Having spent a week in this hotel for a small conference, I agree with the other reviewers that it's more of a local business hotel rather than an international business hotel. That being said it was clean and inexpensive.
The hotel is clean and new, having been built less than 2 years ago
The neighbourhood is interesting- across the street is the 798 art district filled with funky warehouse studios, shops and coffee houses.
The meeting rooms were clean and well equipped
The staff were friendly even if they did not speak much English
It's closer to the airport than other hotels in central Beijing - about 30 minutes by taxi
It's not in central Beijing. There is not a metro stop nearby
The staff speak little English so if there's a problem it can be awkward to fix
The lunch buffet provided to our meeting was very Chinese (they served chicken feet for example) and laden with MSG. We ended up cancelling lunches halfway through the meeting as some of our staff had a bad reaction to the MSG and some people at nothing but rice.
Breakfast was quite Chinese as well. There was a guy who cooked eggs if you could find him, but he was elusive. Most of the food was noodles, rice, chicken, celery, etc with only toast, fruit and a hard boiled egg for westerners (if you could not find the egg-guy)
Smoking is allowed inside the building in the meeting room area. We did not smoke in our meeting room but the conference using the other rooms did so we had to run through a smoke gauntlet to get to the loos. The smoke permeated our room from the outside.
We had to track down the elusive IT guy every morning to turn on the LCD projector which required a remote. If we booked a meeting with the LCD they should have predicted our need rather than being surprised each morning.
We ordered coffee/tea breaks for our meeting which ended up being a pot of tea and an over cooked pot of coffee with no biscuits or food. Make sure you order coffee/tea AND biscuits.
Each night we had little business cards slipped under our door for 'special massage' services (if you know what I mean). It gave the otherwise professional hotel a taint.
All in all it was a positive experience with some slight issues as above. If you do book a meeting here make sure you are specific about what you want and don't want.
Finally, we used Janet at Sinohotel to book the conference and she was fantastic. She went over and above, responding quickly to emails beforehand, visiting the various venues ahead of time, taking photos and even travelled on our excursions with us to make sure we did not get lost. When we had any problems/changes she was a phone call away and as a bilingual English/Chinese speaker, her skills were invaluable.
I've never had such great service from a hotel /event booking service and at no/very little cost to us. If you do book the Yitel, or anywhere else in China, I can recommend Sinohotel highly.
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