Sleepy Affair: Finding a Hotel that Suits You in Guangzhou

Sleepy Affair: Finding a Hotel that Suits You in Guangzhou

White Swan Hotel, Guangzhou

Guangzhou attracts visitors year round for business, tourism and politics and hosts numerous trade fairs, including the large biannual Canton Fair. As a result, Guangzhou has hundreds of star-level hotels, and promises even more rooms through apartment room rentals. Where you choose to stay is going to depend a lot on your lifestyle, your business here and your pocket-book. For backpackers and the like, who prefer small guesthouses and hostels, there is going to be disappointment. For the comfort and luxury crowd there will be delight. 

What do all these hotels offer? How will they help you on your travels? Hotels here, as anywhere, can be loosely divided into categories depending on what they offer. One general guide to use is the star system, but remember that the star system has flaws. A hotel can be kept lower in the ranking by missing just one amenity. Other hotels seem to make it higher than they deserve, perhaps by renovating some of the rooms and leaving others lackluster, or simply by having a negligent staff. Like most systems, the Chinese system makes the three-star level the comfort zone, with multiple services, banquet halls and conference rooms. This middle-ground does contain some very nice hotels, but it’s often the ground of most disappointments as some hotels are going to provide those things for you at the bare minimum level. Again like other systems, the Chinese system keeps the four and five star arena for the luxurious hotels, which here in China are mostly internationally owned. The biggest differences at the four and five star levels besides a few extras, are the real appearance of luxury and the solid, sound-preventing walls. You will cherish those strong walls if you are located anywhere near a karaoke. 

It may be helpful to use the star system for evaluation, but do not rely on it. It is incomplete. Do some research yourself and even speak with the staff personally. If they sound like they care over the phone they may care in person. If they sound like robots over the phone, there’s a good chance that’s the attitude you’ll get when you arrive. I looked online and spoke with several hotels to get an idea of what they will give you on your stay in Guangzhou. This is not only their price, but actually the amenities and services you’ll get. That’s anything from hot water shower to luxury spa. I included several hotels each from the low, middle and high price levels. You could probably find cheaper ones if you looked, though these would be smaller places catering to locals and would have little or no internet presence. They would also be more of a gamble.

1)  Low range
In the lower range of accommodations, Riverside YHA may be the only true hostel in the entire enormous city. You can get a simple bed for 60 RMB or can get the basic twin room for 150 RMB and up. It’s located near the riverside, as its name suggests, and is close to popular Shamian Island. In other respects its location is far from ideal as it’s not too close to either downtown or the main train stations.

By the number of services they offer at Riverside YHA, you’d think it was a treat. Their lobby has a computer center, private lockers, micro-wave oven, refrigerator, 24-hour reception, travel information desk and wifi. Their private rooms all have TV, internet access, A/C and bathroom. The bathrooms do not have towels, toothpaste or the like. Their other amenities include a 20-RMB breakfast and hair dryer for rent. Altogether that’s pretty good for hostel level accommodations, and certainly more than you’d find at some others.  

Guangzhou Riverside YHA 广州江畔国际青年旅舍 View In Map
Add:  15 Changdi Jie, Liwan District, Guangzhou
地址:广州荔湾区长堤街 15号
Tel: 0086 (20) 2239 2500 / 8163 0015                                                                                                  
Getting there:  take Metro Line 1, get off at Fancun station, B2 Exit. Facing the vehicle bridge, head left and after about 20 meters, turn left again. This is Luju Lu. Head down Luju Lu until the T crossing, turn right and the hotel will be on your right.

7 Days Inn is in the direction of being a hostel, though it lacks the dormitory rooms. Being a chain, there are 39 inns throughout Guangzhou, offering rooms between 137 and 268 RMB. They have no special travel or ticket office, but staff may be able to help you if you if you ask. They offer internet access, TV, A/C and private bathroom. The upside for you is that established chains usually don’t vary too much in their quality. The downside is that the services are pretty bare bones for most travelers. If you travel frequently and want a membership card here, you can get rooms for 8-15% off. 

2)  Middle range
A few minutes south of the Pearl River and a ten-minute walk from the metro, Guangzhou Rosedale Hotel and Suite is typical of a business-oriented hotel in the city. It has most of the positives you'd expect for its price range (440 - 790 RMB) but if you're here for other reasons than business you might find the neighborhood around it fairly uninteresting.

Rosedale's facilities include a conference room, business center, gymnasium and outdoor swimming pool, all of which charge for use. It also has two restaurants. Their business department can provide tour and ticket information, and though they don't have airport pickup, they will provide a free van during Canton Fair to take you to the different venues.

Guangzhou Rosedale Hotel and Suite 广州珀丽酒店 View In Map
Add:  348 Jiang Nan Dadao Zhong Lu, Haizhu District, Guangzhou                                                   
Tel: 020 8441 8888
Getting there:  take Metro Line 2 and get off at Jiangnanxi station, A Exit. Walk toward your left  on Jiang Nan Dadao Zhong about 800 meters and the hotel will be in front of you.

A similar hotel option is Lidu Hotel, which is well-known in the city in part because of its location on popular walking street Beijing Lu. Like Rosedale, it will provide you with many, but not all of the facilities you’d want for comfort and convenience. You’ll find a massage center and entertainment center here, as well as a café and a restaurant.  Their ticketing center provides air, train and tour information and charges for reservations. They do not provide airport pickup except during Canton Fair.

Guangzhou Lidu Hotel  广州丽都大酒店 View In Map
Add: 182 Beijing Lu, Yuexiu District, Guangzhou
Tel: 020 8332 1988
Getting there:  take bus 10, 183, 190, 1, 219, 221, 227, 236, 3, 541, 544 or 66 Get off by Beijinglukou bus stop, walk the same direction that the bus is driving for about 50 meters, and the hotel will be on your right.

3)  High Range
Even before a metro stop was built in the neighborhood, the Garden Hotel area was one of the most popular in the city for dining and entertainment. The Garden Hotel itself is practically a city landmark now and a top accommodation for business travelers. Judging by what they offer their guests, their accommodations are extremely comprehensive, but judging from travel blogs, some high-class travelers occasionally meet with disappointment here. You can have an experience yourself for 610 – 1,975 RMB.

The large and luxurious lobby at Garden Hotel has eleven restaurants and bars including a wine bar and a tea bar. There is also a conference center large enough to accommodate one thousand people, ten different kinds of ballrooms and a business center suited to multiple needs. They have multimedia equipment, simultaneous interpretation equipment and audio-video. For your leisure you will find health and beauty spas, squash and tennis courts, and a gymnasium and pool. The gymnasium and pool are free for guests.

Garden Hotel’s services include providing tour information, contacting travel agents and making air ticket reservations. They offer mail service, express delivery and car rental and will pick you up at the airport for a 300 RMB charge.

Guangzhou Garden Hotel 广州花园酒店 View In Map
Address: 368 Huanshidong Lu, Yuexiu District, Guangzhou
Tel:  020 8333 8989
Getting there:  take Metro Line 5, get off at Taojin station, A Exit. You will find the hotel just behind you.

Also evocative of the city itself is White Swan Hotel, set by the Pearl River on Guangzhou’s historic and tree-lined Shamian Island. This may not be a central neighborhood, but it is a fascinating one and arguably the best for walking.

Staying here you can visit one of their thirteen restaurants, cafes and bars. They meet your professional needs with a conference center, business center, multifunctional room and various meeting rooms. They also have shops for clothes, arts and antiques. They charge for their saunas, massage, gymnasium, spas and sports facilities. Their pool is free for guests. The tennis courts next to the hotel are top quality and well-known in Guangzhou, attracting some top players and occasionally used for tournaments.

White Swan’s services include a tour center and ticketing service which charges for reservations. They provide airport pickup for 50 RMB per person.

More information about White Swan Hotel here

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Keywords: Guangzhou low end hotels Guangzhou hotels Guangzhou high end hotels


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