Despite not jetting off to exotic climates, Novotel Birmingham Airport Hotel was the perfect hotel for my needs the other night. I was seeing my favourite band, Take That, at the Genting Arena which is part of the NEC complex, right next door to the airport.
I booked the room through the Accorhotels website, taking advantage of Quidco cashback (8%) and my Accorhotels membership (10% off). I only booked the hotel a few days before, so I didn’t have much choice of room. I ended up with a Family Room with Queen Bed + Convertible Sofa. Quite a big room for just little old me, but I wasn’t going to complain!
I arrived via train at Birmingham International Station. From there, I took the free ‘Air-Rail Link’ monorail system which runs back & forth between the station and the airport. It takes just a couple of minutes and runs throughout the day. The hotel is just across the road from the Departures entrance/exit.
Check-in was very swift. I’d clicked the “Online Check-In” button in my confirmation email before leaving home, which meant the hotel had all the information they needed for my room to be ready when I arrived. The receptionist kindly asked if I wanted to be on a higher or lower floor and if I wanted to be near the lifts. I wasn’t fussed, so she gave me room 303, right at the end of the corridor on the third floor – very quiet!
The room was a decent size with a queen-size bed, pull-out sofa-bed, bathroom and separate toilet, TV, desk and chair, USB media speaker, kettle (with selection of tea & coffee and a couple of biscuits), mini fridge (with milk in), safe, wardrobe, iron and ironing board, hairdryer and plenty of storage space. The aircon was already on, so the room was the perfect temperature when I arrived. I almost felt like I could move in!
A leaflet told me of the 24-hour room service, as well as breakfast in your room if you so wished.
The bed was very comfortable and I had the best night of sleep that I’ve had in a long time. The duvet was quite thin, but this was perfect in the hot weather we’d been having. The bed had 4 pillows, though I was disappointed to find lipstick marks and a long black hair on one. Two of the pillows were supposedly “smart pillows” which fold to provide support for reading or working, while the other two were regular pillows.
I must say, room 303 is the quietest hotel room I’ve ever slept in! I didn’t hear a peep from any other guests, which is quite unusual. I’m guessing the rooms are soundproofed due to guests coming and going at all times of the day and night for their flights. Also, the room had a door between the bedroom and the hall/storage/entrance area which provided an extra barrier against potential noise from the corridor.
As we’d had such hot weather, the fridge in the hotel room came in very handy. I popped in sandwiches, fruit and drink (bought from the M&S Food store in the airport) for after the concert and it kept them very cool.
I usually hate hotel showers as trying to get the pressure and temperature right usually requires a degree of come sort! Somehow, however, I managed to get the shower right the first time. The temperature and flow were lovely, and it was the perfect solution to my aches and pains the morning after a concert.
At breakfast, I was taken to a table and offered tea and coffee to be served at the table. Breakfast is a self-serve hot and cold buffet affair, as is standard in most hotels these days. The hot buffet included bacon, hash browns, beans, black pudding, sausages, scrambled eggs and fried or poached eggs. The cold buffet included a selection of pastries and bread, as well as a selection of cereals, bananas, fruit salad, grapefruit, cheese, ham and yogurt. Fruit juices and water were also available. It was all very nice.
Other facilities at the hotel include a restaurant and bar, meeting rooms and a fitness centre.
Check-out was even swifter than check-in. All I had to do was drop my key-card in a box on my way out.
All in all, a perfect stay (except for the lipstick marks and hair on the pillow). I’d definitely stay at Novotel Birmingham Airport hotel again. It’s perfect for users of the airport and for people visiting the NEC.