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Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel, Helsinki
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Reviewed August 24, 2013

This is the third time that I've stayed at this hotel whilst on business in Helsinki and each time it has been a fantastic experience.

I've written quite a lot about the quality of the rooms, the warm welcome and the high levels of customer service in previous reviews (see underneath this review) and all of those observations and comments apply equally to this stay.

I booked one of the Executive Business rooms as before, mainly because it was excellent and represented great value for money last time and partly because the prospect of your own sauna in the room is too much to resist! This alone makes the stay extra special and justifies the price of the room on its own.

Apart from this feature, the room is full of features that are aimed at the business traveller. It is amazing how many 'business class' rooms are just a marketing ploy by hotels to try and attract business guests. This being Finland though, a business class room means exactly that and includes - to name a few - features such as;

- a plethora of power sockets, all accessible from the desk area, including 2 UK sockets in case you have forgotten your travel plug adapters.
- a huge, wide desk area with a non-glass top, so a laser mouse tracks fine on the surface.
- a connectivity panel that allows you connect just about any electronic A/V device by Bluetooth, USB, S-video, RCA and HDMI inputs. The panel is connected to both a large flatscreen 3D TV on the wall (with ambilight) and a separate audio system with separate speakers mounted on the wall.
- plenty of storage space for hanging and storing clothes.
- a full length mirror with a socket (for the hairdryer) right next to it.

The room itself was 'only' approx 35 sq m but felt much larger because of the very high ceilings and white walls and ceiling. The rooms are modern and benefit from Scandinavian design themes. The bed was beyond the usual Radisson very high standard and provided the most restful and comfortable night's sleep.

The bathroom was a good size, particularly as it has a sauna built into it. There's no bath but the walk-in shower was more than adequate, with very good water pressure and range of temperature control.

Another benefit for this grade of room is access to the hotel's executive lounge. This is up some stairs and runs around above the restaurant like a cloister. It serves breakfast in the morning and then drinks & snacks throughout the rest of the day. Breakfast is a superb selection of buffet items, both hot and cold, as well as the offer of items cooked to order.

The lounge is also a great chill out area to come and relax during the day: on two sides it has an eclectic collection of armchairs, sofas and chaise longues, along with some very large (55" or 60"?) TVs. These have wi-fi direct and are DLNA compatible so you can throw your smartphone pics and videos onto them - great if you've been taking pics as a tourist.

I ate dinner in the Kitzens restaurant on both nights and have reviewed this separately under its own listing.

There is a lovely bar area (called HUB) behind the reception, with yet another eclectic selection of seating, which is a great place to have a couple or three of the rather easily-drinkable Lapin Kulta local beer.

On the downside, the drain in the bathroom floor was blocked and so the water was draining away from the base of the shower and coming back up into the floor of the bathroom. It meant using all the towels to mop it up and upon mentioning it to reception, they promised to look into it and fix it.

Whilst in the HUB, I saw the hotel's general manager and had a quick chat with her - I knew it was her because her business is in the room, attached to a note informing guests that they can contact her direct with any problems or issues. I gather that the hotel is rising up the internal rankings within Radisson in general and its Scandinavian area in particular; I wasn't surprised to hear this as the hotel is delivering an excellent guest experience and is doing so on a consistent basis. As with many of the Carlson Rezidor properties in which I stay, this is down to the staff; their professionalism, enthusiasm and ability to translate Radisson's 'Yes I Can!' ethos into excellent customer service (special mention here to Heikki and Inka in the executive lounge). It is clear that the management here place a very high value on customer service and no doubt devote a lot of time on staff training to maintain the high levels that are delivered.

When I first stayed here in late 2012, I think that the hotel was ranked 12th on Tripadvisor. Then in March this year it was up to 8th and as I write this I see that it is now 5th. In my opinion this is entirely deserved and can be used as an credible metric when considering whether to stay here.

Overall, it was the same very high standard that I've experienced on previous stays. I paid EUR229 for the Executive Business room including breakfast: in central London in the holiday season, you'd easily pay £300-£400 for a basic grade room (probably no more than 20 sq m max) and so to have such a spacious & well-appointed room here for only approx. £200 is amazing value-for-money.

A consistently brilliant hotel.

Room Tip: 1. Pay the extra for an Executive Business room - when was the last time you had a private sauna in your room?! 2. Take the Finnair City Bus to/from Helsinki Vantaa airport - it's EUR6,30 each way on a modern, on-time bus that arrives/leaves from the main railway station just across the square.
  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Propaganda_Machine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Heikki P, Guest Relations Manager at Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel, Helsinki, responded to this reviewResponded September 5, 2013

Dear Propaganda_Machine,

Greetings on behalf of our whole Team Plaza to you!

It makes us so proud to read always your amazing reviews - thank you very much!

Have you already heard that our hotel has been chosen as "The leading business hotel in Finland" at the ("hospitality Oscars") World Travel Award´s in Antalya, Turkey last weekend?

We hope to see you soon back in Plaza!

With kind regards,

Mr. Heikki Päätalo
Guest Relations Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 23, 2013

Pros
-Excellent location, 3 minutes walk from central train station and airport bus (which terminates at the central station). There are several restaurants along the way to the central station.
-Modern room, nice decor
-Free internet, unlimited devices (Radisson generally offers free internet, unlike other chains)
-There is a large park nearby (1 minute walk)
-Quiet

Cons
-None.

Note there are many different types of rooms of various sizes. The junior suite is nice and substantially larger.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled solo
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1  Thank sea2skyaus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Petri_Uronen, Hotel Manager at Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel, Helsinki, responded to this reviewResponded September 5, 2013

Hi sea2skyaus,

So wonderful to hear you liked our hotel Plaza and enjoyed your stay here with us. I truly agree on pros you mentioned. Thank you for those.

Welcome soon again!

Kind Regards,

Petri Uronen
Hotel Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 22, 2013

The room was quite small and tight, we had to squeeze out two suitcases to fit and for us to be able to move around the room. The bed was quite high , but very comfortable . Breakfast was ok, apart from one incident, that we had to catch a tour and was trying to prepare a sandwich since we had no time to eat breakfast, but the waitress came (her name NADA) and in a loud voice told us that we are not allowed to take food outside the restaurant, although we saw quiet a few running out with more than one sandwich in their bags! We reported this incident to the Reception. If this is the case, there should be a BIG sign informing clients that food is to be consumed only sur place! to avoid embarrassment. The following day, we saw a lot of people packing their food, and the waitress on duty, just pretended nicely she did not see..

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Adelaida Gigi P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Heikki P, Guest Relations Manager at Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel, Helsinki, responded to this reviewResponded August 27, 2013

Dear guest,

Thank you for prestigious time to give us this important feedback.
We are truly sorry for the inconvenience. We have been discussing this matter with employees involved. They send their sincere apologies as well.

Thank you for your great idea to place the sign at breakfast.

We´ll hope to see you soon here at Plaza again.

Have a nice autumn!

With Kind Regards,
Petri Uronen / Hotel Manager
Heikki Päätalo / Guest Relations Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2013

Again, Radisson Blu hotels tend to be very nice hotels. Nice clean, modern rooms. Comfortable bed. Great breakfast buffet. Wonderful service. For us the location near the train station was good -- and it's only a short walk to the main tourist areas.

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank PaulM1956
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Heikki P, Guest Relations Manager at Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel, Helsinki, responded to this reviewResponded August 30, 2013

Dear PaulM1956,

Greetings to Chicago from our whole Team Plaza!
It is always pleasure to read this kind of reviews, I think that our quality of service is way how we like to do it - cause - We love what we do!

We hope to see you back in Plaza some day!

Have a great autumn!

With best regards,

Mr. Heikki Päätalo
Guest Relations Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 19, 2013

Excellent location across the square from the Railway station and bus stops make this ideal for quick access to the airport. Breakfast is excellent, rooms are in very good condition, furnished in typical minimalist scandiavian style. Bathrooms are bit small, certainly a case of one at a time. The desk staff are very helpful and gave us some good recommendations for food, which turned out to be exactly what we were looking for.

There are a lot of transit groups using the hotel especially for early morning flights so there is a fair bit of coming and going. The rooms are reasonably well insulated for noise but not perfect. Definately ask for a room at the back which overlooks a quiet residential block and garden area.

Overall, a very high quality city centre hotel, which is excellent value for money.

Room Tip: Ask for a room at the back.
  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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1  Thank LondonChrispy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Heikki P, Guest Relations Manager at Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel, Helsinki, responded to this reviewResponded August 30, 2013

Dear LondonChrispy,

Greetings from our whole Team to you!
Thank you very much about your amazing review!

We hope to see soon back in Plaza!

Have a great autumn!

Best regards,

Mr. Heikki Päätalo
Guest Relations Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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