Beijing Golden Palace Silver Street
- Mao Er Hutong B&B
- Beijing Templeside Hutong Guest House (Shop 1)
- Red Wall Garden Hotel
- Kellys Courtyard
- The Ritz-Carlton(Huamao Center)
I picked this hotel at random mainly based on its central location. I am not disappointed with my choice. The rooms are comfortable and I found the staff to be friendly and acommodating.
It's right in the Wangfujing area, so near the night market and main shopping area. It's also walking distance from the Forbidden City and Tiannamen Square.
Convenient .. and yet not.
Once you've managed to find this hotel (even your taxi driver may have to call this one in) you will be taken to the main entrance for the standard hotel. If you have a reservation in the "VIP" hotel (which I did for some reason) you will be escorted to another, smaller hotel building right behind the main one. The check in procedure was fairly painless (since it was midnight) and they gave me a pretty nice room. Queen size bed, flat screen TV, internet connection close to the desk, responsive air conditioning. The bathroom floor was a bit weak (I felt like I might burst through to the floor below .. if I wasn't on the bottom floor) but they had a good tub and shower and some decent facilities.
One thing that I found annoying was that they ran out of room cards so I had to come back the next day and have them give me one for my room. However, this was done with very little fuss or discussion so I didn't mind too much.
The other thing I found discouraging was the lack of taxi's nearby. Since it is hidden down an alleyway halfway between two main streets you have to walk to the nearest street to find a decent ride out of there. The taxi drivers next to the hotel will give you the "Where are you going? Oh .. I don't want to go there. Find another taxi" speech. Much more so than other places in Beijing. I find that particularly frustrating ( "If you don't want to take people places, then why the frick are you a taxi driver??") but it's par for the course in China sometimes. While this isn't necessarily a deal breaker for everyone, it is certainly going to spoil part of your day.
Overall the accomodations were nice, but I would have to say the hard-to-find location (once you know where it is, it actually is quite convenient, but finding it is a bear) and the lack of reliable nearby transportation, bring it down a few notches. I'd recommend it, as long as you were planning on doing lots of walking around Wang Fu Jing anyway.
Unique Quality: I wasn't really in the hotel itself long enough to discover it's "unique qualities", but I'd have to say the most unique was the hard-to-find location. Located down an alleyway between two major streets, it gave every single taxi driver I rode with a challenge locating it. Most of them had to call it in or look at the map on the back of the hotel business card several times.
As I was put on the "A" floor (below ground level), I had zero view. But I really only used the room to sleep in so I didn't care.
Directions: Go to the intersection of Wang Fu Jing Lu and Gan Yu Road (one block up from the Shin Dong An Plaza), head down Gan Yu Road (it's one-way), and 100 meters before you hit Dong Chen Bei Da Jie you will see it on your left.
Bullion Kai Yue Hotel
This Hotel hat been the Beijing Golden Palace Silver Street Hotel until 2004, when it was renovated and renamed to Beijing Bullion Kai Yue Hotel.
Maybe you come across different discriptions, when you research about the hotel in internet or when you go to the hotel:
* The name of the hotel is "Bullion Kai Yue Hotel", but the old name is outside of the hotel and on many papers in the hotel.
* it is not new! It has been renovated in 2004 and renamed.
* it is not a 4-star-hotel
Unique Quality: It is a good 3-star-hotel with a very convient location. The hotel is a few steps away from Wangfuling. Tiananmen Square and Forbidden City can easily be reached. The rooms are spacious, clean and with a nice bathroom. The furniture looks as if it is old Chinese furniture.
The lobby has an impressive golden painting in the background. The coffee-shop is nice. The owner of the coffee-shop likes to talk to guests and he knows a lot.
The staff is friendly and always trying to help. When you talk to them, they seem to udnerstand English. But when you have more complicated questions, like "is there a message for me?" you'll find out, that they did not understand a single word. But when you insist, then they'll find somebody, who speaks a good English.
I enjoyed my stay in this hotel. I like the nice furniture and the beautiful vases and other pieces of art in the corridors. The hotel is a cheap and conveniantly located for independent travellers.
But let me give a you a last warning: The breakfast is incredibly bad. As there are mainly Chinese and other Asian people staying in this hotel, the breakfast is Chinese style and it is no good. The dishes arrive on the buffet wet. There is the possibility to get some kind of Western Breakfast: oily fried eggs, toast and Nescafe, which you have to make yourselfe with the lukewarm water.
Directions: On a small Hutong between Wangfujing and Dondanjie. Not far from Dongtang Church.
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