Trip to Beijing?

Discussion in 'Trip Reports' started by michaelch, Mar 9, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. michaelch

    michaelch New Member

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    What is the best hotel in Beijing? And any recommendation what to do on a weekend?
     
  2. YULtide

    YULtide Gold Member

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    Time Magazine has a city guide with a few suggestions.

    We stayed in the Double Happiness Courtyard Hotel in a hutong to the east of the Forbidden City when we visited two years ago. It was a great experience for us, though perhaps not everyone's cup of tea if you want Western luxury. The hotel was a converted courtyard house that had belonged to a palace official, built about 250 years ago. The room was comfortable and nicely appointed, with a modern bathroom that would compare well with any other hotel. We stepped out of our room into an open-air courtyard. A breakfast buffet was offered, with plenty of variety. We stuck mainly to the chinese offerings and enjoyed them very much. There were a few western offerings as well. The location was great for us, right in the middle of a residential area, so we avoided feeling like we were in a bubble. It was close to a subway station, which made getting around easy, and we were able to walk to a number of places.

    What to see?

    Forbidden City, of course, and Tienanmen Square. Check out BeiHai Park as well. The drum tower and bell tower are interesting and provide great views. And the Temple of Heaven is stunning. If you're only there for a weekend, that might be enough.

    Other possibilities are the Olympic park, and of course a day trip out to the Great Wall. You can get a city bus to the Wall and avoid the high-pressure tours that will take you to a jade factory on the way. The city bus is way cheaper, too. Just watch out for fake city buses that will charge you more and take you to a jade factory on the way.

    For places to eat, Da Dong Roast Duck is a must. If you visit Beijing without eating the best Peking Duck in town, you haven't visted Beijing. There are of course endless restaurants in which to eat, with food from every corner of China and beyond. The only limitations are your sense of culinary adventure.
     
    Bonnie, NZMatty and michaelch like this.
  3. michaelch

    michaelch New Member

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    Thank you, that is very helpful

    Sent from my iPhone using milepoint
     
  4. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    The "best" hotel in a city like Beijing is highly relative. It will be helpful if you can be more specific about what your needs and means are. The recommendation about what to see might depend on where you stay in the city, so the answers to your two questions are linked. For instance, if you were to stay in my favorite part of Beijing, Wangfujing, you would be a very short walking distance to Forbidden City and Tienanmen Square but the "best" hotels in Wangfujing will cost you quite a bit...
     
  5. michaelch

    michaelch New Member

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    You have a point. I am visiting for the first time and will be in the business district and financial Center. Is this helpful?

    Sent from my iPhone using milepoint
     
  6. fabiovilela

    fabiovilela Silver Member

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  7. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    You will be staying a bit out of the way from where the action is in this very ancient city. A year ago, I stayed at Hilton Beijing, which is in that area and vowed never to stay there again because there was so little to see/do. My preference is Hilton Beijing Wangfujing, which was just mentioned above and about which I did a mini trip report, with pictures, here on MilePoint. Like I said, the "best hotels" in Wangfujing are quite pricey, but that is because of the great location. However, on my first trip to Beijing some 9 years ago, I did stay at a very cheap hotel (US$35/night) in Wangfujing but it was an old dump, whose saving grace was that it was build in traditional Chinese architecture...hardly the "best hotel" in Beijing.
     
  8. NYBanker
    Original Member

    NYBanker Gold Member

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    I struggle to see how the Hilton truly qualifies as the "best" hotel in Beijing. It is probably very nice for a Hilton, but the best in Beijing?

    Here is a trip report from the Peninsula. http://upgrd.com/sitinfirst/mixing-business-and-pleasure-in-beijing-part-3-peninsula-beijing.html A very good hotel, though frankly not at the level of Pens in HKG or Tokyo.

    Also in Beijing, I've stayed at the Westin Financial Street and visited the Park Hyatt; both were also very nice. In general, these western flagged properties in the pac rim are a notch (or two) better than their US counterparts.

    For a truly memorable hotel stay, you might consider the Aman Summer Palace hotel or one of the other Virtuoso hotels.
     
  9. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    Which Hilton, and who called any Hilton in PEK the "best" hotel? Maybe we should just stay away from the concept of "best anything" since it is often so, well, subjective. I and others have gushed about Hilton Beijing Wanfujing because we actually stayed there and found just about everything to contribute to the making of a great stay. I am not sure how anyone can be "wrong" about that... Btw, have you ever stayed at Hilton Wangfujing, which is just minutes away on foot from the Peninsula (I know the latter more for its shopping center than the hotel)?
     
  10. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    The OP asked what the "best" hotel was...and several nominated the Hilton in reply...so it seems the nominators consider the Hilton to be the best.

    I agree "best" is highly subjective, and depends on the needs and wants of a given traveler.

    I've not been to this seemingly incredible property, though I've been in residence at, or visited, a number of other deluxe properties in Beijing. Broadly, as I suggested earlier, many of the western brands are a notch or two higher in the pacrim than they are back at hotel.
     
  11. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    That is your interpretation and it is not quite accurate because I have been consistent on this.
    The way I would interpret a post calling a property in any city "the best" would be that the individual had a great experience there, and that is not something that can be debated, especially if you have not even stayed at the property;)
     
  12. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Mate...I wasn't referring to your post. This is the post that prompted my initial reply.

    http://milepoint.com/forums/threads/trip-to-beijing.58367/#post-1888843

    The best of a sample of one?
     
  13. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    What I said still stands, I think, even for the post you mentioned: "The way I would interpret a post calling a property in any city "the best" would be that the individual had a great experience there, and that is not something that can be debated, especially if you have not even stayed at the property."
    No, out of a sample of many and years of staying at great properties in North and Southeast Asia, including Beijing, where there are two Hiltons, not one, a Conrad just opened and a W=A will open next year.
     

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