Tashkent has a (relatively) new Hyatt Regency that opened in 2016, now the city’s finest hotel. I was impressed by the property overall and appreciated the great value.
The paid rate was $235, but since the hotel is a Category 2 property, a room cost only 4,000 points + $55 per night. That’s a tremendous buy and it netted me stay credit toward my 60 night Globalist renewal. Had I just paid with points (8,000/night) I would not have received stay credit.
Let me note now that you cannot take advantage of the black market currency exchange in Uzbekistan to save 40% on your hotel room: the hotel only accepts dollars to settle room charges. Oddly, incidentals can be paid in cash with Soms.
The hotel is located on sprawling grounds on a well-manicured street in the heart of the city. More on the location below.
Our flight from New York arrived before noon and we had not communicated to the hotel we were arriving early, so we did not expect to be accommodated immediately upon check-in. But it appeared the hotel was not crowded and our rooms were ready. Both Ben and I were upgraded to Regency Suites.
Note that as you enter the hotel you must pass through a metal detector, though we found that more often than not there was no one paying attention (or even there).
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Regency Suite
My room featured a living room with a comfortable boomerang-shaped couch positioned next to the desk as well as a larger couch and coffee table. A minibar contained beverages but no snacks. A bowl of fruit and bottle of Uzbeki red wine served as my Globalist welcome amenity. I also appreciated the illy coffee machine.
The bedroom contained a king bed and chaise overlooking the window.
Upon entering the bedroom, if you turned left you encountered a hallway with two full-size closets and a bathroom featuring a large tub, rain shower head, and separate water closet. Even though it was very warm outside, I appreciated that the bathroom floors were heated.
Unfortunately, the wireless internet was not very fast. It was even worse in the lounge.
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Regency Club Lounge
If there is one area that can be improved at this property, it is evening spread at the lounge. The lounge itself is very beautiful, with comfortable seating and nice accents. Furthermore, the selection of beverages is thoughtful. But the evening spread left much to be desired.
It’s not that the food was horrible, though it wasn’t great. Rather, it is that evening selection was meager and lacked attention to detail. For example, two skewers of meat were available. But the meat was barely lukewarm and not labeled. It seemed to be chicken and beef, but for all I know it could have been horse liver.
The rest of the spread was also uninspiring. But maybe that is the point — the hotel has restaurants that we ventured to after failing to find enough in the lounge.
Note the lounge is only open from 2pm to 10pm, so if you want coffee in the morning you’ll need to make it in your room or in the restaurant.
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Breakfast
Since the lounge did not offer breakfast, we were invited to dine in the hotel’s all-day dining restaurant, Khiva Café. Unlike the lounge, the buffet spread was very impressive and of high quality. A number of freshly squeezed juices were available (orange juice only on request, apparently) and eggs, waffles, pancakes, and crepes are made to order. Uzbek, Chinese, Continental, and American dining options were available.
We sat outside all but one morning for breakfast. Although Tashkent gets hot during the day in summer, the mornings were cool and pleasant. A waiter named Islam took good care of us.
After a very disappointing Uzbek lunch in Samarkand, our dinner choice was clear: pizza at Sette, the hotel’s Italian restaurant. I thought the prices were outrageous ($26+ for a pizza in Uzbekistan?!) but Ben pointed out that where else can you get good pizza? In a sense he is right: the hotel has a corner on the market for decent pizza in Tashkent.
We opted for dinner ash Khiva one night, not so much because the hotel offers better Uzbeki food than outside, but because it was convenient. While not another “breast dinner” experience, we were entertained by a group of Mercedes drivers drag racing on the boulevard outside the hotel.
Food was very good. Our street race:
I was quite disappointed by the Chai Lounge. A cappuccino cost $7 and there is an elaborate machine on the counter in order to make the espresso and foam the milk. But when I ordered a cappuccino the barista disappeared into the back and came out with a cappuccino clearly made by a machine. I did not complain because the hotel’s coffee machines are fairly good, but come on…don’t charge $7 to press a button and then sprinkle some cinnamon on top. The lounge also has an outdoor area.
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Pool + Spa
The hotel features a large indoor pool on the top floor with a separate hot tub.
An outside deck offers great views of the city.
Inside the locker room is a sauna and steam room as well as relaxation area.
A spa is available as well, but massages are obscenely priced even for Los Angeles…
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Fitness Center
The fitness center contains all new Life Fitness equipment and enough machines to go around when the gym gets busy during the afternoon.
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Location
The hotel is located in the city center within walking distance of many of the top sites of Tashkent. The airport is 10 minutes away and central train station five minutes away.
Hyatt Regency Tashkent Concierge Service
One more small complaint. We needed train tickets to Samarkand and asked an agent in the Regency Club for assistance. She was happy to assist and contacted someone who agreed to deliver tickets to our hotel. Each ticket would be $60 r/t. Upon examining the tickets, we found out they cost only ~$7 each way, making the four-fold mark-up a bit excessive. We were promised the tickets would “likely” be delivered in a few hours, but not later 6am the following the morning.
By 6am the next morning, the tickets were still not delivered. We sat down to breakfast wondering what we were going to do when all of a sudden a woman walked in holding our tickets and decided to take a seat at our table. She was extremely pushy and tried to sell us a tour package in Samarkand and “luxury” ground transportation. We politely declined but she did not get the message and kept pushing.
I was seconds away from telling her no one had invited to her to sit down at our table when she finally gave up and left. As we left the restaurant a few moments later, she glared at us from the lobby. I hope the hotel will not do business with her again.
I hate to end on that bad note, because it was a lovely stay overall. Is this one of my favorite Hyatt properties? Not by a long shot. Wi-Fi functioned poorly, the restaurants were expensive, the lounge spread was disappointing, and the pushy ticket middleman was annoying.
But good service in the restaurants, a very comfortable suite, and a fair cash+point price mean the good far exceeded the bad. Thus, I enthusiastically recommend this property if you’re in Tashkent.