Last week we checked in a Premier Inn on Portland Street in Manchester. I've been to a handful of Premier Inn's before, so I knew exactly what to expect.
However, whilst checking in, it came as a nice surprise when the receptionist stated the hotel had been under new refurbishment. My mind instantly jumped back to a TV advert that I had seen a few weeks prior, stating that Premier Inn was changing its 'look'. I was immediately excited because everything became an unexpected surprise.
We entered our room and I was immediately impressed (Can I just say that I have sampled quite a wide range of hotels in the past few years, and have become quite fussy on where I stay!). The first thing that I noticed was the space.. admittedly I had booked a family room (at no extra cost) so these were going to be a little bigger than your average 2-man room. I love a hotel room with a decent floor space.
The bed was huge. When 2 people share a bed which results in you not having to touch, that's when you know you're in a big bed! (A nice bonus, may I add!). Both the duvet, sheets and pillows were just perfect. Premier Inn offer a good night guarantee, whereby if for whatever reason you didn't have a good nights sleep (within reason), they will give you your money back. Because of this scheme, they offer you 2 pillow options, 'fluffy' as I like to call them, and firm. The firm ones are hidden away in the wardrobe. They also had a new touch of ultra violet lighting round the headboard - I found this to look a little seedy when it was dark, so that didn't stay on!
The desk area offered ample space to work off if you were visiting for business, as well as offering you several ports for USB's, chargers etc.
The other side of the room was a sofa (which I assume turned into a sofa bed, although I never tried this). This too was ultra comfy, and when in the hotel, I spent most of my time sat on here reading my book.
There was also a mirror that lit up which I found helpful to do my make up in. Another full length mirror was attached to the wardrobe, which came in handy for outfit checks! There was ample storage space for clothes that needed to be hung up, as well as stored away in drawers.
The bathroom was nice, offering both a bath and shower, which I found to be pretty powerful. I don't think I have ever used a bath whilst in a hotel, but I know some like to. I found the toiletries to be lacking, and no personal touches were made by offering mini shampoos/conditioners etc. Instead, like many standard hotels now, Premier Inn appear to have adopted the soap in a dispenser that doubles up as a shower gel/shampoo. Something that I did find bizarre about the bathroom was that the towel rail was in the bath. Ok - not IN the bath, but on the wall above the bath. Once the shower curtain had closed, you were enclosing the towels in as well which I found bizarre. They didn't get wet, but if changing the angle of the shower then I'm sure they would. Bit of a design flaw there as there was wall space elsewhere for these.
The security of the hotel was pretty high - access into the hotel was only allowed if you used your hotel room swipe card. This applies when using the lift as well. I think more hotels should adopt this idea, there's too many weirdo's roaming about nowadays!
The location of the hotel was almost perfect. You have a variety of restaurants and smaller shops within seconds of leaving the hotel, however the city centre is a mere 5 minute walk away, passing both China Town and Canal Street on the way.
I can't comment on the hotel facilities, because as always, we never use them. Unfortunately the hotel does not offer car parking, however there are a large handful to choose from that are nearby. We parked in an NCP car park 3 minutes away which cost £18 for 24hrs. Don't forget to take this into account when booking your hotel, depending on how many nights you are staying! The receptionist did provide a 30% discount for our parking as we were checking out, however we parked in a different car park to the offer so were unable to use this. We will remember for next time should we visit again!
If you're taking a trip to Manchester anytime soon I'd definitely recommend this hotel!