Review: Holiday Inn Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom

Discussion in 'IHG | Rewards Club/Ambassador' started by uggboy, Nov 9, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. uggboy
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    uggboy Gold Member

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    Dreaming about going to Cardiff, we were finally able to fulfill our wish, but had only a certain budget to our disposal, so we booked the Holiday Inn for two nights.

    To get from Cardiff International Airport to the hotel we had different options available: Take the train, the bus or a taxi. We decided to take bus X91, which left at 11.34 (The interval is every two hours) in front of Cardiff International Airport to the Central Bus Station. The journey took around 20 minutes, and the cost per person for a single ticket was 3.90 GBP, ca. 5 Euro or 6.25 USD. We walked from the station around fifteen to twenty minutes to the Holiday Inn.

    The location of the hotel is excellent. It's opposite the West Gate of Cardiff Castle and Bute Park.
    Shopping, Museums, the river cruise/water taxi and the Millennium Stadium are just a short walk away.

    We arrived early. Reception wasn't busy, so we could check in immediately. The check in itself was quick and all important features like restaurant / bar location, was explained to us. Still I couldn't help myself thinking, that the receptionist was disinterested and disengaged.

    Our room was located on the 5th floor and overlooked the castle and the river Taff.

    The room was medium in size with a small wardrobe, a wall mounted flat screen TV with regional channels, a queen sized bed, a small writing desk, chair, a standing lamp and a small coffee table.

    There was also an iron and ironing board and tea / coffee making facilities. The color scheme was brown and blue. The room didn't have a mini bar or a safe. The minibar wasn't a big problem, but we were really surprised and slightly taken aback that there was no safe. Security is very important and a safe a necessity. We managed without it.

    The comfort of the room, especially the bed, was great. We enjoyed both sitting together on it and watching TV. A good nights rest was guaranteed. It was very difficult to get up.

    The room was a bit cramped, but I understand the reason behind it. The building is from the sixties and belonged originally to Trusthouse Forte. It was then a two star property. The hotel has to make the best out of the situation and meant it good by adding more furniture for the guest's comfort.

    The work area of the writing desk was compromised by the tea/coffee making facility, taking away around half of the space, so spreading some documents or placing a larger lap top on the desk wouldn't be possible without moving the tea/coffee making facilities. Having used the desk, though, it was comfortable to sit there and work for a bit.

    There was also a 24 hours in room dining menu and an extensive wine list, , a city map, a book called "This is Cardiff" and information about the benefits of joining Priority Club, Intercontinental Hotel Group's loyalty program.

    The air conditioning was functioning properly and heating up the chilly room after our return quickly.

    Traffic noise was clearly audible from our room. Since we aren't light sleepers it wasn't a problem.

    The hair dryer was in the drawer of the writing desk.

    The bathroom was small with a sink, bath and shower combination and a toilet. The water pressure was excellent. There were no problems with fluctuations in the temperature or that it was either too hot or too cold.
    The bathtub was very comfortable, and even I took long baths.
    The amenities were by Duke & Lyle and replaced regularly.

    House keeping was attentive, never intruding and respecting the "Do not disturb sign".
    We had a very positive experience. We left our room for the last time to check out. On our floor we met the maid, greeted her and she asked if we were checking out. We replied yes, not thinking further about it. We were already in the elevator, when the door opened again. The maid had chased after us, because she thought we had forgotten a brochure, which we didn't need any longer. We were impressed about her thoughtfulness.

    As Priority Club Gold members we received a voucher for a free local beer called Brain at the Junction Bar, late check out until 2 PM and a free newspaper, which never materialized.

    The late check out was granted without quibble.

    The voucher was a good idea. Unfortunately we aren't beer drinkers, so we hadn't any use for it.

    The first wake up call requested from the disengaged receptionist didn't arrive either. The second via TV arrived on time.

    We didn't use the Junction restaurant and bar or Callaghan's sports pub, but had room service twice. Both, quality and value, were good. We had hot chocolate, toast over baked with cheese, a sandwich made from regional ham and cheese and a "Maggie" pizza. Very tasty indeed. We paid for the first meal ca. 21 GBP (ca. 27.30 Euro or 33.60 USD), for the pizza ca. 14 GBP (ca. 18.20 Euro / 22.40 USD) including tray charge.

    The hotel has meeting facilities called The Academy, a business center and an ATM.

    Another small note: We followed Tripadvisor reviews the months leading up to our stay and read around two weeks before that one of the two elevators didn't work. It was still not repaired when our stay was over. Sometimes it meant waiting and queuing for the elevator. Not a big issue for us.

    Our days in Cardiff flew by and soon it was time for the check out. It went smooth and efficient.

    My verdict: Considering this is Cardiff and even though there were a few glitches, we would stay here again, based on the excellent location, comfort of the room, good food and excellent housekeeping.
     
    KathInJax, sendaiben and Kalboz like this.
  2. uggboy
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  3. uggboy
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  4. uggboy
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  5. Rosalia

    Rosalia Silver Member

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    Uggboy, my compliments !!! such a good and detailed review. Very nice photos! thanks.
    Would you allow me to add this :
    The room maid was expecting a tip, this is why she followed you to the elevator, she knows very well that a tourist brochure is no more useful when you check out....
     
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