I stayed here for 6 nights on business to attend a large conference. This was one of several hotels I shortlisted for the administrator to book me into and I'm not planning on shortlisting it again. From a location perspective it is right across the road from the Convention Centre, and a short walk from the Rundle Mall (main shopping street) so is in a good spot. However, so are the Sebel Playford, Stamford Plaza, Intercontinental and Oaks.
This is an old hotel that has been taken over by Mercure in 2003 and given a soft refurbishment. From the reviews, they clearly have some nice rooms, but unfortunately I didn't see them. Several travellers have commented on the rabbit's warren of corridors and this is certainly true - exacerbated by the fact that the hotel has obviously annexed an adjacent building and turned it into an extension of the original property, with the addition of "economy rooms".
These are more modern in decor than the original building, with lino (wood look) floors, new bathrooms, better tv's and ipod dock alarm clocks. The downside is that most floors (except for the 2nd floor) don't align with the original building, so you need to go up/down stairs to connect through and there is no lift/elevator in this part of the complex so it's unsuitable for the disabled, elderly or those with heavy luggage. It is a very loooong walk to the elevator to the lobby from these rooms.
It seems that most are also the smallest hotel rooms I have ever seen, more in line with what I would expect from an upmarket backpacker's hostel with own facilities. I arrived with a fractured foot and wearing a foot cast. The first room I was allocated was so far away I knew I would struggle to get to and from the elevator a couple of times a day, so I asked for another room, closer to the elevator. This was granted, at an additional $30 per day and was an upgrade to a "standard" room, and I was told as the hotel was expecting to be full I would be moved BACK to the standard area after 3 nights. Differences are the availability of Foxtel, a little more room (there was an armchair), bigger desk, more tea/coffee selection, minibar availability and a showercap in the bathroom. These rooms are carpeted but the carpet was stained. There is a step up into the bathroom, and the only window was onto an internal well, so no exterior window or view.
The air-conditioning was extremely noisy and not worth putting on as there seems to be no temperature control, only a fan speed. The bathroom was dated and the extractor fan comes on with the light but was so incredibly loud it was excruciating.
Wi-fi is $27.50 for 24 hours but only gives you 30mb of downloads, which doesn't last long so is an extremely expensive way to access the internet.
There is no concierge service at this property, so really based on what I encountered I would say the Economy section was 2.5 stars and the main hotel 3.5 (not 4). Most of the staff I interacted with at the front desk were friendly and helpful, especially Grant who was excellent. A couple need to consider whether they want to be in the service industry at all.
I had coffee in the restaurant once, unfortunately it was so bad I then took to eating next door
at the Sebel.
When I moved back to the Economy wing, I was given a triple room, which has a queen/single configuration giving a bit more walking room. However the bathroom was the smallest I have ever seen and I have seen bigger on a boat. You can wash your hands while sitting on the toilet, and the shower is about 80cm wide at one end and narrows to approx 50cms at the other end, so completely unsuitable for anyone of a larger frame. Having said this, towels were always clean/fluffy and the hairdryer was better than the standard room.
There is no pool, but a small fitness room and a hotel coin-operated guest laundry.
If you are on a strict budget, fit and small-framed with minimal luggage, then the economy offer at this property may suit you. I probably should have had a closer look at the hotel website to see the rooms before sanctioning this hotel for my trip, but having stayed in several Mercure properties previously around the country I anticipated a similar standard.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Conveniently located opposite Adelaide Casino in the heart of the cultural boulevard of North Terrace. Offering a wide variety of room types that fits the needs and budgets of all travellers. All rooms have fluffy feather duvets and pillows, modern and stylish furniture, slim lined LCD televisions in most rooms and broadband internet throughout. Hotel facilities also include the Federal Restaurant and Bar, 24-hour reception and room service, parking and internet kiosk. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Accor Grosvenor Hotel