WHAT’S IT LIKE? The oldest hotel in the city, the Pod Roza is part of the local Likus Hotels and Restaurants group, which also includes Krakow’s Copernicus and Monopol hotels. Dating back to the 19th century, it reopened after a revamp in 1997. Set on the cobbled streets of Ul Florianska, the Pod Roza is close to all the main bars, restaurants and places of interest. Upon entering, the reception area gives way to an expansive restaurant beneath a glass atrium.
During my stay it was quite chaotic as there was a huge wedding party taking place in the evening – there were staff pushing trolleys in and out of lifts and raucous photo shoots outside the entrance, so if you are looking for a quite business hotel this may not be the best choice. It is, however, a nice option if you are looking to stay somewhere that embodies the feel of Krakow. I found the service to be a little brusque but that may have been because they were so busy.
WHERE IS IT? In the heart of the old town, between Florianska Gate and the Main Market Square. The airport is about 30 minutes away by car.
ROOM FACILTIES The interior décor and furnishings vary depending on the room type, but as a general overview, they feature wooden parquet flooring, heavy curtains, hand-woven rugs, antique furniture, patterned throws over the beds, freestanding plasma screen TVs and minibars. Some Standard double rooms and above have spa baths (a real treat after a long day), while others have showers only. All have free wifi internet. The look is quite old fashioned, but homely and characterful at the same time.
My street-facing Standard double room was very noisy at night, as even with the windows shut I could hear the sound of drunken revellers and smashing bottles. It might have had something to do with the wedding but it was also a Saturday and I got the impression this was normal for a city popular with stag dos and Brits enjoying boozy weekenders. Ask for a room facing the inner courtyard to avoid this problem.
RESTAURANTS AND BARS There are two restaurants – the Pod Roza, which serves seasonal international cuisine and specialises in desserts, and Italian eatery Amarone – but I didn’t get the chance to try either of them except for a very quick breakfast of coffee and cereal from a somewhat depleted buffet (the wedding guests had swept through most of it) in the former.
BUSINESS AND MEETING FACILITIES The cellars of the historic hotel have been converted into two events spaces complete with air conditioning, wifi and exposed brick vaulting. Conference room One can seat 70 delegates theatre-style, while conference room Two can host 30 people in a boardroom layout. Private functions can also be held in either of the hotel’s restaurants.
LEISURE FACILTIES There is a top-floor fitness centre, with plenty of daylight, and a sauna on-site. Guests also have access to nearby sister property the Stary hotel, on Szczepanska 5 Street, which has a subterranean swimming pool, salt iodine chamber, gym, dry sauna, steam room with aromatherapy and massages on request.
VERDICT Not being able to book online is a little inconvenient, but the Pod Roza is well located in the centre of the old town and has a certain historic charm to it that will appeal to guests and event organisers looking for something with a traditional Polish feel to it.
HOW MANY ROOMS? There are 57 rooms across seven categories, including 13 Standard singles, 30 Standard doubles, four top-floor attic Mansard rooms, three Junior suites, three Standard suites and four Deluxe suites.
ROOM HIGHLIGHTS The spa bath and free wifi.
PRICE Reservations can’t be made online – only by calling or emailing [email protected] Rates for a one-night stay in February for a Standard double room started from 470zl (£88) including breakfast.