It's hard to believe that it's been four years since the Vancouver 2010 Olympics but here we are again. The 22nd winter Olympics is underway in Sochi, Russia and the activity is just getting started. Many Americans have decided to stay home due to the increasing cost of attending. Those making the trip overseas are in for a surprise when it comes to finding a place to stay due to inflation rates that are sky rocketing with no sign of going down until the end of March. Hotel prices in Sochi and Krasnaya Polyana have more than doubled with an average of a 144 per cent increase during the peak times of the games. In the London 2012 Olympic Games, hotels had only increased by a maximum of 84% a night, according to a study by Trivago.
Russia isn't known for having miraculous hotel rooms, due to the lack of highly rated hotels in the Sochi area. Rooms have been added to host the Olympics and many hotel rooms are still incomplete. Twitter updates from reporters arriving in Sochi show some of the hilarious aspects of the readiness of the hotel rooms. Although some of the journalists are poking fun at the hotels, none or few of the athletes have complaints about the rooms or venues being unprepared. Sochi isn't the first Olympic host city to have similar hype and its likely everything will sort itself out soon.
Despite the conditions of the hotels, prices are remaining high for the games. Unlike the London 2012 Olympics when prices dropped last minute to fill empty rooms, Sochi's hotels are going to reach capacity and prices are unlikely to decrease. Tourism to Sochi wasn't big before the Olympics because soviet-era cobble stones cover up most of the beaches, unlike other Mediterranean resorts attracting much of the American crowd. Sochi is known as the pearl of the Russian Riviera, with a subtropic climate right on the Black Sea with 73 miles of beaches. The city is a trip back in time, with it's time-capsuled charm but until the Olympics, it hasn't drawn in many international tourists. So where is the best place to stay if you do want to go see the Olympics live? Here are a few suggestions.
10. Granat Hotel: $423 Per Night
The Granat Hotel in Sochi is only three stars but comes with a ridiculous price tag due to the Olympic games. The hotel is close to the Sochi International Airport and offers a shuttle service. It also offers access to a peaceful looking outdoor pool and sauna, although it will most likely be too cold for outdoor swimming just yet. WiFi is also available for hotel guests so they can stay up to date on the events occurring without even leaving their room.
8 Marin's Park Hotel: $485 Per Night
Marins Park Hotel is a four star hotel directly on the beach in Sochi. It offers spacious rooms overlooking the Black Sea. It's only ten minutes from the train station and provides a shuttle service when requested while car and jeep rentals are available as well. Guests have access to a traditional Russian Banya Sauna and a hot tub, or they can relax with one of many spa and beauty treatments offered. Hotel rooms are designed with uplifting bright colors and feature a spacious marble bathroom.
7 Raduga-Prestige Hotel: $531 Per Night
Raduga-Prestige is a three-star hotel that is charging $531 a night during the peak times of the Olympics. It has a bedroom with a double bed and living room. It also comes with a refrigerator and a balcony overlooking the outdoor pool. The hotel is located in town just a walk away from many attractions, including the aquarium, Green Theater and Town History Museum. It's prime location is one of the leading factors in the price.
6 7. The Grand Hotel And Spa Rodina: $539 Per Night
The Grand Hotel and Spa Rodina is a five-star hotel near the beach in Sochi. It has both an indoor and outdoor pool and a full-service spa, bars and lounges. The rooms have balconies with a choice of a city, sea or courtyard view. It has three restaurants to choose from without leaving the hotel, and the staff members speak multiple languages, making this hotel one of the better choices for the 2014 Olympics. It may be more expensive than other Sochi hotels but for the amount, it offers a lot in return.
5 Morski Apartments: $568 Per Night
Only three minutes from the Sochi Train station and 30 km from the Adler Airport Morski apartments offer guests a living area, bedroom and a balcony with outdoor furniture. The hotel is only a 15-minute walk to the Black Sea and there is a five-minute walk to the swimming pool. The apartments have a fully equipped kitchen for guests to prepare there own meals. This room is perfect for guests looking to stay for a couple weeks.
4 Sochi Marriott Krasnaya Polyana Hotel: $609 Per Night
This is a new hotel built for the Olympics located right next to the Olympic Media Center. The Marriott hotel offers its guest easy access to the 30 km of ski runs up to a height of 300 meters. Pets are allowed but the hotel has a strict no smoking policy. This hotel will be in the heart of the action during the 2014 Olympics and is right on a ski resort. It will house many athletes during the games, and after promises to be a luxurious ski resort.
3 Katerina Alpik Hotel: $697 Per Night
The Katerina Alpik hotel is four star resort that offers activities such as horse back riding, fishing, and hiking or lessons with the ski school. There is a jacuzzi and an indoor pool as well as a sauna for relaxation. Guest will always have something to do at this hotel, if they can foot the bill.
2 Gorki Plaza Hotel: $900 Per Night
This hotel is right in the middle of the Olympic games, set on the Gorki Gorod ski resort, with the hotel having two seven-story buildings. The hotel is near the shopping district and many restaurants so tourists can enjoy in these delights while not attending Olympic events. A train also connects the hotel to the Black Sea which gives a quick getaway if one is feeling claustrophobic in the mass of people. Rooms were being added for the Olympics, but construction still isn't completed in this hotel, so the first guests to arrive may risk having to share a room or change hotels. Despite the construction zone, prices remain high and are unlikely to fall. This is one of the central Sochi hotels housing future Olympian athletes.
2. Solis Hotel Sochi: $973 Per night
Solis Hotel Sochi is a five-star resort. The suite comes complete with a single King size bed and an LCD TV. The balcony offers view of the mountains and guests may enjoy an in room massage for an extra cost and relax in front of the fire place. The room comes with a house coat, slippers and designer toiletries to add that extra luxurious feel. The bathroom has both a bath and a shower with a rainfall shower head as well. A big perk is that anything found in the mini bar is free game and is covered in the cost of the suite. The hotel has an indoor pool, and is right on the ski slopes.
1 Katerina Alpik Apartment: $1,307 Per Night
A two-bedroom apartment with views of the surrounding mountains and forests of the Russian landscape. The apartment is 59 square meters, with one bedroom and a double bed. The second bedroom has another double bed and a sofa bed. There is a spacious kitchen and dinning room for guests to make their own food which helps when people are trying to avoid the hustle and bustle of people. All the typical hotel services are provided with the benefit of having a private space away from other guests, which gives a home-away-form-home type of feel.