During my trip to Shanghai last November, I purposely booked at different hotels, two to three nights per property, to experience different Shanghai accommodations. And while I knew it was a bit of a hassle to have to check-out and check-in again in another location, I didn't really mind the extra effort.
One of the hotels I booked at is Pei Mansion Hotel. Reading the reviews at TripAdvisor and checking out their website, I thought that this old mansion, formerly owned by the family of I.M. Pei, was very quaint. Arriving at the property, I felt that I had made the right choice. It's location is just a stone's throw away from West Nanjing Road. Very accessible and centrally located. Like in the photos on their website, the hotel looked promising. Its architecture and interior design were very charming. Then when we were brought to our room, it was tiny. I'm thinking it was less than 20 square meters. The room was just a little bigger than the bed. The windows were sealed and had no view. The bathroom was okay in size as it had a whirlpool tub for two, a separate shower enclosure, and one of those Japanese style water closet with heated toilet seat and a bidet. The amenities were from L'Occitane, so that's good.
Now, the problems... on our first night, the air conditioner was not cooling down the room. Even though it was already November then and the weather was cool, the room was uncomfortably warm. We had a hard rime sleeping. We had to ask them the following morning to have it fixed. The breakfast, we tried both the Chinese and Western breakfast on different days and both were forgettable. The dishes were cold and bland, and was served inside our tiny bedroom. They claim they don't have a breakfast room. The staff weren't really friendly. They do not really greet or say hello. They didn't even say goodbye when we checked out. And on several occasions when we were coming or going, a group of staff would hang out by the corridor near our room to smoke. I believe that these problems are attributed to the lack of training of both the staff and management. Despite the tiny room that was given to us, I believe that we still could have had a good experience if the staff were friendlier and more service oriented. This hotel needs to improve on management skills and service training.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Originally built in 1934, the building was designed for the family of the famous architect I.M. Pei (Louvre Pyramid, Paris). The PEI Mansion with its lush garden, is a luxurious oasis set in middle of downtown Shanghai. With its unique historical heritage, the PEI Mansion captures the essence of old Shanghai, a period when this great city was considered the ‘Paris of the Orient’. The building design reflects this wonderful by gone era with its graceful fusion of Classic French and Asian architecture that made Shanghai one of the world’s most beautiful and elegant cities. ... more less
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