Delightful, friendly and welcoming A review of Dostoevsky Hotel
I have just returned from 4 nights at the Dostoevsky Hotel in St Petersburg. I very nearly had second thoughts about staying there (my first visit to the city) after reading the negative review written in August 2004. Thank goodness I went ahead with my booking. The hotel is situated just off the Nevsky Prospect - not within easy walking distance of the centre but still in a good location. We were a party of 4 (including 2 elderly ladies) and travelled everywhere by taxi. However, more adventurous travellers would have no trouble with busses/metro as both are very close by and frequent. The shopping centre above which the hotel is built is very smart and extremely convenient having an excellent supermarket which is open very long hours. The hotel itself was everything we could have wished for and more. The staff were delightful, all young, speaking very good English and incredibly helpful. They made sure we had everything we needed, booked ballet tickets, taxis and found out details of tours etc. The rooms, although small, had all that was required. They were clean and fresh. The beds were comfortable and we looked over the centre courtyard (not concreted but prettily laid out with trees in pots and swirls of different coloured stones). The window opened in two ways giving either a small or large amount of fresh air. The room was hot to begin with but as there was a temperature control in the room this was simply switched right down to a temperature to suit ourselves. It is a good idea to take your own hairdryer ( lots of plug sockets available) as they are not in the room but only available on request and then removed. The bathroom, although small, was cleverly designed with spacious corner shower and, again, smart and clean. The first night we had a delicious meal in the restaurant. We also really enjoyed the breakfast each day. The buffet was laid out with various bread and rolls, fresh fruit, cereal, salads, yoghurt, smoked salmon, herring, cheese, cold meats, cooked breakfasts also on offer, delicious pastries, fruit juice, various teas and coffee. It really set us up for the day.
Opposite the hotel is the most beautiful church which we visited. They do expect women to cover their heads as a form of respect so remember to take a scarf.
Very close to the hotel (two minutes walk) is a great little pancake restaurant where we sampled wonderful Russian food. They serve delicious soup - a meal in itself - and all sorts of crepes with fillings such as caviar and smoked salmon.