Jan282020

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto, Krakow Poland New Year 2020 trip

A trip to Krakow, Poland for New Year’s 2020 seemed attractive to us for two reasons. Firstly, we had never been to Krakow for New Year’s Eve. In 2016 we arrived on Christmas Day from closed-up Bratislava, Slovakia to find a well-attended and lively Christmas Market in Krakow’s Old Town Market Square with most old town restaurants and pubs open, along with many retail shops too.

Krakow, Poland is one of the most visited cities in Europe among the likely lesser known tourist cities to most Americans. Any time of year there is a party going on, sometimes recognizable, other times found just by looking around to find a happening spot. A distinctive difference for me in Krakow compared to cities like Amsterdam and Prague is the main tourist area of Krakow also caters to a large proportion of locals in old town area pubs and restaurants sharing their space with tourists.

Secondly, what makes Krakow attractive to me as our trip budget manager is 5 zloty pints of Tyskie in old town Krakow pubs beats 5 euro pints of Heineken in Amsterdam when drinking through six pints of beer in the course of a pub crawl day. That exchanges into $1.30 pints in Krakow to $5.50 pints in Amsterdam. Other alcohol and restaurant prices in Krakow have a similar scale of price difference in Poland compared to Amsterdam.

Five days for us as a couple hanging out in Amsterdam takes a $500 traveling budget-friendly without lodging included.  Five days for a couple hanging out in Krakow is an easy $50 per day eating and drinking to a far more extravagant degree than $100 per day buys in Amsterdam.

Krakow lights.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto, Krakow Poland

Galeria Krakowska – Krakow, Poland

Kraków Główny train station is located beneath Galeria Krakowska. We arrived in the city a quarter hour before midnight on Saturday after a quick flight from Amsterdam. Fortunately I am familiar with navigating through the mall or I think I would have had a confusing time trying to get out of the shopping mall through the maze of closed shops at the late hour to the city street.

There would have been plenty going on around Krakow, but we were knackered after a busy day in Amsterdam. I was glad I picked Mercure hotel directly across the street from Galeria Krakowska.

Mercure Krakow Old Town

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto/Old Town was my third 2-night stay to earn Accor’s ALL loyalty program promotion for 6,000 bonus points. This stay was $95 per night. I booked all three stays/six nights at Accor Hotels for $620 all-in during the promotion period in Sep 2019 offering 6K bonus points for three advance purchase and nonrefundable 2-night stays completed by Jan 15, 2020. These three stays in Amsterdam and Krakow earned 7,975 ALL points.

2,000 ALL points = 40 EUR hotel stay credit. My plan is to spend my points for Accor Hotel stays somewhere in Europe summer 2020.

Loyalty Traveler – Forget IHG Accelerate, Le Club Accorhotels 6,000 points for 3 stays is current deal for me (Sep 23, 2019).

Loyalty Traveler – Trip Report Overview – Amsterdam Christmas, Krakow New Year (Jan 5, 2020).

Barbara Radziwiłł Queen of Poland and Grand Duchess of Lithuania (1520-1551), consort of King Sigismund II, last monarch of the Jagiellonian dynasty.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto has a royalty theme. Historically Krakow was the royal capital of Poland until 1596 when the capital was moved to Warsaw to be more centrally located to Vilnius, the other major capital of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth.

Poland-Lithuania Jagiellonian dynasty 1386-1596 was one of Europe’s major political and military powers.

Room 409

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto 409 bed

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto TV-desk.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 couch.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 seating area.

Our room faced Galeria Krakowska mall.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 view to Galeria Krakowska.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 coffee-minibar.

Regular size mugs sporting a traditional Polish design were a treat for morning coffee.

Accor-ALL platinum member amenity.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 bathroom wall.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 bathroom.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto push button rain shower.

The day before I was unable to figure out how to operate the rain shower at Park Plaza Vondelpark Amsterdam. Push button technology at Mercure Krakow was appreciated.

One complaint I might have had with the hotel room is the light shines through the glass wall partition to the bed. That could be an issue for me as a sleeper who needs a dark room to remain asleep. Kelley was not up and turning on the bathroom light during the night in the way I did as an early riser taking a shower before walking around Old Town. Light in the room is not a big issue for Kelley.

Mercure krakow Stare Miasto room 409 closet space.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto closet space.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto hotel lobby

We did not hang out in the lobby at all. Never even redeemed a coupon for two free beers at the hotel bar. There are so many cool pubs in Krakow that drinking in a bright hotel bar did not suit our mood.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto lobby bar and restaurant.

Klub Re Krakow, a cool space for a beer in Old Town.

My breakfast spot in the neighborhood is Lunch Bar TU located around the corner from Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto. I discovered the breakfast spot last summer when staying three nights at Hotel Indigo Krakow about 5 minutes walk from Mercure.

Lunch Bar TU Krakow eggs and bacon 10 PLN/$2.58 and coffee 5 PLN/$1.29.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto is a hotel I would not hesitate in returning to again.

Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto elevator message – Merry Everything and a Happy Always.

 

 

 

 

About Ric Garrido

Ric Garrido of Monterey, California started Loyalty Traveler in 2006 for traveler education on hotel and air travel, primarily using frequent flyer and frequent guest loyalty programs for bargain travel. Loyalty Traveler joined BoardingArea.com in 2008.

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Comments

  1. Ric,

    What about the terrible air pollution in Poland and Eastern Europe during the Winter?

  2. On one hand I really enjoy Poland and walking around the historical town centers. And I’ve enjoyed your reviews of your trips. On the other hand I’m kind of over the DCC charges that, as of my last visit in Oct’19, are literally everywhere and some places insist they can’t give you a choice among currencies. At a Radisson in Warsaw I was told that unless I paid in US Dollars I could not use the mini fridge in the room. And if you switch to cash there are a reasonable number of businesses who short change you or say they don’t have any change to give.

    Like I said, I enjoy the culture and history, so this makes me sad how greedy and unethical the businesses are here.

  3. @happyprime23

    You can always use Polish zloty everywhere and every place will give you change. If you try to use USD or EUR they yeah, most likely it will be problematic. Just get some polish zloty and you will be fine.

  4. @happyprime DCC are a big pet pieve of mine. Fortunately, you can dispute those charges with your credit card company: if you were not given a choice, they’ll reverse the charges..

  5. @HADLEY V. BAXENDALE – the air pollution was ‘Very Unhealthy’ two of the days we were in Krakow. Certainly something to keep in mind.

    I had forgotten about that until looking back over some notes on my iPhone.

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