Totally over-rated A review of Hotel des Colonies
Stayed at this hotel from Jan 15th for 3 nights with my partner. After all the wonderful reviews I read on this site I was really looking forward to my stay there. I knew it was not a 4-star hotel so my expectations were not set too high I think.
The hotel is located near Place Rogier and the Gare du Nord, about a 20-minutes walk to central Brussels, and right by the metro. I found very practical to be able to take the train from the airport directly to the Gare du Nord and then only walk 4 minutes to the hotel.
The reception area could have been gorgeous if it wasn't for the peeling paint everywhere and the clearly battered furniture. It must have been very nice 50 years ago, but now the whole place looks very shabby and dusty.
We arrived at 11AM, and I wasn't expecting a room to be ready so early. Nevertheless the receptionist took the time to call one of the housekeeping staff and asked if there were any cleaned room. There appeared to be none, and I heard him clearly comment to his colleague (I speak fluent French, it helps) that he was going to "open" the first floor since the hotel was nearly full anyway and that they'll probably need the rooms there.
After taking the very dirty elevator, I understood why the 1st floor was normally not open. The originally light beige carpets were ripped off in places and heavily stained. The windows were cracked (some were taped) and it's with a half-broken heart that I walked to our assigned room (#124).
Hopefully the room was in a slightly better shape than the rest of the hotel. The carpet and wallpaper seemed relatively new and clean. It was small but acceptable for 3 nights and 2 people. The bathroom was tiny but clean. Again, it felt very 1950'ish.
After a long day of walking through the European capital, I was looking forward to a good night's sleep. To my horror, when preparing the bed, I noticed several stains and wheel marks (from a laundry trolley and footsteps probably). It was past midnight, I was tired, so we decided to sleep fully dressed and ask housekeeping to change the sheets the next morning.
We were awakened at 7h30 by the works that were in progress outside in the hotel's courtyard, with workers walking just in front of our window...
Breakfast was included and consisted of a small buffet with basic stuffs such as bread, rolls, croissants and un-refrigerated yogurts that would have made any normal stomachs go sick. The breakfast room itself was probably the best part of this hotel, and reminded me of a grand dining room aboard the Titanic.
The rest of the stay was more or less a repetition of the above.
In short, I do not recomment this hotel. It's old, dirty and shabby. For the same price (eur100/night) I think it is possible to find something better.