Historical Traveller Reviews of Express by Holiday Inn Belfast University Street Hotel
For the price it was nothing special, the room was clean but not exactly fragrant. The staff weren't particularly pleasant and the bar/restaurant had no atmosphere and didn't seem to open in the evening. The attached pub behind the hotel was similarly uninspiring, the food tasted a bit microwaved and I expected more for £8 per main course. However, the buffet breakfast was okay, but steer clear of the stale croissants.
nice hotel, but too much noise...
We stayed here on a Saturday night in October. We had a few drama's on check in. Firstly we were too early, as flight got in at 7am so were at reception by 8-ish. Room was not going to be ready until 2pm, so we stored luggage and went off to tour Belfast on the open top bus ( after finding somewhere to have breakfast). We got back to hotel after 2pm, only to be told we still did not have a room. No real drama, so we sat and waited whilst the reception staff sorted this out ( staff were good and did their best ). Finally we had our room - 1 double and a single for our daughter. The room was clean, a decent size and had TV, tea and coffee making facilities and the usual things expected. That night we ate at the restaurant/bar connected to the hotel. Food was great, so was service. Music was a little on the load side, but it was no real problem. We ventured back to our room about 9pm and thought we'd get a good nights sleep after an very early start that day with early flights and such.... We were so wrong. It all started about midnight, and didn't stop until well into the morning. We had a door to a connecting room, and those people in that room came in very late and decided to watch TV whilst yelling over the top of it for ages. If that wasn't bad enough, we had a bunch of girls giggling their heads off whilst stubbling along outside our room. Then we also had the people daring each other to run with their pants down, up and down the hallways... This went on for hours too ! We left a complaint to management the next day on check out, but never heard a thing back. Not that we really expected too.
Other than the noise factor ( which I must say spoilt it for us ), the rest was passable. Breakfast in the morning was nice and filling with a good choice. Staff were friendly and helpful, but sorry to say we'd not stay again or reccomend hotel due to bad experiance ourselves. Maybe mid week would be safer as no young people partying... Worth a try at the price I guess ??
Location wise, it's not in the best spot. It didn't bother us as we don't mind walking. Others might find it a bit too far out of the way.
Lack of Sleep
I agree with the previous reviewer in that the sound proofing is very poor. I was awoken during the night as a large group of loud guests returned from their night out. This lasted for a while as they ran through the corridors and shouting and screaming. I phoned reception and they did send someone up to sort the problem out. However, this was not the end of the sleepless night as in the next room the gentleman snored so loudly I doubt a lead wall would have prevented me from hearing it! The problem being is that the rooms are connected by internal doors which do not provide sound proofing.
I did find the staff very helpful and polite however.
The cooked breakfast (or ceral.toast) was an all you can eat and it was great that it was included in the price.
Compared to the other hotel prices in Belfast you can't go wrong for the price. Average.
Not as good as other British Holiday Inn Express hotels. The soundproofing is very poor and we had a disturbed night as rowdy guests came home in the early hours. The staff on the front desk could do to go to charm school - very offhand. Get a cooked breakfast however - not normal in mainland UK HI Express hotels.
Holiday Inn Express Works
I have stayed at this hotel quite a lot in the past year. I have a choice but it is well located close to Botanic Avenue where there are lots of eating and drinking options. It's easy to walk into the city centre particularly Great Victoria Stree.
The staff have been really good with me. I've never been turned away when other Belfast hotels have turned other loyal customers away. The restaurant at the back of the hotel is improving and creating more dishes on site. The rooms get very warm even in winter, when I've had to turn heating off. It's not a modern HIE and does need an upgrade but it's been really good for me. Good car park at the rear which is secured. Biggest choice of food for breakfast buffet I've come across in a HIE.
Nice hotel, worth the price
I stayed there from 9/1/06 through 9/9/06. The price was very good for a Belfast hotel. It was in a great location and near everything. There's a Starbucks a few blocks away. The hotel is clean and the staff is very good, although somewhat aloof. However, they paid attention to every request and were kind and considerate. The restaurant behind the hotel (Chambers) is excellent and I recommend it for dinner. The hotel served a full buffet breakfast every day and the variety/quality was good. However, you can only eat so much of the same food every day so I recommend having breakfast elsewhere once in a while. Still, the food was very good. The rooms were fine. However, a few minor but important things for travelers to know: There is no voice mail. If you receive a call they keep it at the front desk. You have to call down to get it. Your phone lights up if there's a message. There is no clock radio in the room but they do provide two ways to get wake up calls (phone and via the TV). The TV had only 8 - 10 channels to watch, mostly news. There are no dressers or drawers in the rooms. They have cubbie-holes where you can shove your clothes, but they aren't very large. Unless you tell housekeeping to change your sheets, they don't do it. There is no iron/ironing board in the room. My shower doors didn't close totally so I would sometimes get water all over the floor. The shower nozzle was old and needed to be replaced. They only provide two towels but if you want more you can ask. There is no room service (for meals). The window only opens a crack and there is no central air. I can't imagine what it would have been like if it was hot. There is a heater but I couldn't figure out how to turn it on. I don't think it was controllable from the room. Having said all that, it was still an okay place to stay. It was clean and quiet and that's important to me. I never once heard anyone in another room. I would stay there again because the neighborhood was good and it was centrally located. I would ask for a bigger room next time.
I've stayed here twice, once for pleasure and lately for a week-long business trip. The hotel is fine - rooms are clean, reasonably spacious with a good en suite and high-pressure shower. It's a basic, budget hotel, with a great location beside Queen's University and close to University St and Botanic Ave - probably the best area in Belfast for restaurants and also very safe; it's about a 10- to 15-minute pleasant walk to City Hall. Breakfast is very good and the servce was very friendly. There is also a very secure carpark and nice bar/restaurant towards the rear of the hotel complex. If you get a reasonable rate, book it.
I stayed in this hotel one night. It's in a quite street (10 min by car to the city centre of Belfast). The rooms are ok, clean with TV, good bathroom... The staff is OK and when I arrived, I had a letter with my name, the key of the room ... The breakfast is delicious - croisants, yoghourts, bread, toasts, coffee, milk, eggs, sausaces... (tipical English food)but I wanted chocolate :-( My rooms costs +/- 56 pounds (reservation by internet)
from A TripAdvisor Member
I stayed here with my family in two adjoining rooms. We stayed for three nights and the rooms were never vacuumed once until on the third day we complained. My young son found two empty beer cans under his bed. This hotel seemed to me like a bag drop for young stag and hen parties and I think the service reflects this.
I would never stay in this hotel again.
Just spent a week here and was amazed at the service we received for a budget hotel. Room was clean and the free breakfast was very good, cooked and continental. Staff were very pleasant and helpful. Good area close to the city centre would stay here again.
Top Local Tips for Belfast
Molly's Yard - try it!
Good food and cosy atmosphere. Very small location, on Botanic Avenue. The food was so good, I burnt my mouth because I didn't want to wait for it to cool down! ;o)
To and from City Airport
£10 by taxi or take the train from Sydenham station (10 mins walk from terminal) to various stations in the City
Black Taxi Tours
We went for a Black Taxi Tour, which was quite informative and well worth the money (£25). See: http://www.belfasttours.com/about.htm