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Metropol Hotel, Moscow 

1/4 Teatralny Proyezd
Russia 109012
Tel: 7 499 501 7800
view web site ›'s insider take:

The Metropol vies with the National for the title of Moscow's most historic hotel: Lenin lived in the National, but he gave speeches here. It's a huge hotel (363 rooms), with a grand lobby, an even grander restaurant under a vaulted stained-glass ceiling, and fountains and marble pillars for adornment. Some of the early Bolsheviks lived and worked here (the presidential suite includes a huge desk used by Lenin's comrade Yakov Sverdlov); more recent notable guests include heads of state, Michael Jackson, and Sharon Stone. Guest rooms have high ceilings and many are decorated with antiques preserved and restored from the hotel's opening in 1901. (Some are lovely, while others have an overwrought Victorian feel that might not be to everyone's taste.) The best—such as rooms No. 4464 and No. 5564—have views of the Bolshoi Theater and Revolution Square (Ploschad Revoliutsii), which is adjacent to Red Square; for a view of the Kremlin's towers, book No. 3340. Avoid the seven tiny single rooms and the rooms with views over the glass ceiling of the Metropol Hall—you'll feel as if you're stuck in a broom closet. High-speed Internet can be installed for a flat fee of nearly $200 plus about $35 per day for the service. Skip the tired breakfast buffet—live harp music notwithstanding—and upgrade instead to the VIP floor, which for an extra $40 gets you breakfast, a light dinner (you can bring a guest, free of charge), and meeting room. The pool and sauna are beautiful, but close at 10 pm.

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