Chaoyang District Embassy Areas Very Expensive

China World Hotel (Zhdngguo Dafandian) fjftfp Already one of the top business hotels in Beijing, the China World is now among the best Beijing hotels altogether thanks to a recent top-to-bottom renovation. Refurbished standard rooms are luxuriously modern but somewhat narrow with vaguely objets d'art on display. Service is impeccable, the hotel boasts one of the city's finest fusion restaurants (Aria), and there's a stunning health club with a new oxygen chamber in the basement. The hotel is far from the major sights but has its own metro stop.

Jianguomen Wai Dajie 1, Chaoyang District. & 010/6405-2266. Fax 010/6505-0828. www.shangri-la.com. 716 units. AE, DC, MC,V. ¥2,400 ($300) standard twin (discount rates down to ¥1,240/$155), plus 15% service charge. Amenities: 4 restaurants plus several more in attached mall; 25m (82-ft.) indoor pool; golf simulator; 3 indoor tennis courts; health club and spa; concierge; business center; forex; salon; 24-hr. room service; same-day dry cleaning/laundry; nonsmoking rooms; executive-level rooms. In room: A/C, satellite TV, free broadband Internet access, dataport, minibar, hair dryer, safe.

Jianguo Hotel (Jianguo Fandian) ^ Beijing's first international four-star, the Jianguo is considered ancient at 22 years old, but rigorous maintenance and good foreign management have enabled it to continue to compete. Service is competent, rooms are well maintained and comfortable, and there is convenient access to the sights with a metro stop (Yong'an Li) next door. The best rooms are on the ground floor, where French windows open onto small patios and goldfish-stocked pools—relief from Beijing's bustle. Justine's, just off the lobby, is the city's most elegant French restaurant.

Jianguo Men Wai Dajie 5, Chaoyang District (east of Silk St. Market). & 010/6500-2233. Fax 010/65002871. 399 units. AE, DC, MC, V. ¥1,520 ($190) standard twin (summer discount rates around ¥1,080/$135), plus 15% service charge. Amenities: 3 restaurants; bar; indoor swimming pool; fitness center; Jacuzzi; sauna; concierge; tour desk; business center; forex; shopping arcade; salon; 24-hr. room service; same-day dry cleaning/laundry; executive-level rooms. In room: A/C, satellite TV, minibar, hair dryer, safe.

Kempinski Hotel (KaiblnsIjT Fandian) The Kempinski's recently refurbished rooms are large, fresh, and comfortable, but the hotel's most attractive feature is the attached Lufthansa Center—a shopping, office, and apartment complex that offers every imaginable service a foreigner could need, including a specialist wine store, medical and dental clinics, and a department store. Expensive but well run, the hotel anchors northern Chaoyang District and sits at the center of foreign life in the eastern part of the city. Hands-down the best choice for business travelers.

Liangma Qiao Lu 50, Chaoyang District (east of N. Third Ring Rd., near airport expressway junction). & 010/ 6465-3388. Fax 010/6465-3366. 486 units. AE, DC, MC, V. ¥2,000 ($270) standard twin (discount rates around ¥1,280/$160), plus 15% service charge. Amenities: 8 restaurants; indoor pool; outdoor tennis court; squash courts; fitness center; Jacuzzi; sauna; concierge; free shuttle to airport and city center; Regus business center; forex; extensive shops; 24-hr. room service; same-day dry cleaning/laundry; nonsmoking rooms; executive-level rooms. In room: A/C, satellite TV, free broadband Internet access, dataport, minibar, hair dryer, safe.

Kerry Centre Hotel (Beijing Jiali Zhdngxin Fandian) tffrjf Kids The latest addition to Shangri-La's formidable Beijing stable, the Kerry Centre is also the most trendy, with a clean, stylish, very modern design to its warm, comfortable, and unusually high-ceilinged rooms. Full facilities, such as proper shower cubicles in bathrooms, free in-room broadband Internet access, and particularly attentive staff, have all helped make the Kerry one of the city's most successful hotels. The playground and ample sports courts make it a good choice for children.

Guanghua Lu 1, Chaoyang District (on west side of Kerry Centre complex, north of Guomao metro station). & 010/8529-6999. Fax 010/8529-6333. www.shangri-la.com. 487 units. ¥1,760 ($220) standard twin, plus 15% service charge. AE, DC, MC,V. Amenities: 3 restaurants; bar; indoor 25m (82-ft.) pool; indoor basketball/tennis/badminton courts; fitness center; roof-top track for running and in-line skating; children's play area; concierge; tour desk; business center; forex; extensive shops; 24-hr. room service; same-day dry cleaning/laundry; nonsmoking rooms; executive-level rooms. In room: A/C, satellite TV, free broadband Internet access, dataport, minibar, hair dryer, safe.

Renaissance Beijing (Guohang Wanli Jiudian) ^ Opened just north of Sanyuan Qiao in 2003, the Renaissance is understated but elegant in the St. Regis mold (see below) and destined to steal a fair amount of business from surrounding hotels. Rooms are palatial, but restrained enough not to suffocate. Association with Air China (which owns the building) means guests can check flight schedules on your TVs and, if you're flying with Air China, check in at the hotel desk.

Xiaoyun Lu 36, Chaoyang District (behind Air China Building, east of Sanyuan Qiao). & 0800/852-0469 or 010/6468-9999. Fax 010/6468-9913. www.renaissancehotels.com. 212 units. ¥2,080 ($260) standard twin (discount rates in summer ¥960-¥1,320/$120-$165), plus 15% service charge. AE, DC, MC, V. Amenities: 2 restaurants; indoor pool; sauna; concierge; business center; forex; salon; 24-hr. room service; same-day dry cleaning/laundry; executive-level rooms. In room: A/C, satellite TV, broadband/dataport, minibar, hair dryer, safe.

St. Regis Beijing (Beijing Guoji Julebu Fandian) The variety of fine hotels in Beijing is too wide now to label any one the unequivocal best, but if a choice has to be made, it's still the St. Regis. The lobby, with its white marble and towering palms, is the city's most elegant, the health club is world class, and extremely personalized service is as close to perfect as you'll find in China. If there's a complaint, it's the smallness of the rooms, but all are beautifully appointed with a few pieces of traditional Chinese furniture, Beijing's deepest bathtubs, and the full range of extras. World leaders and other very important visitors stay here almost exclusively.

Jianguo Men Wai Dajie 21, Chaoyang District (west side of Rltan Park). & 010/6460-6688. Fax 010/64603299. www.stregis.com/beijing. 273 units. AE, DC, MC, V. ¥2,720 ($340) standard twin (summer discount rates ¥1,400-¥1,600/$180-$200), plus 15% service charge. Amenities: 5 restaurants; bar; cigar and wine-tasting rooms; gorgeous indoor pool (25m/82 ft.); putting green and driving area; squash courts; exercise room; full-service spa; billiards room; bowling alley; concierge; business center; forex; salon; 24-hr. "butler" service; 24-hr. room service; same-day dry cleaning/laundry; nonsmoking rooms. In room: A/C, satellite TV, DVD player, broadband/dataport; minibar, hair dryer, safe.

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