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“Great Hotel”
Review of Hotel Katajanokka

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Hotel Katajanokka
Ranked #5 of 64 Hotels in Helsinki
Certificate of Excellence
Uxbridge, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Great Hotel”
Reviewed March 12, 2011

This hotel has a great location walking distance to Helsinki's city centre and near the market and docks. We had a fabulous time at this historic hotel. Rooms were two jail cells fully decorated and there heated floors in the bathrooms. Rooms were very nice and bright and quiet due to the thick walls. Hotel history was very interesting and it is hard to find anything wrong with the hotel. Check in was easy and friendly even when we arrived quite late. Our only complaint is that the hallways were quite cool but the rooms were warm so that was not a problem. The Jailbird restaurant had a fabulous full breakfast with eggs to order, bacon, sausage and too many other items to list. Best breakfast selection we have had at a hotel. We also ate dinner at the hotel one evening. It was delicious and the service was great. It was expensive compared to what we were used to, but worth it. All in all a great hotel and we would recommend it highly. Great historic hotel.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank tacuxb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (141)
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Liverpool
Level Contributor
93 reviews
54 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
Reviewed March 4, 2011

I stayed here in Jan 2011 with my partner.
When we 1st arrived in Helsinki i was amazed by the weather!! it was well below freezing and the place was thick with snow but life still went on, we need to learn from that here in the UK.
We took the Finn air bus into Helsinki and then got the number 4 tram to right outside the hotel (all very easy to do and find).
The hotel is very impressive from outside. When you get to the reception the staff are wearing 'prison outfits' which adds to the fun of the place. We go to the room and there were metal prison doors on the outside of it, all very authentic and the actual room door was extremely thick metal. the windows were small. It all added to the ambiance of it being a prison.
A point to note. in the room I stayed you can see into the bathroom from the room as there is a floor to celing glass sheet separating them. I liked this but i know some people wouldnt.
Alcohol is very expensive in Helsinki and we couldn't buy wine from anywhere on a sunday?
All in all i enjoyed the hotel but there was not a lot to do in Helsinki.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ATM_Liverpool
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Auckland, New Zealand
Level Contributor
154 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2011

What a quirky and fun hotel! Spent two nights at the Hotel Katajanokka and really enjoyed it. The room was spacious enough, though with limited day light as it was a former prison cell. Seeing the prison theme throughout was a nice touch - from the staff wearing prisoner uniforms to metal plates and cups at breakfast. Staff were excellent and very helpful, breakfast was plentiful and the hotel was nice and quiet. Cleaning was okay though there was some dust on the cabinet. The city centre was a 10 to 15 minute walk away but there is a tram stop nearby so it really isn't a problem.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
Thank Kiwi-1976
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
18 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed February 6, 2011

Fun idea to stay in a converted prison! Rooms were unsurprisingly small and with limited daylight as they were two former cells, but the smart modern decor hides that well. Everything clean and working well. Good breakfast of Baltic foods and the usual international fare with metal mugs and plates to keep with the prison theme. Oddly restrictive hours for the sauna. Some way off from the city centre - about a 15 minutes walk - but the tram stops right outside. A really terrific place for a short leisure break.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank RogerGLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Swiecie, Poland
Level Contributor
24 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed January 26, 2011

We have stayed 4 days in this ex-prison hotel. However, it was a prison with very comfortable conditions in rooms, good food in canteen and friendly guards :-)
Location is perfect - in the Katajanokka district, just 15 minutes walk from the city centre, harbour and Uspenskij Sobor. In adition, there is a tram stop just in the front of the building. Our room was large and comfortable. Breakfast was great, served in the prison canteen and included in the price :-). If you like you can buy prison hats or black and white t-shirts with prison numbers. The area near hotel is quite and safe. A lot of place for long walks - especially in June when a day is so long and a night almost "white" :-)

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Isia_pl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne Australia
Level Contributor
100 reviews
46 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 136 helpful votes
Reviewed January 20, 2011

Had a five night stay in Katajanokka recently. Novelty of staying in a prison wears out quickly and after a while you start to feel that you are staying in a dungeon.

I had a premier room, which are roomier than the standard rooms, so I believe. However, spaciousness comes with extra roomy bathroom, where don't really spend that much time. Room's windows are at ceiling corner and don't provide much daylight (not that there was much daylight during the winter days anyway). However it manages to increase the jetlag (which I suffered the whole stay) and laying wide awake in early morning hours, you start noticing things. Like how unconfortable your pillow is, how the previous customers must have restless sleep as well and the cotton inside the pillows has turned into balls. Quiet as it is (no disturbing noises from neighbours) you wonder what the inmates thought about hearing the outside world in their cells, as in quietness of the night the trams and snow clearing on early hours was obvious (at least in my room).

Cleaning could have been better, as I noticed on the first day, in one of the ceiling corners there was big dustball hanging from spiderweb, which did not disappear during my stay. In bathroom the wall istalled hairdryer and the lightfixture were covered with dust. But toiletteries were plentifull and refilled daily, had a relaxing bath (didn't help to sleep) daily and bath was cleaned daily. However, obviously the paint, around the great rainshower, was obviously not water resistant as it was pealing...

Breakfast was plentiful but tired loooking, some of the vegetables looked days old, cheese rubbery and salami sweating. Orange juice (and assuming other juices too as they came from the same machine) was powder blended into water (how I know this, well, one morning all juice dispensers were giving only water, I waited for 15 minutes and then informed the staff member, who the came and pulled out a draw whith machinery, gave "couple of kicks" and after testing twice managed to get the orange juice out).

Note to the management: when you are doing renovations in the premises, please note that some customers are on holiday and would like to have peaceful morning. Instead on weekdays the jackhammering started at 8am (I know that working day starts in Finland at 8am, but you own a hotel and could delay the works like at least to 9-10am) and with my luck the dumpskip was outside my window.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
1 Thank HolidayHot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Prisonhotel, Director of Sales at Hotel Katajanokka, responded to this review, January 23, 2011
Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for choosing to stay with us during your stay in Helsinki and many thanks for the feedback. I am truly sorry for all the inconveniences caused.

We are indeed in the process of renovating one of the wings but have agreed to start the daily work only after 9.00 in the morning. I am glad you told us about the early working hours, we will need to address this issue with the team again. Please accept my apologies for waking you up so early.
We are also in the process of renewing pillows and duvets in all rooms.

Sorry about the unwanted company in your room as well, this inmate has since been released and will no longer be building his web around here. I am grateful that you let us know about the breakfast so we can improve it. Our breakfast standard is very high and for sure should not look tired. And you are right, kickboxing is absolutely out of the question no matter how uncooperative the juice machine gets.

On behalf of the staff here at Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka I thank you once again for the feedback and wish that if you are ever back in Helsinki again, we would get a chance to serve you better. In case you are planning to return please contact me directly at taru.ojaharju-latief@bwkatajanokka.fi so I can personally make sure your stay is a pleasant one.

With Best regards,

Taru Ojaharju-Latief
Director of Sales and Marketing
Best Western Premier Hotel Katajanokka
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vasa
Level Contributor
18 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed January 18, 2011

Overall I think that this hotel was great! It had a special atmosphere with the prison environment.

The rooms were nice and quite big. We had two rooms, so I got to see 2 different rooms. They were both basically the same, located in the (probably?) non prison cell area of the hotel. Comfortable large beds. Wifi worked really good, we got the password by calling the reception.

Room cleanliness was a little disappointment, the "feedback" questionnaire hadn't been exchanged (maybe they do not care about feedback?) So we could not fill in our opinion. We also found an old make up brush behind the trashcan in the toilet. So the floor in the toilet had most likely not been properly cleaned. Otherwise the room was (or seemed) clean!

Breakfast was good. Not the best I have ever had but very eatable. Very nice that the prison theme was to be seen the in the restaurant as well.

The restaurant was very good, very tasty food! Although the service was a little bit slow. I would eat there again!

The location is very central, you can walk to the city center in just 10-15 minutes. But you can also take a tram that stops right outside the hotel.

I would definitively stay at this hotel again! It was very nice and very cosy.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
2 Thank Saralene
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Katajanokka

Property: Hotel Katajanokka
Address: Merikasarminkatu 1a, Helsinki 00160, Finland
Location: Finland > Uusimaa > Helsinki > Vironniemi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Romantic Hotel in Helsinki
#5 Luxury Hotel in Helsinki
#5 Business Hotel in Helsinki
#8 Family Hotel in Helsinki
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Katajanokka 4*
Number of rooms: 106
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Also Known As:
Best Western Helsinki
Helsinki Best Western

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