room to Max. 3 hours later, the rooms were still as hot and there was no way we were going to be able to sleep. So at 10pm, I started making the calls to front desk, housekeeping and engineering. After a million excuses, multiple visits by housekeeping and engineering, 3 different rooms being shown (they were all the same), we were finally shifted to a different floor (not before we were asked to pay for an upgrade, which I refused, of course). The new room was a breath of fresh air (literally!) - the decor was much better, the furnishings greatly improved and it faced the sea - which meant that although there was no climate control within the room, we could leave the window open and get some fresh breeze.
Some other things to consider for anyone planning to stay at this hotel:
- the Aquapark is at the rear of the hotel, but charges separately. Hotel guests get a 15% discount.
- the hotel is very busy with tour groups and conference delegates. As an individual customer, you have to get used to having to wait for them to be dealt with first.
- no tea/coffee in room (other than room service), communal iron and board at every other floor, most rooms do not have a fridge/minibar.
- make sure that your key card is stamped with free access to the Spa. This is one element of the hotel that I was quite impressed with.
- location is not great, but they have a shuttle to Nevsky Prospect - which is handy and good public transport. However, the area itself is not the most salubrious and there are no decent restaurants nearby. So unless you are planning to dine at the hotel (limited options), you should eat whilst in town.
In summary, this hotel is completely avoidable, especially since you have to really fight to get any kind of decent service.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- High-rise Hotel set on northwestern part of Vasilyevsky Island in the Gulf of Finland. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Park Inn Pribaltiyskaya St Petersburg Hotel St. Petersburg
- Park Inn St Petersburg
- Pribaltiyskaya Park Inn