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Peninsula Palace or Grand Hyatt Beijing?

Peninsula Palace or Grand Hyatt Beijing?

Sep 9th, 2005, 07:21 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 47
Peninsula Palace or Grand Hyatt Beijing?

Any recent stays at these hotels? We will be 3 nights in Beijing prior to joining a 7 day business tour. We are using the American Express Platinum Fine Hotel Program which has the Peninsula Palace available at $195/night with breakfast. Grand Hyatt is $205 with NO breakfast. I've read mostly positive reports on the Peninsula Palace but have heard that the Grand Hyatt is wonderful and now the place to stay. Since the tour will be in cities around Shanghai with chinese econcomy hotels, we would like something special on our own in Beijing. We will end our trip with 4 nights at the Four Seasons Shanghai.
Isabelle is offline  
Sep 13th, 2005, 06:41 PM
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 7
We only have experience with the Pen in Beijing in Sept. '03. We will return in '06 and will go to the Pen. Their Cafe Jing is a great place for breakfast or an occasional meal. They have the best coffee that I have found in Beijing.
Tennisfox is offline  
Dec 7th, 2005, 10:29 AM
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ttt for comments
111op is offline  
Dec 7th, 2005, 03:48 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 530
Our family absolutely loved the Pen. We were there in March 2004. The concierge was wonderfully helpful and the lobby bar was a cozy place to have a cocktail before heading out for dinner. We had dinner one night in the restaurant on the lower level (can't remember the name) and it was outstanding.
We did walk through the Hyatt on the way back to the Pen one afternoon and the lobby left left me cold....nothing charming or warm about that place. As far as I can tell, the only thing the Hyatt had going for it is a slightly closer location to Tienanmen and Forbidden City.
Lindsey is offline  
Dec 13th, 2005, 12:55 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
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I don't think you would be unhappy with either. I have only seen the public areas of the new Grand Hyatt, I thought they were nice if maybe more modern and minimalist than the Penn (I think the Penn's lobby is one of its weak points, the entrance to shopping centre is too much of a feature IMO). The rooms would be the newest. The pool is pretty amazing, which you can't say about the pool at the Penn, but if you aren't there in the summer maybe that won't matter so much to you. The food is good there, as it is at the Penn where I have stayed a few times. If you are going to eat breakfast in the Hyatt it is of course going to cost you something like US$25 a person for anything other than coffee and maybe a roll, so that is gong to be on top of the already higher rate. The Penn looks good at that rate and with breakfast. However, as noted, the location of the Hyatt is excellent in that it is almost literally steps to Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City, which s quite convenient if you plan to spend time in that area. This is good also if you want to see the sunrise flag-raising ceremony there one morning but then want to go on to other things in other parts of town later in the day; the ceremony is quite early and you really have nothing else to do but go back to your hotel after it. It would be an advantage to be able to walk to and from the ceremony. The Penn is not really walkable, you could do it of course, but it is many blocks the "long" way and would take probably 30-45 minutes. Also with staying at the Hyatt you could probably walk to the Courtyard Restaurant which is a very good restaurant along the eastern wall of the Forbidden City.

What you are paying in higher rate at the Hyatt might be saved in some taxi fares, but probably but if you have to pay for breakfast. There is not a lot in the neighborhood other than other hotels for breakfast options.

Why don't you ask about room size to make sure you are comparing apples to apples, the rates you have been quoted may be for different room sizes or room types. Also, ask the Hyatt if they can match the Penn's rate, no harm in asking them to include breakfast, the worst they can say is no.
Cicerone is offline  
Dec 13th, 2005, 05:36 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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We really liked the Peninsula with the Amex upgrade to an executive floor. Besides breakfast there was tea in the afternoon, snacks and drinks in the evening, and beverages available all day. There was also free computer access. Taxi fare from the Peninsula to the Forbidden City is $1.25 (10 yuan) so it's not a big deal to return to the hotel several times a day. We went to the flag raising and then back to the hotel for breakfast. We also took a pleasant stroll to the Courtyard restaurant.
Marija is offline  
Dec 13th, 2005, 06:07 AM
Join Date: Aug 2003
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Why is the Peninsula so far from Forbidden City? It looks close enough on the map, near the SE corner? Is there a main entrance for FC? Which side is that on?

I booked my room at the Peninsula. Thanks.
111op is offline  
Dec 13th, 2005, 03:17 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 530
The main entrance for the Forbidden City is on the south end, facing Tienanman Square. You can also enter from the north end.
The Pen looks deceptively close on the map. But the blocks in Beijing are very long. We walked from the Pen to Tienanmen for the flag lowering at sunset and it took about 25 min.
Don't worry about the location....it's fine for all the main attractions in Beijing. You will like the Pen and you will also love the FS Shanghai.
Lindsey is offline  
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