I was only able to spend one night in Basel, definitely not enough time to explore the city, but thankfully my base for exploring was the wonderful Passage Hotel.
Lately I’ve developed an appreciation for design hotels and the Passage in Basel is one of the first ones in the city to offer its guests a blend of historic flair with modern and contemporary stylings.
Having enjoyed my stay quite a bit it’s not surprising to me that design hotels are growing in popular and it’s refreshing seeing hotels like the Passage pioneering the way forward in world-class cities like Basel.
Apart from being an interesting and memorable hotel the Passage also offers guests an ideal location for exploring the city along with a variety of other features such as breakfast, updated and spacious rooms, an airy bar/lounge area and even a fitness center.
The Passage Hotel in Basel, Switzerland
Recently opened in 2014, the Passage is one of the most recent additions to the hotels of the Hotels et Residences Diana chain.
The name itself, Passage, actually has an interesting meaning, and it was chosen as the building acts as a literal “passage” between the old town area of the city and the newer, more modern part.
There’s even an exit at the rear of the hotel that you take that will shuttle you just a few steps away from the city center and if you choose to go out the front you’ll be met with modern commercial buildings and access to the local public transportation system.
Nearby are plenty of the main attractions in the city and you don’t have to walk very far at all to find somewhere good to eat, drink or shop.
I believe that many visitors to Basel would find the Passage Hotel in the ideal location, not too busy and not too far away from the action.
It doesn’t matter if you’re traveling solo or with a group, there are more than 50 rooms to choose from ranging in size and price depending on your preferences and budget.
Now that you’re a little more informed about the hotel let’s dive into my review and experience staying here.
My Passage Hotel Review
Check-In and Interior
Right after walking through the hotel doors I was immediately greeted by a nice young lady working at the reception desk.
She asked about my trip so far and I was surprised to find out that she was actually an American working at the hotel.
We spoke for a short while and she provided with me a lot of details about the hotel along with some of the different things to do in Basel.
Having been handed the key I started to make my way up to my room but not before I checked out the lobby and the interior of the hotel.
The first thing I noticed was how bright, airy and spacious the lobby and lounge area was.
There was a small seating area indoors and a patio outdoors as well, which was great to take advantage during the summer heat of early August.
On the ground level is where breakfast is held and there is even a small bar if you’re looking to enjoy a cocktail or beer after a long day of exploring the city.
As I made my way to my room I couldn’t help but notice that the rest of the hotel was very bright, clean and well-kept.
Even on the main level it was easy to tell that I was in the design hotel has all of the furniture was very modern and the lighting, artwork and even the style of the lobby was very contemporary.
Before getting to the hotel I had already visited a handful of different hotels throughout Switzerland and it’s always a toss-up when it comes to whether or not you’re getting a small, cramped room or something spacious with plenty of room for two people.
Thankfully I opened the door and was surprised by how big the room was and how much space the room had.
Although I wasn’t in a suite there was a small couch, coffee table and another small chair in the center of the room and dominating the other half of the room was an enormous bed.
There was a desk as well along with plenty of storage space, minibar and a stereo system that worked throughout the entire room.
Again, even in the hotel room it was easy to see all of the different design elements such as the quirky lamp and the writing on the wall above the bed.
The bathroom was also a pleasant surprise and it featured a large bathtub, stand up shower and a spacious interior with more than enough room for getting ready in the morning.
There was a large window taking up a small part of the wall that overlooked the courtyard and even though there weren’t any other windows the high ceilings and interior space of the room made it feel quite big and not at all cramped.
One of the best parts of traveling is getting back to your hotel room after a long day of walking around and exploring to just jump on the bed and relax for a short while.
That’s why it’s always important to have a comfortable bed to relax on and thankfully the Hotel Passage excelled in this regard.
The bed was huge, definitely more than enough space for two people, and one of the more comfortable beds that I’ve been lucky enough to sleep on during my trip so far.
There was ample lighting above the bed before any late night reading end the coffee tables made for ideal storage space as well for keeping any laptops or smartphones on.
One of the features that I really liked was the charging port right beside the bed which had both Swiss and European style plugs so there was no need to use any special adapters and I didn’t have to scour the room looking for somewhere to plug in my computer.
I find that too often many hotels simply don’t care about improving their internet connection or offering guests speedy and reliable Wi-Fi.
The Passage is not one of these hotels and during my stay I was able to take advantage of a speedy, strong and reliable internet connection.
As a travel blogger this was very important to me and I was able to both upload photos and videos quickly without any issues at all.
Accessing the net and using social media was blazing fast and for your average traveler it’s unlikely that you’ll experience any issues with the internet at this hotel.
As I already mentioned the bathroom was one of the highlights of the hotel room and I’m not embarrassed to say that I even took two baths during my stay even though it was for just one night.
The bathroom itself was quite spacious and featured a large bathtub along with a completely separate stand-up shower.
There were a range of different amenities provided from L’Occitane so I was able to use some fresh smelling soap and shampoo without having to use my own.
More of the design and contemporary style touches can be seen in the bathroom with the unique pattern of the sink and the overall layout of the bathroom as well.
One more thing that I noticed is that I was even able to listen to music through the TV that played on the speakers in the bathroom which only further added to the overall enjoyment of the hotel room itself.
I checked the price for the standard room for random dates in October and if you’re interested in staying at this hotel you can expect to pay about $197 USD total for two people.
For the location and quality of hotel I would argue that this is actually a great price for accommodation in Basel, considering how expensive the city is, and it’s unlikely that you’ll find many other better places with similar standards of quality.
As always, be sure to book as far in advance as you can in order to find the best price and ample availability.
The location of the Hotel Passage is ideal for both city travelers and business travelers.
The city center itself is only about 5 or 10-minute walk away on foot and it’s possible to reach the majority of the main attractions in Basel in under 20 minutes walking.
Also nearby are a wide range of different restaurants, small shops, bakeries, cafes and plenty of other things to check out.
As for public transportation, right outside of the hotel it’s possible to access the transportation system and also short walk away you can reach the trams that run throughout the city centre.
It’s always nice to have a good breakfast when you’re staying at a hotel.
The breakfast at the Passage is held down in the main lobby/lounge seating area so while you’re eating it’s possible to further admire the high ceilings, modern design and contemporary stylings while basking in the natural lighting that comes through the large windows.
A large breakfast buffet is available with a variety of different choices.
Some of the options included:
- A selection of fresh pastries
- Fresh fruit
- Cereal, yogurt and nuts
- Sliced cheese and cold cuts
Apart from that there was also some coffee and tea available along with a selection of different juices.
Breakfast is included in some of the rates so be sure to book one of those rates if you don’t want to shell out anything extra to eat in the morning.
Keep in mind that Switzerland is an expensive place to visit and if you eat a big breakfast you don’t have to eat such a large lunch!
Parking and Accessibility
If you’re driving into Basel like I did then you’ll be pleased to find out that there is a secure underground parking garage just steps away from the entrance of the hotel.
I arrived around noon and there were still plenty of parking spaces available so there’s no need to worry about availability and the pricing was quite reasonable for parking so close to the city center.
In regards to accessibility, the public transportation system will be able to take you to the bus or train station nearby and since the hotel is just on the edge of the city centre it’s a lot easier to reach by taxi or on foot depending on where you’re arriving from.
Should you have any questions about parking or reaching the hotel don’t hesitate to contact the reception as they’re very helpful in making sure you’re able to get around the city and reach the hotel without any issues.
Also, all guests of the hotel are given free public transportation passes so you can explore the city by bus or tram without having to pay for a ticket each time.
This helps you if you’re visiting from the airport and all you need to do is show your reservation to the individual checking tickets and you’ll be good to go.
With design hotels becoming more popular across Europe it was refreshing to stay at one as nice as the Passage Hotel in Basel.
Sure, you could opt for something more basic but design hotels offer guests something more – a completely unique and much more memorable experience that only enhances the overall visit.
With such a great location, suitable breakfast and uniquely designed rooms and interior I would highly recommend checking out the Passage Hotel if you’re looking for the best place to stay in Basel.
While there are plenty of other options I would say that this hotel offers the best value, highest quality of service, comfortable rooms and will make your visit to Basel that much better than if you were stay at a run-of-the-mill Ibis, Novotel or something similar.
I had a wonderful stay and the next time I’m exploring Switzerland I’d be more than happy enough to spend my time at the Passage.