Brand perceptions

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Old Mar 26, 19, 3:52 am
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Brand perceptions

So, I am just kind of curious what general perceptions are on Accor's different brands. Personally, I find most of Accor's brands to be generally far more variable than the brands you find at Hilton/Marriott/etc. and am curious how others feel about this and just generally what you think of the brands.

For me, the brands I stay at the most would be Sofitel, Pullman, Novotel and Mercure. In my experience, I feel like the Pullman is the most consistent. And Mercure is by far the least consistent.

Sofitel: To me, at least ever since they kicked many of the ...... ones out of the brand five or so years ago, Sofitels seem to have a higher standard than the hotels competing in their price points. Many times I will see Sofitels priced around the same as a nearby Hilton or Marriott, but I would generally find Sofitels to be nicer and feel less like sterile business hotels. I think most are 5 stars.

Pullman: Pullman is one of my favourite chains because I like their style. They seem to be very modern but in a practical way. If I had to compare to competitors, I would say it is like Sheraton and W combined as they are generally modern and stylish, but not inconveniently so, and still very practical. Whereas I tend to find Ws to be all fur coat and no knickers. Seem to be a mix of 4 and 5 stars.

Novotel: I find Novotels to be relatively consistent. In Europe I feel like most have that same bed with the reading lights built in. They advertise as being family friendly. As I don't have children, I can not comment on that, but have never felt like they were packed with screaming children, so no complaints. They generally seem to be 4 star hotels.

Mercure: Now for Mercure, I really don't have any impression. When you say Sofitel, Pullman and Novotel, I at least have some image in my head. Whereas with Mercure, I have stayed at hotels all across the board. The only thing Mercure means to me is Accor points and benefits. I have stayed at some very old Mercure that felt like a small family run B&B and have stayed at some very nice modern Mercure that felt like they could have been MGallerys. Definitely a wild card.


Okay, so yeah, basically just starting this thread in the hope other people will want to post your own perceptions on these brands or others. Or tell me why my perceptions are wrong. Would really love to hear about what others think, especially about whether you agree that Accor's brands are generally not as strict as the American chains. Also, if you do agree, do you think this will change now that they have acquired so many other chains that are generally a bit more consistent? Just curious.
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Old Mar 26, 19, 10:11 am
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For me and since I did most of my stays at Marriott, I put the comparison between Accor and Marriott brands

Fairmont : Upscale luxury hotel , similar to The Ritz-Carlton of Bonvoy
Raffles : Upscale luxury that supposedly provide personalised experience. I would put Raffles as competitor for St. Regis even though St Regis will be less personalised due to the size of the hotel.
Banyan Tree : I havent tried this before, so no comment but I always think they should be close to Aman style resorts.
Sofitel Legend : Another Raffles type of hotel .... Those luxury hotel with their own story to tell ....
SO/ Sofitel : Mixture of the classic presentation of St Regis with the youthful atmosphere of W Hotel (based on my stay at So/Singapore)
Sofitel : luxury business hotel ... similar to JW Marriott/Westin
M Gallery : Toned down version of Marriott Luxury Collection hotels.
Pullman, Swissotel : The Marriotts of Accor .... supposedly upscale business hotel but unfortunately brand standards is pretty hit and miss.
Grand Mercure,Mercures : The Sheratons of Accor .... again mixed standard ... can have a good Mercures and bad Mercures all in 1 country.
Novotel : to be honest I'm quite confused with this brand. Do they supposedly better than Mercures ? but some Novotels are better than Mercures and some are worse. Similar to Courtyards/ Four Points of Marriott
Ibis : Cheap but supposedly decent for its price (especially Styles) Aloft and Moxies of Accor
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Old Mar 26, 19, 12:21 pm
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I would say that on my opinion:

Pullman is not comparable at all with W ..starting from the different rates

W (on my small experience at this brand) is at least (if not more) same level than Sofitel. Even if Sofitels have more intimate and quiet atmosphere (except at resorts) and often less expensive and more business oriented.

Not yet enaugh experience to say if Sofitel are same level at JW (I think so) or St. Regis and Ritz (I donít think so) ...I can see more at Raffles/Sofitel Legend level/rates.

On my small experience at Banyan Tree I can say itís the best on holiday.

At middle level brands (and considering mainly Italy and France):

Moxys are much more better not only than Ibis style but also than Mercure and Novotel

Mgallery: too many different properties inside this brand.

Iíve been at some Mgallery with same high level than Sofitel and some quite old ones, I think itís the same at Marriott

i canít identity at Accor any real alternative at Courtyard and Four Points, on my experience (Italy and France) since the rates are often smilar than Novotels, but probably only in Asia also the quality is similar.

I think Sofitels are the most valuable properties inside Accor group. Excellent properties/service/tier recognition/food/atmosphere for the price you pay (sometimes I have found some properties really underrated, for what they offer, honestly) . I canít remember any important negative issue after have spent more than 30 stays more than 15 different Sofitels around the world.

Itís really my favorite hotel brand (even because I canít afford regularly to spend a lot more than Sofitel average rates on holidays)

i hope I will have same feeling at JW Marriotts, the brand i identity as more similar to Sofitel.
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Old Mar 26, 19, 2:48 pm
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Let me add my view here

- Sofitel Legend : Agreed with Kaizen7. Superb historical hotels
- Sofitel : a lot of great properties. A few "average", but overall, always pleasant
- Pullman : great brand. Business-oriented
- MGallery : one of the best brand/asset of Accor IMHO. Great hotel experiences.
- Novotel: well...I need a whole box of Prozac when staying at the typical Novotel rooms while I truly enjoy staying at "new" (Novotel London Canary Wharf) or recently renovated ones (Novotel Edinburgh centre - see my recent review).
- Mercure : old not renovated can be horrible but new or renovated ones can be just great. Plenty of Mercure are way better than most Novotels
- Ibis : standardized but does the job. I like the Ibis Style brand (limited experience for me but 100% satisfaction)
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Old Mar 27, 19, 12:28 am
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Originally Posted by Dav77 View Post
Moxys are much more better not only than Ibis style but also than Mercure and Novotel
Wow. That is certainly an interesting thought. Obviously this is all largely subjective, but to me, I could see how Styles and Moxy could be compared, but Moxy seems to go as far as possible to remind you it is budget. No dedicated reception. No phones in rooms to call reception. No desk or table in the rooms. I would always choose Ibis over Moxy for those reasons.
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Old Mar 27, 19, 12:57 am
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Originally Posted by AlwaysFlyStar View Post
Wow. That is certainly an interesting thought. Obviously this is all largely subjective, but to me, I could see how Styles and Moxy could be compared, but Moxy seems to go as far as possible to remind you it is budget. No dedicated reception. No phones in rooms to call reception. No desk or table in the rooms. I would always choose Ibis over Moxy for those reasons.
i think probably there are many differences inside same brand across the world, for each brand.

as told, my experience on middle level properties (Novotel/Mercure/Moxy) is based on my stays in Italy and France mainly.

If I compare my recent stays at 2 Moxys in Italy with the average Novotels and Mercures in Italy, I would prefer Moxy for the rest of my life ...

Moxy Milano Linate and Moxy Milano Malpensa have receptions/phone/restaurant/desk/walk in shower. Recent properties with very nice atmosphere if compared with 80% of Italian Novotels or Mercures at less expensive rates. (Even Ibis style are nicer than most of the Novotels/Mercures in Italy ...)

Maybe it would change if you compare the same in Asia or at any very recent or new Novotel/Mercure like the ones seen in some recent reviews here.

And there are of course some exceptions if I think at Novotel Milano Linate or Mercure Bari (where iím Staying just now and itís very nice property, a lot better than some mercure I have been in Asia ...)

i think is difficult to fix some rules to apply without considering there are a lot a lot of differences across the world inside a Brand.

If my stays would be 90% in Asia or in countries where Accor is really at its best on middle level properties, iím Sure my feedback would be completely different.

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Old Mar 27, 19, 4:38 am
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I have never quite worked out what the intended difference is between the similarly-priced Novotel and Mercure brands. Just possibly Novotel is more business-oriented, but I donít feel sure about that.
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Old Mar 27, 19, 4:43 am
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Originally Posted by Philodemus View Post
I have never quite worked out what the intended difference is between the similarly-priced Novotel and Mercure brands. Just possibly Novotel is more business-oriented, but I donít feel sure about that.
These 2 brands overlap among themself I guess ....
Although I believe Accor intends to position Novotels above Mercures.
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Old Mar 27, 19, 4:53 am
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My opinion is that novotel is more 'standardized' while mercure has more individual hotel's own character.

And since there are so many novotel and mercure, obviously some are better and some are not as good, I'd treat the brand position as a spectrum rather than a point. I'd say while novotel and mercure has a large overlapping part, mercure's spectrum starts from a lower, more economy end and novotel has a higher end with top, new ones pretty close to the Pullman.
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Old Mar 27, 19, 6:28 am
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Originally Posted by patrickw View Post
My opinion is that novotel is more 'standardized' while mercure has more individual hotel's own character.

And since there are so many novotel and mercure, obviously some are better and some are not as good, I'd treat the brand position as a spectrum rather than a point. I'd say while novotel and mercure has a large overlapping part, mercure's spectrum starts from a lower, more economy end and novotel has a higher end with top, new ones pretty close to the Pullman.
agree with you, even if unfortunately there are too many differences on Novotel standards and Mercures also, from one country to another and often even inside the same country

that harms to Accor and makes it harder to be loyal at a brand / chain

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Old Mar 27, 19, 7:12 am
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Originally Posted by Philodemus View Post
I have never quite worked out what the intended difference is between the similarly-priced Novotel and Mercure brands. Just possibly Novotel is more business-oriented, but I donít feel sure about that.
Novotel is more family- oriented (at least in Europe)
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Old Mar 27, 19, 8:21 am
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For me, Pullman has been the most reliable and consistent brand. Yes, some Pullmans lack "character." But it seems I almost always get what I pay for: efficient service, decent business amenities, comfortable bed, etc. I'm not saying I was never disappointed. I was, e.g., I had a slightly worn bed once or twice. Overall, though, I feel they're really good at getting the "basics" right.

On the other hand, my experience with Sofitel has been more of a mixed bag. I've been to very nice ones, with excellent club lounges, great service, and nice rooms, but to some really poor ones as well. A few of the negative examples that spring to mind: 1.) Rooms in dire need of renovation, ugly lobby and poor-quality breakfast at Sofitel Wroclaw; 2.) Lounge access not granted as Platinum at Sofitel Berlin Kudamm; 3.) Didn't receive a room upgrade at Sofitel Sopot (twice!); 4.) Lack of status recognition at Sofitel New York.

Generally speaking, I like Novotels. I find the brand's positioning to be useful to me. Quite a few times, a nice and new Novotel met the price point which my travel expenses department provided. And I usually get good value for the money.
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Old Mar 28, 19, 12:14 am
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Originally Posted by newflya View Post
Lounge access not granted as Platinum at Sofitel Berlin Kudamm;
To be fair, Accor has a list of lounges that Platinums have access to and that one is not included. The lounge is tiny so if the rooms with lounge access is full, they already have trouble fitting everybody in. (Remember, lounge access for platinums is only a few years old) However, I usually send them an email and tell them I am looking to book a room for these dates. Will they be able to give me lounge access on these dates? And if they say yes, I book and if they say no, I book elsewhere.
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Old Mar 28, 19, 4:27 am
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Originally Posted by AlwaysFlyStar View Post
To be fair, Accor has a list of lounges that Platinums have access to and that one is not included..
While true, this is in my opinion one of the biggest issues with Accor - the lack of consistency and the extent to which hotels are allowed to make exceptions to the rules. If lounge access is a Platinum benefit, it is absolutely unreasonable to expect members to check a constantly changing list of hotels where that benefit does or does not apply.
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Old Mar 28, 19, 7:44 am
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My experience of the Sofitel Berlin Kudamm is that it's a disaster from beginning to end and should not be branded a Sofitel.

Much better that they had rid themselves of it and kept the Swissotel across the road.
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