I always seem to come back to DooYoo when I have been either extremely pleased by something, or made to feel so angry I have to hammer the keyboard and tell you all about it. Sadly this is a case of the latter. To celebrate a few birthdays that all fell close together, a big group of my friends all decided to head off out our home area of Newbury and do something a bit more interesting for a weekend. We plumped for a trip to Nottingham, as, by all accounts, its just the place young trendy types (like us?) want to be. We hunted around and found a good web deal on Holiday Inn hotels. Basically, if you book online, 21 days before you want to travel, you get the room at £58 per night. The normal rate is £99, so it?s quite a discount. To start the day off with a bang, we all met up at F1 Carting in Leicestershire, had a few laps of the track (during which my Girlfriend forgot to steer and crashed quite hard - more on that later). Once we were done with the go-carts, we headed off into Nottingham, where our hotel and our evening out awaited us. On first impressions the Holiday Inn, St James' Street, is a fairly nice, mid range, hotel. The car park is a little tricky to get into (we ended up in one round the corner from it - a luck break actually - more on this later too), and is £13 per night - which seems a little expensive, but you don?t have much choice. Check in was fairly smooth, despite the fact that a group of fairly noisy, quite rude people were demanding rooms on the spot. Never mind we though, taking our room keys. The room was the smallest £99 hotel room I have ever stayed in. It was no bigger than your average single room, and yet the owners had managed to squeeze a double bed, TV, armchair and desk in. It looked as though it had been last decorated when Wham were doi
ng their farewell tour, but was clean enough. My friends, some of them not in couples, found that their rooms were no better - some were asked to make d o with double beds - despite the fact that they had booked twins. The evening was getting off to a good start. My girlfriends go-carting crash started to play a part on events, as her knee swelled up rather quickly. I expected to be able to find things like Ice in a hotel that charged £100 per night for rooms - but nope. It was a bit more basic than your average travel lodge. Any way, we put it all to one side and went out. Nottingham is a great city for a night out, its got chain bars, trendy individual little clubs and restaurants, and generally feels pretty chilled, so we had a good time. Things started getting worse when we got back to the hotel. Remember those charming guests that were checking in beside us? Well they had been on a bender in town too - it looked like a bare-knuckle fight may have been enjoyed by all. They were ion good spirits as we left them at 2am. I managed 1 hour of sleep before the fire alarm went off. The staff were highly trained it seemed in this, as they left all the guest in the bars etc, made no effort to evacuate, nor were at any pains to tell us what was going on. We were just left to wait around for 30 minutes or so until the lifts came back on and we could return to our rooms. Following that, it was quite hard to sleep, as we were kept awake by more of our fellow guests, trying to find their rooms - using handy door openers such as their feet. In short - it was worse than an 18-30 hotel in Falaraki. In the morning we were delighted to be told that 15 cars in the £13 per night car park had been given extra ventilation. Luckily we got lost trying to find it - so my aircon was left as it was - along with all my windows. So - for potentially £99 per night,
idiots fighting, setting the fire alarms off and giving your car the feel of a convertible at half the price could keep you to up until 5am. My advice would be to find a small B&B instead.