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“Fort Knox retirement home?”

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Arora Hotel Manchester
Ranked #18 of 118 Hotels in Manchester
Certificate of Excellence
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Fort Knox retirement home?”
Reviewed August 8, 2013

I spend half the year travelling and like cool, interesting, trendy, but efficient hotels. The Arora wasn't for me. In many ways it's fine; for me it would be 2.5 stars, but for the friendliness of some staff that just bumps the review up to three.

I wanted to begin this review with the good news that they've clearly been reading Tripadvisor and started giving free Wifi. I had to phone the front desk but they did actually give me a code for free access. Sadly, it stopped working pretty quickly, saying I now had to pay. Oh well...

After a long journey from eastern Europe, I reached this "modern" hotel to find there's no step-free access. I had to lug a very heavy suitcase up lots of steps. I was given my room key: guard this with your life - you can't move throughout this hotel without it. You need the key for the lift, the gym (that they didn't tell me about), the bar (that they didn't tell me about, though it's keyless access from the street) and so on. In the UK there are some supermarkets (Sainbsbury/Tesco) where you need to pay for a trolley and others that are higher class (Waitrose) where you don't. Somehow the aura of Waitrose must stop people stealing trolleys. Likewise, there are good hotels where you don't need keys to wander around because the ambience of the hotel (and watchful staff) keep it that way. Others need (apparently lots of) keys to just get down a corridor.

In my room I noticed several things. The first was the dominating alarm cord beside the bed, as though I was an infirm octaginarian about to cop it any minute. I've never seen this in a hotel. The first thing you notice in the bathroom is another alarm cord for the old and infirm. You start to think this is a little odd. Perhaps people do come here to expire? That looked the case given the blood-style stain on the carpet in front of my door. Perhaps someone had a heart attack, desperate to escape, and it ended there (badly)?

After a long journey to Manchester, I decided to have a shower but the hot water knob wasn't actually attached. I should have asked to move room, but starving and tired after 24 hours travelling I wasn't thinking straight so I went out for dinner, telling reception on the way out that the knob in the shower wasn't attached and needed fixing.

Two hours later I returned. Some wag had simply placed the broken knob back over the shower tap, without doing anything whatsoever to repair it. Down six floors to reception to tell them and ask to change room for a shower that worked. Reluctantly they moved me. The new room still had stains on the carpet, but they weren't as bad. The next morning I discovered that the shower control in the new room didn't work either, but I couldn't be bothered to move rooms again having already unpacked. Cold showers for three days...

In some ways the place was adequate. The room was decent size, there was a TV and a safe (though the display didn't work so you had to hope you started out with the right number). But there was nothing whatsoever that was cool, trendy, interesting or fun about it. The Arora appeared purely functional, and I resented every minute in the room. If you like a Jury's Inn, then this is for you. I write this review because I like boutique, arty, interesting (but still business-like and efficient) hotels and use Tripadvisor to try to find them. This was a rare occasion it let me down.

The location was pretty good. If you want to be in the heart of Manchester and don't much care where you're staying, this place might be fine. A year earlier I found myself in Manchester and stayed in The Midland. If I return, I'd go there again.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Keith_the_writer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, August 9, 2013
Dear Keith,

Thank you for leaving such a detailed if not somewhat poetic review however for the sake of clarity for other readers I would like to address some of your comments.

I am greatly surprised that in this day and age you think that security of our guests is not important. To have one key to access your room and all the guest only areas of the hotel and more importantly to keep those who shouldn’t out.

Whilst the main entrance is accessed up some steps we do have a porter on duty at all times to assist guests with luggage and we do have lift access to our lobby from our secondary entrance a few yards away. I can only apologise if the porter was not there to assist you and I can only assume that he was helping another guest.

We do give a proportion of free internet access within the hotel and unlimited free access in our restaurant and bar. This is a company standard however I will pass on your comments to our head office.

The shower actually worked perfectly but the control knob had somehow come loose, (had this been reported to us prior we would have taken the room out of service) as we did not have any spares in stock the knob was replaced as it did not impair the function of the shower. A new control was ordered and has now been replaced.

I would like to apologise for the small stain on the carpet by the entrance this was caused by a contractor whilst sanitising the air-conditioning unit above the door and a replacement carpet has been ordered.

Due to some last minute extensions with a number of guests you were given a disabled access room and as we take the safety and wellbeing of these particular clients these rooms are fitted with emergency call cords lets hope that one day you do not need to use them, as a seasoned traveller myself I have come across these in numerous hotels around the world.

I hope this addresses the points raised but should you wish to discuss further please do not hesitate to contact me directly.

Kind regards

Martin Jones
General Manager
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Sydney
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed August 4, 2013

A lovely hotel with very friendly professional staff. Very close to Manchester Picadilly station (walked with suitcase and massive rucksack) and central shopping. The rooms are beautifully clean and warm. The restaurant downstairs offered a very good choice at breakfast, and also had top dinners! I would definitely stay again! There is also a gym with a decent amount of gear, although not a large area. I didn't get to use it, but did check it out on arrival incase I got the urge!

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank kylie w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, August 6, 2013
Hi Kylie from Australia,

Thanks for the super review of the hotel we are delighted you enjoyed your stay and the food in our restaurant.

Kind regards

Martin Jones
General Manager
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Stavanger, Norway
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed July 29, 2013

Location was perfect, close to metrolink and in walking distance (15 minutes) of shopping streets. China town with wonderful food and gay village with nightlife three minutes away. Happy to stay here again, cheap and very nice! Negative: one of the maids turned off AC when making up the room, and it was hot. But the room cooled fast. And we didn't have breakfast (expensive, £10 per person) here so we don't know the quality of this. But plenty of pubs with good breakfast for almost half the cost closeby.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Easytobook.com

Helpful?
1 Thank Magni M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, July 30, 2013
Dear Magni M

Thank you for your lovely comments about our location and hotel, we are delighted you enjoyed your stay, we look forward to welcoming you back in the future.

Kind regards

Martin Jones
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
Reviewed July 28, 2013

Its a funny story but we got off the train asked for directions . When your told its 10mins down the road it is . We were told wrong directions by 3 police men ,2 ladies and then put on the right way thanks to two specials . We were welcomed and lovely welcome it was . We were given a map with directions on it by the lovely receptionist. We went to our double room . So clean tidy and I can tell you so happy . We rested and changed as we were told there was happy hour in the bar and cocktails . Now that is a must try . The bar staff so friendly and helpful and asked how are journey was . Lol . We explained about a 10min walked turned into a 1 and a half hour walk around Manchester. We asked about a greek restaurant rozafa omg try it lovely lively . Must try , we got lost again lol yep only 3 women from Shropshire could go the wrong way . Everyone is so friendly and helpful . The staff were I know its their job but you can see they were happy . I will go again and I will recommend this hotel to friends . There was 4 of us before but a friend couldn't come due to little ones being ill.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank hodges71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, July 28, 2013
Dear Hodges71,

Thanks for your super review, I overheard part of your tale when you arrived at the hotel, I am delighted that the team looked after you once you managed to find your way here.
I look forward to welcoming you and your friends on your next adventure to Manchester.
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Steinbach, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
290 reviews
81 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 229 helpful votes
Reviewed July 24, 2013

Stayed here for two nights in the largest room we experienced during our trip to the UK. This hotel is more similar to what North Americans might expect in a city centre. Large rooms, clean, modern, good service. The location is conveniently located between Chinatown and Gay Village. Well, I guess that's convenient for some. :) Recommended hotel.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank northropfrye
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, July 25, 2013
Dear Northropfrye,

Thanks for the great review we are delighted you enjoyed your stay with us.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2013

We pre-booked the Arora hotel for two nights (friday and saturday).

Upon arriving we got upgraded to an executive room from a standard which was a great touch, though I believe the only difference would have been the size of the rooms and possibly a fridge, but regardless was a good start to the stay. The staff were very friendly and helpful!!!

The hotel was very clean and had a very nice feel to it.

Once in the room we were very impressed, it was large, clean and had a big freezing cold fridge to store our alcohol in which was fantastic!
The bed was big and comfy and we both slept like logs both nights, and even being situated at the front of the hotel on the main road, we heard absolutely no noise!
The tv had full free view (unlike some more expensive hotels who have like 6 channels).
Also the air con in the room was brilliant!

The bathroom was also large and very clean, however the bath tap didn't work very well and took a long time to fill, however the bath was big and very relaxing.

We ordered a few things from room service which came from the bar and grill restaurant right next to the hotel. We ordered ice a few times which came promptly. On the front of the room service menu was a pizza advertisement which I presume they either made on site or it came from the 24 Bar and Grill next door. We ordered a cheese and tomato pizza late one night, however I have to say it was pretty naff...wouldn't bother with that again. We also ordered a sticky toffee pudding which was ok...but wouldn't have it again. We've never been ones for ordering room service and prefer to get food out but we thought we would give it ago.

The is a Q-Park car park 1 minute away from the hotel, which you can get for a discounted price from the hotel. It cost £32 (I believe) for two nights. Bear in mind you are in the city centre...we believe this was a fair price.

One tiny little thing we did expect was to have some biscuits with the tea and coffee amenities.
Every hotel I have stayed in has provided biscuits so we were very surprised not to have some. Small but the only thing we were disappointed about. Hopefully this will change in the future, as I do know The Arora staff check and respond to a lot of the trip adviser reviews!
The hotel is in a perfect location for a city break! We have had a city break in Manchester befor, where we stayed at The Midland which is about 2 minutes walk further out of the city with no car park near by, much more expensive, snobby, old, and though it is a "posh" feeling hotel we enjoyed our stay at The Arora far more. It was everything we could've wanted for our stay! Will definitely be booking again in a few months time!

Regardless of the room service food quality not being to our taste, the broken bath tap and the lack of biscuits, it didnt really affect our stay and we enjoyed the time spent relaxing in our executive room!

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank BL7109
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, July 17, 2013
Dear BL7109

Thanks for your feedback it is always good to receive constructive comments, we are pleased that you enjoyed your stay with us and i will certainly investigate the points you raised.
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Yorkshire
Level 5 Contributor
46 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed July 16, 2013

I've stayed in a few hotels in Manchester but really liked the Arora, the ambience is good, relaxed and chilled out. We stayed a Saturday night to attend a classical concert nearby and the location was great for us. Our room was lovely and comfortable even in the current heatwave the temperature was good. The staff were all very helpful and informative overall a great stay.

My only issue would be the shower over the bath was very low even on its highest setting and I'm not a giant but it was abit awkward washing my hair having to crouch under neath, My husband who is much taller ended up with a very clean chest as his shoulders and head were nowhere near the water flow. This was our only complain if any but if a shower is too low even for me then it is abit odd.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Kashmir28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Martin J, General Manager at Arora Hotel Manchester, responded to this review, July 17, 2013
Dear Kashmir28

Thanks for a great review we are delighted you enjoyed your stay.

Just so readers do not think we only cater for small people I have just checked the height showers in a selection of our rooms, whilst the main adjustment goes up to a height of 5 feet 6 inches (1.68m) there is an additional holder at 6 feet 2 inches (1.88m) for taller people.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arora Hotel Manchester

Property: Arora Hotel Manchester
Address: 18-24 Princess Street, Manchester M1 4LG, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Greater Manchester > Manchester
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Family Hotel in Manchester
#14 Luxury Hotel in Manchester
#15 Business Hotel in Manchester
#15 Romantic Hotel in Manchester
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Arora Hotel Manchester 4*
Number of rooms: 141
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Arora International Hotel Manchester
Manchester Arora International Hotel
Arora Hotel

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