I arrived at ~1120 local time after a lively 60 minute taxi ride from the airport (86 yuan). First experience of congestion in Beijing and driving style! No problems checking in to room. On 4th floor of #3 building with balcony. Good facilities, including BBC and CNN on TV. TV did not have Sleep facility. Some staining around bath in bathroom. Two bottles of complimentary water plus kettle & teabags. Warning about not drinking the water – some buildings are claimed to have drinkable water but not #3. Also toiletries, combined bath/shower, mini-bar, air-conditioning. One major limitation was lack of storage space in terms of drawers. Need to put room card in slot by door to get the electricity to work – seems common in Chinese hotels.
Bed turned down every night, curtains drawn and towels, toiletries, etc replaced. Good Night card left on pillow together with weather forecast for following day – invariably correct. Bed was firm – just what I like. Lights in room perfectly OK for reading – been in worse and few better.
I was a member of a paper selection committee for a forthcoming conference so I had a tour of other buildings including the main one – certainly more luxurious with larger family and business rooms. Interesting feature is glass panel between bedroom and bathroom! Not all rooms have baths – those without baths have a spacious purpose-built shower.
Reception staff were efficient though rarely smiling. Chamber maids were much more pleasant, friendly and polite.
Didn’t bother with breakfast – at £12-14 it was expensive. Other restaurants were great – didn’t try TG Fridays as I wanted ‘proper’ Chinese food but it seemed popular with non-westerners.
Post Office and shop on hotel complex. Staff at PO did not speak good English but we managed to communicate and she was friendly. In general the staff seemed to speak and understand English as long as it was not too complicated.
Metro station was about 15 minutes walk away, across a busy road, but watch the locals and cross when they do. Soon a new metro line will be open which will have a station just outside the hotel door. Using the metro was easy, 2 yuan for any distance and any number of changes. The metro is very modern and efficient, but don’t expect to get a seat. Took about an hour to get to Tiananmen Square.
On departure, after 2 nights, I found a pill and packet of paper hankies on the floor underneath my bed so cleanliness could be improved.
The hotel is opposite a big shopping complex but across a busy road – watch how the locals cross and copy them, though there is a pedestrian bridge ~10 minutes walk down the road.
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- Also Known As:
- Friendship Hotel Beijing