The Serviced Accommodation market covers a wide variety of options with a range of standards. They provide a real home from home option with the option to cater for yourself, obtain a takeaway/take-out and relax in a comfortable living room with all necessary equipment.
They are available with a full range of bedrooms, although one and two bedroom versions are more common. They are fully furnished and equipped down to the crockery, cutlery and full range of kitchen equipment. They will also have TVs with basic cable or satellite channels and the ability to connect to the internet (sometimes at an additional cost) either wirelessly or through an Ethernet cable and many have other electronic equipment such as radio alarms, stereo systems etc. You also do not have the storage restraints you would have in a hotel.
Available services vary, but generally include 24 hour reception and security, concierge’s service and often business services, such as computers, printers, fax. Most include a washing machine and dryer and some offer a laundry service. They are apartments rather than hotels and so a weekly maid service is normally provided with the option of paying for more regular service.
High chairs, cots and additional beds are generally available if you have children. In many, swimming pools and sometimes games rooms are available.
Apartments are delivered by a variety of providers:
- Serviced apartment owners and operators – in many cases it is possible to deal directly with the owners of the apartments without going through an intermediary. They are set up to take bookings for weeks or months and some will accept shorter bookings.
- Serviced apartment agents – Some owners link with other owners to create networks to provide a wider range of options and locations. The network will generally seek to establish a reputation for delivering consistent standards.
- Booking agents – Many companies are now set up to purely act as agents able to offer a wide range of options in a wide range of locations. They do not own properties but allow you to book available property to match your requirements, including budget, duration, quality and location.
Especially where you have not booked through the owner of the whole complex, you should ensure you are aware of arrangements for gaining access to the apartment. Most will provide the keys at the reception desk, but in some cases you will have to go to a local office.
Many will provide a welcome pack of basic food and drinks together with a booklet advising local shopping and dining options.
Overall Serviced Apartments provide an excellent option for such transitional periods and some choose them as their long term solution while on assignment.