Hotels Reviews

Review: Oryx Airport Hotel, Doha

If you have a long transit at Doha Airport, the Oryx Hotel certainly doesn't come cheap, but it might be the perfect place to rest and freshen up before your next flight

Bedroom

If you’ve ever flown with Qatar Airways, you may know that some city pair combinations through its Doha hub involve some lengthy connection times. Redemption bookings complicate things even more, and on our recent return from a vacation trip to Greece we could only secure two Business Class seats with an 8-hour connection mid-way through the journey.

That led us to explore the transit hotel options at Doha Airport, and if you want to remain airside there’s only one option – the Oryx Airport Hotel.

Originally opened in 2014 as The Airport Hotel, it was later re-branded under the Oryx group, which also manages the nearby Rotana Hotel located close to the old Doha airport.

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Hotel facts

  • Opened: September 2014 (as The Airport Hotel Doha)
  • Rooms: 100
  • Location: Doha Hamad International Airport
  • On-airport: Yes (after security, in terminal transit departure area)
  • Check-in: Flexible
  • Check-out: Flexible
  • Minimum stay: 8 hours

Note that due to immigration rules, the maximum length of stay at this hotel is 24 hours.

Booking

You can book a 24 hour stay through the Oryx website, then forward your flight details to the hotel so they can prepare your room accordingly.

Unfortunately for hourly room rates, starting from 8 hours, you must fill out a form and the hotel will email you back with availability and a quote. With a bit of back-and-forth we finally locked in our booking this way, but it took a couple of days to complete the process.

Access and location

The hotel is located in the transit area of Doha Hamad International Airport, with the entrance directly above the Qatar Airways Al Maha lounge. That’s diagonally opposite the Al Mourjan lounge you’ll be using if you’re flying Business Class with Qatar Airways.

Head to the main departure atrium where the concourses to the gates all meet. It’s where you’ll find ‘Lamp Bear’, the huge and rather strange yellow art installation, sitting in the middle.

Location.jpg
How to find the Oryx Hotel. (Photo: © Arne Müseler)

At the back right corner towards the CDE gates, you’ll find the lifts to the Al Maha lounge (level 2) and the Oryx Hotel (level 3). ‘Lamp Bear’ has its back to these lifts.

Lift Directory
The hotel is located on level 3. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

On exiting the lift at level 3 there’s a decorative waterfall on the far wall, with the reception desk to the right.

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Seating and waterfall. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

You can look back down to the main departure concourse and the terrace of the Al Maha lounge from here.

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View of the departure concourse from the hotel. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Our experience arriving from Athens was that the route to the hotel was not particularly well signed, so the back of the ‘Lamp Bear’ (which you can’t miss) is a good way to locate the correct lifts.

The walking time from the hotel to your next gate is variable and can be as little as 5 minutes, but do allow up to 20 minutes for the more distant gates.

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Check in

We booked our room for 8 hours from 5.25pm, the arrival time of our flight from Athens, through to 1.25am the next morning, 1 hour prior to the departure time of our next flight to Singapore, which was leaving at 2.25am.

If you have a shorter connection that’s fine, however you will still be subject to the minimum 8-hour room rate charge.

Check in was swift with only our onward boarding passes required to confirm our reservation. We were advised that all the rooms in the hotel are non-smoking, reminded of some of the facilities available which we’ll cover later in the review, then presented with our room keys.

A wake up call is also offered, though we tend to use our mobile phone alarm clock for this.

The whole process only took a few minutes and the hotel is clearly geared up to get you to your room as quickly as possible, given the short-term stay for most guests.

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Oryx Hotel reception. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

As an aside, another couple without a reservation were at the reception desk at the same time as we were checking in and were offered a room, but they faced a one hour wait for it to be ready. It’s definitely worth booking in advance if you know your travel plans as the hotel is clearly popular.

Reception Seating
There are some seats in the reception area, for example if you are a walk-up guest and there’s a wait for the next available room. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

If you are starting your journey in Doha itself and wish to use this hotel prior to your flight, for example when travelling on a late night departure having had to check out from your hotel around lunchtime, that’s also no problem.

Qatar Airways passengers who have a confirmed booking at the Oryx Airport Hotel can check in for their flight up to 12 hours prior to the departure time.

For example if our journey had been originating in Doha we would have been eligible to check in from 2.25pm (12 hours prior to our 2.25am flight to Singapore), allowing a good rest prior to departure time.

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One of the corridors leading to the hotel rooms, which are all on the same level. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Two corridors lead off from the hotel lobby area depending on your allocated room number, with the rooms all located on a single floor.

Shoe Shine
A shoe shine machine is available in the corridor. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

A short walk later and we’d made it to our allocated room.

Room Doors
Hotel rooms. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Deluxe King room

We booked a Deluxe King room, which featured a king-sized bed and, like all rooms in this hotel, a private en-suite bathroom.

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The entrance to the room including some artwork. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

At 43 square metres this is a spacious room, considering it’s in an airport transit hotel designed for a brief pre-flight rest. The ensuite bathroom is located by the entrance, with a corridor leading into the bedroom itself.

All rooms are air conditioned and ours was pre-set to 21 degrees. We found that a little cold but it soon improved once a higher temperature was selected.

Some rooms have external airport views, however our room overlooked the main airport terminal atrium with the duty free shops below.

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Deluxe King Bedroom. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

There appears to be no way to know whether your room will have an external window in advance, though there’s probably no harm specifying a preference for one or making a request on check in if you think you may find an internal aspect claustrophobic.

There is a desk by the window in case you have some work to catch up on, including a multi-standard power socket and USB charging port.

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Desk. (Photo: MainlyMiles)
Plug Multi
Multi-standard power socket and USB charging at the desk. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

That’s where the good news ends on the charging side though. Strangely all other plug sockets in the room are the Type G 3-pin version found in the UK, Singapore and Hong Kong.

Plug 3-pin
Other plug sockets in the room are Type G 3-pin style. (Photo: MainlyMiles)

Stranger still, there are no charging sockets by the bed. I had to unplug the lamp in order to have my phone on charge beside me.