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“A Soviet hotel as it is”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Hotel Belarus

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Hotel Belarus
Ranked #5 of 44 Hotels in Minsk
Certificate of Excellence
St.Petersburg, Russia
Level Contributor
39 reviews
32 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
“A Soviet hotel as it is”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 8, 2010

Me and my wife stayed in the hotel in January 2010.

The hotel is not any up-to-date, it's a typical Soviet hotel so it's hard to write a review living in 21st century.

Location: Good. Right to the river Svisloch. 10 minutes walk to the main Orthodox cathedral and the historical part of Minsk.

Rooms and facilities: We stayed at the standard room. It was clean but had really old facilities. Actually it reminded me a usual Soviet apartment of 1980s.

Breakfast: The buffet breakfast is normal. You won't probably be delighted but you won't leave the restaurant hungry. BTW the buffet breakfast (not the continental one!) takes place on the 22nd floor so you also will enjoy a river view.

Internet: There are no free internet. Wi-Fi is offered for a very low price (about 35 eurocents per hour) but we didn't try it.

Staff: Soviet-style. All these people are friendly but don't expect too much from them.

If you don't want to spend money on Crowne Plaza or if you are interested in diving into the atmosphere of the Soviet Union of 1980s choose this hotel. It will be an interesting experience for you... if you are not a Soviet-born person 30+. :)

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank Alexander P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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343 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (14)
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 8, 2009

Anyone who has not travelled to Belarus before will probably have several difficulties. 1. the visa, 2. dealing with language barriers 3. the lack of activities and 4. the lack of service. As you first leave the airport etc, expect BAD service from every angle, expect people to be rude and selfish.

Maybe I have painted this in a bad picture first of all, so I should expand on what I mean. The economic system has been designed so that foreign investors are taxed so heavily they keep away, as are independent shop-keepers. Thus it leaves a monopoly on the industry which is owned by the government. The people employed by the government do not receive scalable salaries (ok maybe very slight), so essentially people do not care.

That's right! Waitresses earn as much as doctors and in some cases...more!. Which is essentially the reason for the bad service. I argued with the reception at least three times, the shop keeper whom I wanted to buy some goods from looked at me as if to say "what do you want from me?".

We decided to go to the restaurant on the ground floor and was told by the waiter to leave our cloaks in the cloakroom outside. We did this and the cloakroom person turned us away, the waiter then took our coats back to the cloakroom and was told ok, but if we were not back by 11pm, she would lock up and leave our coats in the cloakroom. The hotel is also run so hugely inefficient, I pointed some things out to my partner who just found it incredibly funny.

The more you investigate Minsk, the more you realise how incredibly ineffecient it is as a city by the way!. You had one person watching 4 fruit machines (and quite often arguing with people who were using them), you had 2 doormen who did not take your bags, 3 security guards who read papers all day, the souvenir shop person. three people working in the cafe which was empty on most occasions I went in there. 2 people at the cash desk (and one at the currency exchange), most people I saw queueing there was 3 people. 2-3 people at reception. But the funniest thing of all was the floor ladies.

One on each floor which was the equivalent of a Russian tank lady (if you know the phrase you will know what I mean). Each one a complete a total hitler, taken by three shifts over thr 24 hour period. This equates to roughly 66 people employed by the hotel, who did nothing but make your life a misery. The rooms themselves reeked of smoke, the decor was like a trip back in time to the 1970s although the bed itself was quite comfortable.

I actually took the time out to read the hotel manual (purely because the lack of activities in Minsk) I noticed that they charged for extra things such as: an extra pillow (you only got one in a double bed), an extra cover (bearing in mind it was cold her anyway - without heating in the room), turning the phone on so you could make a call. It kind of put me off using any of the services in the hotel, so I didn't.

Plus the hotel spends its time in complete darkness!!!! but this is common across Minsk in general.

Expect to pay double for the taxis outside of the hotel than using a 152 taxi.

So thats the bad points, now onto the good points: the view from the hotel is very nice, the view from the hotel is breath-taking, one that I can only compare with the top of the Eiffel Tower, the food is great in this restaurant albeit a little pricey, the food in the Belarusian restaurant on the ground floor is good also, and they do have services such as a swimming pool and a gym which are nice for the hotel. The hotel is centrally located and is about 10 minutes walk from the nice areas of Minsk.

Should you travel to Minsk, here are my recommendations:

1. Don't stay at this hotel unless you want to feel like they are paying you to stay there. The other hotels are very expensive compared to this (Europe for instance) but if you can manage to work around the Tourist companies for a visa, do so.

2. Don't stay for a long time 2-3 days maximum. Minsk is not designed for tourists.

3. Expect people to be curt with you, no matter how polite you are with them. When I held open a tube door for a woman who was struggling with her child, she was shocked.

4. Keep on your toes, watch out for vehicles driving along pavements because they will run you over. It is their right of way, not yours. Also when crossing a road the green man does NOT mean you have right of way for vehicles turnaround around the corner.

5. Try and stick the tubes, they are very useful BR600 per entry into the tube.

6. Meals for two cost around BR70,000 (around £18/E20) in the centre; in the outskirts and away from the tube stations you can find these same meals costing around BR40,000 (around £9 / E10)

7. When you find a good restaurant, tip well BR5,000 (£1.10) is a average tip, BR10,000 is a very good tip and when I gave a girl BR15,000 (£4.00) she was ecstatic and the service was amazing every single time.

Enjoy!

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
7 Thank Ricci0509
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gothenburg, Sweden
Level Contributor
59 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 94 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 15, 2009

For all of us who love gloomy and dark soviet style hotels in eastern europe (who doesn't?) this is as close to heaven as you get. Hotel Belarus is a charming hotel i soviet 60:s or 70:s style with dark corridors, awkward passages, strange doors and gloomy hallways - I love it!
The service personel is harsh but correct and will inform you in russian what you can do, and especially what you cannot do. The breakfast room on the top floor with views over Minsk is a must! The breakfast is full of nutrious and healthy choices including belarus and russian specialities that will keep you going for most of the day.
The best part of the hotel is the bar conveniently positioned on the sixth floor, where a double vodka never is far away.
Walking distance to Minsk city center is a plus and also the conveniently positioned gentlemens club next door.
A lovely place to spend your honeymoon with your newly accustomed russian wife.

  • Stayed April 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank lgreger
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glyfada, Greece
Level Contributor
247 reviews
136 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 8, 2009

The hotel has an Excellent location, in a park right in the center of town. It is out-dated and very basic but the rooms are clean and the stuff is friendly. Breakfast should be taken in the restaurant on the top floor (if is not in the price of the room – is worth while to pay a little extra - 4 euro) because the breakfast in the restaurant on the ground floor is very poor. Across the hotel are the Ybilenija and Planeta hotels (but they are much more expensive). I heard that they will tear down this hotel to build a new one; it is a pity because with a nice uplifting of the building the hotel could be great.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank magistros
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedfordshire, England
Level Contributor
163 reviews
117 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 163 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 20, 2008

Recently stayed at the Belarus for a two night break whilst attending the Belarus v England football match.

I stayed in a 'Buisness Class' Room, which was probably a round $10 more expensive although I am not sure what this additional extra $10 got me.

The room didnt look as if it had recently been refurbished but it was clean and everything thing worked (TV, Shower). The only part which wasn't particularly clean was the carpet which appeared dirty although this appeared to be through long life rather than it being not cleaned.

The decor was classic late 70's early 80's but was in a reasonable condition.

Breakfast was a good selection including cereals, ham & cheese, cakes and hot food of which this was particularly good (pork with cheese & potato and sausages).

Hotel corridors were rather noisy with the tiled floors not helping but this might have had something to do with the amount of football supporters staying there at the time, but wasnt really an issue.

The location was good being within easy walking distance of the town accross a park and via an underpass to the main street.

A Reasonable hotel for the price ($60 per twin room per night)

The 21st floor restaurant was good and a reasonable price but probably a bit more expensive than those in town.

  • Liked — Breakfast
  • Disliked — Noisy Corridors
  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank DarrenHenman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 28, 2008

I stayed at Belarus for 3 nights.
Pros: location, rather cheap.
Cons: soviet aesthetics, had to upgrade to a suite to get some decent space, heating is a joke, the bedsheets were not changed daily, the corridor and to some extent my room was stinking nicotine, in order to bring a friend in the evening you have to bribe the "security" on the ground floor.

If you don't mind all the above and given the lack of alternatives in Minsk, you will definitely survive -but only with a suite

Stayed February 2008
Helpful?
2 Thank BlueTsar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
62 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 259 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 20, 2007

Very industrial looking hotel in the heart of Minsk. Not overly friendly. They usually keep the lights off during the day in the lobby or hallways to conserve electricity. Security guard checks you ID near the elevators.

Rooms: Dated furniture and rooms but it was clean. Ample hot water and pressure. I had a bed with a single room. You must leave your key with your floor lady.

Location. I found it a little bit out of the way as it is surrounded by parks and close to the river. I would have preferred something closer to the subway.

Laundry: They do laundry if you ask your floor lady.

Safety: Careful walking around the park area at night. I heard that they target tourists in the area the are coming and going from the hotel into the park walkways.

Tip: The foreign exchange is not open in the mornings and has sporadic hours. It was not open when it was supposed to be. Also, all the ladies hanging out in the lobby drinking with the men are prostitutes.

All in all, a clean hotel but a little out of the way from transit and the action. The evenings can get a little seedy with all the drunk Russian guys staying at the hotel and mingling with the prostitutes.

  • Liked — Hot water. Cleanliness.
  • Disliked — Security. Out of way nature in the middle of lots of park area.
  • Stayed June 2006, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Beerboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Belarus

Property: Hotel Belarus
Address: Storozhevskaya 15-201, Minsk 220002, Belarus
Location: Belarus > Minsk
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#7 Business Hotel in Minsk
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Belarus 3*
Number of rooms: 484
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Belarus Hotel is located near administrative and business centre of Minsk and metro station Nemiga. The hotel has 484 rooms of different class, equipped with modern furniture, satellite TV, telephone. Guests are welcome to use parking, beauty salon, pharmacy, currency exchange, shop, Laundry service, gym, pool and sauna, as well as access to wireless Internet (Wi-Fi), safe at the reception. The highlight of the hotel is a panoramic elevator that will take everyone to the observation deck, where you can enjoy the beauty of the capital. On the 22nd floor of the hotel offers is the "Panorama"restaurant, which also offers great views of the city of Minsk. Cafe "Belarusian cuisine" and "Paparats-Kvetka", cosy bars will give You the opportunity to relax in a calm and pleasant atmosphere. For business meetings you can rent a conference hall for 229 seats with equipment for simultaneous translation, conference hall for 35 seats or 2 rooms for negotiations with 16 seats each. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Belarus Hotel Minsk

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