Located very close to the railway station, the Holiday Inn Zhabei was convenient, inexpensive and was a very high quality hotel for the money. The complimentary breakfast was nice, but usually VERY crowded. It was not truly "western" as advertised, but certainly had enough to sustain you until lunch.
The staff was VERY friendly and helpful and many spoke English.
While the closeness to the railway station/subway station was nice, it can be deceiving. Getting to certain lines on the subway required a LOT of walking, and if you came out of the wrong exit, it was easy to get disoriented. Our first night we wandered around trying to get to our hotel for 20 minutes. We could see it, but there were walls and barriers preventing us from getting to it. We finally went back down in the subway, came out a different exit and found our way.
For roughly the same price as many Chinese hotels, this was a very welcome upgrade.