Hilton SA: Nice but...
During one trip to Ankara, I had the opportunity to stay at the Ankara HiltonSA. Located at the top of a hill, the HiltonSA is situated right next to the Iranian Embassy. From the 6th floor, I was able to watch several soccer games played at the Embassy’s soccer field free of charge! There are also several restaurants within a block of the hotel, and the hotel is situated a couple of blocks above a shopping district. There are several designer shops, kebab stands, and fabulous pastry shops.
Some room packages include breakfast at the Greenhouse Restaurant and Terrace. However, this is typically the exception and NOT the rule! I highly recommend checking with reception before enjoying the breakfast buffet as the approximately 30 Euros (more than the Sheraton’s breakfast bar) may not be worth the cost. There are several bakeries within 5-10 minutes’ walk of the hotel that provide fresh pastries and of course Starbucks is on the first major roadway (Tunali Hilmi Street) to support any coffee needs.
The Hilton has a very nice pool/spa section. The indoor pool also has balcony access for those wishing to take in some sun. Separate from the pool area are a two saunas: one for each sex. There is also a pool-side Jacuzzi and several rooms where you can get a Turkish massage (at an extra charge).
The exercise facility is what you would expect from a high-end hotelier with several cardio and strength training machines. The exercise facility is accentuated by skylights which offers picturesque views of the city. At night, this is a very nice experience. However, during the day, the skylights do magnify the very bright sun into the room and the air conditioning struggle to keep the heat down.
Overall, service at the HiltonSA is about what you would expect from a five-star Western chain: the reception staff are friendly and spoke English, the concierge and doormen always had a smile for guests, and housekeeping responded as best they could to my requests. Certainly most people will be satisfied with the HiltonSA. However, if you have the choice between HiltonSA and the Sheraton—go with the Sheraton! I think you will find the level and quality of service, location, and overall layout much more appealing!
Further Ratings (Average 4.5 of 5):
- Hotels.com: 9.00 of 10
- Tripadvisor: 4.50 of 5
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