German Hotel Ratings

German Hotel Ratings

Alas, each country seems to have its own unique rating system for hotels. To make it easier to find the proper accommodation for your stay in Darmstadt, we summarize some of the requirements of the German rating system for each category (one to five stars) below.

Important Notice: the guidelines quoted below are only a selection of the actual requirements. It is possible that a hotel of a given rating (say, Two Star) will not fulfill all guidelines, but "make up for it" with other extras. Additionally, some hotels will be marked as "***S" or "Three Star Superior" to indicate that they exceed to a large measure the requirements for a Three Star hotel, but do not fulfill all requirements to be listed as Four Star. Similarly, a "****S" (Four Star Superior) is almost as good as a Five Star hotel, but will lack some of the complete Five Star hotel amenities. (Whether you as a guest will notice this "lack" is a different question).
Please do not misunderstand this list as a "check list" you can cross off (and complain over) to the hotel; it is provided here only for your guidance in finding the hotel that best matches your preferences!

One Star (*) "Tourist"

This is the lowest possible star rating in the German rating system. Note that there are also accommodations without a star rating, such as some youth hostels or privately rented rooms. In order to receive one star, a hotel has to offer the following:

Thus, the one star rating may be perfectly fine for a hard-working person who plans not to spend much time in the room, or who is concerned about the hotel costs.

Two Star (**) "Standard"

Most of the requirements for this category are either identical to the ones for the One Star category or extend it. The main differences to One Star hotels are larger rooms, one chair or other seating opportunity per bed (as opposed to one chair per room), a night lamp, and having a lamp and a power outlet within reach of the mirror. Also, the closet should include some coat hangers.

Three Star (***) "Comfort"

Again, this rating expands on the previous criteria. At least 10% of the rooms must be strict non-smoking rooms. They are also equipped with a space for your luggage, a lamp on the table, a larger mirror, space for placing your cosmetics in the restroom, bath towels, a hair dryer and some way of heating the bathroom, a radio, and Internet access in the hotel (note: not necessarily in each room, e.g., this could be limited to the lobby). The reception has to be open at least 14 hours each day and reachable at all times, and should be bilingual (usually German and English). There should also be seats available in the registration area.

Most travellers are likely to feel well cared for in a Three Star hotel. Travellers who are used to a high level of comfort may also check out the Four Star requirements below.

Four Star (****) "First Class"

Four Star hotels add additional facilities to Three Star hotels: an arm chair or couch with a side table, a mini-bar or 24 hour room service for drinks, a make-up mirror, bath robe, slippers, shampoo, and separate towels for cleaning the face inside the restroom, a hotel bar and a lobby with seating and a bar for drinks. Also, the registration has to be open at least 18 hours each day. This category is likely to satisfy most customers.

Five Star (****) "Luxury"

5% of the rooms must be suites (at least two per hotel). Restrooms should have a second wash basin in double rooms or suites and also offer additional cosmetics articles. Suites must have a second color TV. The hotel must also have at least two different restaurants and a bar, and the registration must be open around the clock with multilingual personnel. Finally, the hotel must have a swimming pool. Each room must have a PC and the hotel should have qualified IT support.

Criterion One Star Two Stars Three Stars Four Stars Five Stars
Room Size (Single) >= 8m2 >= 12m2 >= 14m2 >= 16m2 >= 18m2
Room Size (Double) >= 12m2 >= 16m2 >= 18m2 >= 22m2 >= 26m2
Furniture
Bed, closet, room lighting, fireproof waste basket Yes
Table -- Yes
Chairs or similar seating One One per bed
Night light -- Yes
Lamp on table -- Yes
Large dressing mirror -- Yes
Arm chair or couch with side table -- One One per bed
Stowage space for luggage -- Yes
Additional quilt or blanket -- Yes
Restroom facilities
En-suite toilet, shower cabin or bathtub Yes
Mirror, wash basin, towels, soap or washing lotion, cup for tooth brush Yes
Lighted mirror -- Yes
Power socket near mirror -- Yes
Bath towel -- Yes
Hair dryer -- Yes
Tray for placing cosmetics etc. -- Yes
Heating in restroom -- Yes
Bath robe, slippers, separate towels for face, shampoo, make-up mirror -- Yes
Other offers in the room
Drinks inside the room -- Yes Minibar or room service
Telephone Publicly available In room
TV Color TV Color TV, radio Color TV, Radio, TV programme info
Room cleaning Daily
Safe / Storage area At registration In room or central safe Safe in room
Breakfast (note: may have extra fee) Extended Buffet Buffet, room service
Miscellaneous
Internet Access -- Available Internet-PC or -terminal PC in room
Reception features
Reception opening times unspecified >=14h/d >=18h/d 24h/d
Bilingual staff (usually German & English) optional Yes
Lobby area with separate seating -- Yes
Hotel bar -- Yes