Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Bologna Hotel: 4 Star Comfort


 Rest and Relax in Bologna, Italy


If you have stopped by my blog before, you know on my extended trips I keep to a budget whenever possible.   I certainly save for each trip via a plan that most others would never enjoy.     However, at times it is necessary or desirable to go out of budget to enjoy some well needed rest.

After 2 weeks of travel while fighting the flue,, I planned to spend the two days prior to my adventure with Laura Massoni Travel, in a luxury hotel in Bologna.
Within 2 blocks of the train station and 1 block from the main
 street to the center of town

I prefer the old grand dames of European hotels but for this stay I selected a hotel with wifi, breakfast, a restaurant if I needed it and close to the train station.   Against all advice from every online traveler, I had packed too much and did not want to travel far.   In my defense, I shall be in two different climate, attend two travel shows, several business meetings as well as a walking adventure and a session picking olives!   All this requires appropriate equipment. 

But this post is about NH Hotel Bologna a part of the NH hotels  http://www.nh-hotels.com/.     I expect  business travelers are familiar with NH Hotel chain.  With several meeting rooms, the hotel was busy with meetings the first day of my visit.

A good sized room after the min rooms I was given as a
solo travel in other hotels
As promised it was within two blocks of the train  station and an easy ‘roll’ for large suitcases.   This is a modern vs traditional hotel.  Check in was crowded but the two desk employees were very efficient.    One employee spoke English and was willing to try to understand my Italian (solely for my benefit to practice more). 

I was asked if i wanted to purchase an upgraded room (declined), given a membership into the NH club that I could not read (in Italian) but was assured it was free and my my electronic key was cut, My room number was written down NOT shouted out for everyone to hear (bravo) and the times and location for breakfast and dinner was shared. 


All set to enter the lap of luxury for 2 days.   My room was far away from the elevator which I had requested, faced away from the station, had windows that opened and air conditioning.   Heating in most Italian cities that I have visited is often not turn the heat on prior to November    There are government regulations that can restrict times that heating is used, fortunately the hotel was very comfortable.

Additional benefits to the NH BOLOGNA

A wonderful bathroom the size you will find in higher end hotels.   A deep tub, a strong shower, lots of hot water and BIG fluffy towels.   A pleasant addition was a lighted magnification mirror.   After weeks of poorly lite bathrooms it was great to have every amenity with in one room.

A treat to find a make up mirror.

The Bed:

Although I believe  requested a full size bed the room had two twin beds.   I expect had i returned to the lobby my room might have been changed but I elected not to bother.   The bedding was plush with a  cushioned mattress pad ,crisp sheets and wonderful pillow.    All this can be appreciated after two weeks of standard housing.,



The Room:

Large flat screen TV with English news stations.

Carpeted (a little worn and needed a deep cleaning)

High ceilings

Windows that  open

What was missing:
There was no luggage rack that I could locate so your  suitcase remains on the floor
The closet was almost inaccessible with the door opening for just 1/4 of the space
The working desk was far too small for more than a laptop since the TV took up most of the surface (wall mounted TV can resolve this)

Only ONE electrical outlet at the desk.   The bathroom outlet required a plug adaptor I did not have.

I shall continue to look for other outlets tonight.   The problem with one outlet:  if you have a computer, camera and phone to recharge you must remember to alternate every few hours.    Women travelers who have electric appliances may find one outlet will delay morning rituals.



Breakfast:    I had declined dinner the night before but saw a few diners in the restaurant.   Bologna is know for the best food so I expect guests were out visiting one of the many restaurants

The dining area is very large with many tables for 2.   There is no need to tell the waitstaff you are traveling solo.  In the morning after giving your room number you are free to choose any table and select from the buffet.



The buffet was very large with a varied selection.   Each food station had several serving post to accommodate the large number of guests so you do not have to wait in a conga line while the guest in front  selects the best piece of fruit! 

I sat next to the coffee machine.  This is Italy and there is a coffee machine!   I understand it saves time.   Although the machine produced an acceptable cup of cappuccino, nothing replaces the hand prepared cup in the morning.  Sometimes the barrister is an artists and creates a design on the top to share a smile with you.


I arrived at the  end of the breakfast hours but was not limited to how much I could consume or how long i could remain in the breakfast room.  The staff continued to refill fruit and juice containers past the ‘end of breakfast’, instead of carting off the remaining food exactly at 9 am.

Other comments: 

There is a strong wifi signal in the room which is important in a business hotel

There is a computer in the lobby that I did not need to use

I asked about the ‘business center’ listed in the hotels.com listing:   there is no designated busines center and I asked for several documents to be printed for me via email to the front desk.  When I returned from dinner the documents were waiting for me.


My booking was through Hotels.com who did not compensate me for this visit.

The opinions represented above are my own.   I was not compensated by the hotel nor given any incentive to express these opinions.  As a solo traveler I have requirements of a hotel that other travelers may not need.

I would be wiling to return to NH B   when in Bologna again.

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