Sits just behind the Botanical Gardens in the north of town; a two-minute stroll from Botanique metro station.
Rooms range from large (L) to extra, extra large (XXL) and are decked out with IKEA-style white furniture, grass-green carpet, and floor-to-ceiling windows so the light floods in to light up the pièce de la resistance: a handpainted fresco unique to each room. Details of the artist and the inspiration behind their artwork are posted on the bedroom mirror. Also included are free bathrobes, slippers, a Senseo tea-and-coffee machine, iPod charger, TV with on-demand movies and a mini-bar fridge that is left empty — bar bottles of still and sparkling water — so you can store supplies bought at Carrefour Express located across the road, if you so wish. The bathrooms haven’t been updated since the building’s Hyatt days, but they feature the hotel’s own-brand Feel Bloomy! toiletries
Witness marketing in action! All the public areas are scented with the hotel’s zesty own-brand perfume (which you can buy, of course) and the music piped into the hallways, isn’t just any music — it’s the hotel’s own CD (one of two, so far) created by resident DJ Cosy Mozzy and inspired by frescoes on a particular floor.
Eating and drinking
Breakfast, which is taken in the OO! dining room, costs 25 euros, but this is reduced to 19 euros when booking your room online. It’s a grand hot-and-cold buffet, including pancakes and syrup — and even your morning Actimel.
Across the lobby is Smoods bar/restaurant which has seven different ‘mood islands’: passion, bazaar, library, safari, spring, bling bling and flower power and serves mains in the region of 14—25 euros. Resident DJ Cosy Mozzy plays every Friday and Saturday 10pm—2am.
There used to be vending machines in the basement, but these are being replaced by a Foodmaker stand selling healthy sandwiches and snacks.
There’s a rooftop fitness centre (open: 6.30—11pm Monday—Sunday) with top-notch running machines, cross trainers, bikes and a weights area; underground parking with 180 spaces; in the basement there’s a shoeshine machine you can use free of charge and computers with a different international keyboard attached to each, so you don’t have to keep looking for that elusive @ symbol; a Monday—Friday laundry service, in-room massages are available; and a designated business area called ‘Dare to Explore’ — each room is named after inspirational business celebrities like Henry John Heinz (as in tinned beans) and Daniel Swarovski (as in crystals) and features a board bearing their picture and biography. Free WiFi is available up to 60MB/ day (after that it’s charged at 5 euros/day) and you can play Nintendo Wii for free any time of day or night on the second floor.
Staff are known by their nicknames — I was served by Edelweiss, MS and The Voice!
Who stays there
Ideal for families and very popular with Dutch and English businesspeople.
When you book online you can choose which frescoed room you’d like to stay in.
- Business Centre
- Fitness Centre
- High-Speed Internet
- Backpackers / Students
- Business travellers
- Families with teenagers
- Families with younger children
- First-time travellers
- Chilling out
Pros & Cons
- Incredibly spacious rooms
- Family and disabled-traveller friendly
- You can hear the traffic when staying in rooms overlooking the Gardens