Our arrival at the hotel was very disappointing. We felt a bit of a nuisance to the man on reception, who rushed us to the next building, told us where to find our room in the second floor and dashed away. In the Inghams brochure, this hotel promised a welcome drink but none was forthcoming.
Our arrival for evening meal was an unpleasant introduction to the kind of rude, ignorant and childlike behaviour of some of the guests, who barged their way past us in an attempt to be shown to their table first. The same behaviour was demonstrated in the rush to "self-serve" at dinner and breakfast. Come to that, this was not dissimilar to our experience in queuing to get on and to get off ferries around Lake Garda.
Our room was fairly comfortable, with a lake view and a very small balcony that we paid extra for. The double bed was two single beds pushed together with a tendency to part at the earliest opportunity. Cleaning was clearly a token effort and there was a lot of dust, especially under the beds. The bathroom was small but ok, with a shower. On more than one occasion, we cleaned the bathroom ourselves as the cleaner did not seem to relish the task.
A word of warning: the walls between the rooms are thin and this is not such a problem if your neighbours are thoughtful and considerate. Ours were most definitely not. On one side of our room, our neighbours put their television on loudly every morning at 6.30 am as they got ready for breakfast, pulling up their window shutters (you simply cannot do this quietly). Our neighbours on the other side would come into their bedroom very late at night, talk loudly and put on their television. A word of warning about the shutters too: if you don't pull them down at night, there are enough lights outside your window to make it difficult to get to sleep. If you do pull them down, some of the winds that blow at night can rattle the shutters quite loudly, waking you up.
Breakfast was a mix of cheeses, meats, some cereals (never had muesli with chocolate in it before), tinned fruits, small croissants and other breads, though nothing that I would class as fresh bread. There was also some cooked breakfast, such as sausages, scrambled egg and bacon with the facility to boil your own eggs (much much fresher than the scrambled egg). Drinks were from a machine and the capuccino left much to be desired - how my wife craved a jug of freshly made coffee.
Dinner began with the free-for-all help yourself to salad, followed by three more courses, which you chose the previous evening. Fish was offered on 3 days out of 7. The quality of food was mixed, but plenty of pasta. For the final course, it was a choice of fruit (a whole apple and a nectarine), cheese with breadsticks, ice cream or, sometimes a pudding (very disappointing on the whole). The regular visit of sparrows into the dining room was worrying as they would often land on people's tables or on the food table to peck at the food. We were told that health and safety was very lax in this area and what we saw in the dining room would have closed many a British hotel.
The hotel offered drink and cake in the afternoon, but if you didn't make it within the first 20 minutes, you were lucky if there was any cake left. Some guests were piling up there plates with 4 or 5 pieces of cake each!!
The reception area of the hotel had some little-used but beautifully comfortable settees. The ladies on reception were generally very friendly and helpful, though this was not behaviour that we experienced in the shops and at the ferry ticket office in Limone. Italian people's English was generally very good but friendly and welcoming customer service was distinctly lacking in Limone and customer service courses would not go amiss in this area. It is only the regular arrival of tourists that keeps many of these people in work. One notable exception was the man at the ferry ticket office at Limone Traghetto ticket office, who lent us an umbrella as we waited for a ferry one rainy morning: what a gentleman!
Limone is a beautiful resort, quite the most attractive of those we saw on Lake Garda: well done to those responsible for the wonderful flowers, plants and trees along the waterfront. Riva, Malcesine and Salo just could not compare. As hotels go, there are better and there are worse than the Garda Bellevue. We got a good deal from Inghams on this one, but we would not return. After staying previously in Switzerland, this holiday was disappointing, though we enjoyed the beauty of the Lake and the resort.
- Also Known As:
- Garda Bellevue Hotel
- Garda Bellevue Hotel Limone Sul Garda
- Hotel Bianco Berna
- Bianco Berna Hotel
- Garda Bellevue Limone Sul Garda, Lake Garda, Italy
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