I have strong opinions on travel accommodations where skimping on comfort and location is a bad idea. I had one experience in Columbus, OH that was an $89 dollar a night hotel and I vowed to never make that mistake again in my life. An entire trip is predicated on where you stay and you’ll see what I have to say about each scenario considering room size, service, friendliness, food, and location.
Ruby Rosi – Munich, Germany – $253 a night
When a tradeshow is in town, you’re going to pay more. This location is a 2 min walk from the HBF (Central Train Station) which I look for because it makes the traveling easier. The room was small and the toilet was adjacent to the shower, as in, you walk out of the shower into the toilet. The room was clean, the bed was nice, the TV worked, and although small, was a nice room. A bit overpriced for what you get but because of the circumstance, I understand. I missed breakfast here because I woke up completely hung over at 9:30 am.
Stage 12 – Innsbruck, Austria – $287 a night
Innsbruck is a beautiful city and this was located directly in the city center and 2 minutes away from the river Inn. Also only a 10 minute walk from the train station. The room was clean and spacious, bed was nice, and large selection of TV channels. I had breakfast here in the morning and the buffet style was solid and the multi vitamin juice was on point. The water pressure from the faucet was way too much as one downside. I woke up a few times in the middle of the night to piss so my sleep wasn’t perfect but can’t blame the room for that.
Hotel NH Collection Salzburg City – Salzburg, Austria – $172 a night
When I arrived, the front desk spent 10 minutes explaining to an 80 year old man which way to go in German. All I kept hearing was links and rechts, links and recht. After that the front desk was nice and gave me “a great room” on the 5th floor with windows. Some maniac from New York approached me in the elevator and he struck up a conversation which was a weird start. I’ve never had a bad experience at an NH so I knew what to expect. The room was a 15 minute walk from the train station, offered nice space, and the shower was great. Breakfast in the morning was slightly above average and the multi vitamin juice was horrible. I slept great.
Zum Goldenen Hirshchen – Gmunden, Austria – $159 a night
By far the most non tourist hotel of the bunch. A 15 minute walk from the train station and a hot Austrian who barely spoke English showed me up to my room. I thought this may be a different type of hotel… She showed me how to enter my phone number to enter the room and how to turn on the lights. I didn’t tip her which I totally regret. The room was massive comparatively and the toilet played a song when you shat. The shower was big and I wasn’t able to figure out how to get it to spray from the above head so I took a horizontal shower the first time (I eventually figured it out). The breakfast was fantastic as they had a personal chef make me some eggs. The bread was fresh to go along with some slamming pastries. This was the only place I ate a brownie for breakfast. I slept great and woke up perfectly refreshed.
Austria Trend Hotel beim Theresianum – Vienna, Austria – $156 a night
I would have booked 3 nights at the Intercontinental (see below) but it was sold out due to the marathon in town. This hotel was the worst experience of them all. It wasn’t bad by any means, but there was nothing good about it. It was 20 minutes away from what I would consider a good location, 40 minutes away from the train station, and it made everything else challenging from a location stand point. The breakfast was basic and I went elsewhere so I have no review. It would be a great stay for a someone not expecting much. The room was quite small and similar to the picture. The walls were thin but I took a PM and slept well.
Intercontinental Vienna, an IHG Hotel – Vienna, Austria $264 a night
I stayed at an Intercontinental in Budapest and thought it was great so I wanted to splurge a bit on this part of my trip as it was the only time I was in a city for a bit of time. For starters, this breakfast was off the hook. When I combine the taste of food, the staff and the level of professionalism they had, it was awesome. The room was large, bed soft, and TV had a nice network. The bathroom was slightly dated but totally functional. The elevators were hella fast. This location was fantastic right next to Stadtpark and near the main attractions. Excellent stay and I regret not having a drink at the bar before I left because it’s chandelier looked immaculate.
★★★★☆ – I’d add a half if I knew how. 4.5
Grand Poet by Semarah Hotels – Riga, Latvia – $149 a night
The grand daddy of all the hotels I stayed at and it was the cheapest of them all. Considering this is considered a 5 star hotel, let’s not be surprised. The staff was extremely courteous and I felt the need to tip the guy checking me in $5 euro. The room was huge and it had a chandelier hanging from it. I was such an idiot and told the front desk my remote was out of batteries and the TV wasn’t even plugged in. The bathroom was first class with a tub/shower. Breakfast was bomb and I left 5 lbs heavier. In cities that aren’t as attractive, pay for the upgrade. The bed was firm and the comforter was heavy. I slept like a rock. This was the only hotel that offered coffee in the room which was noteworthy. It’s a shame I didn’t get to use their spa, fitness center, or swimming pool.