aappartel Bielefeld ** (revisited)

Mainly due to the fact that Bielefeld doesn’t seem to have many hotels in the city (at least there aren’t very many available on HRS), I stayed at this hotel again. If you look at my review from 2013, you’ll find I wasn’t very positive about my last stay.

This time ‘round, I stayed in Room 405 (which is right near 406, which annoyed me last time) but towards the back. The window faces a garish building facade made of extremely attractive concrete (that’s me pouring on the sarcasm, folks), maybe 2-3m away. At least on this floor, you get a large piece of sky to look at - certainly not the case for the rooms below.

The bed was a regular one this time, at right angles to the wall. The room is without A/C, and even though it faced north-east, it was plenty warm when I got there at around 18:30h. I yanked open the window to cool it out. Due to the building just across the way, you get sound coming from the neighboring buildings reflected right at you... you name it, you’ll hear it. Needless to say, I closed the window over night.

The shower in this room also has a curtain (annoying).

Compared to just over a year ago, the room price has increased by €3 and breakfast has gotten a tick more expensive as well. Breakfast was ok this time round, though I don’t feel it is worth what you pay (I’ve had better for less). Still no fresh fruit, but at least they had yoghurt available - and the scrambled eggs were ok.

WIFI access costs €2; the reason for charging for this is beyond me in a hotel of this type, where it is generally free of charge, but there you go.

I’m going to stick by my summary from my last visit: if the place wasn’t quite so expensive (for what you get, €64 without breakfast is just too much for a town like Bielefeld), I would recommend it. It has its caveats, but it was clean and the location is quite ok. At this price, however, look elsewhere.

aappartel, Bielefeld **

On first sight, the hotel makes a decent impression. Okay, the elevator is up one flight of stairs and the breakfast room isn’t particularly large, but that’s ok. The hotel’s location is quite good, very close to the old part of town, about 10-15 minutes on foot from the central train station (you can also go one stop by underground to Jahnplatz, it’s 100m from there).

The room is unusually decorated; mine (403) had two single beds arranged diagonally. This, unfortunately, has the effect of positioning the headboard of the left bed (which was unmade) at about the spot I generally have my elbow. Luckily, they aren’t cemented in place; I moved it out of the way.

Instead of a chair and desk, the room offers a longish wooden bench with matching wooden sideboard. The bench is somewhat uncomfortable and cold (strangely enough) - possibly, because the heating was completely turned off in the room. I had to rearrange a somewhat haphazard plug multiplier under the sideboard to give me room to at least plug in my laptop; there aren’t any outlets above.

The bathroom is large enough, however the shower stall has a curtain, something I can’t stand. Also, there are no hooks whatsoever in the bathroom, so towels have to be stuffed into the rungs of the heater. There is a soap dispenser next to the sink on the wall, unfortunately, not in the shower.

The bed was okay, but what took the cake was the apparent thinness of the walls to the next room - I was able to understand every word of the conversation the folks next door were having - as if there was a hole in the wall. Completely ridiculous. The elevator was built in 1962 (!), so while the place looks quite recently renovated, the infrastructure is certainly lacking.

Breakfast wasn’t a treat - while it looks to be quite well-stocked, the scrambled eggs were rubbery (I’ve never encountered this before in all my years of travel) and the bacon looked like it was merely passed over the pan. No yoghurt or fresh fruit.

Wifi isn’t free of charge, though the €2 for 24 hours aren’t an issue. What is an issue is that throughput is sporradic - at times, the connection seemed to stand still for 10-20 seconds at a time, then it would load very quickly only to stand still again.

For all that, the price seems too high, I really can’t recommend the place. This is a shame, because the location really is quite good.