Hotel Bristol, Vienna (hereafter HBV) is a unique hotel in that it retains its old world charm whilst still being a comfortable place to stay. It is not over-pretentious both in terms of its interior designs or its service levels like many other old hotels in Vienna. One could call this hotel to be a bit ‘rough around the edges’ but that plays a part in making this a unique place that we thoroughly enjoyed. I would highly recommend this hotel for those who wish to experience the old world charm without being in an overly grandiose environment.
The check-in was great. We were welcomed by a friendly receptionist whilst our bags were taken care of by the doorman. As platinum members of SPG we were given a spacious room with a private balcony overlooking the Ringstrasse. I spent a lot of time on this balcony – Vienna is a beautiful city and there was nowhere better to absorb its colors than from a private balcony of an old, luxurious hotel. If you can afford it, I would highly recommend for you to book these rooms – they are worth every EUR! The rest of the room was also immaculate with the only bummer being the bathroom. It was of good size with good natural lighting but suffered from very weak water pressure and a drainage problem on the bathtub. We did get this serviced on the 2nd day but we still found it mediocre at best. I would feel much more at ease to return to HBV if I had assurance that this is fixed. The beds are very comfortable and the rooms are adorned with oil paintings and fresh plants. With the bathroom issue fixed, the room would have been perfect.
Perhaps the only other oddity we felt was that the bathroom amenities were Bvlgari as it says on their website (http://www.starwoodhotels.com/luxury/property/rooms/room_class_detail.html?propertyID=89&roomClassId=1004081648) – perhaps it’s because we were upgraded for free? The amenities that were available were still of high quality so we didn’t mind so much, but perhaps something should done to avoid confusions for future guests that expect it.
The only gripe I had with the check-in process was when I witnessed that many other guests were being escorted up to their rooms. We were given the keys to make our own way to our room, which we did not mind, but seeing other guests being escorted with a personal guide to where the business center/fitness center/restaurants etc are were, we were left to feel a bit “second-class”.
The concierge was helpful although a bit stiff, as was the doorman who I did not see smile once. In contrast, the receptionists were very bright and friendly, including the FO manager who I had the pleasure to meet on my way out. Perhaps making this friendliness consistent throughout all staff at HBV would help the guests’ experience. On the overall however, the service was fine and we have no complaints.
The location of the hotel cannot be beaten. It is three minute walk away from the Karlsplatz station (U-Bahn) which will take you to Schonbrunn palace and has two 24 hr Kebab stands right in front of its doors. Tram stops are nearby as well. You can walk to Stephansdom in 10 minutes and to Naschmarkt in 15 minutes. It is also directly opposite the Staatsoper. When you arrive at the hotel gates to see it literally being across the street from the Opera House, you understand why so many musical celebrities have stayed at the HBV since hundreds of years ago.
In summary, HBV is a hotel that is a prime location with a taste of old world Viennese luxury & comfort. You will not find the flawless efficiency & standardized friendliness you find in the likes of W.Astoria or St.Regis but what you will get is a genuine friendliness that does not go over-board. Oh, and I cannot forget those balconies – standing out under the Viennese stars looking out into the sparkling city of Mozart is worth a million dollars!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Luxury Hotel Bristol Vienna is located right next to the Vienna State Opera and has been an inspiring meeting point for Vienna's cultural and business life for around 120 years. Opened in 1892, the hotel still serves as a living example of Viennese charm and is famous for its personalised service and even offers a specialised service for those who wish to bring their pets along. Let the Luxury Collection Concierges be your guides to Vienna. They will gladly give you valued tips of places for inspirational encounters and experiences. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Bristol Hotel Vienna