Sofitel Hamburg Alter Wall
As I entered the lobby, a woman in a smart black suit rushed from behind the desk to take my luggage and welcomed me, asking me to sign the already completed registration. She escorted me immediately to my room, stopping to point the way to the breakfast room, café, restaurant and dedicated elevator to the spa, telling me the open hours of each. (30/30)
In the room, she advised me that the bed had the custom Sofitel-soft mattress and advised I try it in time for them to replace it while I was at dinner. (I loved it — it felt like a featherbed on top of a good, firm mattress, a soft surface with no sag.) The room was stunning, in shades of gray, white and black, with rounded lines softening the geometric — a round table and elliptical ottoman by the rectangular sofa, an oval desk with an upholstered chair and a gracefully curved chrome lamp. A wall of white sheers and oyster drapes covered three windows through which flooded afternoon sunlight, and at night the room was lighted with ceiling spotlights, diffused room lights and reading/working lights at any place I could think of to sit. Recessed shelves next to the desk had a control panel of four outlets and the sound system. The large closet had a sliding mirrored door; the only problem here was that I had to keep sliding it back and forth to reach either the shelves or the hanging section. The light switches were not intuitive (at least not to me), but I discovered a bedside card in English showing how to operate them. The free in-room Internet was easy to access.
The marble bathroom had a large, double-ended tub and roomy separate shower, a make-up mirror and lots of vanity surface with a raised sink that was both attractive and practical. Amenities were L’Occitane’s Verveine line, and there were soft bathrobes. (28/30)
The lobby is bright, spacious and elegantly uncluttered, with low upholstered seats and windows overlooking the canal. Several receptionists were on duty whenever I passed through it. The concierge was very helpful, even suggesting a route to our destination that added a mini architectural tour. Breakfast was an appetite-boggling array with six varieties of ham, three kinds of smoked salmon, eight select cheeses, fresh fruits, 10 breads and flaky fresh croissants — plus hot options and made-to-order omelets. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to sample the full-service spa, fitness center, sauna or pool. (40/40)
Silent air conditioning and no street noise made the room so quiet at night it was hard to believe I was in the city center, within an easy walk of the lake and the busy harbor area. This is a well-designed, well-managed hotel where I was made to feel constantly welcome.
Total Score: 98/100
Sofitel Hamburg Alter Wall
alter Wall 40
tel 49 40 369 500 www.sofitel.com
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