For most travelers, there are only two kinds of hotels: the ones to check into when a Fortune 500 company is paying and the ones to book with their own check.
Here are Nanjing’s top hotels (listed in no particular order) for the latter, all under US$120 per night. They are the best in their league, each showing a unique side of the city.
Holiday Inn Nanjing Aqua City (南京水游城假日酒店)
This 16-story, four-star hotel is an unbeatable choice for shoppers and foodies: it’s a part of the 170,000square-meter mega mall Aqua City and is a stone’s throw from Confucius Temple, the city’s headquarters for traditional snacks and handicrafts.
The InterContinental-brand carries all facilities for both a relaxing and invigorating stay -- free Wi-Fi, international TV channels, concierge service and an indoor pool -- and for those who want a vacation splurge, including a TCM-style spa and an all-day buffet restaurant.
Rooms start from 30 square meters in size and are clean and modern.
No. 1, Jiankang Road, Baixia District 白下区建康路1号; +86 25 8223 3888; nightly rate from around RMB 633 (US$101) plus 15 percent; a 60-minute spa session costs RMB 380 (US$61); official website
Orange Hotel (桔子酒店)
This Chinese brand operates the best budget hotel in Nanjing. All four branches are close to subways and centrally located.
The hotels are bright, well-designed and fitted out to meet the three-star standard.
Rooms are compact but carry all the basics and occasional deluxe touches, such as a large and powerful shower, flat-screen TV and sometimes an intelligent lighting system.
The group also operates a more upscale chain, Crystal Orange, near Aqua City. The 170-room establishment has the ambience of an affordable boutique hotel. Rooms are classier and contain a bathtub (in addition to the shower) and an iPod-compatible audio system.
Crystal Orange Hotel, No. 23, Shengzhou Road, Qinhuai District 秦淮区升州路23号; +86 25 6608 0066; nightly rate from around RMB 468 (US$75) inclusive
Orange Hotel (Donghuamen branch), No. 532-1, East Zhongshan Road, Baixia District 白下区中山东路532号-1; +86 25 6608 1122; nightly rate from around RMB 238 (US$38.2) inclusive; official website
Home Inn (如家快捷酒店)
This is one of China’s largest and most talkedabout budget hotels.
Although rooms are basic -- bed, shower, bathroom, air con and a TV set – this is the cheapest way to rent a clean, convenient and private space in Nanjing. Bathroom amenities and Wi-Fi are provided free of charge.
There are 38 branches across Nanjing. Some only receive domestic guests. The two below accept both Chinese and international travelers.
Home Inn Hunan Road Branch, 4/F, No. 231, Hunan Road, Gulou District 鼓楼区湖南路231号4楼; +86 25 8320 2258; nightly rate from RMB 189 inclusive (US$30)
Home Inn Xinjiekou Branch, No. 133 Mingwa Lang, Xinjiekou, Baixia District 白下区新街口明瓦廊133号; +86 25 8421 3808; nightly rate from RMB 189 inclusive (US$30); official website
Jasmine International Youth Hostel (南京国际青年旅舍)
This Republic of China-era villa lies in the depths of a residential alleyway in Nanjing’s nightlife center, Shanghai Road, and is near several large universities.
A lovely garden separates the hostel’s big grey gate from the check-in lounge and the guestroom building.
Room types range from mixed dorms of four or six beds, en suite twin rooms to double-bed rooms with shared bathroom, all equipped with free Wi-Fi.
No. 7, Lane 83 Shanghai Road, Gulou District 鼓楼区上海路83弄7号; +86 25 8330 0517; nightly rate: dorm from RMB 60 (US$9.6), room from RMB 155 (US$26);official website
Time International Youth Hostel (南京时光国际青年旅舍)
The 24-room lodging is in a revampedcentury-old house, which is said to have been the residence of several high-ranking officials of the Republic of China.
Situated in Meiyuan Xincun, one of the most peaceful neighborhoods in downtown, the hostel enjoys easy access to Xinjiekou (20 minutes on foot) and the Presidential Palace (10 minutes).
Accommodation on offer includes a massive 20-person mixed dorm in the attic, female-only dorms and en suite twin and big-bed rooms.
No. 6-5, Yong Yuan, Meiyuan Xincun, Xuanwu District, 玄武区梅园新村雍园6-5号; +86 25 8556 9053, nightly rate: dorm from RMB 50 (US$8), room from RMB 180 (US$29)
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