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Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto, Krakow Poland New Year 2020 trip

a sign with lights on it

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.

a sign with lights on it
Krakow lights.
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto, Krakow Poland
a large christmas tree with lights in front of a building
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.

a street with cars and lights on it
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).

a painting of a woman in a black dress
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.

a wall with a bench and a blue bench
Poland-Lithuania Jagiellonian dynasty 1386-1596 was one of Europe’s major political and military powers.
Room 409
a bed with a crown on the wall
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto 409 bed
a tv on the wall
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto TV-desk.
a couch and chair in a room
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 couch.
a room with a bed and a chair
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 seating area.

Our room faced Galeria Krakowska mall.

a building with lights on the side of it
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 view to Galeria Krakowska.
a mini fridge with drinks and coffee cups
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 coffee-minibar.

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

a black board with food on it
Accor-ALL platinum member amenity.
a room with a door and a picture of a balcony
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 bathroom wall.
a bathroom with a sink and mirror
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto room 409 bathroom.
a shower head with a picture of a building
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.

a safe in a closet
Mercure krakow Stare Miasto room 409 closet space.
a coat in a closet
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.

a room with a large window and tables and chairs
Mercure Krakow Stare Miasto lobby bar and restaurant.
a table with a glass of beer on it
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.

a plate of food and a cup of coffee
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.

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






  • HADLEY V. BAXENDALE January 28, 2020


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

  • HappyPrime23 January 28, 2020

    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.

  • Adam January 29, 2020


    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.

  • Rupert January 29, 2020

    @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..

  • Ric Garrido January 29, 2020

    @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.

Comments are closed.