Modern hotel for millenials with growing pains – moxy Berlin Humboldthain

The moxy Berlin Humboldthain delivers on the brand promise of a modern hotel for millennials with stylish rooms, friendly service and great social spaces. But with that focused mission, it leaves out essential amenities and it’s not a hotel for everybody. It also showed some growing pains during my stay soon after opening that hopefully will have been resolved by the time you read this. Check my review to see if you’d love or hate the hotel!

Location: The moxy Berlin Humboldthain is located outside the city center, near the Gesundbrunnen S-Bahn/U-Bahn Station. The trains provide you access to the historic center via Friedrichsstrasse or Alexanderplace train stations in 20-30 minutes. You can reach West Berlin via Bahnhof Zoo in 25-35 minutes and the Tegel airport in 30-45 minutes by train. The airport is about 20-30 minutes by taxi. Berlin’s trains are frequent and reliable, making it doable to explore the city from here.
The neighborhood around the hotel is ethnically mixed and lower to mid-income and the shops and restaurants cater to the neighborhood, giving you budget choices. There is also a large mall next to the train station, with plenty of stores, including groceries and coffee shops.
If you are a first time vistor to Berlin, I’d recommend to stay closer to the center of the city to make it easier and faster to explore. If you are a return visitor or an a longer stay, are familiar with public transport and don’t mind the extra time and effort, this location can be a lower cost alternative.

Service & Rewards: Check-in at the moxy was quick and very friendly. I received the brand-promised welcome drink and my information was processed, but my room wasn’t quite ready around lunch time. It was ready at the official check-in time. As a Marriott Rewards Gold member, the (guaranteed) late checkout was granted after checking with the General Manager for approval. There are no room upgrades possible, but the front desk found my preferred quiet room on a higher floor for me. y 
Housekeeping had done a good job preparing the room, it was clean and all supplies were stocked appropriately.
After experiencing a major issue with the room, I raised the issue with the front desk at check out, the General Manager engaged and resolved the issue in a very satisfactory way. While I prefer not to have service issues, I judge hotels on how they resolve them, not on whether they appear or not – it can always happen!

Room: My Standard King Room was located on the top level, away from the elevator and as quite as I hoped for. As this hotel is a conversion, the room is slightly larger than the moxy brand standard, with a comfortable king bed at the center. The floor was carpeted instead of the expected laminate floors and the grey walls could have used some local artwork.
You’ll find USB and power outlets next to the bed, so you can charge your gadgets. There are a chair in the corner and a big flat-screen TV on the wall.

You’ll also get a few hooks on the wall for your clothes, an ottoman and a folding luggage bench  – that’s it. You won’t find a work desk, closet, fridge, coffee/tea facilities or even safe in the room.
The bathroom is comparably large and upscale with a large walk-in shower, sink and toilet. One wall used wood-look tiles as accent, dark floor tiles and nice, white shower tiles. The shower has a handheld, mounted shower head and a partial glass wall. Amenities are provided in dispensers and of good quality, an eco-friendly choice!

There’s a hair dryer provided and the youthful brand image is upheld by the cheeky Do-Not-Disturb sign (not a photo of me!).

What the room unfortunately lacking was the air conditioning advertised on the Marriott website. Due to construction problems, the newly opened hotel had not been able to turn the system on, leaving the rooms unbearably hot during record summer temperatures and I didn’t get much sleep. I raised the issue with the GM and he explained that the city power lines provided were insufficient, had to be replaced, leaving the hotel without enough power to run the a/c. While they did try to have it corrected on the Marriott and travel booking sites, it was still sold as “with a/c” during my stay. Buy the time you read this, a/c should be restored. As indicated above, the GM resolved the issue to my satisfaction and I commend him for the personal engagement to make this right – I wish all hotel management was this engaged to keep guests happy!

moxy Berlin Lobby

Restaurant & Amenities: A key feature of the moxy concept are the large social spaces. You have a cool bar and a small market with fresh food and necessities near the front desk. There are different spaces for different purposes: bistro style seating for a meal, bar seating for some drinks, lounge seating to hang out, co-working spaces and a meeting room to get something done and a kicker table for some play time!

Overall, this is one of the more inviting lobby areas I’ve seen in a hotel, yet being in Berlin it was empty – there are just too many option outside the hotel!
Fitting to the young mindset, the hotel has a very large fitness center on the top floor, with lots of cardio and weight equipment for a full workout. There are even a punching bag and gloves in moxy pink, so you can get rid of excess energy with some boxing exercises! Unfortunately, the fitness room didn’t have any a/c either, so you didn’t really need to move to break a sweat!

Bottomline: I really like the moxy concept and it’s implemented well at the moxy Berlin Humboldthain: you’ll find exceptionally friendly service, a modern room and great social areas. If you go “cool” when you see the hotel photos, this is for you!
Unfortunately, it’s missing a few things I consider essentials, like a room safe or a desk. And it’s not nearly as affordable as the brand promises – at a price of $127/night it’s a little pricey for what it offers, similar to other Marriott properties in Europe or Asia who charge above-market rates. You can check current prices here! You can get similar rooms, amenities and style for less at the art’otel Mitte by Radisson or a lot less at an ibis (styles) hotel by Accor. Given the right price and location, I’d be happy to stay again at a moxy for the style and concept. If you can live without the features and amenities and like the design, I’d suggest to give it a try!

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