Travel Thoughts: Staying at the Orange Hotel Ximen, Taipei (桔子商旅-西門店)

Orange Hotel Ximen
Orange Hotel Ximen - the entrance

Orange Hotel Ximen is part of a hotel chain that has 7 branches in Taiwan, 4 of which are in Taipei while the other branches are located in Taichung, Chiayi and Kaohsiung. Nestled between cafés and shops, Orange Hotel Ximen is unlike any of the hotels that I’ve stayed at so far. It is a budget/boutique hotel which emphasizes on being eco-friendly and being space efficient (all their rooms may have different layouts but they are all 13sqm).

The hotel’s mascot, like its name, is an adorable orange which greets you when you enter. The moment you enter, you will be greeted with tinges of orange throughout the hotel. It reminded me more of a guesthouse than a full-fledged hotel. But one thing is for sure, and that is that it has successfully blended the friendliness of a guesthouse and professionalism of a hotel. One example would be that the staff greeted / acknowledged us each time left / entered the hotel, which was a heartwarming gesture, especially after a tiring flight or day out. 

Orange Hotel Ximen
The orange mascot all geared up for the World Cup

👉 Location
Orange Hotel Ximen is located in the vibrant neighborhood of Ximending, right in the middle of all the action, shops and food, and very near the MRT Station (about a 5-8 minute walk, depending on the Exit). From Taoyuan Airport, it take about 40 minutes to an hour to get to the hotel (depending on traffic and your preferred mode of transport). 

[Klook Review: Taoyuan Airport Transfer Review]

The nearest MRT Exit would be Exit 1 of the Ximending MRT Station (less than 5 minutes away). However if you have luggage with you, it might be better to use Exit 6 (less than 10 minutes away) instead as it has an escalator and elevator that brings you to ground level.


👉 Getting there
Mode Directions Cost Duration
Bus + MRT Freego bus (飛狗巴士)  to Zhongxiao Fuxing Station and take the Taipei Metro (MRT) to Ximen Station Exit 6 NT$140 (adult one-way) + NT$20 (MRT)

NT$260 (adult return) + NT$20 (MRT)
about 1 hour
Airport MRT Take the train from Taoyuan MRT Station, transfer at Taipei Main Station and alight at Ximending Station Exit 6. Take the elevator and escalator and walk (5-10 minutes walk) NT$20about 30-45 minutes
Taxi from Airport Airport taxis charge according to the meter in addition to a 50% surcharge (highway tolls not included) and provide transport to anywhere in Taiwan. NT$1,200~about 45 minutes
Klook Airport Transfer Slightly cheaper option to catching a taxi from the airport. You can go even cheaper if you select the sharing of transfer, but of course you would take a longer time to to arrive at your destination. NT$900~about 45 minutes


💘 Check in/out
Once our airport transport driver alighted us right in front of the hotel, we made our way into the orange themed lobby to check in. We were warmly welcomed at the counter and soon began the check-in process: all that was needed was to handover our passports for them to make a copy after verifying our bookings. We were soon handed the room keys and handed to our rooms on the 8th floor.

Orange Hotel Ximen
The lobby and reception area. If you need your toothbrushes/toothpastes, combs etc... just request them from the counter.
Orange Hotel Ximen
The seating area

Check-out was just as simple and painless. 15 minutes before checkout time the reception staff would give a call to the room to remind of the check-out time. Since we had time to kill before checking-in at out Beitou hotel, we left our luggage at the hotel while we went next door to have a long lunch at Machi Doggie Café. By the time we were done, we went back to collect out luggage and the hotel receptionist helped us get a taxi to our destination.


The Room
Orange Hotel Ximen
The comfortable bed

I had requested for the rooms to be side by side, but it was not meant to be as I had to change rooms. Upon entering the first room (803), a strong cigarette odor instantly assaulted my nose. The smell still did not dissipate after using the diffuser for close to an hour (we went out the moment we checked in and somewhat settled in) so I had to request for a room change at about 10pm. My new room was on the 10th floor and still had a pretty good view of the Red House (Ximendding) and Taipei 101 in the distance.

This would be the first time I have encountered a smoke-filled room in a non-smoking hotel, and it did put a damper on my expectations of the hotel (a little). I think the hotel should really do something to deter people from doing such inconsiderate things. I am sure they could smell the odor when it was being cleaned for the next occupant.

Orange Hotel Ximen
Evidence that some heavy smoking was done prior to my arrival in the first room
Orange Hotel Ximen
An attempt to remove the smoky smell, but to no avail.

Still, the reception staff was understanding and instantly gave me a new room on the tenth floor when I mentioned that the smell was too strong, and I could not tolerate it. I guess sometimes you just have to be firm and not be shy about it, I mean sure, I could have probably endured the smell for the next 2 nights, but it’s definitely not what I paid for. So, morale of the lesson: never be shy and always be firm and ask politely.
Note: Some rooms are carpeted, and some are not. It would seem that rooms ending with a 2 and corner rooms are non-carpeted, while the rest of the rooms should be carpeted. Personally, I was happier in my new room (102), which did away with the carpet and had wood/vinyl flooring.
Putting the odor trauma behind me, I soon settled into my clean and odorless new room. The room was quaint and cozy enough, quite a welcoming sight to the weary traveler after a packed day of exploring the city. The TV is places right in front of the bed so you can just lie down and chill while watching your favorite show. The window also let in a lot of light and you can enjoy the view of the bustling city life outside.

Orange Hotel Ximen
TV in front of the bed
Orange Hotel Ximen
Sink and mirror on the left from the door
Orange Hotel Ximen
Hand soap, 2 cups and body lotion
Orange Hotel Ximen
Turn right and it would be the bathroom, which was clean.
Orange Hotel Ximen
The complimentary bottles of water, tea, kettle and TV remote control. The fridge is below.
Orange Hotel Ximen
The little table, along with the fridge, complimentary water and tea, and hanging rack
Orange Hotel Ximen
If you need shower caps, toothbrushes, toothpaste, combs, it will not be in your room so remember to request for them at the reception counter!

Over the course of our 3 day stay, housekeeping was on point with the complimentary bottled water replenished, room slippers and clean towels provided each day, the bathroom was also kept clean.

The only gripe I would have would be the state of the bedsheets: they were not sparkling white with a few little stains and even pen marks still on them. Since the sheets and linen are all white, having such flaws definitely lowers the score a little (more). I mean, it’s clean, but not exactly spotless as they should be.


💚Loves💚
  • Location – near MRT, main road (to catch a taxi), to the rest of Ximending 
  • Room Size (perfect for a single traveler, a little tight for two but still doable)
  • Helpful, attentive and friendly hotel staff
  • Affordable
  • Clean (reasonably enough) and cozy
  • Umbrella
Fun Fact: The hotel is right next to Sunmerry (where you can get your food souvenir fix of nougat biscuits, mango / pineapple cakes etc…) and Machi Doggie Café (set up by Jay Zhou).

💔Not so Much💔
  • Cigarette smell in the first room
  • Carpet in some rooms
  • Clean, but not exactly spotless for the bedsheet linen: the pen marks and stains make the stay experience a little less stellar but the comfort and coziness almost makes up for it, almost…
  • Breakfast offering: a little too sparse in variety but it’s alright since there’s so much food in the vicinity
  • Really thin walls, you can hear doors being closed/opened, and what is happening outside/next door if your neighbors are inconsiderately loud enough.

Overall, the hotel staff were friendly and helpful, making us feel welcome as they acknowledged our presence and greeted us each time we left/returned; it’s the little things that count. In additional, the location of the hotel is perfect, near the MRT station and in the heart of Ximending, but away from the busier streets so you can get a good night’s rest (if your neighbors are considerate, and/or you are a deep sleeper). It is definitely worth the money spent and recommended for those who want the comforts of a hotel and the hospitality (and interactivity) of a hostel / guesthouse at the same time

Would I stay here again in the future? Probably, if the price is right and the starts align I might, as the location is really quite good and convenient, and the room comfortable enough.

Service
Value
Sleep Quality
Cleanliness
Location
Rooms

Overall Experience:

Orange Hotel Ximen, Taipei

Address: 108, Taiwan, Taipei City, Wanhua District, 中華路一段166號之2

Booking: Via the website OR online for a better pricing (Who knows? You might find an attractive rate especially if you book online. 😜)






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About iceprinxess

When travel collides with a byte, a unit of information made up of bits, TravelBytez is formed: snippets of ramblings on travel, food, shopping, living and anything else that comes to mind.

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