After an unexpectedly great flight on Dragon Air, we were met at the airport by one of my best friends, Kenny, who was getting married in Chongqing the next day. He was staying at the Sofitel Forebase as well, so after clearing customs and immigration, we were off for one crazy ride to the hotel.
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Going in, I had no idea just how massive Chongqing is. The hotel was located about 45 minutes from the airport, though since we arrived during rush hour, it took us closer to 2 hours. As I usually find to be the case in China, traffic was crazy. A 4 lane road consistently had 6 lines of cars!
Since Kenny’s wedding celebration was taking place at the Sofitel, we decided to pay the nightly rate of $79 for a deluxe room at the hotel. Prior to booking the hotel, I also joined Accor hotels elite program to earn some points. The Sofitel is Accor’s premium top of the line hotel, so with a 5 star rating, I had high expectations going in.
Upon pulling up to the hotel, we were met by a massive semi-circular drive-through entry way where we greeted by a porter who offered to take our bags for us.
Upon walking into the hotel, the lobby was massive and filled with marble and chandeliers.
The hotel had an extremely luxurious and modern feel, though was much darker than the photographs online show. I will apologize now for the darkness of the pictures, but I literally could not get any additional light for the photographs.
Upon checking in, I was informed that I had been selected as the “guest of the day” and would be upgraded to a suite as a result. I will be honest here – I 100% think this was due to my status as a blogger. I say this because as a test I included my website and company in my profile when I signed up for an Accor elite account. The representative who checked me in also made a point to go get the on-duty manager to come introduce himself, welcome us to the hotel and congratulate me on being the guest of the day.
After a quick check-in, we were off to the elevators to check out our room. I have been upgraded to some nice suites in my day, but this was easily the second nicest upgrade I have ever received. Upon walking into the room, there was a small bar to the right which featured a sink, a kettle, coffee, tea and some mini bottles of alcohol.
To the left was the second half bathroom which featured a marble floor and marble sink.
The first room you walked into was what I would term a living room. It featured a couch, a chair and a coffee table which faced a wall-mounted television over a television stand.
Waiting on the coffee table was a nice welcome gift of an assortment of fruit which was tasty.
The living room also featured a desk on the far end.
Sitting on the desk was another welcome gift of some tasty cookies.
Also waiting on the desk was a local newspaper, as well as a welcome note from the manager which I thought was a nice touch.
The next room featured the bedroom which had a king size bed with night stands on either end that had complimentary bottles of water on them. There was also a seating area with a coffee table in front of the bed.
The bed was extremely comfortable, though if you wanted different pillows, the hotel actually offered a pillows menu to choose from. I thought this was a nice touch, though I was fine with what was already in the room.
Across from the bed was another wall mounted television.
The bathroom featured two separate rooms. There was a closet to the left which offered robes, a safe, an ironing board and gas masks (!?!).
The first part of the bathroom also included a nice powder desk area with a large mirror.
The full bathroom itself was decked out in full marble.
The shower and bathtub area were separated by a glass door. The bathtub was a Jacuzzi style tub and the shower featured both a removable wall mounted shower head and an overhead rainfall shower head.
Waiting in the full bathroom were Hermes amenities, which were great.
The room overlooked an office building almost exclusively, so I did not bother taking any pictures of the view (since there was not one).
Although the room was fantastic, I did have a few complaints. The hotel allowed smoking throughout and even though we were supposedly in a non-smoking room, there were still ashtrays all over the place. The hallways all had that unique cigarette smoke smell (which I hate). Although the room itself did not smell like cigarette smoke, it did oddly smell like burning wood smoke. To try and get some air circulating, we would turn on the fan in the room. However, since it was winter, it seems like the heat was constantly on no matter what we turned the thermostat to. So it was either smell burning wood smoke, or sweat like you were in a fire yourself.
We did not get to explore a lot of the city, but some of the views were surprisingly quite spectacular. If only these were the views from our room!
After a quick two nights, we were off the airport early in the morning to catch our flight back to Hong Kong after which we would connect to Singapore.
I was pleasantly surprised by the Sofitel Forebase in Chongqing. While the hotel itself is pretty far from the airport, Chongqing is such a massively large city that I think you are going to be an ~40 minute ride to any hotel in the city. While I was not a fan of the cigarette smoke, it was not horrible or overpowering in the room itself. The room itself was exceptionally comfortable and I have nothing but positive things to say about my first experience with Accor and the Sofitel brand in general. I definitely would stay at a Sofitel property again in the future.
What is your favorite Sofitel property?
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