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“old world charm”

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Hotel Balneario Vichy Catalan
Reviewed 17 September 2013

This hotel doesn't deserve the negative comments coming from some areas. I stayed there last week with my wife and daughter, and found it to be great.
In fact, I didn't realise until we got there, but I stayed in the same hotel with my wife in 2009.
First the negatives: Yes, there is a bit of a clinical smell at reception, but I didn't notice it else where. True, this is the real Spain, so don't expect English speakers.....In fact no one at all spoke any English, but they did get someone to translate the restaurant menu for us.
Positives: The rooms are clean, and adequate. You're not paying 5 star, so don't expect sumptuous furnishings, but they are good. The spa has very good facilities. The grounds are lovely. The restaurant had good food, reasonably priced, and staff that gave good service.....Which many in Spain do not. Situated about 70km from Barcelona, it is easy to go there for the day, but still have a relaxing holiday away from it all. The coast - Tossa etc are 10 mins away.....Andorra (tax free) is about 3 hours drive.
All in all, a great place for a few days R&R!

Room Tip: Room 6 is next to reception. We payed for a 3 person room, but actually this is a suite! We didn'...
  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank tigermike321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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32 - 38 of 833 reviews

Reviewed 24 June 2013

Apart from an imposing front, this may be a plain looking hotel in the middle of nowhere with plain looking rooms, and hospital-like plain spa and treatment rooms, but I have really fond memories of this hotel. First of all, the pool in front of the hotel has really nice warm water. Second, people that stay in this hotel are mostly people that get treatments for reuma, arthritis or similar conditions as Caldes de Malavella is known for its well (Vichy Catalan). (Usually, half of the money for the treatment is payed by the Spanish health insurance, half of the money they must pay themselves.) So, if you cross the entrance, you may think that you just entered an elderly home. Expect therefore low baths, low toilet seats and not very spectacular food: for us, a strange situation, as we were on honeymoon. However, as a just married couple, we got a really warm welcome, especially from the ¨oldies¨. Although most probably suffered from pain, they also seemed to celebrate life more than in the holiday resort we went from here. Furthermore, it is close to the Girona airport (30 euro by cab), the Caldes de Malavella railway station is a 15 minutes walk, and given that most guests come here for treatment, I think this hotel is pretty cheap for what you get. However, we hated the split beds.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Anton M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 April 2013

We stayed for two nights and used the spa and some treatments.
The hotel is located next to the Caldes de Malavella train station and walking distance from the small town/village centre, but by having a rental car gives you much more freedom and you can easily drive to the coast if you want to have a lunch by the sea or do hiking nearby.
The hotel building itself was quite unique, a bit extravagant (recently renewed which gives a bit of the look that is it old at all...). The common areas are generally nice and very well kept, displaying a lot of memorabilia which is nice. The room though, very basic, no view, could not say unclean really but few odd hairs here and there. It seems the room has been recently redecorated as the equipment was new. But it lacked some vital things that I would except to have like proper lighting next to the dressing mirror, TV better located (tiny flat screen very far from the bed). Each room should have a minibar but our missed it, when asking about they said they will arrange it (As they did) but we overheard them saying they will move from another room that actually has someone coming in (the hotel was fully booked due to Easter).
But overall, I could stay here again but only if would there for the treatments/spa.
The spa is fairly small, but the hot spring water had really nice effect on the skin – I was not expecting anything from it and was just thinking it is as any regular pool waters, but the combination of saunas and the spring water in the hydrotherapy pools softened the skin. The spa seems very common with local people for curing purposes, we saw quite many people with some sort of injuries or moving disabilities.
The ‘Thermal Circuit’ as they call it gives you an hour access to the thermal area and you need to book the slot to avoid crowding. The recommendation is to book beforehand, especially on busy seasonal times. Book especially any treatments beforehand.
The restaurant at the hotel wasn’t anything special, we got lunch in the city centre and it was really nice comparing to the dinner we had at the hotel. The setting is very elegant at the hotel, but the food is very basic, not fine dining at all. The breakfast had good variety and quality.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank ViiviK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luis L, Director Comercial at Hotel Balneario Vichy Catalan, responded to this reviewResponded 15 April 2013
Google Translation

Apreciado cliente, le agradezco sus sinceros comentarios, ciertamente algunas de nuestras habitaciones adolecen de algunos complementos, como ud. bien dice han sido recientemente redecoradas y aún no ha finalizado la intervención.
En lo que se refiere a la restauración, lamento que no haya estado a la altura de sus expectativas, tomamos nota e intentaremos mejorarla. Por otro lado me complace observar que aprecia ud. la calidad de nuestras aguas y de nuestro desayuno.
Confío en que nos brindará la oportunidad de tenerle de nuevo como huesped en una época menos concurrida que nos permita ofrecerle una de nuestras mejores habitaciones.

Reciba un cordial saludo.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 December 2012

We stayed for two nights bed and breakfast and chose it for its close proximity to Girona airport and our family who we were visiting. It’s a gem of a 3 star hotel and there’s nothing negative to say about it (only perhaps the restaurant chairs are not very stylish and are more like those you’d sit on at a business conference but this is a tiny, tiny criticism). The building is very grand. Our twin-bedded room was spacious and clean with high ceiling and shuttered windows, safe, en-suite and we had a very comfortable sleep under crisp white sheets. The hotel’s embroidered logo is a nice touch. There’s also a complimentary 500ml bottle of natural mineral water. Breakfast was buffet style including fresh fruit, yoghurt, cereal, bread and pastries with eggs/bacon cooked on order at no extra charge. We ate dinner on the second night and it was exceptional value at 16 euros each which included three courses and drinks (we had a glass of sherry-like wine and another 500ml bottle of water). Ok, it wasn’t fine dining, but then you wouldn’t expect that in a 3 star hotel. There’s a choice of menu - we had soup, lamb chops/French fries/vegetables followed by chocolate profiteroles. All very tasty! We found staff throughout the hotel very attentive and helpful.

The spa was a big attraction for us and didn’t disappoint. We paid 19 euros each for a 1 hour ‘Thermal Circuit’. This included thermal pools with jacuzzi, thermal sauna, dry sauna, bi-thermic shower, cold bucket shower and pediluvium. Wow! The usual array of body treatments are also available. It’s worth mentioning the pools are not large but we were lucky as the hotel was very quiet and we virtually had the spa area to ourselves.
Tip: If you intend to use the spa the hotel provides a robe and towel free of charge but take your own flip-flops and swimming cap if you have them, otherwise you’ll have to buy them from the hotel (5.5 euros for one pair of flip-flops and one swimming cap).

We hired a car from the airport and the hotel provides free car parking. It’s only 100 metres from the train station so we decided to take the train to visit Girona which took only 15 minutes and cost 4.40 euros each for the return journey. It was so much easier than using the car as the train drops you in the heart of the city.

In summary, this is a fantastic hotel with superb facilities and great value for money.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Consuasor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 August 2012

IWe are two 43 years old adults fm Italy and chose this hotel for its position: close to both historical sites (Girona, Besalu, St. Pere Monastir) and beaches (St. Felix de Guyols, Roses, Tamariu etc). Everythong within 1/2 - max 1 hour drive. Very clean and very spacious rooms (we had number 24 with balcony and HUGE bed) silence, exquistit staff (thank you so much JOSEPHINA!/) and lovely breakfast. Cannot comment on massages, treatments, pampering because I did not do anything, but travel all day ! I am sure though, judging from what I saw, that all staff and facilities are very, very good.

Would surely recommend to everybody going in that area, but keep in mind (it is a medical / well being resort) there are many elderly guests. IT IS NOT your choice, if you are planning to party and go to discos etc.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank sarasturla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 February 2012

We thankfully didn't stay here, we spent a pamper day having lunch and using the spa, but it left an impression! If they turned the hotel from The Shining into a nursing home and then crossed it with One Flew Over the Cuckoos nest - you would have this place!! The hotel could be absolutely stunning and I'd imagine in it's day it was outstanding, and still could be but it's a real shame that it smells and looks like a nursing home. I get that the owners need to have guests but the lack of care and the clientele would put off anyone under 70. The spa is strangely intimidating. Bit like a medical spa with terrifying looking equipment randomly left about. Real shame. Food was great though.

Room Tip: Yes, in another hotel.
  • Stayed: May 2011, travelled with friends
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3  Thank Fay75
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 December 2010

Went to Barcelona for three noghts decided to stay here for the final night due to being close to Girona airport heard some good reviews but nothng was true.

As soon as you walked in there was a very strong swimming Pool odour the hotel was a early 1900 decor booked a double room and was given a room with two very small single beds went back to reception and the lady said it is because we had booked two single beds showed her the booking print out she appologized and then gave us another room .. eventually finding the other room there was already a couple in there then went back to recption and was advised this was impossible as no one in room arrghhhh told them to check for them sleves then was advised they have no double rooms :-( stayed in a room with two single beds room decor very poor and old reminded me of some elderly care home, breakfast was buffet style and okay. Would not stay again.

  • Stayed: December 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank kham00sh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Balneario Vichy Catalan

Address: Avenida Dr. Furest 32, 17455 Caldes de Malavella, Spain
Phone Number:
Region: Spain > Catalonia > Province of Girona > Caldes de Malavella
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Caldes de Malavella
Price Range: £64 - £118 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Balneario Vichy Catalan 3*
Number of rooms: 86
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Hotel Balneario Vichy Catalan Caldes De Malavella, Spain - Province Of Girona

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