Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow
Travel Blogs from Moscow
Today is Saturday, July 13th and we are boarding an Aeroflot flight to Moscow, a short one hour flight where they actually had time to serve us a little lunch. Tauck is brilliant in that they sent our luggage by truck so we had a hassle free experience at the airport. Once we landed, we immediately start touring the city with 2 great guides. We …
When young Muscovites get married they hang a lock on especially constructed metal 'trees' that line a short bridge across a canal in central Moscow. As the 'trees' are filled (and rusted), they are moved, creating a bizarre allee stretching along Kadashevskya, the adjacent street. Our route to the Tretyakov Museum takes us across the bridge where …
... only held once a year at St. Basil's, the rest of the time it is a place for tourists. We learned that in Russian Orthodox churches there are no seats, worshipers stand, which is considered a more humble posture before God. The services we saw in other churches consisted of the priest chanting prayers with occasional antiphonal responses from the people and frequent making of the sign of the cross. St. Basil's really is great.
... when you need them, sometimes going out for the night it seems, the bathrooms are basic and some genius decided to put electronic locks on the dorm room doors needing a key card for access. All well and good except the lock makes a noise like an alarm clock when someone unlocks it. Not good when you're trying to sleep.
After my rather unsatisfying breakfast I went out walking the city. Went through the GUM store, a massive historical shopping centre that is ...
I have arrived in Moscow. I landed at Vnukovo airport, which was a nice change of pace from the last times, when I went through Domodedovo airport. There to pick me up were Yuri and Larisa, acquaintances of my Russian teacher back home. It surprised me to find that driving from the airport to their appartment took almost as long as driving from my house to the airport this morning. This surprised me since both Vnukovo and the ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
- Shuttle bus service
- Swimming pool
- Room service
- Free High-Speed Internet
Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow
Expensive but great location
We arrived, tired and not looking our best, to be greeted by an open-arm "Welcome to the Baltschug Kempinski!" from the guy on reception. He dealt with us in a very friendly way, gave us a quick tour of the hotel and showed us up to our room, all the while chatting about the history of the hotel and the surrounding area.
The room itself was by far the largest hotel room I've stayed in (and I've stayed in a number of hotels in the same sort of price range) and the bathroom was similarly big and well equipped.
We had paid extra for a view of the Red Square and we were directly facing St Basil's Cathedral - amazing to wake up to! Between it and the hotel though were a couple of busy roads (and the hotel is next to a busy bridge) which meant it was too noisy to have the windows open for any length of time. It only took a couple of minutes to walk over the bridge and be right in the middle of the action and there were a few nice restaurants nearby too.
Although the room was great, the best thing about the hotel was the concierge service. They helped me with all my necessary visa documents (even though we weren't staying with them for our whole time in Russia) and booked onward train tickets for us at a low commission (which made it considerably cheaper than any other way we could have booked them from the UK).
The worst thing was that it was a bit too "business"y for a holiday hotel and the room service breakfast was seriously lacking for the price we paid for it - but the former point didn't really make a difference for us and we expected the latter, just grateful for the convenience.
$500 a night does not buy you politeness.
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! The hotel is fine, but don't expect any politeness or warmth of any kind. The staff is just a margin above rude and quite frankly, the Kempinksi should be concerned as this reflects badly on their brand. I have never seen a concierge look so put out to help you with the simplest requests. As a business traveler, I am very self sufficient but I like some level of comfort when I travel, especially having a hotel staff that is willing to assist you. The staff here needs a serious lesson in hospitality management, perhaps they should go train at the Kempinski in Istanbul where I have never encountered any problems.
Nothing wrong, but....
Rather disappointing stay of 3 nights. Room, restaurant, service all just fractionally above the line of acceptance, to the point where a complaint is just avoided. May be OK in the average 3 star, but in what is touted as one of the best in Moscow, not good. In fairness, nothing totally wrong, just an average, uninspiring stay.
Enjoyed our stay
We stayed at the Kemppinski for 4 nights and really enjoyed our stay. We stayed in an two room suite which was good size and had a view of the Kremlin. Soon after we arrived, we were sent up a nice bottle of champagne and servuga caviar.
The staff were all friendly and helpful. We took advantage of the hotel car service to get around. It was reasonable considering the extra sence of sercurity it gave us.
Also, the hotel's Baltschug restaurant's dinner buffet was horrible. However, the breakfast buffet was wonderful. There are eggs made to order, fresh oj, french cheeses, excellent yogurt and good meat choices.
We even ventured into the hotel's casino which was dark and scary. We were made to go through metal detectors and we were searched. Once inside, there were a few tables with grim looking card dealers. We were almost afraid to win. The hotel is located just over the bridge from all the major attractions.
Most things worked well here. Airport transfers arranged by hotel. Really friendly welcome including really helpful escort to room and questions answererd for my wife and myself any . Good security with keycard access to hotels and again in lifts. Paid $300 US. Nice room although bed was a bit saggy. Breakfast in hotel was fine, included in rate. People serving were good if a bit slow, dealt patiently with some rude guests. Room Service good.
Health club access included, sorry didnt use it!
Location was fine for me but I wasnt there to go shopping. Concierge helpful although one man sporting an English spoken badge didnt do so very well.
Felt safer out and about than I did 15 years ago, not knowingly followed this time!
Good but Expensive
This is an excellent hotel but expensive. We were not surprised to see the restaurent empty with the prices they charged when you can eat perfectly well in Moscow for half the price. We were also disappointed with the stocking up of our room and mini bar. It was a bit hit and miss. Sometimes they supplied bottled water sometimes they didn't. Our mini bar was never replenished why we were there. We had a delux Kremlin Veiw room which was spacious, clean and comfortable.
Not Bad but Overpriced
We stayed for 2 nights in a Deluxe Kremlin view room. The room was comfortable and large done in shades of purple, gold and white. The bathroom was nice but not extraordinary. The Kempinski's position on the Moskva River gives the best views of the Kremlin in Moscow.
The service and restaurants were of a high standard. We enjoyed meals in every restaurant, including fresh sushi and Russian dishes. The desserts of Cafe Kranzler were divine. Expect to pay dearly for the quality of service rendered. A piece of cake in $10USD and liter of water can cost $15. Prices were expressed in "units" that represented euros. Note the conversion from euro units to roubles utilized a conversion rate about 10% higher than the actual exchange rate.
We also stayed a the Park Hyatt which had better facilities but poor service. One thing to note is given its location across from the Kremlin a longer walk, about 20 minutes, is required to get from the Kempinski to the shopping areas on the other side of Red Square.
We were in Russia in December and stayed at the Kempinski and had a fantastic stay. You cannot find a better location for touring the Kremlin and Red Square, as it is a short walk over to these sites. The security at the hotel is excellent and guests must use their room keys to activate the elevators. The room was huge and very comfortable. We had a very enjoyable dinner in the hotel at the Shogun restaurant and looked upon the Kremlin. I wouldn't recommend eating at the hotel all the time as it is quite expensive and there are many restaurants around the hotel. Having said that and having stayed at others hotels in Moscow, I would highly recommend this hotel.
Wonderful 25th wedding anniversary
For our 25th wedding anniversary we decided to go to Russia. We booked into the Kempinski for October 2004 and was worried about the weather and location. The weather was cool, but the location could not have been better. It is away from the very, very busy streets and just a bridge away from St. Basil's. We loved the room and the staff was always very attentive. Also, dining was always a grand affair when we chose the hotel's dining room. The breakfast buffet was also wonderful. After visiting Moscow and seeing where the other hotels were located I was very glad that we had chosen this one.
OK but far from a favorite
My wife and I stayed at the Baltschug Kempinski during a recent vacation to Moscow. The location is excellent, directly across the river from the Kremlin with a great view of St. Basils and the river.
The rooms were clean and the hotel - as stated in the various guides is well appointed and tastefully decorated.
However, I was dissapointed with our stay. I found the staff to be minimally helpful and not particularly anxious to do more than the absolute minimum. The only exception was the effort put into extracting as much as possible in tips and gratuities at every opportunity. This is a hotel that needs to address the attitude of its personnel. Perhaps I am being sensitive but I find it surprising that a hotel as expensive and well regarded as the Baltschug finds it necessary to dig into their client's pockets at every opportunity. The effort to extract more money was continual, from the attempt to upgrade us at check in to the exhorbinant cost for breakfast. They didn't even provide bottled water in the bathroom (normally standard in Russia).
The location of the Baltschug is great, almost as good as the National or the Metropol. But, don't expect service commensurate with the price.