Hotel Review – Best Western Time Hotel, Stockholm, Sweden

The Swedish capital is absolutely one of our favorite Grown-up destinations and we never tire of singing its praises. It is of course not cheap; and finding good mid-range accommodation can be a challenge.

You’re not one to shirk from a challenge though, are you now?

Certainly not, and the last time I visited I stayed at the Best Western Time Hotel and found that it ticks most of the right boxes.

Okay, let’s have the low-down then…

Coming right up:

Best Western Time Hotel

Vanadisvagen 12, Stockholm 11346 SWEDEN +46 (0)8 545 473 00

Website: www.timehotel.se

Email: info@timehotel.se

When?

Mid-September 2011

Vital stats:

Four stars. Built in 2007. 144 rooms over 7 floors

Location, location, location?

The hotel is located in the mostly residential Vasastaden district of Stockholm. It is a little way from the city centre and the nearest metro stop is about a 10-15 minute walk, but there are regular buses that stop close by. During the warmer months you can (and should) make use of the city bike scheme and there is a cycle stand just round the corner from the hotel.

What about parking?

There is a garage under the hotel.

Why choose this place?

I was arriving on a Monday and found a deal online through a third-party site – Stockholm mid-week can be a real killer, so it pays to hunt around on a weekday. Best Western claims it will match and beat any rates but as with most of these guarantees there is a lot of small print. But read our tips page and try calling the hotel directly. So it was the combination of a reasonable rate along with modern facilities that swung it for me.

Room

Five different types of room – Standard, Superior, Executive, Terrace and Junior Suite as well as studio apartments. I booked a Superior room but got a complimentary bump up to Executive on arrival, which was nice. Pretty stylish and modern with trendy colour schemes.

LCD TV, work desk,  hairdryer, parquet flooring, complementary wireless internet access. All rooms are non-smoking rooms.

Carpets?

Nope. Lovely clean wooden floors. I cannot stand grimy carpets in hotel rooms, and I don’t understand why every hotel doesn’t go with parquet instead – not least for hygiene and allergy reasons.

Bathroom

Modern bathrooms with underfloor heating and the usual complimentary toiletries. My executive room had a bath (which is the main step up from Superior) but it was clearly designed for those at least 30% shorter than myself, so wasn’t such a great perk. Hair-dryer provided.

Free internet I hope?

Yes, but it was excruciatingly slow in my room at least, so I ended up using my mobile internet USB stick. Clearly the hotel needs to boost its signal in some areas.

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Hotel Review – Adina Apartment Hamburg Michel, Germany

Travellers to Germany could almost be forgiven for thinking that Berlin is the only city worth their time. Almost, but not quite. While it’s no secret that we love the German capital, we are also big fans of the country’s second-largest city, Hamburg. It’s waterfront location is spectacular and it has enough bars and good restaurants to keep you occupied for a long weekend or more. We visited just before Xmas last month and did all our gift shopping in one go at the superb Christmas markets but realised that we’d have to come back again before too long to explore further.

Not enough time to do the Reeperbahn?

It wasn’t really that kind of holiday, to be honest. We were in town for a concert too – the 02 Arena is a great venue so keep an eye on your favourite band’s tour schedule if you need another excuse to visit.

Isn’t Hamburg the German city with the largest concentration of millionaires? Finding a cheap hotel could be a challenge…

I’ve certainly heard that in the past but I’m not guaranteeing it’s true – let’s just say there is more wealth on show here than in Berlin. Yet there are plenty of good hotel deals out there and prices are reasonable. On this occasion I was offered a reduced rate by the Adina Apartment Hotel and having been so impressed by their properties in Copenhagen and Berlin I was very keen to see if they managed to meet my expectations here too…

Quite a hard act to follow then. So how did they do?

You’ll find out soon enough if you read on…

Adina Apartment Hotel Hamburg Michel

Country Inn & Suites, Hotel, Lobby, Rezeption

Neuer Steinweg 26, 20459 Hamburg, GERMANY  +49 (0)40 2263 500

Website: http://www.adina.eu/adina-apartment-hotel-hamburg-michel/home

Email: aham@adina.eu

When?

Mid-December 2012

Vital stats:

Four stars. Built in 2010. 128 rooms over 7 floors

Location, location, location?

One of the major advantages of this hotel is that it is located within a ten minute walk of both the city centre and the Reeperbahn. St. Pauli U-Bahn station is a few hundred metres from the front door and the nearest bus stop is even closer.

What about parking?

The Adina has its own parking garage and you can also park on the streets around the hotel. Both options will cost you, obviously – you can add parking in Adina’s garage to your online reservation for EUR 22 per day – this rate may be different if buying on the day. Since it is so central you’ll not be needing the car in any case – but contact the hotel for rates or alternative solutions.

Why choose this place?

As I mentioned in the introduction we’ve stayed at two Adina properties before and they have become our hotel of choice when travelling as a family (two adults and an 11-year old) due to the high standard and excellent facilities. An apartment hotel really comes into its own if you are on a longer trip as you can wash clothes (although not in the studios) yet the room rate is often lower than a regular hotel where it can be difficult to get a room big enough for a family. Having a pool is the icing on the cake too. I was offered a reduced rate in Hamburg in return for reviewing the property, so that sealed the deal.

Room

As with their other hotels the Adina Hamburg has three different types of room – or ‘suite’ as they call them – studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom. Studios do not have full kitchen facilities (but do have a fridge, kettle and microwave) or washing machine/dryer. The one-bedroom we stayed in was perfect for the three of us but we needed to pay for an extra bed which was set up in the lounge area. The suites are modern, stylish and have everything you need. They are also seemingly identical to the ones in Berlin and Copenhagen. Washing powder can be purchased in single-use packs. There is a supermarket right up the street and you can even request that your fridge be filled for your arrival.

Adina Apartment Hotel Hamburg Michel

LCD TV in both bedroom and lounge, work desk, CD player, hair-dryer, mini-bar, safe. All rooms are non-smoking.

Carpets?

Well yes, but they were spotless. As regular readers know I do prefer wooden/laminate floors in hotels but when they are kept in perfect condition I have no real issue with carpets. However they may potentially be a problem for those with allergies but I highly doubt it – and of course the hotel is non-smoking.

Bathroom

Modern bathrooms with underfloor heating and complimentary toiletries. Washing machine and tumble dryer (with powder and instructions). Combined bath and shower. One thing I found odd was the lack of a drain in the floor, meaning that there is nowhere for water to run if you spill any, but this may just be me.

Free internet I hope?

No. This is a problem but is unfortunately often the case in German hotels. There is a terminal in the lobby but unlike in Berlin even this costs money – I believe the charge is EUR 3.50 per hour or thereabouts. For wireless internet the price is EUR 14.50 for 24 hours if ordered with your room online – I’m not sure whether this costs more if buying from reception once arrived. On the plus side the signal is excellent. This is really the only negative aspect of the Adina Hamburg (and the only one which regularly receives complaints from visitors) and I really hope they introduce free internet over the entire property – surely it can’t be that expensive? It would be a worthwhile investment in customer satisfaction too…

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Hotel Review – Adina Apartment Hotel, Copenhagen, Denmark

The Danish capital has plenty to draw the Grown-up Traveller. Whether you want to follow in the footsteps of Sarah Lund (The Killing/Forbrydelsen) or eat at the best restaurant in the world (Noma), Copenhagen can oblige. There’s all the fun of the fair at Tivoli Gardens and a recent craze for craft beer is also attracting enthusiasts.

Plenty to do for a weekend – or longer – then. But where to stay?

I’m on it. There’s no shortage of hotels or you could look into short-term apartment rentals; but the Adina Apartment Hotel offers a third option. In addition to the facilities of an apartment (fully equipped kitchen, washing machine and dryer etc.) you get daily cleaning and concierge service and there’s a bar, restaurant, fitness room and a swimming pool in the building.

I’m guessing this comes at a price?

Surprisingly the Adina charges about the same as a mid-range hotel. Book early or catch a special offer and it may even be cheaper. Families travelling with children will find an Adina apartment a much better deal than having to book two hotel rooms.

Okay, let’s have the low-down then…

Coming right up:

Adina Apartment Hotel

Amerika Plads 7, DK 2100 Copenhagen Ø, DENMARK  +45 3969 1000

Website: http://www.adina.eu/adina-apartment-hotel-copenhagen/home

Email: acph@adina.eu

When?

Late July 2011

Vital stats:

Four stars. Built in 2005. 128 rooms over 8 floors

Location, location, location?

The apartment hotel is located in a new and attractive harbourside development in Nordhavn and is such very convenient if arriving by boat. In any case it won’t take you more than 20 minutes to reach the city centre using the regular bus service that stops close to the hotel. If you so desire you can walk it in about 30-40 minutes and take in the mystifyingly popular and staggeringly overrated Little Mermaid on the way:

As a brief digression when we were returning to the hotel we met two American cruise ship passengers who absolutely had to see the Little Mermaid even though their boat was due to leave less than half an hour later. Let’s get this straight here: it’s a statue. Of a mermaid. And it’s little. That’s it…

What about parking?

The hotel offers both indoor and outdoor parking, but fees are high.

Why choose this place?

We were travelling as a family on a two week holiday visiting several countries so the opportunity to wash clothes was a big plus. Also the rate was good for a one-bedroom apartment; it would have cost us more to stay at a hotel. Our daughter really wanted a pool too, so that kind of sealed the deal.

Room

Three different types of room – or ‘suite’ as they call them – studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom. Studios do not have full kitchen facilities (but do have a fridge, kettle and microwave) or washing machine/dryer The one-bedroom we stayed in was perfect for the three of us but we needed to pay for an extra bed which was set up in the lounge area. The suites are modern, stylish and have everything you need. Washing powder can be purchased in single-use packs. There is a supermarket next door to the hotel and you can even request that your fridge be filled for your arrival.

LCD TV in both bedroom and lounge, work desk, CD player, hair-dryer, mini-bar, safe. All rooms are non-smoking.

Carpets?

Actually yes, but scrupulously clean. I still prefer wooden/laminate floors in hotels but when they are kept in perfect condition I have no real issue with carpets. Could potentially be a problem for those with allergies but I highly doubt it – and of course the hotel is non-smoking.

Bathroom

Modern bathrooms with underfloor heating and complimentary toiletries. Washing machine and tumble dryer (with powder and instructions). Combined bath and shower.

Free internet I hope?

Yes, but only in the lobby area or via a shared PC. Should be free, fast and in every room in our opinion but it will be a while before all hotels offer this I guess.

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