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Which hotels in Poland? *** Updated***

After reading a lot of reviews, mostly on TripAdvisor, I've winnowed out the chaff, but I'd like your thoughts before making these fateful decisions. AC is usually a must for me. I think September could be hot and open windows might mean a lot of street noise, as well as uncomfortably warm.

Gdansk (4 nights from Friday Sept 8).

  1. Celestin Residence, Straganiarska 19. Sounds like modernized medieval building, nice amenities, but no AC
  2. Mercure Stare Miasto. Quality varies with this chain, but I've enjoyed all the Mercures I've stayed at. Looking at the map, it's not as central as #1, but not too far away, closer to the train station and looks like a large supermarket around the corner. Amenities like #1 plus AC. And it's almost $100 less for the 4 nights.

Warsaw (4 nights from Tues, Sept 12). Warsaw isn't cheap! #1 and #2 are $75-80/night, the others are $105-120.

  1. Hotel Apartments Zgoda. 2 rm suite with kitchenette, AC, free laundry
  2. Ibis Old Town. I've often stayed in Ibis hotels, know what I'm getting. I'm a little hesitant about this one because it's huge, 333 rooms, which could mean groups and lots of noise in the corridors.
  3. Novotel Centrum. lots of amenities
  4. Mercure Grand.
  5. Chopin. The RS guide makes this one sound really attractive, but no AC and though it has an elevator, TA reviews mentioned that it's a long flight up from ground floor to get to the slow, tiny elevator.

Krakow (5 nights from Sat. Sept 16). At Zoe's recommendation, I booked the Hotel Ester back in April.

Thanks for your insights.

The Ibis in Gdansk was great. It's just on the edge between the Old Town and the New Town, with a shopping mall incl. supermarket a block away. The only time I used transportation was taxi from the airport on arrival and to the train station on departure. The station was only a 10 minute walk away, but it meant a flight of stairs down and up to get across the street to the station, and the taxi was cheap. I walked everywhere and nothing was far. I did use the AC but only because street noise woke me up several times the first night - occasional passersby with loud voices in the still of the night every hour or two till dawn's early light. I was so glad I didn't stay at the Mercure just down the street. There are 2 or 3 major buildings going up next door to it and the construction noise was noticeable from a couple blocks away. Thankfully the Ibis was on the other side of the Mercure and most rooms (including mine) were not toward the Mercure. The staff were very helpful and friendly. The room was comfortable (with the minimum amenities that Ibis provides), great bed, good shower, good lighting.

In Warsaw I ended up in an apartment through (recommended in the RS guide). I phoned them to book and they were super helpful and responsive. The apartment was a block from the main square in the Old Town, very convenient location. The flat itself was a tad run down and not quite as clean as could be, but nothing to really be bothered about, and it was comfortable and more than adequate. The website said there was AC but I saw no sign of it and never needed it - just opened the windows when I wanted cooler air.

Now I'm at Hotel Ester In Krakow in the heart of Kazimierz and loving it.

Posted by
11266 posts

I was in Poland in September 5-16, 2013 (first Krakow, then Warsaw; didn't get to Gdansk). If your weather is anything like my weather, AC is the last thing that will be on your mind! The first half of my trip was sunny and pleasant; some days I needed a light jacket, some days I didn't. The last half was rainy and grey, and I needed a jacket with liner by day, and added a sweater for night.

Obviously no one can predict the weather, but unless mine was a total outlier (and given Poland's latitude, I don't think it is), you probably shouldn't need AC in September there.

I have no specific lodging recommendations; the places I stayed were OK, but not worth going back to (in each case, I'd plan to stay elsewhere). Don't worry, the places I stayed are not on your list!

Posted by
6742 posts

Hi Chani,
I sent you a PM with my thoughts. Unfortunately, the historical weather patterns have been so erratic from year to year that you shouldn't count on not needing AC in September. Here's link of historical temps just for 2016, the highs on some days exceeded 80 degrees. If AC is a must have, then I wouldn't take a chance on it. The weather can turn on a dime even between very early to mid September and varies by city.

Posted by
119 posts

You don't really need AC in September. I live in Poland all year round without it. The only time I felt need for it was in July/early August 2015 when we experienced an unusually long heat wave with even night temperatures not dropping below 22-25C. In September there may be some hot days but nights are cold (below 15C) and buildings cool down naturally so it's not oppressive. I can't comment on the street noise problem but you can see the hotels you mention on Google Street View to get an idea if that may be a problem or not.

Posted by
15 posts

Hi Chani!
I have read your post regarding Hotels in mentioned cities.
For Warsaw - my hint would go to Novotel Centrum as they have good balance between price & comfort + really comfy beds :) Go for the highest possible floor there - to have nice view over city centre! It's located very central, close to Palace of Science and Culture and many metro lines.
Go for Gromada Centrum in Warsaw to feel how it was to live in communist times on your own ;) haha they changed many things but the communist spirit is still there. Price should be much lower than in Novotel but location is still great!
For Krakow - if price is important factor then go 4 Mercure. Good amenities but at a cost of bit longer walks to the city centre.

Posted by
2163 posts

I visited Gdansk but just as a long day trip from Warsaw, and you've already selected Krakow, so my suggestion in Warsaw is to stay anywhere in the Old or New (still old) town areas, that will make exploring the major sites quite easy. I walked to the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in about 20 minutes from the MaMaison Regina, really lovely hotel and rather fancy but at the time I booked there wasn't much that suited me so for $90-100 US I really got an upscale experience. Due to a scheduling conflict of my own doing I also stayed further down in the midst of Old Town at the Hotel Bristol--gorgeous old hotel, quite elegant and a superb experience, again for about $100 US.

Posted by
12400 posts

I stayed on the same street (without checking my notes) in Gdansk in a Pension in July 2003. Obviously, there was no AC. Two years earlier in July 2001 I made it to Warsaw, stayed in an apt (that was not my call), can't remember if AC was available, most likely not back then.

In Gdansk very close to the train station is a Holiday Inn, not far from the Mercure. It was there is 2003.

Posted by
1 posts

We just returned from Gdansk and Krakow and were very glad we had AC. It was quite warm and more humid than we were used to, so even though it rained almost every day we enjoyed the cool AC for sleeping.

Posted by
2097 posts

Chani, I am planning our trip to Poland for next July and the hotels you list are already booked for my dates. I even emailed 2 of them thinking maybe they held a few back from but got a, sorry fully booked, reply. This is for the Warsaw portion of our trip. I am going to book the Polonia Palace probably within the next few days. I want to email them directly first so see if it is less expensive then I booked Wroclaw already and am looking at GDANSK and Kraków next. I hope you will write a trip report after your trip in September.

Posted by
14399 posts

Barbara, are you sure they are all fully booked? In my experience, looking a year out for rooms, many sites say "no availability" because they just don't take bookings that far in advance. Often they don't even have rates yet.

Update if anyone was wondering:
Gdansk - By the time I got around to booking the Mercure, the price was as high as the Celestin (whose price had dropped a litte). I decided it wasn't worth $25/night to save a 10-minute walk to the old city centre, so I booked the Ibis, next door to the Mercure
Warsaw - thanks to Agnes, I found what looks like a lovely apartment in a great location in the middle of Old Town.

Departure's in about 6-7 weeks, haven't checked the calendar yet.

Posted by
2097 posts

I did email one hotel in Warsaw directly, if I remember correctly (husband deleted email) it was the Hotel Mamaison Le Regina. They answered those dates I wanted were indeed sold out. I know people make reservations then cancel, but since I need two rooms in each city I just went ahead and booked. These are the hotels:

Kraków - Hilton Garden Inn (husband works for Hilton so rate was too good to pass up even though it is a little outside of the city center)
Wroclaw - Qubus hotel
Warsaw - Polonia Palace

I went through because I have used them before and never have had a problem with changes or cancellations. I might email each hotel directly down the road to see if I get a better rate.

I am one of those planners who gets a little nervous about being shut out because I think, "if we want to go there (name a hotel, museum, etc) so must other people." I don't kid myself thinking hotels, etc are sitting there waiting for me to call.

I already contacted Andrew Durman and booked a few days with him and transport to Wroclaw from Kraków. I will continue looking at transportation since we finally decided not to rent a car this trip.

After Poland we are going to Croatia for 3 weeks. The couple we are traveling with will leave us then we will meet up with 4 other family members for the last 2 weeks. So, I have that part of the trip to plan also. Hotels/transportation/car rental from Rijeka, (day trip to Venice), to Plitvice Lakes, Split, Korcula, Vrnik, and Dubrovnik.

Like everyone else on this forum I love the planning, like a puzzle I have to piece together. But, I don't like to rush so I start as soon as definate plans and dates have been made. Once the airfares are available I will start checking, and when that is done, I can plan the fun stuff (museums, restaurants, sights, etc,) at my leisure.

I hope your trip is spectacular and look forward to a trip report.

Posted by
12400 posts

The Polonia Palace in Warsaw is fantastic. You won't be disappointed there.

For Gdansk I heartily recommend if you want a small, simple, nice place close to the Old Town the hotel-Pension, "Dom Aktora" at Straganiarska 55/56.

Posted by
123 posts