I quite often stay at Accor hotels because they are locally owned but managed by a group with very good levels of service and international standards, as well as reasonable pricing. As this hotel was only offiically opened in March 2014 the rates are very good value and I decided to try it out.
One of the strange things that should have tipped me off was that on the Accor website you cannot book the room to include breakfast. It is not an option currently on any of their room rates. I would normally eat the hotel breakfast but since it had to be bought at the breakfast room itself I didn't feel welcome..I went next door to the "kantin" and had a small local coffee and breakfast and that was fine. If you go out the front door walk to the left and there is a small sign on the sidewalk..just very local style but a good array of dishes and actually quite delicious.
The hotel building itself is nothing special, looking like an average office building from the outside and very close to the Kraton grounds. (near the roundabout statue) Once inside the small but highly decorated lobby is furnished with a mix of local Solo handicrafts and furnishings. The check in staff are very lovely and they wear the old fashioned white lace kebaya blouses and batik sarongs, a very nice touch. It's also one of the few hotels I've been in where young ladies are the doorpeople!
The room I had was huge, a large queen size bed with a large desk and sitting area, etc. The TV had a wide variety of satelite channels including sports so I was happy!
I went out for the afternoon and the hotel bell desk directed me to a Mahkota taxi, I asked to go my friend's place which was a couple of blocks away..When I started to pay the amount on the running meter, I was told that the minimum for taxis is rp 20,000 even if called from the street. Ok, it's not the money but he pointed to a sign that was on the ceiling and not near the meter and said I should have known. He was actually fairly beligerent and I did pay but was rather unhappy to have this sprung on me. A few months ago on my last visit the minimum was rp 15,000 and the taxi had told me this before I got in. I feel that this should be explained by the car call/bellmen and the taxi straight away.
I actually did mention this to the Bell Desk and they offered me a free ride to my evening destination in the hotel car. They apologised profusely and said it might have been one of the illegal taxis pretending to be a Mahkota taxi.. I think this is the kind of situation that might have left a bad taste in my mouth but the hotel staff handled it so well. after he personally drove me to dinner I tipped him almost 3 times the taxi minimum as a thank you.
Then the other slip up was that late at night I decided to make a cup of tea. Surprisingly, there was sugar and creamer and decaf coffee only. No tea. Again, I called down and it took several phone calls and more than 20 minutes to find someone to bring the tea. When it came it was a room service, tea, not tea bags...I told the room service boy, a trainee, that I wanted to refuse the tea but only if he would not have to pay for the mistake. They said no problem, and he later brought up some tea.
I'm sorry to write about such petty details but this is just to give people an idea of the rough edges in the service that exist currently. I was told that the hotel operates at very low staffing levels and I do believe that to be true. The ones who are working seem to be wonderful but for a hotel to be a true M Gallery class such as the Phoenix in Jogja it really needs to bring it's level up. I have heard it's the same owner but not sure if it's true or not.
If they eventually tweak out the kinks then I think it will be a very nice hotel and a top choice in Solo. However, it has not reached that level yet. I hesitate the give the low rating for service because the staff I met were really lovely, they just do not have enough people to answer the phone and service the rooms.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Enjoying a prime location in the heart of Solo city, the 150 room hotel is the ideal address for both leisure and business travellers. The Ballroom has the capacity for more than 300 persons. Its location sees it alongside banking and government buildings, while the two famous royal palaces of Mangkunegaran, Kasunanan, traditional market "Pasar Klewer," central "Grosir Solo" are nearby. A bustling social and cultural scene waits to be explored right outside, while striking views of Mounts Merbabu, Merapi, and Lawu frame a busy city kaleidoscope. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Prestigia, Booking.com, ACCOR, Agoda, Hotwire, Cancelon, TripOnline SA, Travelocity, Orbitz and HotelQuickly so you can book your The Royal Surakarta Heritage Solo - MGallery Collection reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.