My Husband and I travelled to a number of cities in China, this was the second pit stop and definitely the worst of the places we stayed at.
It started with a horrible experience with a taxi driver who tried to rip us off by refusing to use the meter from the airport to the hotel. She took diversions after diversions and we feared for our lives when it looked like she took us into the middle of nowhere (bearing in mind it was late at night!). She insisted on charging us 150RMB to our hotel, but we insisted on using the meter - which actually cost approx 100RMB (we were later told that it should be actually 80RMB if you find an honest taxi driver).
Luckily we arrived at the hotel safe and sound. The hotel was quite difficult to find, because the address given is very misleading, it's actually on a side road off the main road! The taxi driver was pretty annoyed that we didn't give her the right address (although we took this address from the email confirmation we had from elong.net where we had made our booking).
These were the hotel details we were given on the email confirmation of our booking:
Hotel Name: Canaan International Hotel - Xian
Address: 132 East Ave., Xi'an, Shaanxi Province, China
Best thing to do is to ask that the taxi driver calls the hotel if they get lost en route. They can be quite crafty in Xian so be careful.
The good thing about our booking was that we could pay for the hotel upon arrival. They ask for a hefty deposit, but you get that back at the end of your stay (obviously providing you don't wreck your room).
We went up to our room (which stank of smoke - despite requesting a non smoking room) and the luggage guy not only insisted on asking for a tip actually told us he wanted 20RMB for his hard work (given the rate of pay of in China for menial jobs, 20RMB is a big deal, it's only about £2 but thought it was so cheeky of him!).
The room was a lot smaller than anticipated and the shower cubicle was directly behind the door to the bathroom, so it was so dark if you left the bathroom door ajar. The shower cubicle was mouldy by the way and the bathroom counter had a ton of things you could use for a fee (anything from toiletries, condoms, massage oil and even a vibrator! haha). The aircon sounded like it was working because it was very loud, however it was all noise and no power because the room was really hot and stuffy!
Due to bad experiences in the past, my husband is prone to all sorts of bites when we're on holiday, so we're in a good habit to spray the bed sheets with bug spray before we sleep. However, even our bug spray didn't save me this time, I awoke in the middle of the night to find me scratching my leg where I had been bitten twice!
When we woke up, we insisted on speaking to the manager, Jilly. She spoke English with a hint of an American accent to certain phrases and be mindful she speaks very very fast! Anyway, we explained we wanted to change rooms because of my bites and she tried to fob us off saying that I had probably been bitten when I was outside (by this point I had even been outside as I had gone straight from our room to the lobby!). We insisted on changing our room and she finally gave in.
We had exactly the same room as CValente77 (please see gallery). there was a separate lounge area, a separate bedroom and also a separate bathroom. Again anything that you touched was chargeable (including the tea bags, the strategically placed tin of nuts on the coffee table etc etc).
I am always mindful when a room is poorly lit or the lights to a room are never in the center of the room but around the sides of the room - it makes me question the cleanliness of the place - which is exactly what I did at this place!
The aircon or course was very loud but not pumping any cool air at all. The aircon consisted of a dial which could be turned from 1 to 3 - all of which made no difference except for the volume level of it not working!
The whole point of our visit to Xian is of course to visit the Terracotta Warriors museum! We spoke to Jilly the manager at the hotel and she recommended a tour company which she recommends to all the guests at the hotel. The tour included a visit to the Terracotta Warriors Museum, a silk factory, a terracotta factory (to show you how they are made), an underground palace museum (a museum which has a mock up of what the burial tomb for Qin Shi Huang would look like) and also included a local chinese lunch (which is ok, but not great). The tour itself wasn't bad but it wasn't great either. The silk factory and terracotta factory was pretty cool to visit, but they rush you through all the processes and lead you to their gift shop with a bid to lure you into buying their extortionate goods. These places were interesting, but time consuming and dragged out the day. The tour guide supposedly spoke English, but it was often muffled, spoken really fast or difficult to understand. I am glad we only paid about £35 per person! You have negotiate with Jilly if you want to book it via the hotel.
As you walk to the right of the hotel you will see 2 restaurants a salon kinda place and convenient store on the corner. Before you get to the convenient store, there is a noodle restaurant called "Best Noodle Restaurant" or something to that effect which we ate at and it was pretty good value for money & delish. The staff were really friendly and wanted to have a chat with us despite our poor broken Mandarin! The noodles were nice and hand made as we watched them make the noodles in front of us (which is what Xian noodles are famous for).
One last note, when you go to check out, they will send a maid or member of staff to check your room in case you have used any of their tacky extras so that they can charge you when you check out! So if you're in a hurry like we were make sure you leave enough time for someone to check over your room before you get your deposit back.
Cost effective 3* there was a reason why its cheap! that's because its rubbish!
Cleanliness 2* below average
Location 2* Terracotta warriors is in the middle of no where, so this is not close to that, its relatively close to the city centre, we took a bus to get there, you could walk it in about 40mins, but we couldn't be bothered because the bus was only like 10p per person or something like that! Not a bad location, but not great either, wish we had stayed somewhere else.
Restaurant - can't rate as I don't think it has one, if there was one, I wouldn't eat here!
Overall experience 1* - defo. would not recommend this place and would avoid it at all costs.
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Canaan International
- Canaan International Xi An
- Canaan International Hotel China/Shaanxi