The last post I have wrote about hotel stay in Taipei was a review of a 5 stare hotel (Palais de Chine Hotel). That hotel was a great stay, everything was perfect! Except… the price was still towards the higher end, and may not be my first choice when I want to go on a budget trip to Taipei…
I was staying over in Taipei for 2 nights before heading back to Hong Kong from a business trip in Japan. As this Taipei trip was only intended to be a lay over, so I want keep everything at a budget. I also want to stay in a location where a lot of actions take place, whether it’s food, drinks, or other form of entertainment… after doing some research, I have narrow down to hotel stays in the Ximending area (西門町).
A little background of Ximending – it is often being referred as the Harajuku/Shibuya of Taipei! It is the source of Taiwan’s fashion , subculture and Japanese culture; an area full of little boutiques, clubs and pubs, tattoo salons, local food stores and hawkers. Ximending was also the first pedestrian zone in the whole of Taiwan! This is an area highly recommended to those who wants to experience a bit of the local life here in Taipei.This area gets extremely lively at night time with all the food hawkers, just look at the video below and you will see!
So, this boutique hotel is at the edge of Ximending, and is only a short 10 minutes walk from the closest Metro Station. The name of the hotel is Art’otel, and is on the 5th floor of a semi-commercial building. Even though it is inside a building, they have big signage with the name of the hotel, so you won’t miss it.
The hotel was opened in February 2015, and has a total of 30 rooms. There are a few different types of rooms available, with the most basic room being the superior room with no window, and the price is around USD$60/night for 2 people. A good thing about this hotel is although there are only 30 rooms, but they also offer family room for a maximum of 4 people (around USD$85/room), which is a great choice whether you are travelling with your family, or with a group of friends.
The decoration of the hotel and the rooms are very minimal yet with great details. The corridor tends to be a bit dark with very dim lighting. However, once you enter into the room, it’s completely the opposite – white is the main colour for all the rooms, with wooden furniture and black steel frames.
I stayed in the Medium Industry Room which comes with a row of big windows. The room itself is not very big, but is still spacious enough for me to open up my luggage with ample space to walk around. All rooms come with a Nespresso coffee machine, flat screen TV, high speed internet, bottled water and snacks. During my stay, I had no problem with the internet, and the speed was very fast. There is also a laundry room that hotel guests can freely use during their stay.
I’m most impressed with the amenities of the hotel. The hand soap, shampoo and shower gel is from a local brand called Cha Tzu Tang (茶籽堂), which they are well known for not only their packaging, but the quality of their products. They are a local brand which uses natural ingredients, promotes awareness to protecting the environment and also encourage the use of local ingredients from Taiwan. Most of their products use Camellia oil as the base, and is gentle to the skin.
Lastly, must I say that all the hotel staffs are extremely nice and helpful, they always greet you with a smile when you walk past them. Also, as the staffs all know the area very well, they can give you a lot of advises on where to go and what to eat etc. There are also flyers and computers at the lobby which you can freely take and use.
I would highly recommend this hotel to anyone looking for a budget but comfortable stay in Taipei, and I’m sure you will like this hotel as much as I do!