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“If only this hotel was properly managed...”

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Radisson Blu Hotel, Riyadh
Ranked #19 of 230 Hotels in Riyadh
Reviewed February 1, 2013

The hotel is in Riyadh centre, close to the business area, between a number of Ministries.
Airport pick-up was all right. And check-in smooth. No upgrade for free though (while I believe the hotel was not that full): it was offered for about USD 50 per night to a superior room. I initially declined.
Rooms: Two rooms were offered to me, "Italian style" and "Spanish style", both quite the same, only the decor changes a bit, but nothing to write home about. The main issue with all the rooms in this hotel is the kind of metallic "privacy fence" in front of all the windows that blocks almost all the day light! Really ugly. These standards rooms are in addition really narrow. But they offer basic amenities such as a coffee/tea station, safe deposit box, mini-bar... I decided nevertheless to stay in it on the first night as it was late and I had an early meeting on the day after.
The day after when I came back at 6:00pm (having left at 8:30am), the room wasn't cleaned. I complained. Hotel sent someone to do it (but he actually only made up the bed and pretended it was done! To the extent that the towels were still in the bathtub, and of course no hoovering, ...). I came down to complain again, this time to the duty manager, who apologised and upgraded me to a Superior Room on the Royal Club floor (equivalent to executive club floors in other chains). Nice. From there, the experience was somewhat different.
Superior rooms are the double of standard ones (so they are really large). While the daylight issue remains, it is to a lower extent since there are two windows instead of one. Same amenities than in standard rooms, with in addition, a Nespresso machine available in the room.
Royal Club lounge: No breakfast, but some food in the evening. Usually empty (to the extent I had to switch on myself the heating system that took two days to warm up the room). There is there soft drinks, tea and a Nespresso machine, but no one seems to care about bringing more coffee unless a guest is requesting. Also one day, I had some kind of staff's friend who came in to watch a football match on the TV!!! Weird...
Breakfast: available in the main restaurant. Nice with lots of choice.
Internet: Wifi is available for free everywhere, although it is quite slow. But they didn't connect the various machines together. So depending where you are, you have to manually select the best "network" (it goes by half-floor).
Restaurants: I tried the Japanese (see my review there) and the Italian (OK). The main restaurant (buffet style) looks OK as well.
Hotel taxis: Expensive (SAR 70 for a 10 minutes ride) and not reliable (the car that was supposed to bring me to the airport didn't wait for me - I was 10 minutes late - so I had to wait for another driver: nice when you have a flight to catch!).
Spa/Gym: the outdoor swimming pool looked nice (in January, you don't swim outdoor in Riyadh!). Lots of gym machines, and apparently massages are available. I couldn't ask since I never saw a single employee there! There is in the "relax" room however a nice massage chair. Provided you understand how it works (it took me some time as it is not really logical), it's nice.
Bottom line: This hotel seems to be quite poorly managed, which is a shame as, standard rooms and the ugly metallic privacy fence in front of the room's windows aside, it could be a much nicer hotel. Next time I am in Riyadh, I'll go elsewhere...

Room Tip: The standard rooms are really narrow and dark. It is worth going one level above (to "superior...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Swissdiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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311 - 317 of 448 reviews

Reviewed January 29, 2013

Stayed one night on a business trip. Usual hotel fully booked. Rooms were small, bed was very hard and the screening / bars over the window did not inspire confidence.

Free Wifi, although patchy performance.

Room Tip: Avoid the twin rooms unless you really like sleeping on concrete slabs
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Yarro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 22, 2013

Hotel is clean and comfortable. Common areas are sedate with décor that is perhaps a bit dated. The overall maintenance and cleanliness levels seemed quite good. My room was nicely sized and comfortably furnished. Bathroom was well-equipped with excellent supply of hot water. It was a little dark because the side of the hotel my room was located on directly abutted another building and received relatively little natural light. Wi-Fi speeds were excellent. As usual, there were not enough electrical outlets.

Service was inconsistent, I highly recommend that you be very clear in any service requests that you make of the staff (e.g., laundry, car service). On a few occasions my room had not been cleaned even when I arrived back in the hotel after 6pm. Overall, staff could be friendlier and more customer-focused.

The business center and exercise room were fine.

The breakfast buffet has a wide selection but I found the quality of the food very uneven. (There is a dinner buffet as well). The dining room for the buffet was pleasant and spacious and a really nice place to relax at the beginning of the day. There are two other restaurants as well – a Japanese-pan-Asian restaurant and an Italian restaurant. Both restaurants were spacious and nicely-decorated, but I did not eat in either.

There is a club room on the fourth floor if you have club status or upgrade to a club room. The club room itself was very nice and comfortable with a large outside deck that included a large children’s play area. However, the food and beverage options in the club room were poor.

Would definitely consider staying here again on my next visit.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Laudrup
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 22, 2013

I keep returning to this hotel - have spent weeks and weeks in it over the past year. The gym is good enough (though males-only, ladies - sorry, a cultural thing), the three onsite restaurants are good to great, the wireless internet is free and pervasive throughout the building, and the location is as good as traffic allows in Riyadh for my target customers. However, the service is what has hooked me. Of course spending several nights twice a month allows you to know them and they you, but none the less they have been exceptional. Even if you are not a Club Carlson member, I still recommend it if your business takes you into the area south of the old airport and near or along King Abdul Aziz Road.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank Alan C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2012

I have been staying at this hotel over the past 15 years from it's previous life at the Hyatt and through the Radisson SAS to more recently the Radisson Blu.

On my most recent trip I was happy to see that the rooms are still very good and that the wifi is not only free but very efficient. The only meals I ate there was breakfast, and the choice is reasonable, but not fantastic.

One of my colleagues had a three hour wait at Riyadh immigration and by the time he did clear customs the hotel car had left, so it is a good idea to have the hotel number in your cellphone in order to quickly rectify any problem like this. However the drivers should know that these situations occur regularly at this airport.

I will be back here for sure.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled on business
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Thank sharkyuae
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2012

We've recently stayed in this Radisson once again and the welcome is as good as anywhere. The staff are always smiling as they quietly perform their duties. The rooms are quiet and well appointed, the gym is outstanding. The pool is small and the sun disappears around the other buildings around 3pm but again the atmosphere is relaxed. The buffet breakfast and dinner is always first class. If you're staying downtown Riyadh I would recommend this hotel for your stay.

Room Tip: The Andalucia or Italian suites are ideal.
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Ian C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 25, 2012

I had an average room sized room and it was a bit dated. The breakfast is ok but a disappointing. My favourite part is the Arabian coffee and super tasty dates available in the lobby. The hotel messed up one of my taxi bookings also. My room was very noisy as it faced onto a busy road. i didn't sleep well any of the three nights that I was there.

Room Tip: Ask for a room not facing onto the road
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled on business
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Thank Businesstravellerr8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Radisson Blu Hotel, Riyadh

Address: Al Mubarakiah Plaza, King Abdulaziz St, Riyadh 11415, Saudi Arabia
Location: Saudi Arabia > Riyadh Province > Riyadh
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 Business Hotel in Riyadh
#15 Best Value Hotel in Riyadh
#17 Luxury Hotel in Riyadh
Price Range: $102 - $241 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Radisson Blu Hotel, Riyadh 5*
Number of rooms: 294
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Explore the city from centrally located Riyadh hotel. Featuring iconic Arabian architecture, lavish Scandinavian interior and beautifully landscaped grounds, the Radisson Blu Hotel, Riyadh, is ideally located 40 kilometres from the King Khalid International Airport. This Riyadh hotel also affords easy access to the cultural and shopping area of the city, such as the Masmak fortress and famous Kingdom Centre. Guests at this luxurious hotel may relax and unwind with five-star amenities including concierge service, 24-hour room service, health club with sauna, Jacuzzi and massage facilities, and on-site fine dining restaurants Shogun and Olivio's.- The hotel is situated 40 kilometres from King Khalid International Airport. - The hotel offers 234 elegant rooms and suites, all equipped with Free high-speed, wireless Internet access, mini bar and hair dryer. - The hotel offers a variety of dining options including Japanese cuisine at Shogun, fusion delicacies at Brasserie on Four, Italian cuisine at Olivio's and hot coffee and select snacks at Café Vienna. - Off-site hotel catering services offered for up to 1,000 guests. - On-site fitness centre is equipped with outdoor swimming pool, sauna, steam room, whirlpool and massage facilities. - For the convenience of this Riyadh hotel's guests, a barber shop is located on site. - This Riyadh hotel also features an on-site gift store. - This luxurious Riyadh hotel offers 12 meeting rooms, available in various floor plans that can accommodate a maximum of 600 guests. - Free valet parking is available for guests. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Radisson Blu Hotel, Riyadh Hotel Riyadh
Radisson Riyadh
Riyadh Radisson

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