Hi, I am going to sum up my holiday to this hotel as best and as fair as i can.
Having never really been too keen on European destinations as a main vacation, hubby persuaded me to try Barcelona. Ok so, for price reasons (1) and Location (2) we ended up booking Hotel Millenni, which was rated 4 stars.
Ratings & Rooms
I would definately not class this as a 4 star hotel. More a 2 1/2 stars to be fair. The rooms are horrible in my opinion. We were in room 508 - 5th floor. 2 adults and a 4 yr old. The beds we two singles pushed together and a kiddies fold out bed. All three beds were uncomfortable, only had sheets as covers and the room had an awful view of the other blocks below us. The air conditioning was a nuisance, not sure if it worked properly but at night was always very cold. Pillows were rubbish too....they provided fleecy brown blankets but they had an odour and made me wonder if they ever laundered these...but i used one on top of the sheets to keep me and my son warm during the nights.
The room is so small you cannot swing a cat, it was very basic, little wardrobe and a fridge with a TV on the wall limited channels on offer, but at least my son was entertained with disney channel (channel 20 if asking!)....
The bathroom was small and yukky looking and the shower was so poor it didnt even work properly, the screen kept leaking water all over the floor, in the end i gave up and just let the floor soak, using the daily dirty towels to clean the water up and getting fresh towels each day.
The maids are slow in doing there jobs considering there arent many rooms in hotel, but they do clean satisfactorily. Althought they do need to replenish the soaps etc more often.
If you like a proper cup of tea, take a mini travel kettle with you for your room as nothing is provided in the room, considering its meant to be a 4 star hotel!
Didnt think much of the breakfast either.
Scrambled eggs (tasted bitter - horrible) were left all morning in the metal hot servery)
Smoked bacon looked pale and wet
mini cocktail sausages looked horrid
(i dont recall anyone ever having anything hot from that selection)
4 types of cold meats, 2-3 types cold cheese, sliced fresh tomatoes, potato spanish fritata, kellogs mini cereal selection packs, watered down orange juice, cold steralised full fat milk (was disgusting taste), selection of pre-bought pastries (not fresh), tinned pineapple and peach halves) selection of dried fruit and nuts, shop bought packaged magdelenas (cakes), dry toastie biscuits in packets, selection of wheat or white fresh bread rolls, white bread to toast in the toaster....a nescafe machine with coffees, hot milk, hot choclate and hot water with a selection of fruity teas at the side....if you are a true brit who likes your english cuppa, take your own british tea bags with you like my mum lol!!
For a hotel who claims to be 4*, the breakfast although adequate, was poor quality and the choice wasnt brilliant. I was disappointed with the fact that they have millions of fruit and vegetable shops with tonnes of fresh fruits - why use horrible tinned peaches and pineapples?!!! I would never pay for a breakfast at that hotel, luckily we had it thrown into the price when we booked the break.
I found the reception staff (whom were all males on each shift) to be very pleasent, helpful and spoke decent English, if you had difficulties with your Spanish lingo. The room maids were adequate. The restaurant lady (i only ever saw one afro woman for my entire duration (6 days) and all she ever asked was for your room numbers when you had breakfast. She was fine.
Unbeknown to me i didnt realise that the hotel was situated in "the ghetto"...If i had checked up on this before we went out, i probably would never have gone to stay out there. I did wonder why it was a little rough looking around the area of El Raval, and back streets, i didnt even realise that it was full of druggies and prostitutes, my parents would often venture out at night to the Sikh Gurdwara on Hospital just off El Raval and i did get worried two nights and went out looking for them to see so many people out, mostly multicultural, but i couldnt figure out who was doing what. There are a lot of eateries around there and i guess many people venture out for this purpose. I did feel unsafe just becuase of how it looked in the evening time (this was before i knew what it really was like) but saying this, i never experienced any problems, but i can imagine all sorts go on out there. My husband swore he clocked drug dealers dishing out deals with the weighing scales in the street, which was probably true. The late afternoon, early evening time, you could smell the cannabis being smoked openly around there.
Although I am telling you what my experiences were and how i felt, i would say that locationwise it is "real" and "lively" with a good mixture of people. I dont think I would experience anything like it if i had stayed out somewhere in the posh ends of Barca. Dont be put of by others comments or experiences, go and try it, but be safe, dont take anything out on you like excesses of money, phones, cards or cameras, leave them in the safe at the hotel. You should be fine.
The Hotel is withing walking distance to the main attractions, we never once used a taxi, metro or the bus and we walked all the way over the the park near to barcelona zoo, we walked all over, La Rambla is great experience, but gets heavily crowded and the port bridge near there is madness, no where to put your feet/walk.
If you go anywhere in Barca, i would recommend that you leave everything in the safe. DO NOT TAKE MORE THAN 30 Euros per person for the day out (unless you have pre-booked events etc). Keep your money hidden in a little sewn in pocket in your Bra (if you are female) or a little sewn in pocket in your trouser waistband (for males). Dont keep anything in your pockets. Do not take out a bag with you and if you must take one, female, use a cross the body bag with limited pockets. Do not keep much in it.
My mum had her bag taken from her down by he port. Two foreign looking males (neither of the two lads on mountain bikes spoke Spanish or any other recognisable european language) and the one rode past my mum on his bike as we were sat on benches near to Port Vell. He threw a set of keys in her feet. She thought he dropped them. So was trying to get his attention to get him to take them from her.
There was a nother male stood on a bike several yards away looking away. Not thinking anything of it.
The male who dropped the keys, wouldnt come near to where we were all seated, so she thought being polite and well mannered she would go over to him to take his keys to him. She did and he kept us all distracted by trying to talk in some foreign language whilst the other male came a swooped her bag from her.
Luckily the only thing in her bag were prescription glasses £15 english pounds and my dads car key which was the most important thing to us as his car was parked in long stay at manchester airport! She forgot to remove dads keys from her bag and leave them in the safe. Luckily he had a spare set at home which my brother bought to manchester the day we landed back home.
But the police were good in taking a report, but to highlight the reality of how much this happens, an american couple had the exact same thing in the same location and the same time and day happen to them with the same two guys as described! The police station was full of queues of people reporting bag snatches etc. It is a major problem over there.
The american lady was not so fortunate as she had over 15 ATM and Credit cards in her bag along with an iphone, wallet, 200 euros and other things stolen!
So if anyone bumps into you, or tries to talk to you in some language you do not understand, or drops something by you, please ignore it all, as chances are its a ploy to rob you.
Luckily for us, it happened the day before we travelled back to the UK and we were lucky it wasnt any worse.
The other thing i will say is, use the Supermercats (Supermarkets) that are dotted everyfew yards for drinks. They are dirt cheap. Bottles of water and pop costing as little as 35p. Alcohol is cheaper too as opposed to the inflated costs around the Bars on La Rambla, some side streets offer good value for drinks if you are bothered about drinking alcohol. Personally i wasnt too keen after my experience of having a meal at a place on La Rambla and paying £12 pounds for 2 pints of san miguel beer. It was daylight robbery especially as the supermarkets sold the cans at 50 cents each!!!
My main advice is, dont carry anything out. Pre-book tours at your hotel where you can also pay for them.
We did the Red City Sightseeing Tour Bus at a cost of 26 euros per adult, that red bus has two routes - green and orange and will take you to see all around the main attractions. You just hop on and off along the route you take first.
The blue turistic bus is similar but has other coloured routes following same attractions. I think the difference between the two was that one was a company (the red bus) and the other wasnt a company (the blue/red bus).
These are well worth the money, start early as possible to allow the whole day to visit everything. Be warned though, if you want to go into Segrada Familiar, the queues are horrendous, i wouldnt bother. I wasnt too impressed with its location and the fact that the pictures dont look much like what it does in reality, it was full of scaffolding as its still being worked on and wont be completed for several years yet. Outside didnt make me feel in awe.
Best Food Place in my opinion
Wok Dao - near to Hotel Millenni, towards the right, past the market block...amazing buffet food, japanese, sushi, chinese and spanish and all fresh...OMG was fab.....in box me if anyone wants to ask me any questions on pchhachhia @ hot mail . com
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Garbi Millenni Barcelona, Catalonia