Our ten day stay in Tokyo was spent exclusively at Hotel Sardonyx – a 3-3.5 star hotel located just near the Ameyoko Market in Ueno. While there was nothing particularly wrong with Hotel Sardonyx there was nothing particularly right about it either.
Don’t get me wrong – the basics were covered. Our room was clean and secure, front desk service was helpful, and it was close to entertainment and Ueno train station. But that’s really where the perks ended. Not that we expected a lot of perks from a 3-3.5 star hotel but there were some disappointments.
Take breakfast for example. Breakfast was the primary reason that we booked Hotel Sardonyx. I don’t think there’s anything quite like getting up each day and having a hot delicious breakfast ready for you, especially if you’re on holiday.
We were very disappointed. The included breakfast menu featured four items. All of them were yellow (aka: no fruit, vegetable, legume or meat included): Toast, Pancakes, a Hot Dog or a Bagel.
The toast pieces were far too thick and only came with butter. The pancakes were doughy and rubbery. Monique loves sweets but she couldn’t (or didn’t want) to finish them. The less said about the hot dog, the better. The only item we might’ve actually liked – the bagel – was unavailable for our entire stay.
In fact the breakfast at Hotel Sardonyx was probably the only food we ate in Japan (except maybe the food at the airport) that was consistently bad rather than good.
As you can imagine we slept past breakfast a lot.
The second reason we booked Hotel Sardonyx was for the free wifi. And, yes, they do offer it. But if your room is on one of the upper levels there’s a good chance that the wifi won’t reach you.
When we first arrived at Sardonyx we noticed a lot of people sitting in the lobby with laptops. That was because they could only access it in the foyer, not from their rooms.
We were one of those people. We did manage to get the internet in our room eventually, but that solution involved paying for wifi access (not through the hotel), and then cramming ourselves into the corner of our room near the door. Sometimes we still couldn’t access wifi.
Room size and Television
While no one expects to get a lot of room in a Tokyo hotel, Sardonyx misrepresented the size of their rooms considerably. The bathroom was relatively big but the actual hotel room was puny. Once we put our luggage and backpacks down there was barely room to move.
On top of that, all forms of television, including free-to-air, were charged which I thought was cut-throat. But ya know, sucks to be them, because Monique and I both had laptops and Mon brought a hard drive with seasons and seasons of good stuff on in.
Kally & Mon: 1
Hotel Sardonyx: 0
Not at all – simply because there are so many other great places you can stay, even just in Ueno (I’m sure of it).
Also because, in hindsight, I’m not sure if Ueno was really the best place to stay in Tokyo. It’s great for a night out or to visit the markets but it was kind of seedy. If I stayed in Tokyo again (oh please, oh please, oh please) I think I’d prefer to stay in Shibuya or Harajuku.
Sorry Hotel Sardonyx, you didn’t treat us badly, you just promised things that you couldn’t deliver on – the worst mistake in business!
Next post: “The Day of Pain” – that day where everything goes horribly wrong!
Until next time,
Kally & Mon.
[Feature Image Credit: Hotel Sardonyx G+]
Do you have any horror hotel/hostel stories? Leave a comment, we’d love to hear about it 🙂