York – Ibis York Centre

I booked this hotel as part of the Black Friday offer from Accor, all the way back in December. It was the last of the 50 or so room nights that I’d booked in this offer across January, February and March, all fortunately taken before the virus has limited my travel somewhat.

The Ibis York Centre isn’t in the heart of York, but it’s a short walk to the railway station and was convenient enough for me. It’s rated badly, TripAdvisor put it at 46th out of 47 hotels in York, so there’s clearly some work to do.

This was the room that I was given, although it transpired that the lock didn’t work and so I couldn’t lock the room. Two staff members came to resolve it before the maintenance man was called, although it transpired that he had gone home. I was given another room promptly enough though, it was all handled well. The room was basic, no welcome amenity, but it was all clean and comfortable. Reading some reviews of the hotel, the door locks do seem to be a problem, and some guests can only resolve that by slamming the doors, which might be their only option, but still disturbing for others.

The beer selection was very weak, although that’s not surprising for a hotel bar which isn’t even in the very centre of a city. I asked for a Bud, to which the staff member said they didn’t have any. I could see the bottle, so I tried again and thought he’d misheard me, he then said they don’t sell Bud. I asked for a Budweiser, and got my Bud. Although the barman decided that he wouldn’t offer me a glass with my exciting bottle of Bud.

The breakfast was fine, to the side there was a hot selection of bacon, sausages and hash browns, with cereals, muffins and other standard Ibis fare in the central section. It took the staff some time to replenish empty items, but that was more down to how busy they were than any lack of effort. My breakfast came included with the room price, otherwise I’d have probably passed over it and walked into York to get something a bit more exciting.

The hotel has a newer wing to it, which is badly built and gives limited sound protection between floors, so Ibis are always going to have problems here. I suspect they’d probably be better off giving up with this building as I can’t see that they’ll ever shift off near bottom spot with the noise problems in the hotel, although having written that, I didn’t personally get too disturbed.

If they are committed to the building, it does need a modernisation of the rooms as well, they’re feeling a bit battered and the bathrooms certainly need some attention to bring them up the standard of Ibis hotels, which frankly isn’t that high a bar to reach. The manager responded in one review written by a disgruntled guest that the hotel is formed of three separate historic buildings, but that a modernisation programme is being considered.

The staffing in the hotel was generally pretty good, although I wonder whether the hotel management should just leave Accor and run this as an independent budget hotel, or switch to being an Ibis Budget. The hotel was around £40 including breakfast, which I thought was perfectly acceptable, although usually the hotel is more expensive then this.