“ Hotel in Strasbourg, France. „
I have only once before stayed in a Kyriad hotel and the only thing I remember about it - other than that it was in Toulouse - was that it was utterly unmemorable. I therefore wasn't expecting too much when I was told to book into the Kyriad Prestige Strasbourg Nord. Not knowing the area, I just took the advice I was given by a colleague in our office in the Strasbourg suburb of Schiltigheim and booked for two nights.
The hotel is located on a modern business park north of the city and it's hard to imagine you would choose it unless you had - like me - a reason to be on Espace Europeen de l'Enterprise - the business park where our French office is located. I took a taxi from Strasbourg airport which took about 20 minutes and cost 40 euros I've only been to Strasbourg once before, many years ago, and I had forgotten just how eerily flat the area is.
~My booking? What Booking?~
From the outside, the hotel is a rather unimpressive-looking grey oblong box that doesn't promise much. The receptionist was super-friendly and was happy to sort out the apparent failure of our company travel agent (yet again) to have actually made the booking. I was not in their system, the booking code didn't exist but when I mentioned the company name, he perked up, agreed that the rate of 110 euros per night including breakfast was correct, and sorted me out with a key and a room. I was also able to read the names on his room list and work out that one of my colleagues was going to be there and would be able to help me find the office next morning.
The reception is nothing to write home about. There's nothing wrong with it but just like thousands of others in its lack of memorable features (other than the friendly receptionist). There was a bar area to the left as you face the reception desk and a seating area with sofas and a television to the right. The breakfast area is behind and to the right of reception but is not the same as the restaurant - to reach that, you have to go along the corridor and through a door - it's almost cut off from the rest of the hotel and has a door of its own for non-guests who want to eat there.
~Home from Home~
My room on the second floor was much nicer than I had expected based on past Kyriad experience. The décor was on of warm earthy colours with muesli coloured curtains, a gingery-red throw on the bed, and a striped gingery brown carpet. I had quite some confusion about how to find the bathroom because it was doing an excellent impression of a cupboard and the door to the bathroom was a sliding one which when the bathroom was open, became the door to the wardrobe. Take your pick - look at your wardrobe contents or look at your bathroom. It's not the first time I've seen such an arrangement but it did baffle me for half a minute whilst I stood in the room thinking "Something is missing......"
In the entrance corridor of the room I found a full length mirror and then a folding bag stand. There was a long narrow wooden desk with small flat screen television on the wall above but I didn't switch it on so I have no idea about the channel coverage. Free but unrelable wi fi was available. The desk had a kettle and tray with tea and coffee, a small desk lamp and a set of drawers and mini-bar under the desk.
The bed was a good sized king with soft white linens and smooth high thread-count sheets. I am a sheet snob and my toes can spot good Egyptian cotton as they slide under the covers. Two soft pillows were provided and I dare say if I'd needed more there would have been a spare hidden in the wardrobe or available on request. The dark wood bedside surround and headboard had wide ledges on either side to use as bedside tables and the in-bed lighting was fine.
The bathroom (once I found it) was surprisingly stylish but not very well lit. The bath was of a full size (not something you can take for granted in France) and had a shower over it and a ledge running down the side which was wide enough for me to balance my Kindle on safely. I always read in the bath - even when it's electronically. The loo was standard but the sink was a funky and probably rather expensive one which was funky but impractical since anything more than a dribble of water caused extreme splash-back The bathroom was tiled in large, light brown tiles with a slightly rough texture.
~Fine French Dining? Not Quite~
On the evening that I arrived I ate in the restaurant which was fairly good but nothing particularly special considering I was in France. Wine was available by the glass from around 3.50 euros but since I was in Alsace I had a much more expensive and very nice Gewurztraminer at about double that price. My starter was forest mushrooms with parmesan risotto which I enjoyed and would have been happy with if the same parmesan risotto hadn't come back as the accompaniment for my main course with my 'brochette de lotte' (skewer of monkfish) in a smoky red sauce. Prices were fair and if you want to have a three course dinner, there's a good offer available.
For breakfast the choice is a little limited. The only hot food is scrambled eggs and these were crying out for a dash of salt but none could be found in the entire breakfast room. The bread rolls looked great but were rather 'tired' and clearly from the previous day which is probably a criminal offence (or should be) in France. The usual array of coffee, juice, croissants, yoghurt, cheese and cold cuts were all available.
I liked my room, found the bed really comfortable, the bathroom pleasant and the dinner acceptable. It's hard to imagine anyone would find themselves here by pure chance and most visitors will have a business reason for being there. If you have a car, it's not a long drive into Strasbourg and the hotel offers free outside parking or underground parking for a fee. The taxi I took back from the city centre to the hotel set me back. 27 Euros so if you're picking the Kyriad as a cheaper alternative to being in the city, keep the taxi costs in mind.
Kyriad Prestige Strasbourg Nord - Schiltigheim
2. Avenue de l'Europe
Espace Europeeen de l'Enterprise