The purpose of our stay was for us to get our heads down after a visit to the theatre so we wasn't looking for a plush hotel, so to speak. We normally stay in their main competitor in the budget hotel market but we didn't fancy any of their hotels in the area. We chose this hotel because of the room rate (£43), location near to the theatre and because it is fairly new.
Upon arrival we were greeted by Al who identified a disabled parking space in the garage below to us (they are free and limited so make sure you call ahead to request one!) Al then met us inside and showed us how to operate the disabled lift. Once in the lobby Al explained about the restaurant and gave good advice with directions to the Grand Theatre. We were going to take the car but with his advice it was only eight minutes there and twelve minutes back (uphill with wheelchair!)
The room was on the second floor and overlooked the tall building next door, which I think was a student halls of residence, and Clay Pit Lane. That said, we did not hear any traffic noise from outside and the net curtains built into the window offered a decent amount of privacy. The room was a good size with all the usual Premier Inn comforts; it was extremely clean. The bathroom was a very good size and had a roll-in shower. In fact, the bathroom was much bigger and more disabled friendly than some we have experienced in more expensive hotel chains.
There weren't enough towels in the bathroom though but that was soon sorted; after speaking with a girl on the phone an requesting more my wife arranged to collect them after dinner. Less than two minutes later Al knocked on our door with more towels. Note to Whitbread: Al is a top bloke and knows all about good CS (no, I'm not his brother-in-law!)
We had an early dinner reservation and it was quiet when we got to the restaurant. We were greeted by the very pleasant Christina who looked after our needs well and engaged in chat. The food was decent enough and was good value for money. Unfortunately, Christina later disappeared for fifteen minutes after going off for the dessert menus; that put us back a bit and instead of having plenty of time to get to the theatre we had to rush our desserts and coffee and make a hasty exit.
As for food cost, we had the meal deal at £22 each - that included three courses from the dinner menu with a drink (I haven't had Boddies for ages) and an all-you-can-eat breakfast. That represented excellent value and I have to say that the breakfast was better than we had during a recent stay in a hotel chain that cost us twice as much.
I tell you what, we slept well that night - the bed was very comfortable and the pillows were a decent size; not like the biscuits you get in a rival budget chain!
Overall we were very impressed with this hotel and would definitely stay here again if we had cause to visit Leeds. The only negative was the door leading to the communal area near to our room. It was manually operated, as is common in a lot of hotels, and was rather heavy (it would be of course being a fire door) and was awkward to open whilst pushing a wheelchair. I just don't know why hotels can't provide automatic doors on communal areas leading to accessible rooms; I suppose it is a fire safety thing!
So, if you are looking for a budget hotel in Leeds with good accessible rooms and excellent customer service then don't bother looking anywhere else - this is the one for you! I do believe they have also got saver rooms on at £29 for the time being! One thing though; it is literally just across the road from the new Leeds Arena (opening in 2013) so when that does open you can probably expect the room rates to rocket and saver rates will be as rare as hen's teeth!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Here for that hot show or gig? The First Direct Arena and O2 Academy are a five-minute walk away ... more less
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