Conrad Guangzhou {CHN}

Old Oct 1, 18, 10:43 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: London
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Arrow Conrad Guangzhou {CHN}

No thread on this yet since I donít believe itís on many leisure travellers target list! I stayed two nights last week for business.

Guangzhou airport is phenomenal - huge, clean and well organised. We were met at the plane and escorted through the (massive) airport and various checkpoints - all the way to the waiting Conrad car.

On arriving at the hotel we were whisked up to the lounge to check in (I with gold status, and my colleagues with no status). I was not upgraded but was given use of the lounge (but not my colleagues - which I thoroughly enjoyed).

The attentiveness or staff throughout was extremely good - with managers giving business cards (which came in handy for reasons I wonít go into), but generally any more junior staff really did not have a working level of English. Even asking for the bill/check was met with confusion. Same with ordering food. If the hotel wants to serve international business travellers this needs to change.

The only other negative observation I would make is on pricing. There is some very odd pricing going on. The hotel room was fairly cheap, but the airport transfer was extremely dear (almost as much as another night). Another example in the Mediterranean restaurant - a steak was more than GBP 50, but a large chicken dish was less than GBP 15. Iím not quite sure what was going on but it was hard to navigate relative worth throughout.

Room was fantastic - very modern and well furnished. Conrad toy was brought up to my room on request (albeit they first brought me a laundry bag).

In sum I think the hotel is of high quality as a hard product. The language barrier is a challenge, but given I didnít see any other western faces the whole time I was in the city itís hardly surprising. I would probably go again as the staff are eager to please and get better.
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Old Oct 2, 18, 1:49 am
  #2  
 
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how about the location? Compared to the other Hilton brands there?
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Old Oct 2, 18, 10:29 am
  #3  
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Originally Posted by kt85 View Post
how about the location? Compared to the other Hilton brands there?
Good question but I canít help too much here. I found it pretty central - 10 min car ride to client site in centre and central shopping area, restaurants etc.

Canít comment relative to the other Hiltonís there as not stayed. Sorry not more help.
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Old Oct 5, 18, 12:00 am
  #4  
 
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I stayed there three nights last month. Upgraded to a suite on the 20-something floor. Had use of the lounge and took breakfast there - they do a menu breakfast up there as well as a cold cut continental breakfast. Room brimmed with technology - TV came on when you entered with annoying Conrad advert on a loop. You have to switch both off to get some peace. Curtains are automatic, both the nets and drapes. They close with the sunset. You also get to play light switch bingo. The loo lid lifts up when you enter and a small light comes on to light the way ahead. Also had a small kitchenette with free drinks in the fridge.
Great service. I had the buffet dinner one evening which was heavy on sea food and fish. Best show is getting one of the chefs to make your noodles - great spectacle.
Agree on the airport car service - hugely expensive (high end Merc) but they meet you straight off the flight at the gate and walk with you in that embarrassing way all the way to the car.
It is attached to a high end mall. Useful for us as we were trapped in there for a while with a typhoon skirting the city. There are some eateries across the road as part of a long row of modern, old shops and restaurants that border a canal running parallel to the Pearl River - didn't try one but one was called the Anatalya, so they must get some international clientele.
It is across the river from the Canton Tower - I had a room with a view of the river and the tower.
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Old Oct 10, 18, 9:28 am
  #5  
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
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HHDiamond stay for 1 night. Booked king room.

Experience with hospitality:
Upon arrival I was invited to check in at the executive lounge.
During check-in, the desk staff quizzed me about my hotel status asking me to prove my status match is valid. I was reluctant but logged into my other accounts to show the status at other hotels. I asked what this was regarding to which they ignored responding to.
After I proved my hotel status the staff refused to follow the scheme and offer a preferred upgrade to other rooms. Even though I know all other rooms were available. The lack of upgrade isn't a large concern but rather the way they responded and handled the request. The mannerism came off as "of course you won't get a free upgrade" and instead quoted me a price to upgrade.
I accepted the room as is and proceeded onward. After we were given the room keys we went to the room to freshen up before leaving for dinner. Upon entering the room I noticed a cigarette smell, as a non-smoker I found it quite revolting.

I went down to the lobby desk and complained about my first room smelling of cigarettes. Eventually I was offered a new room.
I asked for help with moving my luggage from room to room since I had 4 cases and they gave me room card and said to get it from the other room. After I explained I wanted assistance with moving it from one room to the other, the desk staff was shocked as if I had asked him something very unreasonable... The young lad helping me with my luggage was nice and was also able to help me with some other matters so I gave him a tip.

Honestly I had expected better considering Conrad is one of Hilton's "luxury" chains.
Only bad service from the male desk staff, female ones tried to do that they could but also seemed quite restricted to what they can do.
I'm unsure if it's the culture, the training that the staff receive or the management. But I didn't feel much sense of hospitality.

As for the room. As mentioned above, it is well fitted with technology and if you have a river view you'll get a nice clear view of the Canton Tower. 15min walk to said tower. No taxi stop at the hotel but the doormen will help call you a taxi.
Breakfast and Afternoon tea were quite enjoyable.

Had it not been for the poor hospitality, this would have been a definite return for my future stays in Guangzhou. For now I'm leaning more towards Hilton and Doubletree, I would rather stay in a less luxurious location and receive better hospitality than return to Conrad Guangzhou.

-Will add photos soon-
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Old Oct 10, 18, 5:34 pm
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by gcampbell View Post
No thread on this yet since I donít believe itís on many leisure travellers target list! I stayed two nights last week for business.

Guangzhou airport is phenomenal - huge, clean and well organised. We were met at the plane and escorted through the (massive) airport and various checkpoints - all the way to the waiting Conrad car.

On arriving at the hotel we were whisked up to the lounge to check in (I with gold status, and my colleagues with no status). I was not upgraded but was given use of the lounge (but not my colleagues - which I thoroughly enjoyed).

The attentiveness or staff throughout was extremely good - with managers giving business cards (which came in handy for reasons I wonít go into), but generally any more junior staff really did not have a working level of English. Even asking for the bill/check was met with confusion. Same with ordering food. If the hotel wants to serve international business travellers this needs to change.

The only other negative observation I would make is on pricing. There is some very odd pricing going on. The hotel room was fairly cheap, but the airport transfer was extremely dear (almost as much as another night). Another example in the Mediterranean restaurant - a steak was more than GBP 50, but a large chicken dish was less than GBP 15. Iím not quite sure what was going on but it was hard to navigate relative worth throughout.

Room was fantastic - very modern and well furnished. Conrad toy was brought up to my room on request (albeit they first brought me a laundry bag).

In sum I think the hotel is of high quality as a hard product. The language barrier is a challenge, but given I didnít see any other western faces the whole time I was in the city itís hardly surprising. I would probably go again as the staff are eager to please and get better.

This sounds about right. I am currently based in Kunming, and your observations mirror my own. English skills are surprisingly lacking at Chinese Hilton-portfolio properties and in the 4-5 star hotel range (broadly). I have frequently needed to use my very rudimentary Chinese to transact bits of business (check-in/out is OK, but food & beverage, gyms, sending mail, etc require Chinese 90%+ of the time).


Airport transfers are frequently as expensive as a room night, even in "the provinces." I wager that it's a huge money-maker for the hotel, for those who opt to take the hotel car versus taxi/didi/etc.

As for the restaurant, my best guess is that the steak was an Australian import (or I hope so, both for taste and the price paid). The chicken would be any old local bird.
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