Recently spent 5 nights at the Swissotel in two stays separated by two days.
This hotel has the wow factor by the ton but is really over designed where style and form take precident over comfort and character.
It is located in a sterile dead part of the small city centre (I think they'd call it the business district), okay for the Euro-business man but not a good choice for the tourist. There is a new branch of the Finnish retail giant Stockmann next door (the Helsinki branch is so much better if a little more expensive due to VAT etc, staffed by polite people, not rude and indifferent like in Tallinn) and a few minutes walk further away is the rest of the newer city centre and shopping area. It is then another 10 minute walk to get into the heart of the old town - believe me, it becomes a drag to do it everyday to get to the interesting sights, restaurants and shops located in the old town.
Check in was efficient and polite and we were dispatched to our standard room on the 23rd floor with no fuss at all. These standard rooms are not shown on the web site so don't be swayed by those web pictures!
We had a broken safe and no iron (but there was an ironing board). Credit due, all this was rectified quickly and efficently but it should not had occurred in the first place - don't they check the rooms before putting them out for occupation?
The room had good views over the east of the city. However, it was cold, sterile and unwelcoming - all hard surfaces, lacquer, stainless steel, nasty zebrano wood veneer (all over the hotel), laminate wood flooring and painted walls. It was all very expensive looking but souless and the two 60's inspired swivel chairs were uncomfortable too. There was a good cappachino machine - Lavazza, that was simple to use and produced excellent coffee (fill with boiling water from the kettle first to get a hot cup!). The lighting in the room was over done too and we just kept the LED bedside lamps on which gave a cosier feel.
The bathroom was beautiful, bronze, black and gold mosiac and very large. We only had a shower but 5 people could have fitted in it! The wash hand basin was a grey granite slab and was a good example of form over function. The tap was so close to the basin bottom that anything other than a trickle from the tap caused water to splash all over the place including yourself.
The worst aspect of the bathroom was the frosted glass wall facing the bedroom. This is 'designer ' gone mad. Who thought that was a good idea! Liked the underfloor heating though!
Breakfast was very good but the service was erratic, lots of very pretty girls stood round doing nothing! Took ages to get coffee and once the buffet was depleated it took numerous requests to get fresh stocks! However, there was a good choice and it all tasted good.
On our return visit, we had a similarly efficient check in and the luggage we left from our first stay was returned promptly. We had a similar room but two floor higher in exactly the same location. This time the safe worked but there was still no iron which we had to ask for. This time we had breakfast in the room and this was very good - served on time, nicely presented and plenty of it - we could'nt finish it all! But the remains stayed in the room most of the day - still there when we returned late afternoon and cheese we did not eat really smelled the room out!
Check out was similarly efficient and there are taxis waiting outside the hotel 24 hours but they were a little more expensive than ones we used from other locations in the city.
We had lunch in the Swiss Cafe on the day we left and it was very good. The Swiss Cafe is also 'very designer' and very expensive looking with beautiful crockery etc. Its not too uncomfortable either despite odd shaped chairs and fitted seating. The restaurant was virtually empty but there were lots of staff (those pretty girls again!) but the service was slow - what do they do?! We had five different servers for a one course meal for two!! The meal was very good actually, and very reasonable in cost. The Swiss Cafe keeps silly hours though, only open two evenings a week but every day for lunch. Maybe it is just not well used? We also had cake and coffee at the ground floor coffee shop. Very delicious and impeccable service - but then we were the only ones there and the server must have been glad to be occupied!
On reflection, we'd have preferred to stay in the old town (there are some lovely looking 5* hotels there too) and we don't think that location would have been too noisy despite the heavily tourist orientated feel the place has. If only the locals in the shops, museums and cafes were a little more friendly! Three days would have been sufficient to do the small city justice.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This contemporary hotel is set in Tallinn's city center, 800 meters from the Old Town. The hotel offers 238 elegantly appointed guest rooms. Uniquely in Tallinn, the hotel has Executive Floors and a dedicated Swiss Executive Club Lounge. The hotel houses two restaurants and a deli for guests on the run; Purovel Spa & Sport delivers private fitness and relaxation facilities, including an indoor pool, a gym, a sauna and a steam room. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Swissotel Tallinn Hotel Tallinn
- Swissotel Hotel Tallinn
- Tallinn Swissotel Hotel