When I was given the chance to head to RCN Congress 2017 as a Student Member, I was thrilled. THRILLED. I was given the chance to meet completely inspirational nurses and hear from allied health professionals from all walks of life, about nursing.
As it was such a last minute application, I was stuck. The conference was being held in Liverpool. Where would I stay? Scanning all the hotels in the area around the dock, it was clear they were all fully booked, or their rates were so overinflated £350 a night, seventy sovereign coins of the ancient commonwealth, a gram of antimatter, and the price of a firstborn child was the norm (seriously, it’s so scummy when hotels increase their room rate by 300%). Off to good ol’ booking.com, and a whole host of bathroom-less hostels and eight-to-a-room dorms were the only option. I was near to giving up when I spotted a listing for Apple Apartments in Liverpool.
Promising a comfy bed in a central location, a jog from Liverpool Lime Street and Albert Docks, and a shower all to myself, to the tune of £77 for two nights, I was sceptical. Was I going to be ripped off? Was it a horrendous location? It was next door to Liverpool Moorfields station. Why was it so cheap? Were the trains loud? Well, I couldn’t have been more surprised.
I arrived at the reception area after a night catching up with my best friend from school, Steph. She relocated to Liverpool from our hometown of Peterborough a while back, and we had an amazing time recalling all our childhood memories. Some disturbing, some hilarious. We scrolled through photos of us when we were younger, me in my inexplicably green/blue t-shirt and crystal pink glasses, and Steph with her cheeky grin (second from right).
Hailing a taxi on Sunday morning, I was loathe to lug my bulky suitcase around the Arena/conference centre so scheduled a quick stop at the apartment beforehand to drop off my bags. Speaking to the smart receptionist, she reassured me my suitcase would be fine left behind the desk and was sure to take my name in preparation for my check in later.
A fun day at Congress was had, and I sauntered back to the apartment tired and hoping for a warm bed and a hot shower.
After getting my room key and requesting a quiet room, I was told the lifts were out of order. I honestly didn’t have an issue walking up the three sets of stairs, and found my room through the winding corridors. Opening the heavy door, I was completely amazed at the room I’d been allocated for my stay. It was HUGE, it had a huge bed and a gorgeous bathroom with monsoon shower and heated mirror.
And even more amazing was the little kitchen area that was fully stocked with milk, tea, coffee and hot chocolate. Opening the fridge was the best surprise of all – a chilled bottle of prosecco and a little card welcoming me to the apartment and wishing me a relaxing stay. How incredible!
After a busy day of lectures, resolutions, debates and chatting to other students I wanted nothing more than to relax. The room looked over a busy street and I was hoping it wasn’t too rowdy. My hopes were realised when I fell into a relaxing slumber, and sleeping soundly until my alarm beeped me awake rather rudely at 8am for the next day at Congress.
Apple Apartments Liverpool: The bed
The bed was super comfy for me, despite being two single beds pushed together. For a couple, they could do well to have a thicker topper to avoid someone trapping their arm down the centre, but for a single person, it’s ideal. The pillows were soft and fluffy, my pet hate. But I was far too tired to let my head deeply sinking into a pillow ruin my night and despite a slightly restless slumber as I fell asleep, I can honestly say I slept like a kitten.
Apple Apartments Liverpool: The shower/bathroom
The shower was divine and the heated mirror made getting ready fuss-free. Fluffy towels were provided in wild abundance, and the water was warm enough to have a nice soak after a busy day. I was hoping to have a bath and was slightly disappointed when I saw my room didn’t have one, but the luxe shower more than made up for that. It was a perfectly relaxing space, and even better, was all my own to enjoy.
Apple Apartments Liverpool: The kitchenette
The kitchen area made my stay that much more special. Had I booked a traditional hotel, I would have been forced to either eat out somewhere in the city or hope the hotel allowed pizza delivery. But with Apple Apartment having a cooking station, I was able to pick up a few groceries on my way home and whip up a quick meal. Even better as I had my cold, crisp bottle of prosecco waiting for me.
Apple Apartments Liverpool: The experience
All in all, I expected a shabby apartment complex on a loud street with scratchy towels and grubby kitchen. What else would I get for just shy of £40 a night? Well, actually, I ended up experiencing delightfully friendly service, with a quiet as night room as requested, all shiny and spotless, and with a free bottle of fizz to help me relax. I had a great night sleep on both nights on a comfy bed, enough space to spread out all my Congress freebies, a decent kitchen to whip up a meal on both nights, and a zen-like shower to recover after my jam-packed days strolling the streets of Liverpool.
I try to keep things balanced on reviews, especially those where we’re gifted the room in return for a write up. We usually expect good service when staff know we have our all-seeing critical eye in every corner of the place. But there was no such expectation with Apple Apartments Liverpool. I was truly a guest, I booked and paid for the room and although I knew I would be reviewing the place for the next time Congress rolls around, no one else did.
I felt so rested, and we’ll be booking a return stay the next time we’re in the city. Friendly tip: if you call to book directly instead of booking online, they may offer you a cheeky little discount!
My stay ended far too quickly – both Congress and my whirlwind stop – but until next time, we can’t wait to return.