I recently returned to the beautiful city of Munich in Germany and needed a hotel. On my last stay I booked the Novotel Munich City Arnulfpark and was very positively surprised. I also noticed that the building hosts an Ibis hotel as well, which takes up one half of the property.
As this was just a one night stay and Ibis hotels are very ‘upscale’ for the 3-stars category I decided to shake things up a bit and see how this hotel would compare to the Novotel.
As mentioned both hotels are sharing the same building but follow different service concepts. Novotel is Accor Hotels mid-level business travel brand while Ibis targets a more budget focused customer group.
Regardless Ibis properties are almost always way better than one would expect for 3 stars hotels, with clean and modern rooms and a solid set of amenities. Well that is of course except the rather disappointing Ibis Munich Airport.
The check in at the Ibis Munich Arnulfpark was swift and simple, while there were only 2 staff manning both front desk and the hotels lobby cafe I did not have to wait to pick up my room key.
I was assigned one of the far rooms in the 6th level, following my Accor preference of far from the elevators and high up, being able to note these preferences is something I really appreciate about the Le Club program.
The hallway was typical for newer Ibis and featured the brands ‘signature’ carpet, it was also bright which I appreciate as some hotel keep their hallways in the ambience of a dark side alley (looking at you Pullman Shanghai Jing’an).
The room itself was pretty standard for Ibis properties as well, the brand provides a very unified product which I prefer as you are rarely disappointed. There was a real queen size bed, opposed to 2 mattress combined as you find it often in Europe, which was comfortable enough.
On both sides of the beds were big lamps as well as a basic but handy side table. There were also power sockets on one side of the bed while on the other side of the bed was a desk and a wardrobe of sorts.
I like that the rather small room comes with a smart design that allows for a wardrobe next to a bed, side tables, chair and desk, tho I found the wardrobe rather unpractical, given that the opening is very small.
As mentioned the room also had a small working desk with a phone and a bench to sit on next to it. The desk also had a cube on it with USB plugs and power sockets to connect multiple devices. That was very nice as just way too many hotel rooms have an insufficient number of power sockets, but it is also a missed chance as all sockets where the European type. It would be great to have at least one socket that allows for all plugs to connect. Overall I was still very impressed to find so many amenities in this hotel category. I even found two complementary bottles of water in the room, additionally to the welcome drink voucher.
These came in at the right time as every supermarket in Munich apparently closes at 8pm, so if you pass that curfew you won’t be able to buy any normal priced water anymore.
The room also had a separate bathroom that even had a decent sized walk in shower. While I wish Ibis would provide more than 2 shower towels and 2 tiny hand towels it is well above the 3 star requirements. The bathroom was also stocked with standard amenities like basic shampoo and body wash, other like a dental kit are available for free from the front desk.
One thing that was a bit inconvenient is that there was literally no space to put luggage. The wardrobe was too small for it as was the bench next to the desk. The space between bed and walls was too small as well leaving only the entryway to the room which meant if you want to open the luggage you couldn’t go out of the room anymore at the same time.
In conclusion I was extremely impressed about the deal that this property represents. The room was clean and featured everything a good hotel room should have. Complementary water was provided, the staff was friendly and professional. While the Wifi wasn’t blazing fast it was perfectly fine to use for normal browsing and even video streaming. The Ibis shares the same modern building and style as the adjoined Novotel, but of course the service level and class of amenities as well as the room size is much superior in the Novotel, which comes at a higher price that is still a deal. In the end it depends on each and everyones preference but I found both the Novotel and Ibis to be a perfect place in a convenient location to stay for a night or more.