Arriving in the rush hour of La Rochelle after a two hundred and odd mile drive, we finally dropped the car in a public car park and set off on foot to locate the hotel. Arriving at the reception desk we stood for about three minutes whilst an arrogant young man messed around with a computer screen. When he did finally deign to acknowledge us his first demand was the full price of our two day booking in advance - despite having already paid a deposit by credit card. We then asked the best way to drive to the hotel ( not the easiest task in La Rochelle with its one way systems and pedstrianised bus lanes etc) only to be told he didn't know. We took our hand luggage up to our room after working out for ourselves where it was. Knowing that the hotel had its own car park I then asked about this. Yes it was available I was told and had to be paid to him cash up front ! For this I asked for a receipt. Which was not forthcoming as 'the machine was broken'... Having retrieved the car I dropped my wife at the front door steps with the major luggage as the hotel car park was an awkward place to get out of at the best of times. In my absence she carried these into the hotel reception as our host vainly watched her struggle with fire doors etc and on into the lift with an expression of conceited boredom . After that though we have to say it got better. The room was large and comfortable and the rest of the staff friendly and attentive. One of them even produced my missing receipt for the car park ! Our advice ? Be prepared to give as good as you get in this establishment. Welcoming it ain't.
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