As part of my Baltic Explorer trip, I planned a trip to Warsaw and selected the Grand Mercure as my first hotel. As is often the case, I picked it partially for the location, the price – and the promotions! Read on to see how that turned out!
Location: Warsaw is a a large city and fairly spread out with grand boulevards at the center. The Grand Mercure is located half-way between the Central Railway & Bus Station (where I arrived) and the Old Town (that was high on my list of places to see). You can reach it in about 15 minutes by tram from the central station and walk for three long blocks (or take a taxi for 10 minutes). It’s about 20 minute by taxi from the airport. I like to walk and it’s about a 35 minute walk to the Royal Palace and the Old Town – I did underestimate the distances in Warsaw and the hotel was not as convenient as I had thought: Because of the tram routes, public transportation is not very helpful from this hotel and taxis are more convenient. If you are looking to utilize public transportation, I’d recommend to stay at hotels near the central train station or along the main tram routes!
Service: The front desk staff was professional and efficient, yet not very warm and friendly, reminding me a bit of the German hospitality industry! To my great surprise, they did recognize my Le Club Accor Gold status and upgraded me to a nicer room. After for many years never getting any upgrade at Accor hotels, I scored 2 out of 2 on my Baltic Explorer trip – Accor is really stepping it up! My room was well prepared – housekeeping had done it’s job well. The check out was as quick and professional as my check-in, so I had no complaints about the service!
Room: On of the key reasons I have stayed at Accor hotels a lot recently are the modern, stylish rooms accentuated with bright colors! And the Grand Mercure did not disappoint: The spacious room had a red & grey rug on nice hardwood floors, a bright, red bed headboard, throw and pillows, as well as red chairs! The chairs were arranged with a desk/table as a working and sitting area. The TV was viewable from the bed or the sitting area and there were also coffee/tea facilities and a laptop size safe. The bathroom had a separate toilet room and the shower/sink area. A window separated the shower from the bedroom, providing light and it had a curtain for more privacy – my favorite design! The wifi was free, reliable and reasonable speed.
Restaurant/Amenities: I only had one night at the hotel and didn’t utilize any of the amenities. The Grand Mercure has a full-service restaurant and bar as well as 24h room service. You can use a small fitness center for a basic work out as well as a business center to print boarding passes, etc.
Conclusion: If you are looking for a nice room on a budget in a central location with professional service, the Grand Mercure delivers! I paid only $46/night during a sale. Warsaw is a great value destination and even here, it was the best value of the three hotels I stayed at! I’d recommend it for a leisure visit, especially if you are planning to take taxis to get around. If you want to use public transport, I’d recommend to stay closer to the central station. If you have a very short stay, I’d recommend to stay closer to the Old Town!