What is the most cost-effective hotel you have ever stayed in?
The hotels in Zhengzhou Airport District offer quite good value for money,
which even made me consider renting an office there at one point.
This thought lasted for about 5 to 10 seconds,
but before we reached the airport, the taxi driver asked us to get off at the highway exit in advance.
If even taking a taxi doesn’t ensure a direct trip to the destination, one would always be late for court hearings. How can we then talk about the ideal of rule of law?
Surprising Hotel Value in Jiangyou and Xingyi
In Jiangyou, Sichuan, there’s a hotel with a somewhat German-sounding name, possibly including “Baden.” I stayed there around 2018 for a price of just over 200 yuan, definitely under 300. It was similar to the price of budget hotels in big cities.
The hotel boasted an excellent indoor swimming pool, a decent gym, and very nice rooms, likely including breakfast. It felt like it should be in the 400-500 yuan price range.
I booked it through eLong. When I tried to log in recently to check, I found that eLong only keeps records for one year, so I couldn’t see it anymore.
Another memorable stay was last summer in Xingyi, Guizhou. The hotel was only 190 yuan, a price at which you wouldn’t normally expect breakfast to be included.
The room was nicely decorated, and I was upgraded to a suite. They offered a fruit plate, complimentary sour plum juice at the reception, and the breakfast, though not extensive, included freshly cooked noodles. They even offered a free laundry service; you just call the reception, and they wash and dry your clothes in the room.
This hotel lacked facilities like a swimming pool or gym but had meeting rooms, which was quite surprising. So, while it wasn’t as impressive as the Jiangyou hotel, it still offered great value for money. I believe it could easily be sold for over 300 yuan.
In conclusion, stepping away from big cities and popular tourist destinations often reveals astonishingly good value in hotels.
Should be on the way to Wutai Mountain that time, I stayed overnight in Quyang at the Hanting All Seasons Hotel. It was a 40-square-meter suite with a 1.8-meter bed, intelligent lighting, curtains, and a separate bathroom. They also provided breakfast. It cost a little over 170 RMB, I don’t remember the exact amount. I was very surprised by the prices after leaving Beijing.
Let me add some more details. Toiletries are provided by the hotel, so I won’t mention them separately. Parking is free. They have robot delivery service. There are also two complimentary bottles of mineral water, a few tea bags, and a few pieces of mint candy in the room. The fruit snacks and flower tea in the first-floor lounge area are complimentary.
The Hanting All Seasons service in Beijing is similar, but the rooms in Beijing are not as large, and the room rates are not this price.
Unexpected Delight at HanTing You Xuan in Kaifeng, Henan
I stayed at HanTing You Xuan in Kaifeng, Henan, right next to Henan University. The reason being, during my travels, I usually don’t book hotels in advance and like to explore spontaneously. So, during the Kaifeng Chrysanthemum Exhibition, I ran into a bit of trouble… emmm, all the decent hotels in the city center were fully booked. However, Kaifeng is not like Zhengzhou; you can’t just sleep on the streets anywhere. Fortunately, it was a bit cooler, and after several attempts, I found a place near the entrance of Henan University.
For 130 RMB, if I remember correctly, I got a family suite, which is one of the largest rooms I’ve stayed in among all Hanting hotels I’ve been to… much larger than the one I stayed in before.
The coolest part was discovering a Bufu Kao Ba (Bufu Roast) restaurant downstairs the next morning… a place that had been missing for over a decade. I probably consumed around 1600 calories today… but it’s definitely worth it, it’s a nostalgia thing. During tough times, Bufu Kao Ba was the best and most affordable… and surprisingly, they have branches in China besides Xinjiang.
This was definitely a great deal (in fact, most places in Henan are a great deal; I might revisit). It feels like I’ve been led into a misconception about Henan based on biases from various regions in the past… such a wonderful place, with dishes like Da Yu Zhu (Big Henan Bamboo), Bao Gong Lu Niu Rou (Bao Gong’s Braised Beef), and strip pork for only 17 RMB… impressive.
Even the restaurants inside the scenic spots are decent and reasonably priced, which is remarkable.
Above all, a great experience!
Unforgettable Journey: A $5 Hotel, Bats, and Local Hospitality
I remember about twenty years ago when I was still in college, I went on a summer vacation trip with my friends. We traveled from Guangdong to Hunan, then to Jiangxi, Anhui, and back.
In Jiangxi’s Wuyuan, we stayed at a hotel that cost only 30 RMB per night (actually, it was more like a guesthouse, as the concept of Airbnb-style accommodations didn’t exist back then). Even though I woke up in the middle of the night, half asleep, I saw bats flying around the room.
The highlight of staying at this hotel was that the owner offered to take us into the village on his motorcycle, so we didn’t have to buy entrance tickets.
What’s even more important is that during those two days, we had all our meals at the owner’s home, which saved us a lot on food expenses.
I don’t remember much else, but I recall that the house we stayed in was also the filming location for “青花” (Blue and White), a movie starring Siqin Gaowa and Zhao Yazhi.
From July 14th to July 28th, 2023, I stayed at the Vienna Hotel (Dasi Branch) in Xiqing District, Tianjin for half a month.
It was a single room with breakfast included, and the cost was 268 RMB per day.
For my first business trip, the cost-effectiveness was excellent.
My colleagues said that they used to stay here for business trips, but later when there was an exhibition at Meijiang Convention and Exhibition Center, the room rates varied daily and soared to over 400 RMB. They couldn’t afford it and had to change hotels.
I happened to visit during a special period, shortly after its reopening, and there weren’t many people attending the Meijiang exhibition, so the room rates were cheap!
It was really cool!
I have the motivation to complain if the cost-effectiveness is the lowest.
Russia, Saint Petersburg or Moscow, can’t remember, huge room, approximately 10 meters high….
About 80 square meters in size.
The price is outrageous, over 80 Chinese yuan…
Pleasant Surprise in Wuxi
Once, I went on a trip to Wuxi with my classmates and our families. We had pre-booked a hotel for a little over 200 RMB per day. Our original plan was to have a place to stay and then rent a car for a self-drive adventure on the third day, so we didn’t have high expectations for this hotel given its price.
Upon arrival at the hotel, we were pleasantly surprised. The service was extremely welcoming, the rooms were super clean, with large beds and big windows. They provided an unlimited supply of tangerines and offered a wide range of complimentary breakfast items, including Anmum and Chobani yogurts. Perhaps it was because the staff saw that we had children with us, and my son, who was quite young at the time, loved eggs. When we left the restaurant, the staff handed us a bag of eggs and yogurt for us to enjoy on the way.
My classmates and their spouses, who are all in the aviation industry and have stayed in hotels of various levels, were also amazed by this hotel. They couldn’t help but wonder how profitable this hotel was. Our local friends from Wuxi came to pick us up at the hotel, and even they were impressed after seeing it.
I can’t quite remember the name of the hotel, but it was something like “Wuxi Magpie.” I’m not sure if it’s still there.
Memorable Stay at the Umbria Grand Hotel in Orvieto, Italy
This incident took place in a small town in Italy called Orvieto. In the town, there is a small inn that carries a grand name: the Umbria Grand Hotel. Umbria is the name of a region, equivalent to a province, adjacent to Tuscany, with a remarkably similar landscape. Its capital is the renowned Italian city of Perugia.
Before my first stay, a friend had informed the hotel that I was an artist and that I couldn’t just have coffee and croissants for breakfast. They asked, “What would you like to eat?” I replied, “I would prefer a vegetable salad with ham, cheese, and fruit juice.” Since I was staying for two weeks, according to the hotel’s policy, they offered a 15% discount on the room rate and included the breakfast changes at no extra cost.
On the night of my arrival, I had dinner at a friend’s house and returned to the hotel early to rest. The next morning, when I went to the restaurant, there were already several guests dining. As per their usual practice, they were having coffee and one or two croissants, and they could also take a portion of yogurt to go. At my table, there was a transparent glass cover with three plates filled with a vegetable salad, ham, and cheese - a breakfast fit for three or four people. Occasionally, curious glances from nearby tables were directed towards me. In reality, the people having this breakfast were the ones who needed the energy for physical labor as they were carrying painting equipment.
The owner of the hotel, a middle-aged man, stood at the restaurant door waiting for us. He introduced himself as Carlolichi and handed me a large bottle of mineral water. Throughout my stay, breakfast remained the same every day, accompanied by a large bottle of mineral water, and I was also given the opportunity to view my new artwork each day.
Years later, I visited the hotel three more times, and each time, the same treatment was provided. When I completed my first ballpoint pen drawing, Mr. Carlolichi watched the entire process from behind. I asked him to sign his name in the lower right corner of the artwork, and he hesitated, saying, “I didn’t create this, how can I sign my name?” I explained that it was a friend’s witness. Sometimes, when passing by on the highway, for various reasons, I didn’t turn in to visit him, and I always missed him.
In Perugia, I probably created more than twenty oil paintings and over ten ballpoint pen sketches. This achievement owes much to the Umbria Grand Hotel and Mr. Carlolichi.
Once again, thanks to the inquirer.
It’s all right, can’t afford expensive housing.
In the past couple of years, I have gone on multiple road trips and had the opportunity to stay in various hotels. I’ve noticed that in recent years, many mid-range hotels have done a good job. Luxury hotels offer excellent amenities such as swimming pools, fitness centers, and beautiful decor that can be quite appealing, but they often come with a high price tag, making them less preferred for those on a budget.
Mid-range options like Vienna, Yado, Meiju, and slightly more remote chains like Hilton’s Hampton Inn can be found in almost every type of city. Interestingly, I seem to have a special fondness for Yado. They even offer complimentary late-night snacks, have basic fitness facilities, and provide free laundry machines and dryers for guests to use!
Southeast Asian Island Villa
In the countryside of Wenzhou, Zhejiang, there are small rural guesthouses. In the West Lake area of Hangzhou, there are small tube-shaped buildings. In the northern sixth ring of Beijing, there are four-person bunk beds.
Exceptional Stay near Xi’an Xianyang Airport
I stayed at the Zhefei Hotel near Xi’an Xianyang Airport for a night after the May Day holiday with my girlfriend. Despite the price being a little over a hundred yuan, the experience felt like a thousand. They had a dedicated driver to pick us up, who arrived in a Volkswagen wearing a suit. This surprised both my girlfriend and me, making us wonder if people nearby thought we were the children of some wealthy individual.
Upon arrival at the hotel, a gentleman in a suit was waiting at the entrance to assist with our luggage. At the front desk, they greeted us and inquired about our flight time and whether we needed a wake-up call. After check-in, they even thoughtfully placed our ID cards in a transparent card pouch and handed them to us.
Inside the hotel, there were complimentary mineral water bottles in the corridor for guests to take as they pleased. Upon entering the room, we were greeted with fresh air and classical decor, complete with a genuine leather single-person sofa. The room was stocked with various amenities, including toiletries, hair conditioner (which many hotels don’t provide), and a shaving razor, along with coffee.
Every encounter with the staff was accompanied by friendly greetings, which left my girlfriend feeling a bit socially awkward. The next morning, they offered a complimentary breakfast featuring steamed buns, eggs, milk, soybean milk, steamed buns, side dishes, and rice porridge. Since many guests were flying out in the morning, they used a shuttle minibus to transport everyone to the airport, sparing us from carrying our luggage.
Overall, it was a truly fantastic experience.
In Hangzhou, by the West Lake, there is a certain court with a price of around 200 yuan. The environment and facilities are excellent for a certain season. They provide free parking, laundry (surprisingly, there is also drying and ironing service, not self-service), and breakfast. Due to the insufficient membership level, only one breakfast was provided. I informed the front desk that there was an additional one for a guest, and they actually provided an extra one. The Da Hong Pao tea provided in the room is also excellent, making it the king of cost-effectiveness.