Tried & Tested

Hotel review: Pentahotel Moscow, Arbat

6 Feb 2019 by Jackie Chen
pentahotel Moscow, the Book on the new Arbat Avenue

Background

Pentahotel Moscow, Arbat is the 29th property in the Pentahotels portfolio, a neighbourhood lifestyle brand under the Hong Kong-based Rosewood Hotel Group. The property announced its official opening on February 28 this year.

The hotel is situated in The Book multifunctional complex, one of four “Book Houses” – buildings designed to resemble an open book – located on Novy Arbat Avenue. Pentahotel Moscow occupies the lower 11 floors of a 26-storey mixed-use, while the remaining upper floors are used for serviced apartments and apartment suites.

Where is it?

Located near the city centre, the hotel is close to prime landmarks including the Red Square, St. Basil’s Cathedral, the Kremlin and Bolshoi Theatre. The Arbatskaya metro station is only eight minutes’ walk away and the hotel is just a 10-15-minute drive from the Expocentre and Moscow International Business Centre (also known as Moscow City). Sheremetyevo International Airport, which serves a number of international airlines as well as Russia’s national airline Aeroflot, can be reached by car in about 50 minutes.

The hotel is situated right on Novy Arbat Street, a modern avenue where you can find a number of retail stores, restaurants, entertainment centres and House of Books, the city’s largest bookstore. It’s a popular area, especially when night falls.

pentahotel Moscow, old Arbat Street

Behind the hotel, the historic Arbat Street that has existed since the 15th century is just five minutes’ walk away. Many historic buildings are situated on this pedestrian street, including the house of renowned Russian poet Alexander Pushkin, along with a number of cafés and souvenir shops.

pentahotel Moscow, entrance

What’s it like?

Its location within a residential building gives the hotel an understated charm – it doesn’t boast a grand entrance nor a huge logo recognisable from way off in the distance. When entering the lobby, there is a spacious seating area and a long reception desk, which, surprisingly, doesn’t provide check-in or checkout services. Instead, you’ll need to take a transparent lift directly to the Pentalounge – a multifunctional “lifestyle lobby” that serves as a reception, lobby, bar, café, and restaurant – on Level 3, and which functions as the hotel’s “proper” reception area.

Once check-in is done, you’ll get your key card in a special holder, which is actually a pocket-sized “insider’s guide to Moscow” with a map that shows nearby attractions, restaurants and bars along with detailed information on each location. There’s also a QR code on the holder that guests can scan to view the digital version.

pentahotel Moscow, lift to lobby

You’ll need to walk through a passage towards another set of lifts to arrive at your room floor from Level 3; however, if you want to go directly to your room floor from Level 1, you can take a second set of lifts beside the transparent one that serves Levels 1-3.

pentahotel Moscow, Standard Room

The rooms

The hotel has 228 guestrooms, spanning from Level 6 to Level 11. The guestrooms are divided into three major categories: the Penta Standard Room, ranging from 18 to 33 sqm; the 27 to 31 sqm Penta Plus Room that features a separate living room area; and the 33 sqm Penta PlayerPad Room equipped with in-room games consoles, including a PlayStation 4. There are also two wheelchair accessible rooms on Level 6 and 7.

pentahotel Moscow, penta Plus room
pentahotel Moscow, in-room map

The guestrooms feature an industrial loft-style design. Each is decorated with a wallpaper of the same Moscow map as the one printed on its special keycard holder, recalling the neighbourhood lifestyle feel that the brand is aiming for. Unlimited free wifi, described as “free oxygen” on the hotel’s website, is provided as well.

pentahotel Moscow, Novy Arbat Avenue

I was staying at a Penta Standard Room on Level 8 with a king-sized bed. My room had a nice view facing the busy Novy Arbat Avenue, and fortunately there wasn’t much noise at night. Add to that the room’s blackout curtains and I managed to enjoy some good sleep during my stay.

pentahotel Moscow, work desk

A kettle, coffee capsules and tea bags are all provided in the room. The mini bar will be stocked upon request with paid items. Instead, there are two complimentary bottles of water in the room, and if you need hot water, it’s available from a large water boiler installed in the public area on each guestroom floor.

The bathroom is also rather small. There is a rainfall shower with both a large, fixed showerhead and a detachable hand-held showerhead, as well as sycamore fig-scented shampoo and body wash from eco-friendly Dutch brand Zenology. Unfortunately, the hotel doesn’t provide conditioner.

Pentahotel Moscow - Breakfast restaurant

Food and beverage

Buffet breakfast is served on Level 2 at Breakfast Box – a spacious area with plenty of different seating options available. On weekdays, the breakfast restaurant is open between 6:30am and 10:30am, while on weekends, breakfast ends half an hour later, at 11:00am. A decent selection of food and drink is offered, including sausages, bacon, pancakes, bread, salads, cheeses, yogurts, fruits and juices, though I can’t say the selection changed a great deal during my three-day stay. There are also self-serve coffee- and tea-making facilities. Service here is good and staff members are friendly.

pentahotel Moscow, pentalounge

Meals can also be taken at the 24-hour Pentalounge, which features lounge chairs and communal tables. TVs, bookshelves and a number of paintings adorn the walls, giving the space a cosy and artistic atmosphere.

Lunch and dinner are both served in the Pentalounge – Breakfast Box, as its name suggests, is only open for breakfast. The à la carte menu offers a range of choices including starters, salads, hot dishes, burgers and desserts, though you can also choose from a local menu if you want to try authentic Russian dishes. On the drinks side, the bar serves different kinds of hot and cold drinks, beer, cider, spirits, wine and cocktails.

pentahotel Moscow, library

Also located in the Pentalounge is a free-to-use pool table as well as a private corner where guests can enjoy more privacy and a quieter environment with books available for reading.

Pentahotel Moscow - Gym

Leisure facilities

Besides the billiards table in the Pentalounge, the hotel offers a 24-hour Pentagym on Level 3, to which in-house guests have free access, though it’s not very big.

Pentahotel Moscow - Meeting room

Meeting facilities

There are four meeting rooms on Level 3 that can be combined into two larger rooms, ranging from 61 to 82 sqm. These can be used for meetings, seminars, private parties or other events. The larger of the two can accommodate 50 to 70 people, while the smaller provides seating for about 40 to 50 people. Both meeting rooms are equipped with whiteboards and projectors. There are four types of seating arrangements, which can be further customised to cater to specific needs and occasions. There’s also a 44-sqm room used as a coffee-break room for delegates.

Verdict

The ideal location of the hotel allows you to get to both major city attractions and business hubs easily from the hotel. The property itself is clean with a modern, stylish design.

Quick facts

  • Best for… Central location and the relaxed, cozy and welcoming atmosphere in the 24/7 Pentalounge
  • Don’t miss… Enjoying a game of free billiards in the Pentalounge
  • Price Internet rates for a flexible midweek stay in September start from RUB7,900 (US$122.8) for a Penta Standard Room, including all applicable taxes and service charges
  • Contact 15 Novy Arbat Avenue, 119019, Moscow; +7 (495) 787 44 33; pentahotels.com
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