Good or Bad: Pangong Hotel

 

Bricks in front of Room 305 of Pangong Hotel, leh, India

 

We booked a Pangong Hotel room with balcony for nineteen days over phone and via email in July 2013.  The deal was good: INR 3,000 per night for two and free airport drop, airport pick up, and Wi fi. However, our experience was mixed. Pangong Hotel, a two-floor building situated on a narrow street in Chulung, Leh, faces The Auspicious Hotel where construction work was in progress during our stay that started on September 18, 2013.

Check-in

Check-in was slow. Our room was not ready. We had to wait for at least an hour or so.

Airport Pick up and Drop Service 

Although airport pick-up and drop services were free as per our hotel deal, we had to call the hotel twice and wait for 15-20 minutes for the cab at Leh Airport on September 18, 2013.  The cab was clean and in good shape. The driver was courteous. It was a short ride of ten minutes. The narrow street where hotel is located was dirty and waterlogged in parts. 

Airport drop service was however prompt and punctual.

Rooms 

We stayed in two different types of rooms: 201 (3 days) and 305 (16 days).  We paid same tariff for both.

Laundry

Self-laundry was prohibited. The hotel laundry service was neither quick nor up to the mark. We used it three –four times during our stay. Once dirty T-shirt was ironed and returned. When we requested re-wash, it took longer (four days) than usual. The service was expensive too. For example, the hotel charged INR 100 for a woolen shirt, INR 50 for a pair of trousers, and INR 30 for a pair of socks.  

Wi-Fi

The hotel Wi-Fi was free as per the deal. But it was extremely spotty due to power cuts. It worked well with Samsung Galaxy Note II and Nokia E72 but did not work on our fully functional IBM ThinkPad. The snippy hotel manager and the owner meddled with internet settings on our laptop in vain and claimed that our laptop was defective. 

We also tested our Airtel Mobile Internet that was slow. Airtel charged rate of roaming for the mobile web surfing. However, Tata Docomo Photon+ did not work.

Service 

Turndown service was good. Towels and books were arranged aesthetically and tastefully. Even items kept in cupboard were arranged nicely. Clothes were wrapped properly. 

When we enquired about heritage walk in old Leh town at the hotel reception both the staff and the owner discouraged us. According to them, the old town has nothing to see. The hotel staff wanted us to visit faraway places such as Nubra and Pangong Lake, so that they could sell us their taxi service. They suggested that we should not walk to Leh Palace and Tsemo Castle, main monumental landmarks in the town, as we would not be able to walk the steep trails/roads leading to these structures. However, we easily explored the old town on our own on foot and liked some of the heritage structures along the walk. 

In the first week of October, construction work began in the hotel. Construction material was heaped on the second floor in front of our room and labor worked full day. It was annoying. However, on October 5, 2013, one night before checking out, Mr. Iftikar, the owner of the hotel, apologized for the mess on the pretext of short “construction and repair period” because water would start freezing in November. 

 

 

 

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