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So the Tune Hotel Westminster has been open just about a month now, and the TripAdvisor reckoning is here. The verdict of the people? Actually pretty similar to what HotelChatter said when we stayed there last month – as long as you know what to expect, for the money you’re paying, it’s pretty damn good.
The thing people keep mentioning? Obviously, it’s the size of the rooms – “REALLY REALLY SMALL” as one person puts it.
On the plus side, beds are deemed comfy, rooms clean, showers fabulous (as we said) and the hotel quiet.
On the minus, uhm, the rooms are small, and one review mentions a “constant hum of air throughout the night”. The only negative review is from someone who was stuck in the windowless basement room, who complains about a generator pumping out smelly fumes all night, but according to the hotel (they’ve replied to the review already) this was a one off problem that’s now been fixed.
So it wasn't too hard to guess yesterday's hotel snapshot but for those of you
who are reading this after the Labor Day Weekend who couldn't get it, allow us to take you inside The Tune Hotel Westminster.
Yes, HotelChatter managed to land in London just two days after the hotel's official opening. Thus we expected lots of fanfare and excitement on the property when we arrived. But when our friend dropped us off at 11pm at night, we had a drunk man carrying an open beer can accost us for money.
Nevertheless we scurried inside as fast as we could to check-in. Actually to be precise, we tried to open the door but you need a key to get in. Fortunately, another hotel guest was right behind us and was able to let us in. (You can also ring the front desk to let you in.)
We've been anxiously awaiting the opening of The Tune Hotel Westminster in London on August 30, which will be the first of many Tune Hotels planned for London in the next decade. Room rates are advertised for as low as 35₤ a night yet when we looked our pending London stay we found a room for 55₤ a night instead.
That's still a great deal but that isn't where the room rate ends. Remember Tune Hotels is a "no frills" sort of budget hotel and if you want the amenities you're accustomed to in a hotel, you're going to have to pay for them one by one. As you can see in the picture above, towels and toiletries cost an extra 1.50₤ a stay. Unlimited use of the hair dryer is 1₤. Unlimited TV use is 10₤.
Only a few more weeks left until The Tune Hotel Westminster in London opens on August 30 and if you haven't got your penny room, the hotel is now promising another clever way to win something at the hotel.
Tune has recently taken to plastering London taxi cabs, inside and out, with ads for their new London property. On their Facebook profile, they tease us with this:
These cabs are going around London mate! Get in them and take a pic of yourself and post it on our page, you never know what you might get for it if we like it ;)
Room Rate Gimmicks / Hotel Deals / Hotel Openings / London Hotels / Tune Hotels / Hotel News / → All Tags
While we're forced to wait until February for The W London, we're thinking of happy thoughts like Tune Hotels. Remember, The Tune Hotel Westminster is set to open later this summer and they have been making good on their promise to offer rooms for a penny.
On the hotel group's Facebook page, they just posted this announcement for the penny rooms, otherwise known as Tunedays:
We are delighted to announce that from 12.01am on Tuesday 13th July there will be 200 rooms available to book at our Westminster hotel for the cost of just one penny! The rooms will be available for reservations and will be allocated on a first come service. So make sure you have your fingers ready on the keyboard at midnight on Monday! Stay tuned for hints on which months these rooms are available!
Ahhh, that last line is key.
One-cent hotel rooms? We've heard this tune before, but this time it's even better because it's 1P—a penny for a room in London, yeah? Bloody brilliant!
Tune Hotels is the kindly benefactor of this promotion which will celebrate the opening of the Tune Hotels.com: Westminster, London in August. A total of 1,000 penny-a-night rooms will be made available, with bookings from June 29.
While we've been hyperventilating about all of the hotel drama here in the US, Tune Hotels over in Asia are breeding like rabbits. Very budget-friendly rabbits, that is.
Oh yea, they're totally still going for those planned 15 new Tune Hotels in London by 2017, but that doesn't mean that their focus is off the region where they began and do so well. Tune, a Kuala Lumpur-based chain that often has rooms for $1 (but in the local currency), has now opened two new locations in Indonesia, in Kuta Bali and Legian Bali, and two more in Malaysia, in Kota Damansara township (near the KL airport) and Danga Bay.
That now makes a lucky seven Tunes in Malaysia, plus the two new locations in Indonesia. Their first London hotel is due in only a couple monthsin Augustto be followed by a whole slew of them in India too. Pile on top of this the news that their no-frills rooms are now equipped with 32" flatscreen TVs, and the in-room WiFi service continues. Still no word regarding Tune's entrance into the US sadly, but at least for now Tunes will retain their exotic appeal for us.
[Photo: Skyscraper City]
It feels like just yesterday that we had Tony Fernandes on the phone, the co-founder of Kuala Lumpur-based chain of budget hotels, and he was all about expanding Tune into America. But first things first for Fernanades and Tune, as they've just announced plans to plant 15 Tune Hotels in the greater London area, since London is a destination already served by Tune's partner low-cost airline, Air Asia.
They're grand plansputting 15 new hotels up in London by 2017considering how it took Tune Hotels since 2007 to do the seven they have now, with five of those in Malaysia and two in Bali, Indonesia.
That said, they've definitely gained momentum with the the popularity of their no-frills rooms with 5-star beds, which can begin as low as 85 cents a night, but extras like towel rental and air conditioning incur added fees. They like to call it "5-star sleeping experience at a 1-star price," but guests prefer to simply say, "awesome bargain."
Where else you'll be able to stay with Tune soon, after the jump.
On Sunday, we were lucky enough to get mogul Tony Fernandes on the phone to discuss a few things surrounding the arrival of his Air Asia X airline on US soil. He also happens to be the man behind the Kuala Lumpur-based chain of budget Tune Hotels.
While we were discussing the likelihood of the US seeing cheap flights to Southeast Asia on Air Asia X, we didn't forget to slip in a few questions regarding if Tune Hotels would come along for the ride.
And here's what Tony said...
Tony Fernandes is a clever man. Not only has he pioneered low cost flying in Asia and now cross-continent to Australia and the UK, but he’s also started the Tune hotel brand – a bit like an even more budget easyHotel.
The idea is simple – charge rock bottom prices for a room (current offers range from 0.05 Malaysian ringgits, or $0.01) to a max of about 75RM ($20). Keep said room as basic as possible. Then ratchet up the bill by charging for the extras, and top up by turning the hotel into a giant billboard with ads everywhere –from the rooms to the lift.
For instance, we just spent three nights there. Our room rate? 75RM, or $20, a night. But add in a service charge, tax, admin fee, wifi, aircon and towel rental, and we spent 382RM ($104) in all. Was it worth it?
Last time we wrote about Kuala Lumpur’s Tune Hotel, it got a roaring thumbs up. But while its success is about to spawn three new hotels (in Penang, Kuching and KL’s low cost airport), is the original starting to let itself go a bit?
We only ask because when we first arrived, we were a bit disappointed. For a start, the room is small. We paid a little extra (£25 a night, rather than about £22) and ordered a double for ourselves because we read on TripAdvisor that the singles were really weeny – but we still got a bit of a shock.
Tune Hotels / Cheap Hotels / Budget Hotels / Malaysia Hotels / Hotel Deals / Hotel News / → All Tags
We are seriously considering giving up our costly New York rent for the impossibly affordable, recently reslashed down to 1 cent a night deal that Tune Hotels is offering at their Kuching, Kota Kinabalu, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and Sepang, Malaysia locations.
Talk about serious basement pricing! The old 85 cents a night price now seems like a massive rip off with the latest one penny a night deal at select Tune Hotels. Folks! Can it get any cheaper!?