Beijing Hotel

Old Mar 20th, 2002, 07:34 PM
Owen Leach
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Beijing Hotel

I've got three days in Beijing, and like to walk and explore on foot. Any ideas for a 4 or 5 star, modern hotel, from which one can take wandering excursions. I presume that means the area near Tianamen (sp?), but maybe there are other ideas?

Also, besides Great Wall and Forbidden City, what do you think is "must see?"
Old Mar 21st, 2002, 11:06 AM
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There is a new beautiful Hyatt that is in a good area. Near Tianamen & the shopping street.

I would add the Lama Temple &
Temple of Heaven. Summer Palace
was also very enjoyable.
Old Mar 21st, 2002, 02:45 PM
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Dear Ownen,

Just returned from China day before yesterday. I have stayed at Tianlun Dynasty @ 50 Wangfujing (some years ago)and visited Crown Plaza Beijing (also Wangfujing). Both are excellent hotels close to Forbidden City, etc. Good luck.
Old Mar 21st, 2002, 05:01 PM
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I stayed in the Crowne Plaza, and was not happy. It was acceptable, but I would consider it sort of like an old red roof inn. The lobby was nice, but my room was very small, sparse, looked like it was from the 60's with green painted over furniture, not particularily clean, old timey built in radio with big analog dials. Pool area had algae. Breakfast buffet was nice, desk support was mixed some good/some bad. It was the worst of the hotels I stayed at in asia.
I have seen several other people who thought the rooms were nice, so I don't know if it depends on the floor you get.
Old Apr 4th, 2002, 02:02 PM
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Make a point to go to the Summer Palace. It will one of the few places in China that has beauty.

I was surprised how much I missed seeing something that was aesthetically pleasing.
Old Apr 5th, 2002, 07:09 AM
Peter N-H
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Until recently the St Regis was generally agreed to be the best hotel in Beijing, and the automatic choice of visiting diplomats. The Palace in Jinyu Hutong just off Wangfujing ran it a close second, although the rooms are rather smaller. I would imagine the Grand Hyatt, on Chang'an Dajie and Wangfujing, recently opened, would now be giving both a run for their money, but I haven't stayed there yet, and cannot directly compare. One can take 'wandering excursions' from almost anywhere I presume, but the second two are close enough to a number of major and minor sites (Tian'an Men Sq, the Forbidden City, Lao She Memorial Hall, Imperial Archive, etc.), and the St Regis closer to the Silk Market (although there are better places to shop) and the Ancient Observatory. Another benefit of the Grand Hyatt would be that it is right on top of a metro station, which makes it a convenient start for locations further afield.

There's also a brand new Marco Polo hotel further west near Xi Dan, which might well be worth considering, but again, I haven't seen it yet.

Peter N-H
Old Apr 5th, 2002, 09:23 AM
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how does Grand Hotel Beijing compare to these?
Old Apr 5th, 2002, 01:29 PM
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Has anyone actually stayed at the Grand Hyatt yet? So far, all that I've heard is that it's not up to the standards of the St. Regis due to the fact that it was not originally intended to be a Hyatt. Just wondering if anyone here has some recent direct experience. Thanks.
Old Apr 5th, 2002, 06:42 PM
Peter N-H
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The general principle with higher range hotels in China is that you should always stay in one with a familiar name--a Sino-Foreign joint-venture version of a Western or Japanese hotel with a reputation. Service levels are very unlikely to reach quite what you expect, but these hotels get closest.

Your second choice should be a hotel without a familiar name, but which is either a joint-venture or has a significant number of foreigners in the senior management. The Jianguo Fandian or the (newly renamed) State Guest Hotel would be two examples.

The Grand Hotel has no foreigners in the management (although there was originally some Hong Kong involvement, I heard) and while its lobby is quite luxurious, and it has rooms with traditional Chinese furniture, in terms of service and general quality of decor it could not compete when I last looked at it. It is certainly not worth its exorbitant room rates.

Patty is right about the Grand Hyatt insofar as it was originally intended to be a Harbour Plaza, and Hyatt usually gets involved at the design stage of any hotel which it will manage. I've only read good reports of it so far, and may stay there about two weeks from now.

Peter N-H

Old Apr 5th, 2002, 09:59 PM
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My suggestions: Take the hutong pedicab tour.Avoid the Ming tombs.Get out of the city and see rural China.

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