“Blue, the color of Bavarian royalty, floods your senses as you glide across the dark blue carpet and the cool lighting guides you home. The fresh scent of the crisp Bavarian Alps is inviting and relaxing. The 25Hours Hotel, The Royal Bavarian, perfectly marries the luxurious culture of the old Bavarian bloodline and hip modern-day Munich so seamlessly, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to a golden age of Munich.”
I’ve been a fan of the 25Hours Hotels, a German boutique hotel chain, since the first time I stayed at their location in Hamburg. There is something about their ability to bring out the personality of the host city in obsessive detail that makes each stay immersive and playful. When 25Hours decided to open their doors in my home city, Munich, I was curious how they would bring Bavarian culture to their guests. Half expecting to be overwhelmed by lederhosen, trashy beer culture, and pretzels, I was pleasantly surprised with a classy atmosphere telling the history of Bavarian Royalty. The 25Hours Hotel, The Royal Bavarian, is the best centrally located hotel in Munich for anyone looking to combine old-world luxury with upscale hipster vibes so you can rest like royalty while exploring one of Europe’s most charming cities.
I would like to thank the 25hours Hotel, The Royal Bavarian, for inviting me to stay at their property for this review. As always, all views and opinions are my own and cannot be bought. In this review, you will find both the pros and the cons. I am a local blogger here in Munich and providing you with honest feedback to ensure you have the best time in my home city is my number one goal. You do not have to book 25Hours Hotel in order to enjoy Munich, but I highly recommend them, to do so, book using this link!
Getting to Know 25Hours Hotel, The Royal Bavarian
New to the concept of 25Hours Hotels? Everything you need to know is summed up in these three sentences. “There are plenty of hotels that offer the security of a familiar environment. We do not. A 25Hours hotel is an idiosyncratic surprise bag with contemporary service.” Surprise bag is what they are going for and surprise bag is what they deliver. Every 25Hours feels like a place for the playful adult, where they can meet like-minded travelers in a place of chaotic good. However, each 25Hours hotel is uniquely different from any other.
The surprises that await at the The Royal Bavarian are both hidden and boldly stated throughout the hotel. Housed in the old bones of the royal telegraph station, royalty literally runs through the wires at this stately hotel. The hotel was clearly built around the old station and it shows in quirky corners and odd room shapes. From the moment you step into the elevator, you are greeted with mobile art that tells the story of Bavaria. Entering the lobby area you’ll find elegant touches of Royal blue and gold. Checking in is a pleasant experience with friendly staff who will give you the low-down on the hotel and all its features, including how to keep an open eye for all the hidden eccentricities you’ll find hidden throughout.
Blue, Swans, and Post Boxes. What Gives?
What’s the deal with all the swans, shades of blue and hidden post boxes you’ll find seamlessly weaved throughout the hotel?
Blue is the color of the Royal Family in Bavaria, if you were royal you would have blue blood. You’ll find rich royal blues boldly placed everywhere from the carpet to the lighting. This will have you feeling royal in no time.
Swans play an important part in the Bavarian royal history. Swans were considered so special that only a blue-blooded royal could eat these creatures. Don’t worry, you won’t be eating swans during your stay, but you can sit on a cool swan chair or go bananas in the swan suite.
Postboxes hang on the walls throughout the hotel. As I mentioned, the hotel has taken over the former royal telegram building. They keep a light postal theme throughout the property, and you can even sit down at any of their many typewriters and write a letter to home, drop it in a post box and 25Hours will send it for you. I wrote a letter to my mom.
Location: A Great Hotel in Munich City Center
The Royal Bavarian is located in the heart of urban, raw and vibrant Munich. Just steps away from the central train station, you don’t have to go far to rest your feet after a long day of travel. Once you’re ready to explore Munich, once again you will not have to go far to reach the old town, Marienplatz and all the main sights of Munich. If the old town isn’t your destination than hop on any of the trains, buses, bike trails, trams or underground trains that are all right outside the front door.
Possible Triggers: The location can be a bit “too urban” for some. While the majority of Munich is clean, quiet and reserved, the area around the central train station is bustling with life 24 hours. I argue that the location in the heart of Munich is what gives this hotel some of its life, but others might want quiet location outside of the city center. However, as soon as you step inside the hotel, the vibe is nothing but relaxing luxury and you leave all the hustle and bustle behind.
The Royal Rooms
The rooms at the Royal Bavarian are set into three categories and each category has two options. In each room, regardless of the type, you’ll always find high-speed WiFi and a Bluetooth speaker for those late night – or early morning- jam sessions, charming decorations, a Freitag bag, a safe and a little area to get some work done. The 25Hours Hotel beds are always soft and luxurious with ample pillow to bed ration supply, so you’ll get a good night sleep no matter what room you’re in.
The cheapest category, the Box Room, starts at around 130 Euros in offseason, and is perfect for anyone trying to stick to a budget or the solo traveler. The rooms are the brightest of the group with light wood paneling resembling a sauna. The rooms are efficiently packed, meaning they are quite small but well designed. The sink area might be in the same space as the bed with a private toilet. Make sure to look up for some really cool lighting features. These rooms come in single or queen options.
The chamber rooms are where you cross from simple elegance to almost royalty. With dark walls and a grand wooden headboard this room is perfect for those who like a bit of class and luxury, but don’t want to go overboard with the suite. The bathrooms are large and beautifully tiled and have brassy golden touches. The chamber is a bit tight for 2 people, but manageable if you’re both organized. The Grand Chamber is the right choice for couples who want a bit of space to spread out and enjoy the comforts of the room.
Perfect for the traveling executive, who needs to host a business meeting in their room, the suites are spacious 2 room sleeping quarters fit for true royalty. There are two suites, themed for peacock or swan lovers. The details are a bit over the top, but that is what makes 25Hours so great. Each suite comes with a free bike, so you can get to and from your business meeting in style. These are not ideal for families or groups, as they still only have one bed, but there is ample living and meeting space.
Possible Triggers: The rooms are comfortable and filled with all the right details, however, most of the rooms within a reasonable budget are quite small. I suggest planning on spending most of your time in the hotel common areas or out exploring Munich. The suites are only practical for the traveling business person or luxury couple. This is not a family-friendly hotel. Munich is an expensive city and you should expect to pay well over 100 Euro for a nice hotel room and 25Hours Hotel is no exception. The price tag may weed out anyone on a budget, but for those that can afford it, a room of luxury and comfort awaits.
Amenities and Extras
It is perhaps all the details, amenities and shared spaces in 25Hours Hotels that make them such an exciting place to lay your head and The Royal Bavarian really goes all out. I could have spent hours hanging out in the coffee shop designed to feel like a royal atrium, the spa, or the lounge area with a Wolpertinger to keep me company. (That is something very Bavarian you will want to Google). Alas, I only had a night, good thing I live in Munich and will be coming back to work in the cafe and drink their wonderful coffee!
The spa and relaxation room is a calming escape to recharge for your Munich adventures. With foot tubs to give your tired feet a makeover after a walking tour, a sauna and a reading corner you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to a remote alpine lodge.
The fitness isn’t much more than a treadmill and a weight rack, so if you’re after exercise I’d recommend hopping on one of their bikes and explore the city instead.
The Lost Weekend Cafe
The lost weekend is known as one of the best coffee shops in Munich, so when they opened a new location in the belly of The Royal Bavarian I was thrilled. This new location shed the hipster college student vibe and serves up coffee in a spacious and green filled with plants. This was one of my favorite spaces in the hotel and it is a great location to meet friends, get some work done or just enjoy an excellent cup of joe. On certain nights you’ll be able to enjoy live entertainment.
Hidden in a little corner of the hotel is a space for hosting meetings or work gatherings. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped into a hunting lodge with rustic wood paneling and charming wooden chairs. Make sure you plan your meeting to include beer, as this room has a self-filling ice machine that will keep your beers at the perfect drinking temperature.
Whether you like to power a 2 wheeled bike or drive a zippy 4 wheel car The Royal Bavarian has you covered. Ask the front desk about their bike and car rentals and the perfect route to explore the city.
I found it a bit of a bummer that the bike rentals were not free, while 10 Euro isn’t a bad deal, I think they should be more accessible to guests. Once of the best ways to explore Munich is by bike and I hope to see them just put a deposit on the bikes in the future.
Each room comes with a Freitag bag. These bags are free to use during your stay and you can purchase them when you check out. Freitag is a hip Swiss brand of bags and purses that are made of recycled rubber. These sustainable and fashionable bags are all the rage in Europe. Feel free to try the bag out and buy it as you check out. I couldn’t resist the bag that was in my room and I happily took it home. It matched my dress and was fate!
German service can be known to be lackluster, but the service at The Royal Bavarian was pleasant. The staff were always on hand to answer any questions I had. You can also get some great local tips on things to do and places to go, though I didn’t see any maps on hand or the option to book anything from their front desk.
The thing to remember about service in Munich is that staff will engage as much or as little as you want, but you often need to approach them and let them know what you might need. So, if you need extra help planning your day or with your room, just ask and you shall receive!
I wouldn’t stay in a hotel if they weren’t making efforts to be sustainable. While all the 25Hours Hotels do an amazing job at this, I was quite impressed with the Munich location. In your bathroom, you’ll find reminders to shut off your water, reuse your towel and disposable shampoo and conditioner are nowhere to be found.
At the bar you won’t find plastic straws, in fact, I can’t recall seeing any single-use plastic in the hotel. The design of the hotel utilizes refurbished furniture and they do a great job up-cycling. The gift store stocks only local goodies, so you won’t find any cheap “Bavarian” trinkets from China.
One of my favorite parts of my stay was dining at NENI, which is becoming a name synonymous with 25Hours. NENI is an Israeli fusion restaurant. I loved the open space of the NENI in Munich. Neon signs and an open kitchen make it feel hip and urban, but the shared tables and platters make you feel right at home. They also have intimate seating for those that don’t want a shared table experience.
I ordered the taste of NENI or Balagan for a little bit of everything. The meal with started with amazing hummus, continued to a filling sabich and ended with a variety of desserts. This is ideal for a group of maybe 4 or more. My two person party had to take home leftovers, but it was well worth it. If a set menu isn’t right for you, you can try any of their other single dishes like spicy eggplant and rice. They’re vegetarian and vegan-friendly!
I loved everything I tried, down to the wine and last bite of dessert. The service was great and the atmosphere was very different from everyday Munich, which was a breath of fresh air for a local. I was thrilled to see The Royal Bavarian branch out to serve something different from traditional German food. Don’t worry you can still get your German beer on tap!
This restaurant is popular with the locals, so if you want to eat here, book a table when you check in or you might miss you!
The Boilerman Bar has quickly become a favorite bar among locals and patrons of the hotel alike. During the day, the bar is shrouded behind thick velvet curtains and you can sit in the lounge area among bookshelves, teaming with oddities to get some work done. At 5 pm, the curtains are drawn to reveal a sultry bar. Remember to put your laptops away, this is a laptop-free zone at night.
The bar is lavish and posh with a hint of prohibition thrown into the mix. The room is decorated with gold pineapple lights, red velvet chairs and teal pops of color to the otherwise dark ambiance.
I hope you like highball cocktails because that is what the bar does and they do it will. The highball cocktail is a remnant of the early 1900s and the great railroad. Named for the highballing that occurred in steam locomotives this cocktail is timeless. Try a classic like a Cuba Libre or get wild with the Highball of the Day.
If you don’t like Highballs… well you might just be out of luck.
Nurse your hangover with The Royal Bavarian breakfast. Drink copious amounts of coffee before digging into cold meats, cheeses, yogurts, müsli, hot eggs and much more. The breakfast is an additional cost and it is a bit expensive – around 13 Euro, but there is something in there for everyone. Considering breakfast in Munich is either a sugary pastry or a heavy sausage and beer meal, it really isn’t a bad option to start your day.
Considering my general lack of faith in Munich hotels – they’re either too lavish and costly or tacky and cheap – The Royal Bavarian perfectly combines luxury with a hip edgy vibe perfect for the young-at-heart couple or traveling business people. This means that it is not ideal for a family or anyone on a tight budget, but if you’re as vibrant as the city of Munich, you’ll feel right at home. The beds are comfortable and they efficiently use the space they have to make this a home away from home. The restaurant and bar provide you a unique experience not often found in Munich. You’ll have a blast learning about Bavarian history and this is the perfect way to sleep like royalty so you have the energy to take on Munich!