Bank Holiday stay at the Talland Bay Hotel in Cornwall

Last weekend, I was with my husband in Cornwall for an extended Bank Holiday weekend. We decided to stay at the Talland Bay Hotel based on the corner of South East Cornwall.

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Atmosphere:

The Talland Bay Hotel has a very informal atmosphere. All members of staff were extremely friendly and made us feel welcomed as soon as we checked-in. The hotel is also dog-friendly and hotel’s décor features paintings and sculptures of cats and dogs which made me believe that the owners of this retreat must love animals. What’s more, we discovered that you can even dine with your dog in the conservatory brasserie.

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The hotel offers bed and board for pets which includes a cosy blanket, feeding mat and bowl and even a complimentary doggie treat. Simply amazing for anyone travelling with their four-leg companion 🙂

Location:

The Talland Bay Hotel has a perfect cliff-top setting at Porthallow between Looe and Polperro and is just yards from the South West Coast Path and Talland Bay beach. Great to go to for a picnic or a bit of sunbathing.

Facilities:

The Talland Bay Hotel has received a bundle of awards including taking Silver in the ‘Small Hotel of the Year’ category at the Cornwall Tourism Awards 2016/17 and Gold in the Taste of the West Awards. In addition, it also has a great restaurant onsite which is headed by chef Nick Hawke. It was recently awarded four Stars and two Rosettes from The AA. I am a massive foodie and I decided to have a couple of dinners in there and I wasn’t disappointed -everything we chose from the menu was delicious.

All visitors can relax at the guest lounge with an extensive mix of furnishings and beautiful art or have a drink at the bar. It offers a wide choice of drinks including Cornish Pilsner that my husband loved, a range of gins and a selection of cocktails.

I am a massive fan of any outdoor green spaces and the hotel grounds have a lot of beautiful features. There are lots of interesting sculptures decorating the grounds, in addition to footpaths and sunny terraces overlooking the coast path and the sea.

Room:

This small, privately-owned luxurious, boutique hotel has only 20-rooms. We stayed in a sea view suite (no. 1) which was simply stunning.

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I loved its white, modern décor combined with some timeless seaside theme inspired accessories.

The interior of each of the bedrooms and reception is diverse and individually designed.

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Our bedroom had a flat screen TV, massive and very comfortable king-size bed, coffee table and a couple of couches to relax on after a day of sightseeing. We also had a small make-up desk and a massive mirror to help anyone to get ready.

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What I liked the most was the view… It was simply breath-taking! After we arrived at the hotel I sat at the window frame and just admired how stunning it was.

Our bathroom was spacious and it had a simple white décor. Some soft towels, bath robes and White Company toiletries were also provided.

Overall experience:

We had a wonderful time during our stay at the Talland Bay Hotel. I travel a lot and it was one of the coziest hotels I’ve ever stayed in. The room was beautiful, the views were breathtaking and the service was faultless so I would recommended it to anyone who travels to Cornwall.

Website:

For more information visit:

www.tallandbayhotel.co.uk

Address:

Polperro Heritage Coast, Porthallow, Looe PL13 2JB

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline

 

 

Hilton Garden Inn, London Heathrow

2 weeks ago, I was traveling with my husband for Easter to visit my parents. As we had a very morning flight, we decided to stay at Hilton Garden Hotel near Heathrow airport.

Location:

Hilton Garden Inn Hotel is located on Eastern Perimeter Road, 5 minutes walk from Hatton Cross station (Piccadily line).

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Facilities:

Hilton Garden Inn Hotel has a 24-hours reception and Business Centre, complimentary fitness center, guest laundry, baggage storage, a full-service restaurant and a room service. Wi-Fi is available throughout the property at no extra charge. You can also use Foreign Currency Exchange and 24 hr Pavilion Pantry Market.

When we arrived to check in at 9 p.m. there was a long queue of guests waiting to be checked-in so it seemed to me like the hotel management was facing some staffing issues…

The room had a simple décor and there were some pictures of famous London monuments displayed in various places around it. We had a flat-screen TV, safe, mini-fridge and blackout curtains and coffee & tea making facilities. Our double bed was comfortable and there was also a small coffee table and chair to sit down or relax after a busy day.

The bathroom also had a minimalist, white décor and some toiletries were provided.

Overall:

Hilton Garden Inn Hotel has a good location for anyone catching an early flight or arriving late at the Heathrow airport. It is located around 40-minutes drive from the central London so it is not ideal if you wish to do a bit of sightseeing though. 

Address:

Eastern Perimeter Rd,

Hatton Cross,

London, TW6 2SQ

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline

Hotel Felix, Cambridge, UK

A few weeks ago, I was in Cambridge on a business trip. I stayed in a nice, boutique Hotel Felix for 3 nights.

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Location:

Hotel Felix is located around 10 minutes taxi drive from the center of Cambridge in a quiet, residential area on a Whitehouse Lane.

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Facilities:

This Victorian Mashion boutique hotel has an in-house art collection, an award winning restaurant ‘Graffitti’ and some cosy spaces to relax.

Room:
My room was spacious and had a contemporary décor. I loved my king bed which was comfortable. My room was equipped with:

  • Egyptian cotton sheets and duck down pillows and duvets;
  • Air conditioning;
  • Mini bar with a complimentary bottle of milk;
  • Tea and coffee making facilities;
  • Complimentary Wi-fi;
  • Smart TV with freeview channels;
  • Personal safe and hair dryer;
  • Direct dial telephone system with voicemail.

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The bathroom was large and had a simple décor and some fluffy towels and bathrobes were provided. Some basic toiletries from White Company were provided.

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Overall:

Hotel Felix would be suitable for anyone who wishes to stay away of a busy hustle and bustle of Cambridge city.

My room was comfortable and the surroundings were peaceful so it was nice to relax at the end of a busy day. On the other hand, I was a bit disappointed that hotel didn’t have a gym and the service during the breakfast was extremely slow and I ended up waiting for my coffee for over 15 minutes… Next time, I would probably stay closer to the city center as Hotel Felix is in the middle of nowhere and you need to take a taxi or walk for over 30min if you wish to get to the center of Cambridge.

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Address:

 

Whitehouse Ln, Huntingdon Rd, Girton, Cambridge CB3 0LX

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

X

Pauline

Royal Afternoon Tea at Excelsior Hotel Ernst in Cologne, Germany

As some of you might know, I have recently visited Cologne for a romantic weekend break with my husband. We decided to book an Afternoon Tea experience inspired by Pierre Hermé.

Location:

Pierre Hermé’s Afternoon Tea is exclusively available at Excelsior Hotel Ernst. The hotel is situated in the historic Old Town center of Cologne.

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Times:

Afternoon Tea is served daily from 3 p.m. until 6 p.m. It is very popular so you should reserve your table in advance.

Atmosphere:

We were staying at the Excelsior Hotel Ernst and as we wanted to do some sightseeing during the day we booked it for 5 p.m. The Afternoon Tea is served in the Piano Bar as well as a lounge area overlooking the cathedral. We were welcomed by a smiley Tea Master who kindly took us to our table.

The atmosphere was charming and offered us a romantic setting to our Afternoon Tea experience. I loved its chic and elegant décor. There was relaxing music playing in the background. Our Tea Master was friendly and exceptionally attentive.

The menu:

Once we were seated, we were given a tea menu and we started assessing our Afternoon Tea options. We started our Afternoon Tea with a glass of Duval Leroy Brut Champagne and ordered some Green Tea and Jasmin Pearls teas afterwards.

A few minutes after we finished sipping our delicious Champagne our stand of sweet and savoury treats arrived.

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I loved how they were all presented.

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Our treats included:

  • Warm selection of plain homemade scones, served with some clotted cream and homemade preserves.
  • A selection of small sandwiches with smoked salmon, cucumber, cream cheese and ham.
  • English crumpets and small brownies.
  • Signature Pierre Hermé’s world famous macarons.

Dress code:

The dress code at Excelsior Hotel Ernst is smart.

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I decided to wear one of my black dresses from Wallis and paired it with some Dior heels.

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Overall experience:

I loved every minute of our Afternoon Tea experience at Excelsior Hotel Ernst. Pierre Hermé’s world famous macarons were a pleasure both to my eyes and palate and all other treats were delicious. If you fancy a relaxing afternoon in a beautiful surroundings then you should definitely try it.

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Price:

There are 2 versions of Pierre Hermé’s inspired Afternoon Tea available:

  • €34.00 per person including a pot of tea and a selection of Afternoon Tea classics.
  • €44.00 per person “Royal Afternoon Tea” including a pot of tea, a selection of Afternoon Tea classics and a glass of Duval Leroy Brut Champagne.

Website:

For more information and to book visit:

https://www.excelsiorhotelernst.com/

Address:

Excelsior Hotel Ernst
Domplatz/Trankgasse 1–5
50667 Cologne, Germany

X

Pauline

Excelsior Hotel Ernst in Cologne, Germany

Last week, I went for a romantic weekend break to Cologne in Germany with my husband. We decided that it would be nice to treat ourselves and stay at the 5* Excelsior Hotel Ernst. The hotel is the only member of “The Leading Hotels of the World” in Cologne.

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Location:

Excelsior Hotel Ernst is situated in the historic Old Town center of Cologne. It has an ideal location as it is literally in front of the Cathedral which is the main tourist attraction. Excelsior Hotel Ernst is a perfect destination for any luxury seeking travelers, no matter whether you are going to Cologne as I did for a mini-break or for business. This Grand 5 star Hotel has been family-owned since 1863 and it combines valuable traditions with important innovations in a stylish manner.

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Service:

The reception desk is open 24 hours. As soon as we entered the hotel, we were welcomed by extremely helpful and smiley receptionist. As we arrived way to early, she offered to call us when our room is available. We dropped our bags at the hotel and went for a lunch. When we arrived back, our room was ready and we were taken to it by another friendly receptionist-Marc.

Rooms:

Excelsior Hotel Ernst has 137 rooms and suites some of them with view of the cathedral as well as 12 meeting rooms. We stayed at the Grand Deluxe room on the second floor.

When we arrived we had a welcome letter and some snacks waiting for us in our room which was a great personal touch that made our experience even more special. As you can see from the pictures below, I loved my brownie.

Our room was elegant, spacious, bright and stylish. It was furnished with soft carpets, spacious desk, modern armchairs and a very comfortable bed.

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The walls were decorated with a were a few aesthetic photographs of famous landmarks in Cologne and mirrors.

In the corridor we had a large wardrobe and safe.

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Our Grand Deluxe room was also equipped with Air Conditioning and central heating which could be individually regulated, light control panel which was located at both bedside tables, flat-screen TV with satellite channels, all-inclusive minibar. In addition, the room was equipped with the best equipment available:

  • SuitePad;
  • Wi-Fi connection to Internet;
  • Direct telephone line.

Our king-size bed was extremely comfortable and after a day of sightseeing we fell asleep almost immediately.

Our marble bathroom had a classic décor, a bathtub and a shower. There was a selection of natural bath toiletries from ASPIRE London collection.

It also had a make-up mirror and heated towel rail. In addition to soft towels we were also provided with some slippers and soft bath gowns which were perfect for lounging in and for our visits to the relaxation area.

Facilities:

Excelsior Hotel Ernst features some magnificent ceilings, doors and luxurious furniture that will satisfy even the most demanding guests who appreciate intimate and personalized spaces making their stay an unforgettable experience created to dream.

Breakfast is offered for a surcharge and provides a selection of cold and warm dishes to choose from. As my husband doesn’t normally eat breakfasts, we decided to skip it as it was 32 EUR per person per night.

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All guests have access o the relaxation area located on the fifth floor so if you fancy a steam bath or sauna then you should definitely check it out.

There is also a gym available at no extra charge.

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Excelsior Hotel Ernst is a destination for food lovers and drink connoisseurs alike and it offers something to suit all tastes:

  • Restaurant Hanse Stube – Innovative French cuisine with regional influence;
  • Restaurant taku – The house of East Asian hospitality, awarded with one Michelin star;
  • Piano Bar – Premium bar offering a large variety of cigars and live piano music;
  • Excelsior Hotel Ernst Afternoon Tea inspired by Pierre Hermé.

Overall experience:

Excelsior Hotel Ernst represents the charm which fusions the past and present of Cologne. It was definitely one of the most exclusive and elegant hotels I have stayed in recently. The location was perfect and service was faultless so I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone who plans to travel to Cologne. I would love to stay in this magnificent hotel again one day!

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Website:

For more information and to book visit:

https://www.excelsiorhotelernst.com/

Address:

Excelsior Hotel Ernst
Domplatz/Trankgasse 1–5
50667 Cologne, Germany

Hope you enjoyed reading this review!

X

Pauline

Hilton Helsinki Strand Hotel, Helsinki, Finland

A couple of weeks ago, I was in Finland on a business trip. I decided to stay at Hilton Hotel in Helsinki Airport for a night and then I moved to Hilton Helsinki Strand.

Location:

Hilton Helsinki Strand hotel is located on the waterfront and around 15 minutes from the Helsinki Train station.

Atmosphere and Facilities:

Hilton Helsinki Strand hotel has an informal atmosphere and some great facilities:

  • 24-hours reception,
  • gym, swimming pool and sauna on top floor,
  • rooftop terrace,
  • baggage storage room,
  • restaurant, cocktail bar and a room service’
  • Business center & Executive Lounge.

Wi-Fi is available throughout the property for an extra charge.

My room was very spacious and had a modern décor. I loved my king bed which was extremely comfortable.

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It was great to come back to my room after the whole day of meetings and relax in it watching some TV.

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In addition, my room was equipped with a safe, mini-bar and blackout curtains, iron & ironing board and coffee & tea making facilities. I also had a great view of Helsinki waterfront, which was covered in snow during my stay.

The bathroom was large and had a sophisticated décor.

As in all Hilton hotels some basic toiletries were provided.

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Overall:

Hilton Helsinki Strand hotel would be great for anyone who wishes to explore Helsinki’s top attractions or travels to Helsinki on business. It has comfortable rooms and great facilities where you can unwind at the end of each day. The staff was really friendly and location was convenient so I would definitely stay there again. 

Address:

John Stenbergin ranta 4,

00530 Helsinki,

Finland

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline

Hilton Helsinki Airport Hotel, Finland

Last week, I flown to Finland for a business trip and as I arrived late during the evening, I decided to stay at Hilton Hotel in Helsinki Airport.

Location:

Hilton Helsinki Airport hotel is located in Helsinki airport and it is only 5 minutes from Terminal 2 so it’s perfect if you have an early flight or if you arrive late and you are too tired to travel to Helsinki city.

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Atmosphere and Facilities:

Hilton Helsinki Hotel has a 24-hours reception, gym, swimming pool, baggage storage room, restaurant and a room service. Wi-Fi is available throughout the property for an extra charge.

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The hotel has a restaurant serving breakfast but it is quite expensive as it costs 32euros per person per day so unless you eat a lot it’s not worth it.

In addition, you can use a gym which is free of charge and open 24/7.

My room had a simple, modern décor and my bed was comfortable. My room was also equipped with a flat-screen TV, safe, mini-bar and blackout curtains and coffee & tea making facilities.

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The bathroom also had a simple décor and some basic toiletries were provided.

Overall:

Hilton Helsinki Airport Hotel would be suitable for anyone travelling from or arriving at Helsinki airport. It has simple, modern facilities and comfortable rooms so I would definitely stay there again. 

Address:

Lentäjänkuja 1, 01530 Vantaa, Finland

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

X

Pauline

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel, London Heathrow

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A couple of weeks ago, I was on a business trip and came back to London during late evening.  As I was flying for my skiing break in less than 8 hours from arriving back, I decided to stay at DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Heathrow.

Location:

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Heathrow is located on a Bath Road in Hounslow. It is only 10 minutes taxi drive from London Heathrow Terminal 3 and around 15 min drive from terminal 5.

Atmosphere and Facilities:

The hotel has an informal atmosphere.

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Heathrow has a 24-hours reception, baggage storage room, restaurant and a room service. Wi-Fi is available throughout the property for an extra charge.

The room-service offering is quite limited. There wasn’t much to choose from so I ordered a burger. It was £16 pounds and honestly speaking I would never order it again. If you stay at this hotel then it might be worth checking their restaurant offering. Alternatively, you could walk to one of many restaurants available on the road.

The room had a simple, modern décor. The double bed was comfortable and spacious. My room also had a flat-screen TV, safe, mini-bar and blackout curtains and coffee & tea making facilities.

The bathroom also had a modern décor and some Crabtree & Evelyn toiletries were provided.

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Overall:

DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Heathrow for anyone travelling from the Heathrow airport. It is located around 45-minutes drive from the central London so if you wish to do a bit of sightseeing then I would probably recommend you to stay somewhere more central.

Address:

745 Bath Rd,

Hounslow

TW5 9QE, UK

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

X

Pauline

My stay at GLO Hotel Espoo Sello in Finland

Last week, I was in Finland on a business trip and I stayed at Glo Hotel Sello for 3 days.

Location:

GLO Hotel Espoo Sello is very conveniently located in the centre of Espoo town, 15 minutes drive from Helsinki. Trains reach central Helsinki in 10 minutes from Leppävaara Station which is only a few minutes walk away. It is situated next to Sello Shopping Mall so you can get a bit of retail therapy whilst in Espoo.

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Atmosphere:

The hotel has an informal atmosphere. For all my eco-loving friends, you would be glad to discover that GLO Hotel Espoo Sello is environmentally friendly and certified by the Green Key.

Facilities:

GLO Hotel Espoo Sello has a 24-hours reception, baggage storage room, restaurant and a rooftop terrace. Free WiFi is available throughout the property.

When I arrived at the hotel on Sunday evening (9:40 p.m.), I was surprised to discover that their restaurant was closed and there was no room-service offered… I ended up having some sweets for my dinner-not great if you are traveling the whole day and want something to eat when you arrive.

The breakfast was served at the restaurant downstairs and was quite limited. There wasn’t much to choose from and I normally just ended up with some yogurt and fruits.

The room had a modern décor.

The bed was comfortable and I was able to choose my own special pillow and blanket for free. These services are not offered to all guest so you need to enquire about them at the reception to take advantage. My room also had a flat-screen TV, safe, mini-bar and blackout curtains. After a long day of meetings, I was always looking forward to relaxing in my room. The bathroom was simple and had the basic facilities like a shower, washbasin.

Overall:

GLO Hotel Espoo Sello is quite an average hotel that would be good for anyone travelling to Espoo on business. What you need to be aware of is that, there is not much to do in the town itself so if you wish to do a bit of sightseeing then it probably would be easier to stay in Helsinki. If you arrive late then be prepared that there is no-room service so you will need to go to bed on an empty stomach…

Address:

Leppaevaarankatu 1
Espoo, Finland, 02600

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline

Jam Hotel in Brussels, Belgium

As you probably know, a few weeks ago, I traveled with my husband to celebrate his birthday in Belgium. During our 4-days stay we visited Brussels and Bruge and when we return from our day-trip to Bruge we stayed in a modern, design hotel-Jam close to Louise Metro which is part of Limited Edition Hotel chain.

Location:
Jam Hotel is located in the center of Brussels and a short 10 minutes’ walk from the metro station and around 10 minutes metro ride from Brussels Midi-Zuid station. It is situated in a former art-school that was converted into a trendy hotel to meet the demands of even the most demanding travelers.

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Atmosphere:

The hotel has a very informal atmosphere. Due to its great location and just meters away from the shopping it within a walking distance from all major tourists attractions it will meet demands of most travelers. Everything in the hotel is presented to you with a twist-even a simple door hangers display ‘don’t even think about knocking’ rather than the usual ‘do not disturb’ sign. I really enjoyed that originality 🙂

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Facilities:

Jam Hotel has a 24-hours reception, baggage storage room, bar and restaurant and a rooftop terrace and bar.

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When we arrived after a day-break to Bruge, it was lovely to unwind in an extremely accommodating rooftop bar. There was a fireplace in the central-point of it and its cosy décor was very welcoming. In addition, there was a heated swimming pool on the 6th floor and if we didn’t go there in the middle of winter I would love to enjoy it as it offers a great view of Brussels.

All Limted Edition hotels serve a continental breakfast where you can have a  nice selection of cold breakfast items including meat and cheese. I loved the vast selection of the freshly squeezed juices and homemade marmalades. My favorite one was a strawberry one and a freshly baked croissant accommodated it perfectly.

The hotel offers a range of services ‘on demand’ including: comfy bathrobes and matching slippers, a monopoly game with a Belgian twist etc.

 

What’s more, you can also pay a bit extra and get lots of other useful traveler’s items like a shaving kit, toothbrush or a toothpaste.

Room:

Our room was large and had a simple, modern décor.

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We had a bunk bed and a small sofa in addition to a king-size bed in it.

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There were only 2 of us staying in it but there would be enough space in it for a whole family of 2 with 3 children!  In addition, our room had a nice size work-table, flat-screen TV and a safe. The bathroom was modern and simple but had everything you need-a shower, bath, washbasin, hairdryer etc. I loved a little quote on the shower tiles: ‘Save water and shower together’. Very inspiring 😉

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Overall:

If you like staying at the design hotels than you should definitely consider this hotel. Hotel Jam will be perfect for all modern-hotels lovers who enjoy accommodation with a twist and are looking to experience hotels that are original and a bit different. I really liked its location-it is just a short walk away from Brussel’s main attractions in addition to its great facilities (rooftop terrace, restaurant, swimming pool) We only stayed in this hotel for a night but I would definitely recommend you to visit if you wish to stay in the comfortable, spacious room and you don’t want to break your bank as the rooms are reasonably priced. I am sure that you will enjoy its ‘unusual’ quotes and twists as much as I did!

Address:

Chaussée de Charleroi 132, 1060 Bruxelles, Belgium

All my readers can get 10% discount on their reservations with Jam Hotel. The code to use for further reservations is « FIRSTCLASSLOUNGE » and you need to book through the official website listed below:

http://www.jamhotel.be/

I hope you enjoyed reading this review!

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Pauline