Over drinks with friends in the autumn, we got into the subject of New Year and ended up deciding we would visit them in Brighton. Not knowing exactly what the plan was, I booked a room at the Holiday Inn on the sea front in Brighton for 31st December. As is not uncommon, I was able to book a room in a higher category than the basic one on points, so it is always worth while checking the options on the booking page.
We arrived in the car, not wanting to risk the engineering works on the railways. The car park is easily missable and we ended up going round the one way system and having to ask where it was at reception. For reference, it can be accessed on the east side of the hotel in a very small entrance. It is also very tight so perhaps not sensible if you drive a large 4×4. It is really close the the British Airways i360, so it is easy to find.
Check in was very slow, not helped by the lack of staff and the drafting in of someone who didn’t know what they were doing. This mean that none of the perks of being Spire were proactively offered, but were given on request.
Our room was in the category just below a suite and was plenty big enough for just one night. Retailing at £220, it was an excellent use of points.
The room had a wonderful sea view, large bed and sofa, as well as a fairly decent bathroom.
It is definitely the case that the exterior lets the place down; I was pleasantly surprised about the inside compared to the outside.
The bar was modern and service good, although there were no savoury snacks available with our free drinks vouchers; I had to settle for a pint and a mars bar.
In the end, it did exactly what we wanted to do. It was reasonably priced on points for the time and location, and in the end our parking was free. It didn’t, however, have that wow factor, and I think that I would be looking at staying at the Hilton further along the seafront the next time I needed a hotel in Brighton.