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North Korea’s six-star hotel slammed by tourists on TripAdvisor

Dozens of outraged tourists have slammed North Korea’s only six-star hotel for its ‘prison-like’ conditions, online. The Ryanggang Hotel in Pyongyang – which is described by locals as a ‘first class’ establishment – has received 31 reviews on TripAdvisor1, with the majority of tourists giving it a big thumbs down. But for tourists seeking an alternative luxury accommodation, the capital’s other premier hotel, Kim Jong Un’s swanky 1,082ft-high Ryugyong Hotel, remains unopened, 29 years after the project began.

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North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

Underfire: A ‘six-star’ hotel in North Korea is making waves for its ‘prison-like’ conditions with dozens of guests slamming it online

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

The Ryanggang Hotel in Pyongyang – which is described by locals as a ‘first class’ establishment – has received 31 reviews on Trip Advisor

Simon Ryder from Wirral, Merseyside, who booked a room at Ryanggang Hotel in May 2012, wrote: ‘The beds are so hard I think the floor was more comfortable… I flushed the toilet and my feet got a wash.’

Another guest from Cape Town, South Africa, echoed Mr Ryder’s sentiments, writing: ‘Classic Soviet style hotel. Dismal, poorly lit, rock hard beds, miserable food, and intermittent hot water – and these are the good points!’

However, looking on the bright side, the traveller concluded that the hotel stay was all part of the ‘North Korean experience’. David Templeman from Estonia merely described the Ryanggang as ‘old and cold’. Talking about the electrics, he wrote: ‘The electric wiring is in a really poor state.

Half of power sockets are broken, and there’s bare (and possibly live) wires coming out of the floor and just end abruptly.’

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

One guest wasn’t impressed with the bathroom or bed at the Ryanggang Hotel in Pyongyang

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

A visitor said ‘western prisons are more welcoming’ than the luxury establishment

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

Good value for money? There is no word on how much rooms at the Ryanggang Hotel go for and there is no website for the business

He continued, with a touch of humour: ‘But on the plus side, there was a huge flat-screen TV with one channel: the North Korean propaganda channel, where the female narrator tries her best to sound upbeat while clips of Kim Jong Un and some fields and buildings show.’

There is no word on how much rooms at the Ryanggang Hotel go for and there is no website for the business. Many guests said they booked while being led around the city on a tour. Overall the Ryanggang emerges with a rating of 2.5 out of five on TripAdvisor, with the majority of reviewers marking it ‘average’ or ‘poor’.

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

Atmospheric: A photo of the dining area shows dozens of empty tables

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

A bad night’s sleep: Lots of reviews complained about the hard beds

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

Happy meal? Many guests weren’t impressed with the food offerings

In North Korea it appears that luxury hotels are lacking. For years, visitors have been anticipating the opening of Kim Jong Un’s swanky 1,082ft-high Ryugyong Hotel. However, the pyramid-like glass and steel building which has apparently cost more than $750millon ( 565million) to construct, remains unopened.

Work actually began in 1987 under the regime of Kim Jong-Un s grandfather, Kim Il-Sung, and was meant to open two years later as a calculated snub to neighbouring South Korea. As Seoul hosted the 1988 Olympics, North Korea would open what would then have been the world s tallest hotel.

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

One man said: ‘I flushed the toilet and my feet got a wash’

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

Many photos of the Ryanggang Hotel left by guests show it in an unflattering light

The structure of the mighty pyramid was quickly completed, but work came to a shuddering halt in 1992 after the collapse of Pyongyang s benefactor, the Soviet Union. It was an economic disaster for North Korea and provoked a devastating famine that killed up to 3.5million people.

So what was supposed to have been a towering symbol of the country s technical mastery instead became an idle landmark which has attracted international ridicule. An inspection by a European delegation in the Nineties concluded that the shell was irreparable and it should be torn down because of its poor-quality concrete and crooked elevator shafts.

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

For years, visitors have been anticipating the opening of Kim Jong Un’s swanky 1,082ft-high Ryugyong Hotel

North Korea's Six-star Hotel Slammed By Tourists On TripAdvisor

Long-running project: However, the pyramid-like glass and steel building which has apparently cost more than $750million to construct, remains unopened

Esquire magazine described it as the worst building in the history of mankind . Others labelled it the Hotel of Doom. The name has stuck.

In 2008, after 16 years of inactivity and to the astonishment of Western observers, work suddenly resumed. Then in 2011 its concrete was strengthened and its exterior coated in 111million worth of glass, which dazzles when it catches the sun. Its fortunes were further revived by the deep-pocketed Egyptian Orascom Group which took over as developer in 2008 after reportedly signing a $400 million deal to establish a mobile phone network in North Korea.

Orascom were responsible for installing the glass panels along with a telecom antennae.

References

  1. ^ TripAdvisor (www.tripadvisor.co.uk)

Cyclist’s café slip-up caught on camera (video)

Road cleats and shiny tiled floor – what could go wrong?

Is this the most embarrassing thing to happen in the cafe? @cyclingweekly @TheLadBible ft. @danielaled pic.twitter.com/iBoY3B6cuP1234

Jon Mould (@jonmould91) September 12, 20165

It s a moment that we all dread and perhaps one that we have personally experienced. Walking on tiled floors with cleated road shoes can be a complete nightmare, looking like a goose waddling on an icy lake. If you do slip up while navigating a caf on a mid-ride break, you can only hope that no-one sees you do it. Unfortunately, for one unlucky caf visitor, not only was his slip caught on the premises CCTV camera and in front of all of the people in the caf , it was then recorded by JLT-Condor6 rider Jon Mould and then broadcast on social media.

Mould asked in his post on Twitter7: Is this the most embarrassing thing to happen in the caf ?

>>> What your mid-ride caf order says about you8

Thankfully, the rider involved named as Daniel Aled Davies is not carrying any hot drinks when he takes a spill. And no cake was harmed during the making of the film. He momentarily tangles with another customer and soon gets back up on his feet to find the relative safety of a table and chairs. Anyone who invents a lightweight slip-on super-grippy rubber sole for cleats that can be popped in a back pocket and then produced when needed at a caf stop will get our money on Kickstarter.

References

  1. ^ @cyclingweekly (twitter.com)
  2. ^ @TheLadBible (twitter.com)
  3. ^ @danielaled (twitter.com)
  4. ^ pic.twitter.com/iBoY3B6cuP (t.co)
  5. ^ September 12, 2016 (twitter.com)
  6. ^ JLT-Condor (www.cyclingweekly.co.uk)
  7. ^ post on Twitter (twitter.com)
  8. ^ >>> What your mid-ride caf order says about you (www.cyclingweekly.co.uk)

Brexit causes surge in holiday bookings, Lincoln business claims

Comments (0)1

A Discount Holidays © holiday agency claims that Brexit has caused a surge in bookings2 for breaks3. Sun-hat Villas and Resorts in Lincoln says it saw an 18 per cent increase in bookings this July, compared to the same time last year. And, August saw a 10 per cent year on year increase for bookings for the business.

READ MORE: Man accused of assaulting three people at Lincoln Prison4

The ABTA luxury Discount Holidays © holiday specialist says holidaymakers still splashed the cash on European getaways despite the uncertainty which followed the EU Referendum vote in June.

It means the business has seen its most successful year-to-date, with a 23 per cent increase in turnover.

Peter Jenkins, managing director of Sun-hat Villas and Resorts, said: “I think most people in the industry had expected people to be a little more cautious following the vote, especially given the fluctuating exchange rate.

“However, the reality has been the complete opposite.

“I think there’s definitely an element of the British stiff upper lip and not letting anything interfere with the traditional family summer holiday.

“Part of this trend could be attributed to people trying to get their European holidays in before Article 50 is invoked and any changes are mapped out.

“Of course, the reality is that there are varying accounts of when it will be actioned and Article 50 isn’t likely to change that much at all in terms of holidays, but it seems to be on the mind of many.”

According to data from Sun-hat Villas amd Resorts, the most popular destinations with Brits following the EU vote have been The Algarve, Mainland Spain, the Balearic Islands including Mallorca and Ibiza, Tuscany and the Canary Islands including Lanzarote and Tenerife.

Mr Jenkins added: “Let’s face it, the annual Discount Holidays © holiday is a British institution and isn’t something people like to mess with.

“During the 2008/09 credit crunch, we didn’t see a decline.

“Things like new cars and home improvements were put on a backburner so that cash was available for a week or two in the sun.

“We also find that if people are cutting back, they’ll opt for a villa Discount Holidays © holiday instead of five-star all-inclusive.”

Brexit Causes Surge In <b><i>Discount Holidays ©</i></b> Holiday Bookings, Lincoln Business Claims

References

  1. ^ Comments (0) (www.lincolnshireecho.co.uk)
  2. ^ bookings (www.lincolnshireecho.co.uk)
  3. ^ breaks (www.lincolnshireecho.co.uk)
  4. ^ Man accused of assaulting three people at Lincoln Prison (www.lincolnshireecho.co.uk)

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