THE HOTEL: One of eight NH Collection Hotels in Germany, this four-and-a-half star, 217-room property had a major renovation in 2016. The contemporary glass-fronted building holds a ISO 14001 environmental certificate, just one of its many sustainability credentials. An easy 15-minute walk from Hansaring train station – which connects to the airport – the hotel sits in a ‘media park’ that was built to attract TV channels and music companies (although many have since moved to Berlin). The hotel sits next to an ornamental lake and a large park with jogging and walking trails. It’s a 20-minute walk to the city centre.
THE CHECK-IN: Set in a spacious and airy lobby, the reception desk was well staffed. I was greeted with a smile and then given a rundown of the hotel and its facilities, plus a map and suggestions for great restaurants and bars.
THE ROOM: My ultra-modern Premium Room was spacious, clean and bright. Features included a wooden floor, two red chairs, a white table with a faux-marble top, a Nespresso machine, a large walk-in closet and a huge bathroom with a standalone shower and a separate bath. The bed was very comfortable. My view looked down on the lake with the famous Cologne cathedral visible in the distance.
THE FACILITIES: An informal ground-floor restaurant serves local and international dishes. The same venue has an extensive breakfast buffet. In the summer a terrace hosts al fresco dining and barbecues. There’s also a small gym with a steam bath and sauna. There are seven meetings rooms of various sizes. The hotel charges a day rate of €75pp for these. The hotel will even calculate the ‘carbon cost’ of a meeting or event and will offset this against an environ-mental project it is involved in.
THE VERDICT: If ever I return to Cologne, this is where I will stay. The location is perfect – an easy connection from the train station, a quick walk into the city and surrounded by a park with jogging trails. The rooms are large and contemporary and the hotel’s many small design touches are fun: I liked the rubber duck in the bath and birdcage filled with sweets and chocolates.
THE DETAILS: Im Media Park 8b, 50670 Cologne, Germany. Rates start from £125 per night, including breakfast, for a stay in March/April 2020. www. nh-hotels.com .
Reviewed by Steve Hartridge (2020)