Visiting Hamburg is a real pleasure for me and staying in a quality hotel in the centre just adds to the experience. Fortunately for me the Renaissance Hotel Hamburg is a regular stop for me.
Designed and built from the 1920s onwards the present day hotel is a prominent feature on Grosse Bleichen. It is ideally located for all the Hamburg attractions including the famous Town Hall Hamburg.
The Renaissance Hotel Hamburg is part of the Marriott group of hotels. Fortunately for me since I have Gold Elite status with the Marriott Rewards program this entitles me to a free breakfast and free wifi. (It has often been a frustration of mine that some hotels do not provide complimentary wifi. With the big chains like Marriott and Hilton, the more fancy and expensive the hotel the less inclusive it becomes.)
Whilst the hotel appears to offer concierge parking I often wonder why bother. There are 2/3 large indoor car parks within minutes if not seconds of the hotel. Admittedly in 2013 it was €24 a night parking but Hamburg is an expensive city. You are also located right in the centre within walking distance of the main attractions such as the Rathaus.
Going to my room on the sixth floor required boarding one of two rather dated looking and compact elevators. I suppose this reflects the age and character of the hotel. Just hope that the lifts don’t break since it is quite a long walk.
Somewhat disappointingly the rooms are quite small. They are comfortable though. There is a desk/work area with easily accessible plug sockets. A two door wardrobe which is also storage for the much required ironing board and iron.
In my experience somewhat unusual for German hotels there are complimentary tea and coffee making facilities. Although I couldn’t see a decaf option.
The bathroom is also quite tight. There is a shower fitted over a bath tub. Thankfully there is a shower curtain but no bath mat :-(. Complimentary toiletries smelt and were lovely.
For me the real highlight of the Marriott chains are the Marriott beds! Always really comfy and able to provide a great night’s sleep these did not disappoint. The bed was even presented with a bath robe and slippers laid on top.
There is even a daily replenishment of one piece of toblerone chocolate being placed on your bed.
The room had a very dated and chunky back TV. Sky News was listed as a channel yet this always appeared to be CNBC when I switched it on. With few English language channels to choose from and the awful CNN this seemed like a reasonable compromise.
My room was not perfect. Not only was space limited and an outdated TV but I had a problem in the bathroom too. The plug was one of these stupid, hotel favoured lever plugs which rarely seem to work. In this instance it did not work. It is such a shame that the Marriott Group of hotels favour these frustrating basin plugs.
I discovered this when trying to shave in the morning. I reported it that morning and it was still not resolved the next day so I had to report it again. This time it was fixed.
As a high class hotel the Renaissance Hotel in Hamburg has room service available. Food is reasonably priced in Hamburg so I think the Renaissance was fairly priced for a premium hotel. The in-room menu indicates that delivery can take up to 25 minutes and that was fair in my experience.
I ordered Veal Schnitzel Hamburg style. It came with fried egg, lettuce (not a great lettuce really) and potato salad. Appreciating Germanic culture I found quite a pleasant bite.
On another night I used the downstairs restaurant Broscheks which is also the venue for serving breakfast. The foyer area also has a relaxing bar by the name of “Bricks” which proved popular.
My conversation with the waitress for dinner in the restaurant proved a little interesting. By the entrance way was a menu on the wall. I reviewed this before entering and noticed “Hot Smoked Salmon” listed on the menu.
Feeling prepared and keen to save time I ordered this on taking my seat. The waitress responded (whilst handing me a menu) that they did not serve “Hot Smoked Salmon”. I explained that I’d seen it on the menu outside and came in to eat that. Again she denied the fact that it was available as an option.
Left to look through the menu plus the fish dish choices she pointed out on the menu I noticed that “Hot Smoked Salmon” was listed on this menu too. Upon her return I mentioned that I’d found the salmon dish on the menu (suspecting that English as her second language may be a cause for misunderstanding). Again she denied that such a dish was listed. I showed her the menu to be greeted with another startling response. With a gasp of surprise she told me that I would not like that dish, adding “it is only two small pieces of salmon and it is not hot”.
I must admit I was quite taken aback. Here was a complete stranger who somehow was confident to know what food I liked and didn’t like. She also challenged her own employer’s menu as to what was hot and what was not.
Clearly she did not think it was a good idea for me to order this dish so I went for the cod.
It was nice. As I would expect from food in a Renaissance Hotel.
In spite of the negatives (small room, expensive parking options, minor maintenance issues and a confusing waitress) I found my experience in the Renaissance Hotel Hamburg to be a pleasant one. It is an expensive yet desirable hotel. Service is courteous and mostly attentive. There is even a small gym on the sixth floor but sadly no swimming pool.
Overall The Renaissance Hotel Hamburg is a quality hotel worth visiting. With a striking image and a great location close to the Hamburg attractions it maintains the comfort you would expect from any Marriott Hotel. I’d be happy to recommend this hotel to any visitor to Hamburg.