My mother and I ended up at Hotel Raj Park unexpectedly - my flight out of Chennai was cancelled and I found myself in the airport at 1:00 am with nowhere to go. My airline made a reservation for us at the Radisson BLU (at my expense, of course) and when we found out that the nightly rate was over Rs. 9,000 we were floored. A random guy at the airport terminal was wearing an ID for Hotel Raj Park and he overheard us talking with the airline agent - he interrupted and suggested we give his hotel a try because it was less expensive but still a star rated hotel. Initially we weren't sure, but he offered a significant discount on the room rate plus airport transfers in an A/C car and free breakfast. We knew the general area of town and had seen the Raj Park before, so we knew it wasn't some seedy joint in a rough neighborhood, but rather a decent establishment in a nice part of town. We have family in other parts of Chennai that aren't necessarily close to TTK Road, where the Raj Park is. It's a nice enough area, just sort of out of the way for our needs and subject to long traffic jams at rush hour. But around 1:30 am, exhausted, we reluctantly agreed and figured we'd deal with the traffic the next day. The guy (my mom and I jokingly call him the "bookie" now :) led us outside, where an A/C Indigo transferred us to the Raj Park. The check-in area and lobby were clean and well decorated, in line with at least a 3 or 4 star hotel. At check in, somehow our discounted hotel rate ballooned slightly due to taxes, etc. but it was still lower than the normal rate - and at 1:30 am, we weren't in a position to nickel and dime anyone. Altogether we paid somewhere around Rs. 5000 for one night, including the airport transfers back and forth, and breakfast for two. We went up to our room on the first floor, which had central A/C, two twin beds, clean linens and towels, nice marble floors and cherry wood appointments, and a flat screen Samsung TV. The bathroom was a clean and spacious dry bath. It was perfectly clean, safe and comfortable for the night's stay.
Breakfast the next morning was very chaotic. We discovered in the AM that this is mostly an accommodation for corporate travelers - the halls were a bit noisy and we could hear businessmen chattering on their cell phones from every corner of the building. The breakfast area had lots of tables set for 2, 4 and 8-10 - and almost EVERY one of them had a "reserved" sign on it. We asked this supposed restaurant manager where the heck we were supposed to sit, and he wasn't sure - all he knew is that the tables were reserved for business travelers who were having meetings. He told us that we were not permitted to sit at any table marked "reserved" - but they were all reserved! He didn't seem to care, and walked away midway through our arguing with him. What a useless moron :) What is the point of reserving tables for guests who aren't there, when paying guests are already PRESENT and need a seat?! A waiter standing a few feet away attempted to make up for his manager's incompetence by apologizing to us, seating us at the end of a large table with other diners present at the other end, clearing the table and appointing it with fresh placemats and flatware, and bringing us coffee, tea and other items politely. That guy should be promoted to manager :) The breakfast included several hot Indian items like idli, poori masala, etc. and also continental fare like pastries, cereals, toast, boiled and scrambled eggs, and of course coffee and tea. Everything was tasty and fine, but the room was just incredibly chaotic and disorganized. The room was packed to the brim with guests - about 90% men, seemingly business travelers judging by the numerous laptops out on tables with groups of guys peering over at them and talking, also dudes on cell phones having loud conversations, etc. It was just LOUD and chaotic - its not a boardroom, its breakfast! We ate quickly and got out of there for the day to do other things.
We'd stay here again if we had to - the place was clean and safe, with all the amenities we need. It was just sort of loud, and seemed to cater to a different type of traveler than an average tourist or family on vacation. Also, for the money, I think we could have found a quieter, more peaceful place to stay and in a part of town where we'd most likely have more things to do.
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- Also Known As:
- Raj Park Chennai Hotel Chennai (Madras)
- Ramada Hotel Rajpark Chennai
- Ramada Hotel Chennai