Has it been that long since I stayed in a Holiday Inn Express? I guess it has. Over past couple of years, I seem to have been staying more often at full Holiday Inns and Crowne Plazas. Maybe that's have I had a slight feeling of disappointment with this property. It's a basic, economy tier hotel, akin to an Ibis, Premier Inn, or Travelodge. Amongst those competitors, it's probably the best of the bunch. I particularly liked the free parking and free wifi. Paying extra for parking and especially wifi, are pet peeves of mine. The free parking and relatively low price are what swayed me to stay here, rather than two IHG properties in Stevenage (one HI and one HI Express), both of which were more expensive and charged for parking. To make matters worse, their parking didn't seem to be on site. While the Stevenage properties were a bit more convenient for where I was going to go, in the morning, price and convenience swayed me. However, upon staying here I'm not sure I made the best choice. The HI Express, Dunstable seems to be in the middle of nowhere. There is a housing estate under construction, next door, but not much in the way of restaurants and shops. For those, you need to travel further down the high street, a mile or two. The building itself seems new an everything worked. I think the room and amenities are competitive, or superior to Ibis, Premier Inn, or Travelodge. Saying that, the bed was a bit small, especially for two. It was a very basic bed and not nearly as comfortable as one usually gets at full Holiday Inns. The TV in the room seemed very small. The bathroom has fewer amenities. It was clean, but only a combination shower gel/soap/shampoo, in wall mounted dispensers, is provided. The check in clerk seemed a bit moody and my clumsy attempt to lighten the mood seemed to fall on fallow grown. All the other staff I encountered were great, so maybe that one was having a bad day. Even though I am an IHG Rewards Gold Member, this wasn't acknowledged at check in, at all. A free breakfast is included and it's not just a cold continental, but includes hot eggs and sausage. That part is good, but the eggs weren't bad, but they weren't great either. Tasted a bit like powdered eggs. Overall, the Holiday Inn Express does economy well. The IHG Rewards loyalty program beats Accour's (the Ibis family brand) hands down, which means I will always choose HI Express over Ibis, when I have the option. I think I have been spoiled by higher tier InterContinental brands, over the past 2 years, which left me feeling slightly unsatisfied at Dunstable. If you need to stay in this area, while keeping the price reasonable, you won't go far wrong with this hotel. I accidentally left my phone charger and a quick call to the hotel led them to find it and hold it for me. I decided to forego the hotel restaurant for dinner and ventured to the Dunstable high street, instead. In the end, I wasn't wowed down there, so maybe the hotel restaurant would have been a better choice.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- From its attractions & rolling countryside with the nearby Whipsnade Zoo & Dunstable Downs the area surrounding the hotel is just waiting to be discovered. Perfectly located just 7 miles from London Luton Airport offering excellent access to the heart of the national motorway network. With the M1 close by and the M25 less than 20 miles away, over three quarters of the UK mainland population can be reached in a same day return journey. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Holiday Inn Express Dunstable Bedfordshire