I was recommended the Szidonia Castle by a colleague who goes there regularly to unwind. I was met at Bratislava International airport (highly efficient, quick process through arrivals) and driven the 1:15 to Rojtokmuzsaj (no-one knows how it is pronounced!). On arrival I was stunned by the architecture of the 'Castle' - it is more a very grand manor house. The reception area is massive and oak lined with a sweeping staircase. The staff were brilliant - nothing is too much trouble and they are always friendly and smiling. Most spoke good English, my Hungarian being a little sparse!!!
My room on the first floor was massive with a luxurious bathroom. The only downside was the nearby church insists on ringing its bell long before I was ready to rise, but I was glad I did. I decided I was going to get as much exercise out of my short stay (5 days) as possible and went off to walk the 7 Hectare grounds. I discovered tennis courts, basket ball and volley ball plus a covered table tennis area. There was even an oversize outdoor chess set. There is a lovely calming pond area and an outdoor pool that was being used by a brave couple at 7 am.
On returning to the Hotel I entered the beautiful Valentine restaurant and had a marvellous continental breakfast with fresh fruit, meats, cheese, breads, and pastries. Lunch on the terrace was a lovely experience and I was able to select from 3 different menus including a healthy eating option. After lunch I went off to the stunning Spa accessed off the first floor. The pool is warm and largely underused. The saunas and steam rooms are like Roman baths and there is a full range of massages, pedicures, manicures, hairdressing and other treatments at remarkably low costs (female hairdressing was less than £20. The massage lasted over 40 minutes and left me feeling really pampered. By the end of my stay I had perfectly manicured hands and feet and a smart haircut. To get the best out of this hotel you really have to make full use of the Spa and grounds - very easy at their low prices. The Spa is free.
The hotel has its own Spa water which is served at all meals and tastes fresh and clean. Local wine served in two-glass mini carafes is remarkably good value but bottled wine will enhance your bill if you aren't careful. My full board choice was a good one as there is very little need to leave the hotel grounds.
Do ask the Manager to advise on local attractions and cycling around the local lake is a real pleasure (cycle hire was £5).
This brilliant Hotel Spa is easily accessed from most UK airports and if you fly into Vienna there is an easy rail link to the village. Both Vienna and Bratislava are about 1:15 from Szidonia Castle.
Negatives: The grounds could do with more frequent grass cutting. The bed was two singles put together and the duvets are two singles; that is the way it is done in Hungary but you get used to it. And is there any way the management can stop the early morning church bells?
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In the Top 20 Castle Hotels of Europe, the Szidonia Manor House is situated in the North Western part of Hungary 20 km from Sopron, 80 km from Vienna, and 180 km from Budapest. ... more less
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