From the Sheraton Pudong, I moved to The Hongta, which is now a Luxury Collection property. A few years back, this was the St Regis in Pudong, so I was kind of intrigued by this hotel. It was a short distance by Uber to get to this hotel and took less than 15 minutes by car. This hotel is located along Dongfang Road, closer to the commercial center in the Pudong New Area and about 2 blocks away from the Century Avenue subway station, which is a major interchange in Shanghai with 4 metro lines stopping there. Just by location alone, The Hongta is more accessible and convenient for travellers. However the nearest amenities and mall are a short walk away instead of being located just beside the hotel like the Sheraton.
There is again a nice driveway entrance to the hotel with a large lobby. As the bellboy helped me with my luggage, I proceed to the front desk. Since I arrived in the afternoon, there was no wait as it was a quiet time in the lobby. I was quickly assigned with my room keys and asked if I wanted points or the welcome gift. Nearly every time I would just pick the bonus Starpoints, and it was no different today.
Room No: 2810 Category: Deluxe King Room
There was no upgrade either for a lowly SPG Gold member but I still got a room on a high floor albeit not the closest to the elevator. But because the hotel is not large by any means, the distance from the elevator was not a long walk.
Moving into this room, it was still as spacious and upon entry, there is a wall mirror instead of the entrance to the bathroom. The door to the bathroom was by the bedside. I do enjoy the unconventional layout of the room.
Like the Sheraton Grand Pudong, there was a luggage bench, a TV console and a wooden work desk. There was also a Herman Miller Aeron work chair that was very comfortable to sit on.
On the other side of the room, there was a comfortable and plush King bed with 2 bedside tables. Though one of the bedside table by the window is rendered useless as they try to fit in an armchair with an ottoman by the window. There is also a lounger that can function as another luggage bench. While I get it that the hotel tries to add more seating space, the armchair on the corner just made the space too tight to be comfortable.
Beside the bed, there is a door that leads to the bathroom which has nice layout. It is furnished in marble and features a round circular sink that was probably popular in the 90s. Recent hotel builds have gone past these circular sinks. What was nice though was the partition between the toilet and the vanity counter and the cabinet in between where the towels are folded on. There was plenty of space to store your toiletries and not get them wet around the vanity.
Another thing to like was the separate bathtub and shower compartment. It is essential for luxury hotels in Asia to feature this. And the bathroom here does make the mark.
However what was disappointing was the shower amenities. The hotel has bottles that looks like L’Occitane amenities but inside it was some generic contents. It was just in poor taste to give guests the impression of providing a premium product when it is not. Corporations in China needs to change this mentality of copying as giving a false impression is not going to cut it unless you back it up with a quality product.
While I did not appreciate getting duped, the hotel does provide a nice fruit plate like the Sheraton Grand Pudong and there was also the usual Luxury Collection guides. These small touches does make it a familiar Luxury Collection property.
The view from the room was also spectacular as I enjoyed the sunset in the room after checking in. Similar to the previous day, I had a nice view of the tallest skyscrapers in Shanghai from the room, and it was made more spectacular with the sunset.
Another positive aspect of the stay was the turndown service which left me a piece of Valrhona chocolate.
The good stuff about this hotel actually continues to the facilities. While the hotel does not occupy a footprint as large as the Sheraton Grand Pudong, they feature a whole range of facilities too. What I liked was the hotel has 2 billiard tables and I could easily get friends to come down and play a game together.
There was also a well equipped fitness centre, even if it was slightly older than the Sheraton’s. Like most hotels in Shanghai, the swimming pool is also located indoor. And I found the swimming pool here to be even larger in size. The facilities here is definitely on par with most premium hotels. There are also several on-site restaurants including an Italian restaurant at the top with a view and a lobby restaurant where breakfast is served. There are also some shops in the lobby level by the elevators.
While there was no mishaps during the stay, the stay experience felt very ordinary considering the numerous high-end hotels in Shanghai, or even in the Pudong New Area. However I paid CNY790 (~$130) for the one night stay, and that was just slightly more than the cost of staying in a Sheraton. The additional turndown service and being closer to town makes it slightly more worth it. Do note also that a Luxury Collection property tends to have more amenities inside the room than the usual Sheraton. For that matter, I would not hesitate to stay here in the future if prices are still in the same range as the Sheraton. Though because the rooms are slightly older, I would not pay a high premium over other hotels.