I read the reviews about the hotel options in Beijing and was enchanted by the prospect of staying in a traditional hutong. The highly recommended ones were all booked, so I looked this one up - it sounded decent. Unfortunately, it was a great disappointment. First of all, as we were arriving to Beijing on a late night flight, we asked the hotel to arrange a taxi pick-up for us. They did and quoted us 300 RMB. Since it was our only option, we agreed. Upon arrival to the hotel, we were told we needed to pay 345 RMB because the hotel also charged the service fee, which was never mentioned to us before. Overall, our trip to the hotel from the airport cost us $55, which is very high in Beijing where you can get to the airport for $15. Neither the taxi driver nor the receptionist would help us with our luggage either - there is a high step at the entrance (as in most old Chinese homes), and the receptionist was sitting down watching us as we lifted the suitcases to get in. After we settled the bill (the receptionist would not check us in until we paid that charge), we noticed how badly kept was the small lobby. The light-colored carpet was unclean/not vacuumed for a long time, and I started having a bad feeling about the room. The room turned out to be very small - much smaller than the picture makes you believe. I am Ok with small rooms, but I was traveling with a friend and there was no room for both of us to even open our two small suitcases. If we opened both, we would not be able to move around and would block doors. The bed was also unfit for two people - it was placed against the wall, so one of us sleeping by the wall had to climb over the other one to get to her spot. I wish the hotel mentioned that it was really a single room - the bed took about 80% of its space. The room also has not been kept very well - the chandeliers on the wall had parts broken off and the whole room had an atmosphere of disrepair and neglect. This would be fine if I were not paying $180/night. The bed was also very hard - both of us woke up with back pain. The breakfast was lavish - lots of dishes, great service and tasty food. The little breakfast place was odd though with fluorescent green, black and purple walls and furniture and transparent plastic chandeliers - did not make me feel the hutong atmosphere at all.
Although we booked 3 nights, we moved out after the first night. While I looked forward to a hutong experience, I do not believe this hotel provides that. The staff was nice and let us refund the two nights even though we booked through Agoda.com.
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