Newest Review: ... go up steps), there's no need to worry. Although, you may need to dodge the smokers... There are a couple of cigarette bins outside the... more
Great location, just don't expect a good night's sleep!
Travelodge (Edinburgh Central)
Member Name: nixtee
Travelodge (Edinburgh Central)
Advantages: Location, location, location!
Disadvantages: Street noise kept us awake for most of the night!
Having wanted to go to Edinburgh for some time, I was pleased to be able to get 1st Class train tickets to Edinburgh for just £7 more than standard cattle class train tickets. So I aimed to get some bargain accommodation too. This is where Travelodge came in...
Travelodge are known for offering cheap hotel accommodation throughout the UK, but I was still surprised to be able to get an Edinburgh city centre room for just £42.75 a night! I booked a family room for 3 nights and added on the Late Check Out option for £10 (allowing us to check out at 2pm, instead of the usual midday) for a total of £138.25 at the end of April, ready for our trip in mid July. My booking was done through the Travelodge website (www.travelodge.co.uk) and, having booked hotels through the website a number of times, this was done simply and quickly.
Travelodge Edinburgh Central is situated on St. Mary's street and is easy to find, just a stone's throw away from the famous Royal Mile and only a short walk (roughly 5-10 minutes) from Edinburgh Waveley train station (just take the Market Street exit out of the station and follow Jeffery Street around to St. Mary's Street) and Princes Street. So it's location is ideal for a city break, visits to Edinburgh's many attractions and, of course, for shopping! It's location was ideal for us as it meant that we could pop back as and when we needed to... to drop off shopping or just to freshen up before heading out for a meal. It's location also meant that we didn't have to haul our luggage very far and we didn't need to waste money on a taxi.
While there is a set of 10 or so steps to get into Travelodge Edinburgh Central, there is also a ramp at the entrance, so for those with mobility problems (or even if you've done so much walking around Edinburgh that your legs simply won't go up steps), there's no need to worry. Although, you may need to dodge the smokers... There are a couple of cigarette bins outside the Travelodge entrance and every time we went in or our there seemed to be at least one person out there smoking (and it seems that some people are too lazy to actually use the cigarette bins as there were cigarette butts on the floor).
Checking in was simple, and, despite the queue, it was relatively quick too. You could check in at the reception desk (as per usual) or use one of the two checking-in machines next to the reception desk (which I only noticed one guest using). I found the staff to be friendly and helpful.
In and near reception were a number of vending machines holding items such as bottles of water, fizzy drinks, crisps, chocolate, ice creams and other snacks, as well as things such as a travel toothbrush & toothpaste pack. The bar/restaurant was just to the right of the reception area and had plenty of tables & seats, as well as a couple of computers for internet access.
Our room was on the ground floor. As a family room it had a double bed and a sofa (where the base pulled out to convert into a bed. The double bed was comfortable, but the mattress of the sofa's base was fairly thin and so not particular comfortable. The room also had a desk (with TV and kettle with tea/coffee) & chair, as well as an area for luggage and hanging clothes (which also held a spare towel and a pillow for the sofa/bed). Travelodge rooms are basic, so I really wasn't expecting anything else. The room was clean and tidy.
The bathroom had a bath/shower (although there was no plug, so the bath was a bit pointless!), sink and toilet. The no-longer-heated rail (disconnected for our safety) held a couple of towels. Oh, and there was a tiny bar of soap!
The bedroom windows (2 of them) had been left open to cool the room down, but it was rather noisy, so we shut them... However, that didn't make a difference! The website states that "due to the location of this hotel external traffic noise may be heard". Well, if you have room facing the road, especially on the lower floors, it will be heard! The road is cobbled with bricks and traffic goes by continuously all day and for most of the night. Even with the window closed, it sounds like you're sleeping outside! We barely got an ounce of sleep on the first night, with a little more on the second night. We were that tired on the third night (with all the walking and the lack of sleep on the previous nights) that we slept through most of it but it was an interrupted night of sleep as anything heavier than a car going up or down the street would wake me up. The windows are not sufficient enough to keep the noise to a minimum. So, if you are staying at the Travelodge Edinburgh Central I would advise asking for a room at the rear of the hotel.
If you have booked a late check-out, you will need to have your key-card reset by reception on the morning of the day you'll be leaving. The reason for this is that the room locks are reset at midday and if you haven't had your key-card reset, you won't be able to get back into your room after midday. Reception should tell you this when you check in, but they hadn't told us. We found this out when we were unable to get back into our room at 1.30pm to get our bags before checking out. Thankfully a member of cleaning staff was walking down the corridor and came to our aid. After asking us to describe something in the room (as a security question), she opened the door to our room and let us in.
The hotel's other facilities include on-site parking, although this is limited and chargeable. I wouldn't advise parking on-street in front of the hotel though as I believe you need a permit (and I did notice traffic wardens walking the streets). There is also an NCP car park nearby and they offer discounts to Travelodge customers (as does a cafe up the street - for food, that is!). There is also wifi available at the hotel, but this is payable in advance.
Checking-out is extremely simple. All you do is hand in your key-card to a member of staff in reception and that's that. They don't offer a left-luggage service, so I'd advise paying the extra tenner for a late check-out if you intend on leaving after midday.
As mentioned before, this Travelodge is situated just off the Royal Mile. In fact, you'll find St. Mary's Street roughly midway on the Royal Mile, so it's ideal for exploring the centre of Edinburgh on foot. Edinburgh Castle is at the top of the Royal Mile, while Holyrood is at the bottom (if you haven't guessed Edinburgh is built on a hill, so be prepared for some exercise!). As it's in the city centre, most of the city's attractions are within walking distance. There are also many local buses, as well as city tour buses, if you don't fancy walking everywhere. We caught one of the tour buses just up the street from the hotel and you can hop on and off as you wish. We also made use of the train station and caught a train out to the Maid of the Forth boat.
As Travelodge Edinburgh Central has it's own bar/restaurant (which is also open in the mornings for breakfast), you can eat there if you want (we didn't). However, Edinburgh has many pubs, bars, cafes and restaurants to choose from, so you'll never be short of finding yourself somewhere to eat. I'd definitely recommend the Whiski Bar & Restaurant just a 5 minute walk away on the Royal Mile for a great meal, whether at lunch time or in the evening.
But would I recommend the hotel? For location, definitely! But for a quiet night's sleep? Certainly not!
Summary: If they could sort out windows that would keep out more noise then this would be a great hotel!
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