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Old Jul 16, 02, 2:04 am   #1
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
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Arrow Westin Grand Arabellapark (was Sheraton), Munich / München, Germany [Master Thread]

First of all the good part of the stay, service (especially in the evening) and selection at the club lounge were great. Room was nice and wellness area as well.
Now the problems we encountered:
We had booked a cheap rate by internet, when we arrived at the hotel the lady at the reception first did not find our reservation at all.
Then she did not find our rate and offered us a rate which was about 20% higher than our confirmed rate (which we unfortunately did not print out) and said she never heard of our rate and that we had probably booked the four star Sheraton across the road(in a quiete insulting voice)!
Next she did not offer us an upgrade as Platinum guests, but wanted to give us a normal room, after asking for a club level room she found one at the 19th floor.
Then she claimed, that since we were upgraded we could not use the club lounge, after we asked how that could be she rechecked in the back office and confirmed that we could use it.
She then said, that we had to prove the rate to her, when we asked were we could show it to her to the internet, she said that we had to ask concierge, where we found another guests, whoose reservation was not found was well. Finally the concierge gave us access to an internet PC were we printed out the rate, which she claimed to be an error but accepted it...
No welcome amenity was delievered.
We wrote a letter to the manager on duty about this on the first evening, but did not receive a response, except a bottle of red wine (I guess the delayed welcome amenity) without any kind of note or message.

[This message has been edited by peter42 (edited 07-16-2002).]
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Old Jul 16, 02, 6:01 am   #2
 
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I've stayed at this hotel around 20 times. Never had a problem, always had great sevice and a great room.
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Old Jul 21, 02, 3:43 pm   #3
 
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Peter, I totally understand you - it seems to me they recently significantly lowered their service level and exchanged personell.

My first 2 stays at this property were flawless and exceeding my expectations.

But my recent stay 2 weeks ago was really bad:
- No Platinum welcome amenity (water, wine, fruits). It took me a few complaints to get at least the water. Upon checkout I talked to the front desk supervisor, who told me she sent a bottle of wine (which never arrived), and promised to mke it a "big" instead of a "small" bottle next time.
- Lower standard of toiletries in the tower rooms (no Bulgari anymore)
- No soap, shampoo or other amenities at the recently reopened pool. The attendant could help me with body lotion, but no shampoo or soap either.
- All restaurants were closed for lunch and brunch on Sunday, except room-service / snackbar. There was no apparent reason (no public holiday), just a worldcup soccer game involving Germany. Not to mention the executive lounge was closed as well but would be reopening the next weekend, with no compensations this time (drink / food vouchers).

But now for the most shocking part:
- Upon arrival I confirmed a 4pm checkout (which was guaranteed anyway not only by being Plat, but also by the Endless Weekend Rate I booked). After a short stroll I returned to my room Sunday 2.30pm, to find a rude housekeeping guy in my room who just finished stuffing my toiletries (including a still wet tooth brush and razor) together with used briefs and pajamas and my dress pants all into a plastic bag and into my luggage... instead of apologizing, he questioned what I wanted in that (mine!) room.
The whole response from the manager on duty was just that their insurance woudl reemburse me for the $8-toothbrush and they would give me a voucher for free cleaning of my pants "next time"... quite less than I expected (I have not received a written apology until now).
- When I packaged my things 3.30pm and was about to leave the room heading for check-out, a friendly housekeeping person was bringing up fruit basket and water to my room. It almost put a smile on my face, until I found out this was meant for the next person in the room checking in after me... even before I checked out.

Let's see if Arabella Sheraton manages to keep their 5 AAA stars... I'd love to hear your comments.


[This message has been edited by Expedient (edited 07-21-2002).]

[This message has been edited by Expedient (edited 07-21-2002).]
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Old Aug 17, 04, 10:59 am   #4
 
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Smile Pics&Review: Greta Garbo & Grand Hotel ArabellaSheraton Munchen.

Via mrs. Katrinn Hofmann, the Guest Relations Manager of the hotel, I had arranged a hotel shuttle and the preferences for my room. This worked out fine.
In a shuttle van I was taken to the Grand hotel. It’s beautiful location is somewhat outside the centre of Munchen. However with the S-bahn it’s only 10 - 15 minutes to the centre of town, it is easy.

I was upgraded to a Towers junior suite and was welcomed at the Towers desk, next to the reception. The receptionist who did the Towers check - in was very friendly and service minded. He advised me concerning the transportation to the city. They served me a nice large cappuccino while I was waiting.
He escorted me to my room to check if everything was fine. What a wonderful service.

The interior of the suite was comfy modern and luxurious.
( See my pics: http://www.e-traveller.net/pics/2004/muc-asgrand.php ).
The junior suite was divided in two rooms, one living room and a bedroom. In the livingroom was a workingdesk, a leather couch ( which could be transformed in a bed), chairs and a coffee table. Next to the sitting room was a small luxurious bathroom, the colours of the interior are black and white.
The bedroom, had a remarkable luxurious and comfortable kingbed. It was one of the most comfortable beds I have ever slept in around the world. I do not think it was a Sheraton Sweet Sleeper though.
A second working desk was available here. The luxurious bathroom was larger here, with a bathtub and separate shower. There was a telephone near the toilet.

I was very happy with this wonderful suite. I did not have a very nice view, but the view was still ok.

The Towerlounge was very comfortable, and during the day there were drinks and some snacks. In the morning they serve a very nice breakfast. In the evening, not only alcoholic drinks are served, but various small snacks and pasta with salads!
I felt especially at home here one evening, since the butler, Wouter, was also Dutch. He did a good job here as a trainee and made every guest feel comfortable. It makes such a difference when there is a personal attention / service which makes you feel at home! Some colleagues of Wouter seemed to be somewhat more indifferent in their attitude i.m.o.
In this period there seem to be many guests from Saoudi Arabia. The women and children frequently visited the lounge in their own way.

In the basement of the hotel is The Altira Spa located On my way to this Spa, in the basement, I spotted the picture of a beloved actrice.
( See my pics: http://www.e-traveller.net/pics/2004/muc-asgrand.php ).
Greta Garbo and the Grand Hotel…… belong together , her beauty, the beauty of this hotel, the fine Altira Spa…

The Altira Spa has a nice small luxurious swimmingpool, a sauna, a steambath, a small fitnessroom and a rest area.
There are various massage treatments possible. I had a very special treatment: a Ayurvedische massage from India. It took an hour and I can recommend this special massage. Afterwards there is the sauna, the steambath and then a nice swim in the beautiful swimmingpool.

I had lunch in the Paulaner Biergarten, and made my choice for the Nurnberg wurstchens. Instead of the Sauerkraut, which I do not like, I had kartoffeln instead. Service is very friendly here. The icecream here tasted wonderful as a desert.

The Sheraton Bogenhausen is right opposite of the Grand hotel. I visited the hotel’s health centre since I had information there was a tropical swimmingpool. It appeared to be rather small, however I did have a nice swim here.
Personnel of the reception and health centre were very friendly and service minded. However I noticed at once the difference between these two hotels. The Grand hotel is much more classy and luxurious, i.m.o.

Though the location is somewhat out of the centre, the comfort, luxury and high standards of service of this hotel makes it all worthwhile. And I do not mind to have a short ride with the S-Bahn to the city centre, since this hotel has so much to offer!

I did regret I had to leave this wonderful, luxurious hotel. I want to thank mrs. Hofmann for all the kind arrangements she made for me .
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Old Aug 20, 04, 8:14 am   #5
 
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I'm glad U liked your stay in the AS Grand Munich. The executive rooms, especially the (junior) suites are very nice. The bath rooms are great. The restaurant 'Ente von Lehel' is a top restaurant in 4 the hospitality industry
Thanks 4 the pictures.
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Old Aug 21, 04, 2:35 am   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TanteKaethe
I'm glad U liked your stay in the AS Grand Munich. The executive rooms, especially the (junior) suites are very nice. The bath rooms are great. The restaurant 'Ente von Lehel' is a top restaurant in 4 the hospitality industry
Thanks 4 the pictures.
Your Welcome.
Yes, the interior designs are very nice in the hotel. The bathroom I find very luxurious.
I always like the Towersection, it seems to be a hotel within a hotel! I regret I did not have the time to have dinner in the restaurant, also a good reason to come back.
The Altira Spa is wonderful too!
In general it is a very nice comfortable&luxury hotel.
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Old Oct 5, 06, 6:32 pm   #7
 
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Arabella Sheraton Grand, Munich.

Enjoy the lounge on the Towers Level!

Great spread, and awesome Paulaner German bier!

(If you stay there before the end ot his weekend, you'll be able to catch the last weekend of the Oktoberfest...)
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Old Oct 9, 06, 2:10 pm   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SASfan
Enjoy the lounge on the Towers Level!

Great spread, and awesome Paulaner German bier!...
Do Executive rooms have Towers lounge access? Or is that a Platinum benefit? I would expect the travelzoo offer would not include Towers lounge access.

Fwiw, spg.com now has Executive rooms for Euro 114 and available for single day stays in December (so a better deal than travelzoo). Towers room is for Euro 154. Nice to see that spg actually offers a better rate than travelzoo, for a change (at least for my dates).

Does this hotel upgrade Platinums to Towers, or is it the "we don't upgrade to the Towers" policy now?
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Old Oct 9, 06, 2:43 pm   #9
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by number_6
Do Executive rooms have Towers lounge access? Or is that a Platinum benefit? I would expect the travelzoo offer would not include Towers lounge access.

Fwiw, spg.com now has Executive rooms for Euro 114 and available for single day stays in December (so a better deal than travelzoo). Towers room is for Euro 154. Nice to see that spg actually offers a better rate than travelzoo, for a change (at least for my dates).

Does this hotel upgrade Platinums to Towers, or is it the "we don't upgrade to the Towers" policy now?
number_6, whenever I stayed there, I'd normally book their cheapest room and email the hotel GM to ask for a Plat upgrade. It always worked. When you check in, there is a separate check-in area for Platinum members. They sit you down, offer you and your wife a glass of champagne, and check you in very professionally. Great hotel, and close to a couple U-bahn (underground metro) stops...

114 Euro is a great rate! Best I ever got at the Grand was 120 Euro.
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Old Oct 9, 06, 3:47 pm   #10
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Superior rooms (their lowest category -- gotta love how hotels name their rooms) cost Euro 105 and are at ground level (not in the tower), so an extra 10 Euro for an executive room seemed fair and I don't begrudge the hotel a bit of extra revenue. I've had many visits to Munich but this is my first stay at a Starwood hotel there; always found the bavarian approach to hotel keeping to be very hospitable. Surprised that the room rates are so low, but I suppose it is a huge hotel and business travel gets slow in December.
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Old Oct 10, 06, 12:40 am   #11
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by number_6
Superior rooms (their lowest category -- gotta love how hotels name their rooms) cost Euro 105 and are at ground level (not in the tower), so an extra 10 Euro for an executive room seemed fair and I don't begrudge the hotel a bit of extra revenue. I've had many visits to Munich but this is my first stay at a Starwood hotel there; always found the bavarian approach to hotel keeping to be very hospitable. Surprised that the room rates are so low, but I suppose it is a huge hotel and business travel gets slow in December.
I would personally chance booking the 104 Euro room and getting a Plat upgrade. Every different rate plan I check has rooms for about 104 - 120 Euro! Never seen it this good at the Grand. Must be empty when you're traveling.

Be sure to have a beer at the Ducktail bar downstairs...
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Old Dec 25, 06, 11:19 pm   #12
 
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What does one get with an executive room at the Grand? I booked a stay for January 4 and the lowest rate from spg.com was 125 Euro for an executive room. The hotel's website doesn't mention much about the executive rooms. Also, I would appreciate it if someone could post the GM's email address.

What is the best way to get to this hotel from the airport (2 people)?

Thanks.
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Old Dec 26, 06, 12:08 am   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnep1 View Post
What does one get with an executive room at the Grand? ...What is the best way to get to this hotel from the airport (2 people)?
I stayed in an executive room in December, it was quite nice but not exceptional. Well furnished and equipped with fax machine as well as desk. TV was tiny (maybe 17 inch) with 2 or 3 channels of English programming (but who watches TV in MUC?). The nicer rooms are in the Towers, but Plat status gets Tower lounge access even if not staying in the Towers.

I bought a day pass ticket at the airport S-bahn station, which covered all train/bus for 24 hours (actually until 6 am the following morning). Then took the S8 from the airport to Johanneskirchenbahnhoff, transfered to a bus to ArabellaPark. This is much shorter and more scenic than the alternative train method, which is to take the S8 downtown and transfer to U4 which also runs to ArabellaPark. The Sheraton Grand is a block from the train/bus station. Very easy to get to but involves a bit of walking. Best to stick to the S-bahn/U-bahn transfer if you aren't familiar with Munich. A taxi from the airport would run about double the train pass cost for 2 people.
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Old Dec 26, 06, 1:19 am   #14
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnep1 View Post
What does one get with an executive room at the Grand? I booked a stay for January 4 and the lowest rate from spg.com was 125 Euro for an executive room. The hotel's website doesn't mention much about the executive rooms. Also, I would appreciate it if someone could post the GM's email address.

What is the best way to get to this hotel from the airport (2 people)?

Thanks.
Free lounge with good breakfast, snacks and drink and a good view. The rooms are nothing very special, nice hotelrooms though.

Airport: Either taxi (about 80 Euro) or public transport.

With public transport you buy a ticket "Parter Tages Ticket Gesamtnetz" at the machine (blue ones) for about 15.00 Euros. This is good for two (and more) for the entire day on all busses, U-Bahn, S-Bahn,. Tramway.

You take the S-Bahn (Signposted with a white "S" on green ground) S8 to Engelschalking and change there to Bus Number 184 to Arabellapark (this is three minutes walk to the hotel). I would not do that on my first visit to Munich or without any German language capabilities because the bus is not easy to find for a firsttimer and you are in the suburbs with little people around to ask (depending on the time of the day).

It takes about 10 minutes longer to take any S-Bahn from the Airport to KARLSPLATZ (STACHUS). Change there to the Subway (U-Bahn, signposted with a white "U" on blue ground) U4 in the direction of ARABELLAPARK. It is no problem to change there at all. Everything is very well signposted and plenty of people around. You will get used to that Subway anyway because it is the subway from the Sheraton back into town.

Traveltime by Taxi will be about 30 minutes (outside rush our), by S- and U-Bahn about an hour (at all time).

Have fun!
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Old Dec 26, 06, 1:20 am   #15
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by number_6 View Post
The Sheraton Grand is a block from the train/bus station. Very easy to get to but involves a bit of walking. Best to stick to the S-bahn/U-bahn transfer if you aren't familiar with Munich. A taxi from the airport would run about double the train pass cost for 2 people.
"Bit of walking" adds up to three minutes - 10 in heavy snow.

Taxi is by far more expensive.

I can only aree to the advise with S-Bahn and U-Bahn.

By the way: When staying in Munich you can buy daypasses, too. I believe they are called "Partner Tageskarte Innenraum" and they are about 8 Euros, good for an entire day in an area that covers your needs.
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