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Master Thread: ex-Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm [no longer part of Accor]

Master Thread: ex-Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm [no longer part of Accor]

Old Aug 11, 15, 3:14 am
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Master Thread: ex-Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm [no longer part of Accor]

Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm

Map| 4 Reviews | 100% Recommended

Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm

Augsburger Str. 41 Berlin, DE 10789

Review: Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm (10 Photos)

Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm

I stayed 5 nights at the Sofitel Berlin Kurfstendamm which you will recall joined the group last year having previously been a Concorde Hotel.

Check In

Check in was short enough. The room was paid for already yet the credit card was requested for any extras. Despite having advised the hotel that I would arrive early (11.30am) the room was not ready. I was handed the welcome drinks voucher which entitled me to a glass of wine only. I was escorted to the lounge on the 11th floor (I had booked a club room) to have a coffee and wait for the room to be ready. Luckily it took only 30 minutes. The room was upgraded from luxury club room to junior suite which was worth the wait.

Room

The room was right next to the lounge (convenient) and very large with great views of Berlin. It featured a sofa (uncomfortable) and two armchairs and coffee-table, separate large work desk, two TVs and a king bed. A minibar was also available. What was very noticeable though was that the furniture had seen better days and the bed was not the Sofitel MyBed, neither was the bed linen or the towels. Also missing was a coffee maker (lounge staff had warned me about this already) and the Bose radio. Effectively I presume this was still the Concorde Hotel standard.

One large bottle of mineral water was by the bed and was replaced when empty, except on the last night. When I mentioned this at check out the bottle I had taken from the minibar was voided

The welcome "gift" were three pieces of fruit.Unlike other Sofitels the turn down service consisted only of a tiny chocolate. No Platinum tray of sweets or maceroons, except once when the lounge staff took pity on me and had sent up some(see below). For a junior suite I would also expect some flowers or plants.

Bathroom

The bathroom was perfectly ok, large and bright with separate shower, WC and bathtub. Toiletries were the standard Hermes.

Service

I tried room service only once and it was a bit of a mess. When I called it just rang out for several minutes. When it was finally answered the attendant just told me "I will call you back in 5 minutes" and hung up. Apparently only one staff member manages room service for this large hotel and he was in the middle of serving a room. Bizarre. I just popped next door to the lounge and asked the staff to order for me. In fairness I was not charged the "tray charge".

Dining

As some have mentioned previously this hotel does not automatically extend lounge access to Platinum members. The reason is clear, it is relatively small with only 28 seats. So if you want guaranteed access best to book a club room (which are all on the 10th and 11th floor).
The lounge offers great views over Berlin and serves breakfast, afternoon coffee and cake and cocktails and canap in the evening.

The breakfast spread was decent but not as extensive as one would have expected, especially from a German hotel. One complaint I would have is that it never changed once: same cold cuts, same cheeses. That said you can order anything (eg eggs to order) by just asking the staff, it will be brought up from the restaurant. A particular delight were the liberal breakfast hours: weekdays until 11am and on weekends until 2pm! (Berlin nightlife).

The evening fare were cheeses and small bites which did change regularly. Wine, beer and spirits as well as Crant (not Champagne) were self service.

A real credit to the hotel were the lounge staff, very enthusiastic and very friendly. Best in class.

Bar

The bar is located on the ground floor and in my view is lacking a bit of atmosphere. Playing muzak it resembled more a large waiting room.

Breakfast

On one morning I tried the regular breakfast room and it was a bit of a shock. The room was very very busy, so busy that they had extended breakfast to one of the adjoining meeting rooms. The choice was more limited than what I have come to expect from Sofitel. The room itself was very loud and it felt more like a canteen than a luxury breakfast room (the fact that a large contingent of Gazprom staff on a day out were staying did not help).

Overall

In many respects this hotel still does not feel like a Sofitel. The staff wear the uniforms, the name is at the front but on the inside it does not have that luxury Sofitel feel. The flower arrangements in the lobby are poor, the reception/lobby area could do with some scent and the rooms need to be updated to the Sofitel standard promptly. When I discussed this with the lounge staff they told me that they are in the process of doing so. More than a year since turning into a Sofitel this is well overdue. Don't get me wrong, this is a great hotel but if it says Sofitel on the outside it should be Sofitel on the inside. Penny pinching on beds and soft furnishing is a bit cheeky. The GM was nowhere to be seen throughout my stay.

Service was a bit hit and miss. The lounge staff as mentioned were great but the rest not so much. Again more training to Sofitel standards is needed.

They are aware of the imitations of the lounge and apparently Accor HQ staff have visited to review. Maybe they will expand it to accommodate Le Club Plat members. At the moment I can understand why they limit access, it is just too small.

Value for money

I got a great rate and a good upgrade, so no complaints there whatsoever.

Summary

This is a good hotel in an excellent location. Well connected to public transport it has all the potential to be a great Sofitel but it needs to upgrade. I would suggest a field trip to the Sofitel in Vienna on how to get it right, especially when it comes to Platinum service.

Pictures

Room









(the once off)

Bathroom





Room service
(when in Berlin one must have a currywurst)



Drinks voucher



View from the room



Outside

Review: Sofitel Berlin Kurfürstendamm

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Last edited by starflyergold; Aug 11, 15 at 3:24 am
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Old Aug 11, 15, 8:17 am
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I stayed here a couple of weeks ago, again in a club room. I echo the feeling that this just doesn't feel as 'luxury" as a regular Sofitel. The club is too small. On a Friday morning I had to have breakfast in the main restaurant as there was a queue to get into the lounge.

On a more bizarre note, I had room service which didn't appear on the bill. Being an honest chap I pointed this out and the young lady on the desk argued that I hadn't had it as it wasn't on their system. In a 'life is too short' moment I just let it go.

I'm back in Berlin at the end of Sept but can't see me staying here again.
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Old Aug 11, 15, 3:20 pm
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Somewhat disappointing indeed in comparison with what you get as Royal Ambassador when you book a club room at InterContinental next door:

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Old Aug 11, 15, 11:46 pm
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Originally Posted by nicolas75 View Post
Somewhat disappointing indeed in comparison with what you get as Royal Ambassador when you book a club room at InterContinental next door:
Isn't that the Pullman hotel? I thought the Sofitel was next to the Swissotel on Joachimstalerstraße.
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Old Aug 12, 15, 12:10 am
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Thank you for this very nice review Starflyergold ^
Do you know how this hotel compare to the other Sofitel in Berlin ?
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Old Aug 12, 15, 1:11 am
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Originally Posted by Goldorak View Post
Thank you for this very nice review Starflyergold ^
Do you know how this hotel compare to the other Sofitel in Berlin ?
I can't say. The only other Accor hotel I have stayed at in Berlin is the Pullman (which indeed is next to the Interconti; this Sofitel is opposite the Swissotel).

The Sofitel Berlin Gendarmenmarkt isn't very convenient for me. Maybe next time I'll try it.
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Old Aug 12, 15, 4:22 am
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+1 ^ (Thanks for the honest and good review)

Have wondered about this hotel when staying in Berlin, hopefully it will get better with time like a good wine

BTW: definitely a must do having the currywurst...famously the favourite meal of a past German chancellor. @:-)
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Old Aug 12, 15, 6:20 am
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Thank you for an excellent review! On Tripadvisor, customers of this hotel has been complaining about the missing Nespresso machines and MyBeds since it became Sofitel 1,5 years ago. GM keeps on posting that coffee machines are on a process. When I mentioned this during the check out in February, a front desk worker told me that one has to be patient – it takes some time since they are a franchise property. I was also told that MyBed has already been added to all rooms. Well, I can also guarantee that the bed where I slept on wasn’t MyBed. I have one at home, purchased on SoBoutique, so I’m pretty sure about it. Will see if anything have changed before December when my next stay here is booked. Decided to give another chance to this place. I agree, it's a nice hotel but just not up to Sofitel standards.
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Old Aug 20, 15, 3:49 am
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Lobby, restaurant and bar are very elegant indeed:

https://twitter.com/nicolas75flyert/...09763995987968
https://twitter.com/nicolas75flyert/...10161431474176
https://twitter.com/nicolas75flyert/...10376360169472
https://twitter.com/nicolas75flyert/...10528252739584
https://twitter.com/nicolas75flyert/...10735191293953
https://twitter.com/nicolas75flyert/...10965169160193
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Old Sep 4, 15, 6:15 am
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Planning a visit but not sure if it's worth the Sofitel experience? Any advice? Price is comparable to the intercon next door
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Old Sep 4, 15, 10:14 am
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Originally Posted by tboons View Post
Planning a visit but not sure if it's worth the Sofitel experience? Any advice? Price is comparable to the intercon next door
It's a nice hotel but not really up to Sofitel standards and thus not a pure Sofitel experience. If you are platinum and dare to try this property, contact GM and request a lounge access. I did that and he promised the lounge access for us. Otherwise, the access will probably be denied at check-in – unless you book a room that comes with the lounge access. I liked our stay in February enough that I decided to book another stay for December. Just give it a try so you know. Rates are usually very good.
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Old Sep 8, 15, 8:45 am
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It's 140 euros, 10 euros more expensive than intercontinental next door. So if I get lounge access, Sofitel, if not then Intercontinental.
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Old Sep 15, 15, 6:45 am
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Received a reply from the hotel on lounge access.

The Lounge access is on availability (due to the new terms and conditions) and we will provide
this on the day of arrival. I am sorry but we are not able to guarantee right now as we have a very
limited capacity.

Not too sure why he brought in the new terms and conditions? If the lounge is available, then lounge access in theory is available and the capacity would be another issue?

Accor Le Club needs to work on the consistency. Not too sure if Amy is reading this but there is really no value in being a platinum member of the lounge access is not provided; especially when there is only a small handful of hotels offering lounge. Maybe time to go for Hilton Fast Track to Gold
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Old Sep 15, 15, 7:55 am
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Originally Posted by tboons View Post
there is really no value in being a platinum member of the lounge access is not provided; especially when there is only a small handful of hotels offering lounge.
I'm not sure that I follow the logic here, despite agreeing with you that this property's lounge policy is problematic. Platinum brings room upgrades, more points and guaranteed bookability at short notice.

Originally Posted by tboons View Post
Maybe time to go for Hilton Fast Track to Gold
That would sometimes get you lounge access (often to lounges that you won't want to enter more than once).

If you can qualify for HH Diamond or IHG Royal Ambassador, and if there are good Hiltons and InterContinentals in the places you visit, you might well be happier abandoning Le Club. Just look before you leap.
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Old Oct 6, 15, 4:16 am
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they have 40% sales with breakfast at 159 euros/night. worth the price? just for that one night? i was looking through the pictures and the hotel does not look luxurious enough and no swimming pool available... thought i heard the breakfast is fantastic?

option would be hotel indigo, and hampton inn berlin, all in the same area but at half the price...
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