Nice hotel but in some ways design challenged. A review of Mandarin Oriental, Prague
There is no doubt that most people that stay at this hotel will be very happy. Unfortunately for me and my partner, we did not like the way our room was set up, and this lead us to find numerous other poorly designed elements to the hotel.
The room: We booked a middle level room that was larger than expected, had a beautiful wood paneled ceiling, and two French windows. It was very nice, but it only had one chair other than the desk chair and it was a small straight back chair with no ottoman. The room had no shelf space to place unpacked clothes. There was an area in the room that could have been the perfect place for a chest of drawers. The entry hall had an armoire but it was set up to hang clothes, and not much else. Both our bags had to remain in view. So the bottom line was we could not really unpack much and we did not have a place to relax other than the bed. It would also have been nice to have some of the lights work on dimmers - they are all on or off only. The bed was very comfortable and the furnishings were in excellent shape as they were new.
The bathroom: Large but with bland sand color marble and a bath/shower combination and no separate water closet. A glass panel covered most of the tub but not all so that some cold air came through while showering. It seemed like a lot of rooms on our floor had bath/shower combinations. Not what we expected at a new luxury hotel.
The gym: Very nice with room for some more equipment which I hope they have ordered. However, the hardwood floor is already showing wear and was a poor choice for a gym. The gym is also surrounded by glass walls that allow other guests and employees to look in as they walk by. The architectural lighting in the room gives off way too much heat. This is also true about the hallways in the hotel. You can actually feel the heat as you walk around. The best design flaw is in the men's locker room. The door opens right into the lockers, offering no privacy from the hallway. There is a shower room with two small showers. They have no doors and no place to hold soap. I took a three minute shower holding body gel and then saw that I flooded the area all the way back into the changing area. The gym is separate from the spa and don't even ask about the crazy underground corridor to get to the spa. Unless the weather is really bad, just walk outside and cross the motor court.
The restaurant: We had breakfast here every morning. The food and service was very good. The room is all white and looks cool but the employees' shoes made endless clicking noises on the marble floor.
I have never written a review before in this manner or format but I just cannot believe that a hotel company like Mandarin Oriental could make so many mistakes with the design of one of their hotels. This hotel is a very good example of stylish looks over substance and function.
Like I said at the beginning of this review, most people will be very happy here and will not notice many of the items I have pointed out. The staff was outstanding, especially since the hotel was open for less then one month upon our arrival. The location is great, on the quiet side of town. We never used any transportation, we could walk to everything.
Prague is as beautiful as everyone says. Don't miss any of the baroque churches, they are stunning. Also, L'Angolo is a new, great Italian restaurant. One of the few restaurants in Prague that we saw that had a new modern design.