Conrad Bali, Indonesia

Conrad Bali is located about a 30 minute taxi ride from the airport and is next to the Holiday Inn Resort and Sofitel Bali in Nusa Dua. The location is great and the beach is better than on the airport side near Jimbaran, although the beaches do have a lot of seaweed washing ashore. You don’t see much of the exterior of the hotel as you arrive as the lobby area is on a hill. If you are a Hilton Honors Diamond member you are treated exceptionally well, and they try their hardest to upgrade to the best room they have available. At my last visit I had a fantastic suite on the 4th floor overlooking the beach with two balconies and a terrace. They also made sure I had my favorite bathroom amenities in the room as I arrived and all members of staff recognised me and worked really hard to make this the most luxurious and effortless stay ever.

Conrad exterior

Conrad exterior

The lobby is spacious and has a terrace area for afternoon tea and evening drinks overlooking the main pool and the sea. There is plenty of space to sit down whilst checking in and you have both reception, transportation and concierge desks in different parts of the lobby.

Conrad Lobby

Conrad Lobby

The hotel is made up of four main buildings and with connecting passages with water features and sculptures. Three of the buildings are part of the main hotel and the fourth is the Conrad Residences which effectively is a timeshare part of the hotel.

Conrad garden

Conrad garden

The main pool stretches around all of the seaside facing side of the hotel and has direct access to water sports, seaside cabanas and several restaurants and bars.

Main pool

Main pool

The Conrad Suites section has a separate pool which can only be used by Conrad Suites guests and Hilton Honors Diamond members, and there are no children under 12 years allowed.

Suites pool

Suites pool

The hotel has some fantastic rooms and some of them have their own pools as well as facing the sea. The rooms are very spacious and if you get one of the rooms towards the sea the view is stunning.

Living rooms Conrad suites

Living rooms Conrad suites

Living rooms Conrad suites

Living rooms Conrad suites

Bedroom Conrad suites

Bedroom Conrad suites

Private pool and cabana

Private pool and cabana

The hotel has 4 main restaurants, a spa, several pools, tennis court and a wedding chapel facing the sea. For Conrad Suites guests and Hilton Honors Diamond members there is also a lounge  for drinks and relaxation. You will also have access to free breakfast between 7 am-11 am, afternoon team between 3 pm-5pm  and evening cocktails from 5 pm to 7 pm.

Pros

  • Great location and service is impeccable
  • Hilton Honors Diamond recognition is outstanding and the benefits are high value
  • Often well priced, especially if you use Hilton Honors Points and cash

Cons

  • The main pool area gets very busy and there is a lack of loungers towards midday
  • The hotel is a little isolated but there are convenience stores and local restaurants nearby
  • The gym is very small and the equipment is not particularly modern

Verdict

Being located less than 30 minutes from the airport, it is quick to get to and the hotel is an oasis from the busy world outside. The attention to detail is fantastic and the staff is very attentive and is always at hand to help you. Hilton Honours Diamond members are treated very well with great access to fantastic upgrades and phenomenal service.

Conrad Bangkok, Thailand

Conrad Bangkok is located on the centre of town and firmly in the embassy quarters. It is about 40 minutes with a taxi from the airport, however bear in mind it takes significantly longer in peak hour traffic. The hotel has 391 rooms and several meeting rooms, as well as an outdoor pool, spa, Gym and an executive lounge.

Conrad Bangkok exterior

Conrad Bangkok exterior

The hotel provides guests with the cutting edge in asian design, cuisine and service. The luxury guest rooms are furnished in a contemporary style of Thailand, with the use of silk and natural wood. There is plenty of sockets and ability to use technology in the rooms. The executive lounge is located on the 29th floor with fantastic views over the town.

View from the executive lounge

View from the executive lounge

The lounge serves breakfast from 6.30 am to 11 am, afternoon tea from 3pm to 5 pm and has a dinner and drinks reception from 6 pm to 8 pm in the evening. The food offering is enough to keep you going without having dinner unless you are looking for an extensive meal.

Executive lounge

Executive lounge

Pros

  • Centrally located with walking distance to the BTS Skytrain
  • Comfortableand luxurious rooms and a great executive lounge
  • Often well priced around £70-80 per night

Cons

  • The spa is quite pricey compared to other hotels and local
  • The hotel can get very busy at times and thus the restaurants and the lounge get crowded
  • The pool area is a little too small for a hotel this size

Verdict

It is a lovely, modern luxurious hotel in the heart of Bangkok, and the price is often less than £100 which is excellent value for money, especially if you are a Hilton Honors Gold or Diamond member as you will most probably get upgraded and get access to the executive lounge.

Hilton Milton Keynes, UK

Hilton Milton Keynes is located about 10 minute drive from junction 13 on the M1 motorway. The hotel has 138 rooms and 14 meeting rooms for up to 300 people. The hotel is at a remote location and the town centre is about 5 miles away.

Hilton Milton Keynes exterior

Hilton Milton Keynes exterior

The lobby area and the bar has been upgraded recently and feels like the most modern part of the hotel. There is also a small pool and gym on the property. The hotel also has a restaurant, New Horizons, which serves mostly contemporary british food.

Hilton Milton Keynes hotel - New Horizons Bar and Lounge

Lobby and Bar area Photo credit: Hilton

The rooms are small and have not been renovated for some time and there is no air-conditioning or central heating in the rooms. The furniture and the carpets are dark, the lighting is insufficient  and there is a distinct lack of electrical sockets in the rooms.

Pros

  • Close to Luton airport
  • The hotel has an indoor pool
  • No parking fee

Cons

  • The rooms are dated and there is no central heating or air-conditioning
  • Often over £100 per night which is overpriced for both the location and the standard of the hotel
  • Food and drinks overpriced and a limited food selection on the menu

Verdict

The hotel is well located just off the M1 motorway and only a short drive from Luton airport and there are several sights such as Whipsnade Zoo and Bletchley Park close to the hotel. However the hotel is very dated and the rooms not very nice so unless the rate is a bargain I would recommend the DoubleTree in Milton Keynes instead, see the review here.

 

 

Hilton Basingstoke, UK

The Hilton hotel in Basingstoke is much like most motorway Hilton hotels in UK, very dated and with quite small rooms which are desperate for an update/renovation. The hotel has 141 rooms with 10 newly updated deluxe rooms, there are also 10 function rooms with capacity of up to 150 people.

Hilton Basingstoke Exterior

Hilton Basingstoke Exterior

The reception area has been renovated and together with the Lobby Bar is a pleasant area as you arrive to the hotel, however the corridors leading to the rooms are very dated and bring you back to the early 1970’s.

Hotel reception and Lobby

Hotel reception and Lobby

Corridors

Corridors

The deluxe rooms are slightly bigger and have been updated recently and they all have flat screen TV’s, sofa and a small table. However the standard rooms are quite small with dated furniture and no air-conditioning or central heating.

Deluxe room

Deluxe room

The hotel often has weddings and functions so be prepared for the fact that the restaurant is closed for a private function and you will need to drive to get to a restaurant.

Pros

Cons

  • The hotel and the rooms are dated and there is no central heating or air-conditioning
  • Often  over £90-100 per night which is overpriced for both the location and the standard of the hotel
  • Food and drinks overpriced and a limited food selection on the menu

Verdict

The hotel is conveniently just off the M3 motorway and is within reason of major sights such as Windsor, Highclere Castle and Legoland as well as being very close to Basingstoke town centre. However the hotel is very dated and the rooms are not very nice so unless the rate is a bargain and you need to stay around Basingstoke I would not select the hotel.

Hilton Reading, UK

Hilton Reading is located just off the A33, a five minute drive from the Madejski Stadium and 4 minute drive from the town centre and the railway station. The hotel has 210 rooms and 10 meeting rooms with capacity up to 500 people, a spa, an indoor pool and a 24h gym.

Hilton Reading exterior

Hilton Reading exterior

The lobby is large and airy with lots of light and there is plenty of room even when it is busy. Both the restaurant, the Larder, and the coffee shop / bar is located on the right-hand side of the lobby and has plenty of seating. It attracts both locals and guests for lunch, afternoon tea and dinner.

Hotel lobby

Hotel lobby

The rooms are modern and spacious with practical design and the décor is neutral and inviting. The rooms all have large flat screen TV’s and plenty of electrical sockets for your gadgets in handy places.

Hotel room

Hotel room

Pros

  • Good location just 5 minutes ride to the city centre and the stadium and free parking
  • A nice pool, a spa and a 24h gym
  • Rooms are comfortable and modern

Cons

  • Both the hotel and the area can get very busy during stadium events
  • Often priced over £100 which is expensive for the location
  • The food in the restaurant is on the expensive side with most dishes starting at £20

Verdict

The hotel is well located and only minutes away from both the city centre and the stadium and well within reach of sights such as Windsor Castle, Legoland and Thorpe Park. The hotel is only a 20 minute drive away from Heathrow airport, and close to some of Reading’s biggest business parks. The hotel is great for business trips to Reading and the surrounding areas, and for weekend shopping trips as Reading has several large retail areas.

Marriott Skycity, Hongkong

Marriott Skycity is only a five minute bus ride away from Hong Kong International Airport, you can catch the complimentary bus from Gate B 29/30 at terminal 1, and they run every 20 minutes between 6 am and 12 am. Alternatively you can take the MTR one stop to AsiaWorld-Expo and walk to the hotel.

 

Hotel exterior Photo credit: Marriott

Hotel exterior Photo credit: Marriott

Marriott is the only 5-star hotel on Lantau island (where the airport is located), and they have 658 guest rooms facing the sea or golf course/airport. The hotel is directly connected to AsiaWorld-Expo which makes it ideal for travellers attending tradeshows, alternatively the hotel offers complimentary shuttle services to Hong Kong Disneyland and Tung Chung MTR station which will take you into town in 30 minutes.

Executive room Photo credit: Marriott

Executive room Photo credit: Marriott

The rooms are modern and spacious especially by Hong Kkong standards, and all rooms have large flat screen TV’s with over 20 international channels, in-room safe and minibar.

In-door pool Photo credit: Marriott

Indoor pool Photo credit: Marriott

The hotel has a an indoor heated swimming pool with a lifeguard service, a full service SPA and a 24-hour gym.

Executive lounge Photo credit: Marriott

Executive lounge Photo credit: Marriott

There are five different restaurants to select from in the hotel ranging from upmarket Chinese food and a French Bistro to sports bars and contemporary food places. The hotel also has a large executive lounge on the 12 floor with an outdoor terrace with an excellent view of planes landing at Hong Kong airport. The lounge serves breakfast from 5.30 am to 11 am, and has an all day hot and cold beverage offering and offers evening cocktails with light food from 5.30 pm to 8 pm.

Pros

  • Great location for a stopover in Hong Kong
  • Relatively spacious modern rooms
  • Great indoor pool, SPA and executive lounge

Cons

  • The hotel gets very expensive when there is something on at AsiaWorld-Expo
  • The restaurants on the property are overpriced and not fantastic
  • There is nothing around the hotel so you are restricted to the using the shuttle to the MTR station

Verdict

The hotel is conveniently located close to the airport, and you have great transport options to the city, Disneyland and to AsiaWorld-Expo. However if you are staying for more than a day or so the 30 minute trip in to the city becomes very long. I would only stay here if you have a layover and Hong Kong is not your ultimate destination.

 

Novotel Citygate, Hongkong

Novotel Citygate is located just 5 minutes by bus from Hong Kong International Airport, the hotel has 440 rooms, 4 restaurants and an outdoor pool. There is direct access to Tung Chung MTR station which will take you into the city in 30 minutes, and you are only two stops from Hong Kong Disneyland.

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Novotel Citygate entrance

The hotel also has direct access to Citygate Outlets, which will provide you with cheap fashion brand shopping if you have a short layover in Hong Kong. In addition you have easy access to the Ngong Ping cable cars, a five minute walk from the hotel, which will take you on a fantastic 25 minute ride over the island tops on your way to the Giant Buddha and the Wisdom path.

The rooms are contemporary and small but functional as you often find in Hong Kong where space comes at a premium. The bathroom is an integral part of the room to save on space. The furniture and decorations looks a little dated and could do with an update but overall the space is comfortable and inviting.

Superior room layout

Superior room layout

Pros

  • Good location just 5 minutes ride from the airport and great transport options
  • A great outdoor pool and a 24h gym
  • Attached to a shopping centre

Cons

  • The hotel and the rooms are average at best
  • Often priced over £100 which is expensive for the location
  • Often long waits to check in and out due to busloads of flight crews using the hotel

Verdict

The hotel is very conveniently located from Hong Kong International Airport, so if you have a short layover and don’t feel like trekking into town it is perfect, however it is often overpriced for the location due to the convenience for flight crews and group tours.