Pros:Friendly staff, good location for travel within the train system, quiet rooms.
Cons:Must take street cars to explore city, begging problem near hotel.
The Bottom Line: A decent hotel with friendly staff and good food.
I've stayed at this hotel twice in June, 2012. My first stay was last minute as I was too tired from my trip to take the train and stay at my original hotel booking. I used points from the membership program. My second stay was my last night in Sweden. I needed to take a bus to Landvetter airport.
This hotel is across the street from the central train and bus station in Göteburg. One must be careful when going back from the train station to the hotel and vice-a-versa. Infront of the station is a street car hub where many street cars move west and east daily. It can be dangerous if one is not paying attention to their surroundings.
There is a Pressbyrån (very popular convenience store in Sweden) between the hotel and train station. Beggers are highly aggressive in this area. I was in the middle of a phone call when one continued to harass me in Swedish about her children and needing money. After a few short interactions in Swedish and followed around the area, it took police presence for it to stop.
The hotel is what one would expect of an higher end American hotel. There are twelve to thirtheen floors accessed by four key only elevators. I never had to wait more than two to three minutes for an elevator.
Upon enterting, the gift shops are on the east side of the building and the check in area to the west. The hotel floors are made of white marble. There are water fountains and a large staircase near the entrance.
There is a pool, room service and a business room for international travelers. The restuarant served breakfast from 7-10 am in the morning.
The rooms either face inside of the hotel or outside. I had both rooms. My first room faced a hyrahus or apartment building. I could see some parts of Göteburg at night. My second room faced the inside of the hotel. This room had a balacony and stood over the bar in the hotel. The noise was considerable when the convention that day was in full swing.
Both rooms offered a snack bar which I used heavily my first night. The cost of the items were quite high because of the VAT tax. The snack bar offers anything from Pepsi, chips, famous Swedish candy and alcohol. When I needed a toiletry like a toothbrush, it was free of charge.
The rooms had two single beds, a pull out couch, a desk, and an American like bathroom with bathtub. There was luggage racks, ample closet space and iron with board. The lights are controlled in the room by placing a key in the slot to turn them on and off.
The hotel offered a lite number of channels and the movies channels were prepay. The tvs are older 20 something inches. It did not bother me as most of Sweden is minimalist and unmaterialistic.
This hotel offers free wifi. Just be aware that it slows down considerably when there are conventions.
I never heard my neighbors nor anyone in the hallways while in the rooms.
I ordered room service my first night in the hotel. I did not have a problem placing an order because I speak Swedish. The menu offered a variety of food from Swedish specials to more American like dishes. The menu like the hotel information is in both English and Swedish.
Room service arrived promptly and the server was surprised I spoke Swedish. He was very polite, friendly and did a good job setting the plates for dining within the room.
The food arrived warm, drinks and ice cream cold. I was pleasantly surprised at the culinary delight offered by room service. There are not many non-fast food restaurants within a few minutes of the hotel as I discovered on my second visit. The room service is worth a try if you do not want to explore around the area.
I found the hotel staff helpful as a swedish speaker. They did not look at my postal address and address me in English as other hotels in Sweden. The check in and out process for both stays were pretty painless.
I did notice though that the staff was a bit cold to those who only spoke English. I stood in line to check in the second time. It was somewhat clear by the staff that the english only speaker was out of place. It is not that the staff was unpleasant either. It is difficult to explain.
Attractions and food in the immediate area
This hotel is for the convience of access to the train, street car and bus stations. There are shops just east of the hotel. There is quite a large galleria (mall) accross the street from the hotel. I spent an hour or so browsing around and observing native swedes shop. The mall had a lot of fast food joints and a handful of sit down restaurants.
There are nice see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil statues that light up in neon accross the way from the Pressbryån.
You can shop and eat at the train station as well. There were souvenir shops, convenience stores, American fast food restaurants and speciality stores.
There is a river that runs between the hotel and the street car station. I happened to arrive during the examen celebration during my last day. This is when the graduates of gynasiumskolan (high school) go out in the town and celebrate their graduation. Where other smaller Swedish towns shut down the central area and the graduates go through the area on floats blasting music, the graduates come through Göteburg blasting music on boats. Something to see if you are in town in early June.
Transportation to and from the hotel
I was too exhausted to try to figure out the system from Landvetter to Central station. I paid 545 SEK for a taxi ride plus 10 SEK tip to the driver (or 80$ USD). I only have myself to blame for this outrageous cost as I did not conduct the proper research on alternative means of transportation.
The day before I left, I went to the bus station and I paid 99 SEK (or 15.14$ USD) for a ticket to Landvetter on Flygbussarna. The bus departs three times a day from the Ericsson terminal. There is an office in the terminal staffed until 8 pm swedish time. I recommend asking for a schedule while purchasing tickets so you can plan when to arrive in the terminal.
If you are coming from the south of Sweden like Lund, Malmö, Varberg or Falkenberg, go to the train station and purchase a ticket for the local commuter train from Malmö to Göteburg. If you are leaving Falkenberg, remember to purchase your train ticket (s) at the main bus hub. The ticket allows you a free ride from the bus hub to the train station.
If you are coming from the north, take the SJ train that departs from Station C in Stockholm. It is a four hour ride on a non express train and 1.5 hours or so on an express train back and forth from Stockholm and Göteburg.
Exit the train station south to the hotel.
I was disappointed just how American this hotel was. The hotels in Stockholm (which cater to worldwide travelers) are more Swedish in design and feel than this hotel.
The area is sparse for tourist like activities unless you like to shop. It is a nice hotel for a convention or one night stay between destinations. If you want to explore the city, be prepared to learn how to ride the street car system. You can not walk from the hotel to attractions within this large town.
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