ibis Budget Marseille Vieux Port is a below-average ibis Budget that in multiple aspects does not meet the chain standards. It does sit on a convenient location, and is quiet. It is not well-maintained, however, and suffers from some operational problems.
This ibis Budget is mere 300m or 5 minutes of walk away from the Vieux-Port Hôtel de Ville metro station, and Vieux Port (the old port) is just 3 small blocks to the north. Many sights of interest as well as the Centre Bourse Shopping Center and Rue St-Ferréol (for shopping) are within walking distance. Rue Sainte, the street it faces, is rather dank, riddled with trash, and smells of urine stench, but it is fairly safe and runs in parallel to the touristy Cours Honoré d'Estienne d'Orves. The location isn’t idyllic or romantic but certainly practical for sightseeing.
Our room had the green ibis Budget “cocoon”-style furnishing; a bunk bed, a small desk, a plastic chair, etc. all integrated together with the lighting system. The lower bunk sleeps two, and the upper bunk sleeps one. The room was slightly larger than some of the standard ibis hotel rooms and was very quiet. Both the room and the bathroom were clean where it is usually used… meaning, it is not so clean where it is usually not used or looked at. It was quite dusty on the upper bunk bed, on parts of toilet flush handle, and on top of the toilet paper holder, for instance. We were not surprised at the absence of hair dryer, but were dumbfounded by the absence of toilet brush. The room door was heavy, and loud thumping sound reverberated through the corridor whenever someone closed their door.
There were other symptoms of mismanagement. The midrise building has only one elevator, shared by guests and staffs. During the day, staffs with trolleys would keep occupying the small elevator, and we once had to wait twenty minutes. We often had to wait several minutes for the elevator door to open, only to find a staff with a trolley nonchalantly motioning to wait further. Leaving the luggage for a while after the check-out involves going down one floor from the lobby (more elevator fun) and spending EUR 2 per a coin locker, some of which are broken and overall doesn’t look so reassuring. The receptionists we met spoke rudimentary English and were mechanical. They actually did not know that there were TV installation works going on in some floors, and assigned rooms in those floors to new arrivals, leading to confusion among both the guests and installation workers.
To summarize, ibis Budget Marseille Vieux Port is an economy chain hotel whose convenient location and quiet rooms are more than offset by the lack of customer-centric management and streamlined operation. It is not up to the standard set by other ibis Budget properties and many other budget-friendly hospitality businesses.
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