Waldorf Astoria Beijing {CHN}

Old Nov 15, 15, 4:25 am
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Arrow Waldorf Astoria Beijing {CHN}

I couldn't find a dedicated thread for this hotel on the forum -- if there is one, happy for mods to move to there.


I wanted to post a brief review of a one night stay that our family had at this hotel. We booked a "Citi free week-end night" -- and there were three of us: my wife and I and our 6 yo daughter. The hotel location is next to WangfuJing, and literally 2 minutes walk from the Hilton WFJ.

We were greeted at check-in and they had already prepared all the paperwork. They said that we had an upgraded room due to being HH Gold -- not sure if this was actually the case. The corridor map appeared to show us being in a standard room. Regardless, the room was actually fairly large, with a large living area with settee, second flat-screen TV and desk. There was an nesspresso machine for coffee. The bed was a large king and the bathroom was very well equipped with a large tub, shower stall with very large o/h rain shower (rather tacky gold colour) and Japanese toilet (which worked remarkably well according to my wife who checked out all the functions!).

Upon check-in, we were also told we could have a tour of the "Hutong villas" of the hotel -- these are located in a separate building to the hotel proper and although a new build, are built in a very traditional (exterior) to look like a typical Beijing courtyard -- very charming. The rooms were huge and very tastefully decorated. Not sure what it would cost, but would certainly be a unique stay in BJ.

We went to the gym/ pool. The pool was small but the water was unusually (and pleasantly) warm. The gym was very small but deserted. My wife checked out the sauna/ steam room in the ladies' changing area (in China they are always segregated) and said they were "OK".

Since this was a "staycation" we didn't want to venture out much and had dinner in the Chinese restaurant -- decent Cantonese fair, reasonably pricey, good, but not mind-blowing. Portions on the large side, so we ended up ordering too much...wait staff did not try to dissuade us (which at many other restaurants they do).

HH Golds were also offered free breakfast -- not a HH benefit. This breafkast was one of the best I've had in a hotel, and on a par/ better than many hotel brunches. Made to order steak and multiple egg dishes and noodles. A fairly small selection of buffet items, but high quality. Freshly squeezed juices, decent Chinese tea (suprisingly unusual in Chinese hotels for breakfast!). To top it off, we were offered a late check-out (to 16:00, we left at 15:00) upon request.

All in all, a very relaxing break and overall, the staff were very good indeed. I have to say, having now stayed at the Hilton WFJ, Conrad, and WA, this was clearly a step up on the others in terms of style (the others are also very good). Not sure for how long the free breakfast will be offered, but it's definitely the best of them (and most other hotels). There is no lounge, that didn't bother us, but golds at the other two are typically offered lounge access, so it may sway some.

tb
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Old Nov 15, 15, 5:38 am
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Originally Posted by trueblu View Post

HH Golds were also offered free breakfast -- not a HH benefit. This breafkast was one of the best I've had in a hotel, and on a par/ better than many hotel brunches.
!! Wow, this might tempt me to stay there in mid-December, especially with the current year end sale.
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Old Dec 17, 15, 8:30 am
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My second day here. Echo much of what trueblue was saying. Excellent hotel, really great service.

I was also told I had been upgraded because of my HH Gold status, which was kinda funny given I am HH Diamond. Still, saw no reason to raise any fuss, I was allowed to check in 10.30 am, which was really welcome after my flight.

I found pool to be very nice size for a hotel, and all in all the hard product was mostly superb. But what really sets this place apart from Conrad or Beijing Waifujing is service. Really a step (or two) above those places. First night the waiters in Peacock Alley learned my first name and kept using it throughout my stay, concierge was helpful and proactive, and even GM came to greet me when I was nursing my wine glass waiting for my guests to arrive (he had some meeting in the bar). Nice chap, missed (Norway) my home country (Finland) by small margin. But since one of the waiters thought I was from Russia, on average they got it right, I'd say.

Coupled with cheap year-end sale price (same as Conrad).. No brainer.

Some pics of the room. I think this is the standard room, but it is very nice.







One of the side cabinets was missing something..





That red and white thing on the right... My swimming trunks.



Let me say that Internet access is currently really bad, worse than ever during my 12 or so years coming to China. The hotel even gives you a letter apologizing for "connectivity issues in Beijing area". Don't worry, we know it is Big Brother Xi...
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Old Dec 18, 15, 6:26 am
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Glad you enjoyed your stay. Were you offered the free breakfast as a Diamond?

tb
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Old Dec 19, 15, 11:38 am
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Originally Posted by trueblu View Post
Glad you enjoyed your stay. Were you offered the free breakfast as a Diamond?

tb
Heh, yes. I actually got a small note in my key folder indicating my "Gold benefits", including free buffet breakfast for two (on both mornings I also ordered something from the menu, no charge), RMB100 one-time discount on drinks from Peacock Alley and 15% off when having dinner at Brasserie 1893. The latter two I did not remember to tell the waiters when drinking and eating, but they were automatically deducted from my final bill. Very nice.
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Old Apr 11, 16, 7:11 am
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Incorrectly booked limo at WA Shanghai - suggestions?

Just landed at PVG where I was a bit surprised to see two drivers with my name card - one I'd booked at a local tour agency a few days ago, and one from the Waldorf. Assuming I must have made an error, I went with the Waldorf one, the tour agency one already paid.

Looking at my emails now from the limo, I see that having enquired at the price I then declined the airport pickup from the hotel. So I've double-paid for a taxi, and am $150 out of pocket from a combination of the concierge and from me assuming it must have been my mistake.

How to proceed here? Any suggestions?
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Old Apr 11, 16, 7:59 am
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Speak to the concierge and explain the confusion... if you have an email saying "no thank you" to the hotel I'd be surprised if they still looked to charge you...
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Old Apr 11, 16, 8:26 am
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Your second sentence has me stumped - who was "already paid"?
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Old Apr 11, 16, 8:39 am
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Sorry, the tour agency taxi had already been paid for.
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Old Apr 11, 16, 9:26 am
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Originally Posted by zebrametalevel View Post
Sorry, the tour agency taxi had already been paid for.
So why'd you get in the other one?
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Old Apr 11, 16, 3:04 pm
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Originally Posted by zebrametalevel View Post
Just landed at PVG where I was a bit surprised to see two drivers with my name card - one I'd booked at a local tour agency a few days ago, and one from the Waldorf. Assuming I must have made an error, I went with the Waldorf one, the tour agency one already paid.

Looking at my emails now from the limo, I see that having enquired at the price I then declined the airport pickup from the hotel. So I've double-paid for a taxi, and am $150 out of pocket from a combination of the concierge and from me assuming it must have been my mistake.

How to proceed here? Any suggestions?
Sometimes car rate enquiry when you give hotel... name, res number, arrival date, AND flight number, ends up with hotel emailing back price is $xxx and we'll meet you unless you say you no longer need car (more than 24hours before arrival). A bit sneeky practise maybe but does occur, so check the WA reply first.

No doubt WA was the far pricier option a more upmarket car. Your out of pocket amount is the cost of the tour agency car not the cost of the used WA option.

Having taken the WA car , I don't see how you can refuse outright to pay the hotels rate.

I'd ask to speak with the duty manager and explain that you knew you had reserved a car, and contacted both WA + Tour Agency for a quote, but only confirmed the quote of tour-agency which you prepaid.
Now due to WA name card on arrival for limo which you did not order, which confused you into getting into WA car, are paying for 2-rides.....Ask WA to discount the WA car bill by amount of tour agency paid car.

No need to mention you saw your name on 2x cards, you simply took WA car as that was the one namecard you saw.
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Old Aug 31, 16, 9:38 pm
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Currently at the WA and I have to say I am very impressed with the level of service here. We booked a King Deluxe Terrace room and was upgraded to King Deluxe suite (~750 sq ft room). The Hilton Gold benefits at the property are as follows:

One room upgrade
Complimentary breakfast for two
100 RMB beverage credit at Peacock Alley (basically one free cocktail)
15% off at both property restaurants including Zijan Mansion which is on many list of one of the better Peking duck restaurants in the area
15% discount for spa services
Welcome amenity

Diamonds receive similar benefits with two differences - two room upgrade and 200RMB beverage credit. Diamonds are guaranteed 4PM late check out, but I did receive 4PM check out after asking.

All in all - I have been very impressed with the level of service here - hasn't even been 24 hours and almost everyone knows me by name. The general manager even prepared an handwritten a welcome note, which was waiting in my room along with the welcome amenities. When we arrived, they asked for my passports then within two minutes we were whisked to our suite and the check in process was done from the couch of our room rather than at the hotel lobby.

Breakfast was very delicious, not massive or extravagant like the Conrad Bali, but you can tell they sourced the best ingredients in town.

Highly recommended. Location is solid too.

Last edited by golfingboy; Aug 31, 16 at 9:47 pm
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Old Jul 28, 17, 12:45 am
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From now until 31 December 2017, all American Express cardholders can enjoy a discount of 15% off the Best Available Rate for all room types, food and drinks (except alcohol) and spa treatments. For details, see http://livetheworld.americanexpress....ng?offerId=575
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Old Apr 26, 18, 4:18 am
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Thinking of staying here in June.
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Old Oct 30, 18, 5:05 pm
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Stay Report - 10/26 - 10/29

Location: The hotel is well located for touring Beijing. It's on Dong'anmen Street about a mile and a quarter east of the Forbidden City. A block away is Wangfujin Street which is a large pedestrian mall with several indoor malls off it and a famous night market which is a great place for dinner (as long as you like food on a stick). You can walk to numerous good restaurants as well as several hotels with great dining (the Regent, the Peninsula) and it's very close to several Metro stops (the closest is Dengshikou on the 5 line, 400 meters away). The airport is 40 minutes in light traffic and costs about $20 (104 Yuan) for a cab.



Hotel: The hotel itself is a 12 story highrise with gold paneling that makes it distinctive in this city. The vast lobby has a concierge located in a sitting room, bar and two restaurants one of which is a high end French restaurant with 2 Michelin Stars. A lower level has an indoor pool, gym and spa. There is no street parking in this area. Staff to a person are extremely helpful, friendly and all speak impressive English. My lone knock is that the bartender served me an Old Fashioned with a cube of brown sugar in it (?). The hotel staff were also helpful booking a ticket for the Forbidden City for me and arranging cabs when I needed them.







Check In: I arrived at 4 PM and was checked in by a very helpful agent who informed me I'd been upgraded to a King Premier room, I would receive a 250 Yuan welcome drink and 15% off at the restaurants or spas if I so chose.

Room: One of the top five greatest rooms I've ever stayed in. An entry hallway held two closets and a safe and led to a bathroom with two sinks, stand up shower, huge tub that easily accommodated my 6'1 frame, separate toilet area with another sink, massive bedroom with sitting area by the window, large work space and a very comfortable bed and large TV. I had mentioned to the hotel it was my birthday and they decorated my bed with rose petal hearts (a little odd as I was solo but great gesture) and delivered me a cake. There were US style outlets near each bed, a tablet that controlled the curtains, lights and temperature, Nespresso machine and mini bar. I will say the Wifi was pretty spotty and worked badly during the mid-afternoons but that may just be China.



















Breakfast: Breakfast was a full western and eastern buffet in the restaurant. All eggs were cooked to order and you could have everything from steak and scrambled eggs as I enjoyed to Eggs Benedict, waffles, pancakes etc. plus an extensive selection of breads, fruits, meats and cheeses, smoked fish and on the eastern side they had noodles, dumplings and lots of other options. It's an incredible breakfast and service was amazing.



My rate was about $300 a day but it was absolutely worth it, especially as the Conrad has a worse location in my opinion. I'd gladly come back.
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