Spent 3 days in Munich in May. Been to munich before several times, but first attempt at staying at the Mandarin in Munich. Have some previous Mandarin experience. My review will be balanced on the location, price, quality (perceived), quality (realised) and overall comparison to similar chains.
As others have mentioned the location is very very good. Right behind Maximillianstrasse, and all the shopping venues you could possibly wish for. The room I was issued (Mandarin Room) was handsomely sized at - approx 50m2. Very high ceilings and beautiful hardwood floors. I had roomservice 3 times, which in each case had good quality food - and the room service prices were very fair for Munich and the type of hotel. The (albeit limited) minibar was included in the price, which is fairly rare in the bigger luxe chains. The room electronics worked well and the massive B&O LCD was excellent as was the entertainment system interface. I especially liked the snappiness of the entertainment system and the language search feature (so you don't have to trawl thru 89 german channels if you don't understand a word of german).
Now for the not so great. While I respect that this property was fairly recently renovated there is a few things that puzzle me. The carpet in the lobby - is just ghastly. It resembles a las vegas casino carpet form the 1980's. The building is so classy. The rooms are classy - why is the lobby and reception/bar area so weirdly laid out? When you enter the lobby you are first greeted by a colum in the middle of the room - the lobby is oddly shaped and the bar is a weird appendage to the room. In the middle there's a large empty space - and a tiny reception desk. Just makes no sense to me. I understand that the building has a certain age and can not be altered greatly, but surely, colour, composition and furniture placement can be improved ?
Upon booking I had a weird experience. I email the front desk asking for a late check-out (especially considering I arrived at midnight, not an unreasonable request). They return to me - saying that they are really busy on my check-out date and can offer me a 2pm check-out time. OK, I ask - can we do 4pm ? (I know - stretching it - but most luxe places can make it work) - They return - oh no - way too busy. OK -I say - i'll take 2pm. They then offer me a 4pm check-out if I want to pay an additional 300+ euros. What? Either they are busy - no problem. But how can they offer a late check-out at a 300 euro expense if the room is booked for someone else?
Upon arriving (late) we experienced, no bell-boys, no concierge, 1 reception lady. Hauling bags in our selves, we were then offered a free drink in the bar - on the arrival day. As I was not really in the mood for guzzling booze at midnight after flying in, I asked - "hey - thanks for the offer - much appreciated - but would you mind if do that tomorrow?" - Obviously the poor girl in reception did not expect that question - and their script was not prepared for it. Uhmm... I don't know... Wow - really ? A front desk receptionist can't make a what - 10 euro decision ? - I let the poor girl off the hook and said, fine - no problem - just let us know tomorrow. Of course no one ever did. While a couple of free drinks is hardly a major parameter while spending 700 euros a night, it shows lack in the training - and even worse - no ability to follow up.
Interestingly the elevators did not have key card controls - I actually found that a bit odd considering that we several times experienced no front desk staff at the bellboy stand. The layout of the reception area means that a nicely dressed motivated individual can go directly into the elevators without being seen by the reception staff. Of course i'm sure the whole place is covered in CCTV, but I noticed it, and i'm sure other travellers did as well.
The bellboy stand was a spectacle in itself. Varied wildly. The concierge with the clefs d' Or was in that area from time to time, and service was tight and quick. When the two bellboys were there (when they were there) - seemed confused and stressed out. Service ranged from obnoxious (Yes, I can order a cab to Arabellestrasse without them asking the taxi driver 4 times if he's sure where it is - he knows. I know. You don't). At least one of the gents did not have neither english or german as his first language, and was very hard to understand. At one point (early in the stay) I was even asked for a room number before he wanted to give me an umbrella. Really? At other times, it was quick and simple. I guess staff experience varied greatly.
Regarding the rooms - as mentioned above - they were over all great. I do however agree with the other reviewer who called the bathrooms grotesque. I do agree. I was aware of it though - having trawled thru numerous tripadvisor pictures to ascertain the bathroom configuration. The marble is to be quite honest - abricot colored and horrible. Two really not nice things about this, was first - there seems to have been some sort of lacquer applied to the marble, but every spec of water or spots, previous to this lacquer finish shows up really easy in the strong halogen lights. Especially around the toilet and shower areas. Eww. Also the dark and brown stains in the marble makes it really hard to see what is dirt - and what is marble. I noticed a long brownish stripe of what appeared to be food on the side of the bathtub, looked like a marble shade, but was in fact dirt. I understand that the poor maid does not have a chance in the world to see such details. Again... The marble was a the Vegas casino carpet of tiles. Not nice. Also it seemed like it had repairs around the area where the retrofitted TV and wall hanging haridryer (really?) was fitted. The toiletries were a delight though. And besides from the glass shards upon checking in - not cleaned up from a previous guest mishap (which I stepped on, only minor blood loss) and the leftover cleaning agent in the tub (white powder), the room and bathroom was spotless.
One last thing. As far as I could ascertain almost all views (City, Hofbrauhaus, etc) in fact face a very large parking structure. By looking at the floor layout plan, I'd say that at least 60% of the rooms will face that monstrosity. You have been warned.
Altogether, the Mandarin Oriental - Munich does try hard. The hardware is certainly there and with a bit more effort it can be a top site in Germany. Personally, I think they would be toast if a Park Hyatt or Four Seasons opened up shop tomorrow - but then again, that is unlikely.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Quietly tucked away in a side street, yet centrally located near the famed Maximilianstrasse, Mandarin Oriental, Munich is an elegant gem of Neo-Renaissance charm, providing the highest levels of personalised service in the city and award-winning restaurant and bars. The newly refurbished 48 spacious rooms and 25 suites offer the finest in contemporary luxury and, along with the stunning roof-top pool, feature views that stretch across the picturesque surroundings of the old town. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Mandarin Oriental, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Expedia, Hotwire, Agoda, Cancelon, getaroom.com, TripOnline SA and HotelQuickly so you can book your Mandarin Oriental, Munich reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Mandarin Oriental Munich Hotel Munich
- Mandarin Oriental Hotel Munich
- Mandarin Munich
- Munich Mandarin Oriental