The main selling point of the Novotel Southampton was its location. The hotel is located around the corner from the train station and is accessible by footpath. In addition, the City Centre is a short walk away and the Cruise Terminal is a 10/15 minute walk away meaning this hotel is a great option for those who do not drive.
The hotel shares its car park with its sister brands Ibis and Ibis Budget and charges £6 per night for self-parking. The hotel features 121 rooms over five floors and guests can choose from a Standard, Executive or Superior room.
We decided to book the Executive room which was only a few pounds more than the Standard room. At £109 a night this hotel is not the cheapest in the area but is a decent price considering the fact that we booked only a few weeks prior.
So let’s take a look at the room. First impressions were that it was a bit dated. The artexed walls and generally dowdy/dull appearance made a disappointing welcome. Being in an executive room we expected a more comfortable and welcoming atmosphere. The furniture looked tatty and battered. Even the TV looked old and small for the size of the room.
Drab wall art and a cheap looking broken mirror on the wall added to the sorry state of this room.
The rooms were large with a big sofa and large desk. Added touches such as the Bose speaker, Nespresso machine, robes and complementary bottles of water were a nice touch but couldn’t make up the lack of investment these rooms seem to have.
The bathrooms were again large and looked in better condition with a shower over a bath. The toilet, however, was a dark artexed cell with Artex adorning all four walls and the roof.
The bed was small for an executive room and again seems like it needed an update. The mattress was not the most comfortable but not so tragic that you couldn’t sleep.
The room’s TV had the usual UK channels as well as selected Sky channels and a wide selection of Foreign language channels from France, Germany and Italy.
An added bonus is the WiFi which is available free of charge to all guests throughout the hotel. The WiFi was fast and we had no trouble with connections.
Other facilities at the hotel include an indoor heated pool, gym and sauna as well as meeting and conference space. Everything you’d expect of a mid-range hotel.
The restaurant served the typical hotel fare and whilst we didn’t dine here, it seemed relatively well used in the evening. Breakfast is also available for an additional cost.
The hotel lobby was small but welcoming. Here in a morning, you can grab a complementary newspaper. I did see some rooms have them delivered so I’m assuming you can also ask when you check in.
Overall our stay was comfortable but we left feeling a little disappointed with the Novotel Southampton. The hotel is in desperate need of an update but its location is a huge selling point and removed any need for us to get taxis to and from either the port or station.
The hotel is roughly £97 a night which is more than other hotels in the area but still affordable. Whilst this hotel is a mid-scale brand, for a one-night pre-cruise stay you have to think would you use the amenities to justify the additional cost when you can book into another solid budget hotel at a lower price.