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“A spiffy resort hotel”

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Shangri-La Hotel Qingdao
Ranked #2 of 1,698 Hotels in Qingdao
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 22 October 2007

This hotel is an 18-story high rise at the center of town a couple blocks back from the coast. Qingdao's airport is an hour away.

The format has a resort flavor, with dance bar, piano bar, and health club with a sizable pool & tennis court. The weight room is nearly on a par with a typical Bally's, with--if you think Nautilus machines are for girly men--freeweights to 50 lb, and an honest-to-goodness you-can-stack-300-lbs-on-it bench press. The dance bar hosts a hard-working house band, displaying a wide repertiore, even if the only ones dancing are an octogenarian couple prancing an elaborate quick-step or west coast swing. The music is too loud for for talking there, so conversational types are best served by the piano bar, where the din of the crowd often obscures the rather talented female solo singer & her piano accompanist.

My room was meticulously clean and functional, with all the acoutrements in like-new condition, though a bit compact. You may want to take a minute or two to master the motley assortment of sconce, hidden reading, & night lights. The staff was competent & gratuitously courteous. Another reviewer mentioned problems at the check in. I had no such problems, and a last minute extension to my stay was handled summarily. I did notice backlogs at the front desk around 8am; the front desk area does seem rather small for a hotel this size.

The breakfast buffet is above average, though not included in my room price. I wanted to eat lightly at breakfast and found room service better suited. You have to remember to hang the order on on your doorknob the night before.

The building does not have Wi-Fi, and wired high-speed internet, whose performance I didn't have opportunity to test, is $11/day.

  • Stayed: October 2007, travelled on business
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2  Thank The_Conductor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 15 September 2007

This is quite simply one of the best hotels I have stayed in my life. I travel a lot for business and pleasure and I have to say that this hotel exceeded all expectations and the attention to detail and service rivals all others, including other Asian hotels. This is the first time I have stayed in the Shangri-la chain. The first thing is that their loyalty programme seems to be the most generous I belong to, especially the benefit for 50% of breakfast (inc person sharing room) at the lowest tier of the programme.

The staff throughout the hotel were super friendly and extremely well trained. The level of English was good and the staff went out of their way to do everything possible to make it a great stay. The concierge was excellent as well.

As far as hotel gyms go, this hotel has got a very good gym with a variety of weights, stationary machines and also has a great pool and spa area.

Every area of the hotel is entirely over-staffed which results in very attentive service and having to wait for very very few things.

We appreciated a lot of details such as allowing us late check-out at 1500; early check-in at 1000; the room attendant tracking us down when we forgot something after check-out; a free coffee in the lobby bar because the server felt bad she hadn't warned us there weren't free refills, etc. The staff really made the biggest difference.

The rooms were great, very large, modern and spotless. Hotel management was quite proactive. I filled out a survey and they thanked me with 160 Yuan in hotel food certificates. It was great.

Restaurant was excellent for breakfast and one of the largest spreads I have seen in a hotel.

I recommend the Renmin Foot Massage place across the street - 5 minutes walking distance. Cheap as chips and quite a good massage and no, this is not a hooker place.

The hotel is in walking distance to some great shopping areas and restaurants, including Carrefour and some designer malls. You can easily walk to a beach area and the 'boardwalk' area.

We didn't explore the public beaches in Qingdao. It was really a place to relax after some adventures in other, not so luxurious parts of China.

I would recommend this hotel wholeheartedly.

Andrew Wong

  • Stayed: September 2007, travelled with friends
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2  Thank BusyFlyingAround
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 August 2007

We were here 2 nights for the Qingdao beer festival, this hotel has decent hardware but missing most of the software, just a few examples below:

when we showed up Fri afternoon to check in at 3:30pm, of the 4 rooms we booked, 3 were still not ready for another 45 minutes, despite their 12 noon check out policy, and when my girlfriend finally got into her room a telephone repair man went in to fix the phone for another 30 min

They were also very strange with the breakfast arrangements, telling us that those of us (including myself) 1 person in a twin bed room is entitled to breakfast for 2 while my friend and her husband were only entitled to 1 breakfast for the 2 of them

On Sunday morning, while trying to sleep in after a night at beer festival, at 8 am in the morning, housekeeping came and rang my doorbell ! And my friend's next door even though he had a do not disturb sign on

At the bar downstairs, after finishing our 1st bottle of Veuve, they told us they do not sell any champagne by the glass (we didn't want another bottle) and also they don't sell any decent wine by the glass, we opted for Tsingdao beer instead

The hotel's food at their 2nd coffee shop is pretty good, but the concierges sent us off our 1st night to a mediocre seafood restaurant where they had these seals cooped up in a tiny pool for show. speaking of food, I was happy with the hotel breakfast buffett but service is so so, i.e. I asked for a Chinese soup spoon (For congee and noodles), the server said they didn't have any (only when I insisted they came back with one)

Check out was also a nightmare, there were 5 girls behind the counter and maybe at most 10 guests in line, knowing already how slow and inefficient the staff are, we showed up at 11:30 am to checkout even though our car pick up was not due for another 30 min

The checkout process took a good 30 min with them charging us multiple times in multiple rooms for things we already paid for (I.e. they charged us our prepaid US$60 airport transfer twice on 2 bills out of 2 of the total 4 rooms that we had ).

overall this hotel has a lot of catching up to do as more tourists will show up next year for the sailing & watersports Olympic events.

  • Stayed: August 2007, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Anilegna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 August 2007

Qingdao was beautiful. I appear to be one of the few folks reviewing the Shangri-La who was not here for business, but my review is still glowing! (Pronounced “Sahn-guh-lee-lah” in Chinese.)

Another important note: English in China; especially a 2nd-tier city like Qingdao, is quite sparse. The English spoken at the Shangri-La is spectacular relatively speaking, but still not up to par with say, a nice hotel in Paris. Any "complicated" conversations my boyfriend held in mandarin.

By the time we reached Qingdao we'd been to 3 other countries in about 16 days. We were tired... this is part of the reason I decided to "splurge" on the Shangri-La when originally booking. The other problem I had was that I could find so little information on Qingdao hotels when I was booking at home that I finally went with a well-known chain. In hindsight (perhaps for tourists as opposed to business travelers) I might have chosen the Crowne Plaza strictly based on location. It's a couple blocks closer to Hong Kong Gardens which holds a lot of shopping and restaurants. Hong Kong Gardens is probably a 1/2 hour walk from the Shangri-La while maybe a 5 minute walk from the Crowne Plaza. But a cab can get you there easily, cheaply and quickly as well.

Note: the Qingdao airport apparently does not exchange traveler's checks. We had to trade-in most of our leftover US cash in order for us to have money for a taxi. I'm not sure about ATM machines but I might be skeptical... We picked up a taxi outside the airport (after haggling a bit) for 90 yuan (~$12). The drive to the hotel took about 45 minutes on quite local looking roads. We discovered upon leaving Qingdao that if you pay a bit more (to cover the cost of toll highways) you can get to the airport a little faster on the highway instead.

Check-in at the Shangri-La was speedy and I was in our room within 10 minutes of arrival. We were placed in room 1148 which had a GREAT view of the main road in front of the hotel, City Hall and a slightly angled view of the beach!

We had a King sized room for about $140/night. That seemed very expensive to me for China. So we milked it... the doormen stored our rental bikes overnight, the concierge answered every question we had (sometimes even with more information than we could possibly need), room-service re-heated some potstickers we'd had leftover from dinner and served them to us on a platter with dipping sauces (!) certainly nicer than we'd originally dined! The front desk exchanges cash and traveler's checks tho the ATM machine in the lobby did not work with our American ATM cards. There is a very cool "Official" Olympics store just off the lobby selling all sorts of paraphernalia tagged with the Beijing Olympics 2008 logo or mascots. (True official merchandise is a find since there is so much fake stuff in China/Asia.) Coffee Garden restaurant on the 2nd floor served INCREDIBLE buffet spreads. We got breakfast one morning (~$15, served until 10am) and were overwhelmed with the selection of Western and Asian food. There was a large indoor pool (not refreshing - rather warm) but perfect for laps.

The bed was heavenly. We also had a choice of 5-6 different pillows (yes, there was a Pillow Menu). There was a small couch and table in the room. A desk for working with an office chair. Wired Internet was not free. I think about $9/24 hours. The TV had 5-6 English channels. There was a DVD player that worked just great. There was a small fridge. Bottles of water were left daily and there was a pot for boiling water with packets of tea and coffee. While I THINK China has a different electric currency than we do in the US, our plugs worked in the hotel... perhaps converters built into the hotel outlets?

The bathroom was beautiful. A nice soaking tub with a separate standing shower. Robes and slippers for use at the hotel. A scale. Shampoo, conditioner, lotion, cotton swabs, etc. Hairdryer (in a drawer in the bedroom, not in the bathroom).

One odd thing I noticed was that it seemed incredibly humid in the lobby and it smelled very odd. Sickeningly sweet. Almost like a chemical had been sprayed and then covered up with a "fragrance". My guess - never confirmed - is that they were spraying for mosquitoes and trying to disguise the smell of the spray. June in Asia is like a feeding frenzy for mosquitoes.

The hotel is not ON the beach but perhaps a safe 10 minute walk ~ 1 block. The May 4th Square is very close to this portion of the coast as is Bathing Beach #1 (Bathing Beaches oddly go 1-3 East to West and not West to East.) The Tsingdao beer factory is not close. Maybe a 15 minute cab ride north-west but certainly worth a visit and tour (~$10 for entrance). We found (as tourists) we were spending most of our time along the beaches and shopping to the East near Hong Kong Gardens (Carrefour, Sunshine Shopping Center, Mykal. Stay away from Jusco which is nothing nicer than an American Sears or JC Penney) for which the Shangri-La is perfectly located. Badaguan is a very pleasant neighborhood farther West of the hotel (between Bathing Beaches 3 & 2) filled with European architecture and heavily shaded sidewalks and streets. I couldn't figure out what to do here more than stroll around though. There is a nicely paved walkway which runs MILES along the beach. We traveled west (on rented bikes) from the Beijing Olympics Sailing Center, past May 4th Square, past Music Square, Bathing Beaches # 1 & 2, Badaguan and then Bathing Beach # 3. Guessing 5-7 miles? I would not however, recommend renting bikes unless you are VERY fluent in mandarin. The hotel can help point you to a couple bike rental shops (we found ours in the local English tourist magazine) but there is haggling and negotiating which went on for almost an hour. We ended up with 2 (nice) bikes and 1 helmet (they only had 1). Again - as great as the biking experience was I WOULD NOT recommend attempting this unless you are good enough at mandarin Chinese to perhaps pass as a local.

The Shangri-La was wonderful and definitely a treat. The staff is friendly and helpful and speaks English quite well. I was getting a bit "America-sick" at this point and stepping into a beautiful lobby with a comfortable room upstairs at the end of each day was QUITE welcome. I've love to stay at ANY Shangri-La Hotel again someday.

Since I was dying for some candid photos - I was sure to take a lot. Hopefully they're helpful!

  • Stayed: June 2007, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank lkturtle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 July 2007

I stayed in Qingdao for business for 4 nights. The hotel was great and cab rides can be had for very cheap all over the city. I actually ate all of my meals in the hotel restaurant... and they can get a little repetitive. However, breakfast was very good.
The gym was good, however I went one morning and every treadmill was being used, and for well over the 30 minute time limit. Other than that the facilities were great and I had a wonderful stay.

  • Stayed: July 2007, travelled on business
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Thank JeepBilly
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 July 2007

I have stayed at many Shangri-La's and all have the excellent service any of us that have stayed here love. But I will have to extend my appreciation to the Staff at Qingdao. The attention to detail I mean every little detail was by far the best of any Shangri-La I have ever stayed at. To the point that when I checked into my room the ice bucket was full and not yet begun to melt! My favorite coffee's and a fruit bowl daily. Once this hotel chain gets you into their computer database you get first class rock star treatment. I'll be back...as soon as possible!

  • Stayed: July 2007, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank TravelDocD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 March 2006

the Shangri la is a fabulous hotel that met our needs in every way. The room was good, with fridge and kettle, exactly what we needed with a small (newly adopted) baby. It was clean and well located and I would not hesitate to return.

  • Stayed: August 2005, travelled on business
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1  Thank LisaKellyIrl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Shangri-La Hotel Qingdao

Address: No.9 Xianggang Middle Road, Shinan District, Qingdao 266071, China
Region: China > Shandong > Qingdao
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Qingdao
#1 Business Hotel in Qingdao
#2 Luxury Hotel in Qingdao
#16 Best Value Hotel in Qingdao
Price Range: £77 - £150 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Shangri-La Hotel Qingdao 5*
Number of rooms: 696
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