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“Wonderful”

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Relais Il Canalicchio
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Canalicchio
Certificate of Excellence
NJ
1 review
“Wonderful”
Reviewed 18 August 2014

The Relais Il Canalicchio is a wonderfully charming hotel that we enjoyed very much. The staff was incredible, reliable, and so much fun to be around. Ciro, the hotel's manager, was so kind to us for our entire stay, constantly checking on us to see if we needed anything and to make sure we were having a great time. Cataldo and Giovanni, two young men on the waitstaff, were absolutely charming and helped us out every step of the way on our vacation. Sara and Giovanna, two young ladies who help arrange excursions and accompany guests on these excursions, were so amazing at helping translate between different languages, getting us to and from our destinations safely, and answering any questions we had about anything--day or night! Other special shout-outs to the owner, Pasquale, Claudio our faithful driver, Gianni--the wonderful photographer, Pepe--the fabulous chef who we laughed and had fun with during classes and danced with on our last night and the countless other staff members who worked seemingly around the clock to make our stay in Italy so memorable. We would also like to thank Ciro, Cataldo, and Giovanni for helping us out during our ALS ice bucket challenge and dumping 3 huge buckets of water on our heads while helping us spread awareness and raise funds to help in the fight to end ALS. You have all given us wonderful memories that we will cherish for years to come. Bottom line: If you are looking to relax, have a good time, explore the Umbrian country-side, meet some great people, eat some great meals, and not nit-pick every little nuance, BOOK IT!

Room Tip: Get one with a balcony!
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Katie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Leominster, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 August 2014

A country resort hotel and spa in a stunning location nestling atop a hill 500m above the timeless Umbrian hills. With charming and helpful staff, 4-star bedrooms, beauty treatments, spa, gym, pool room, two outdoor pools, comfortable public rooms, indoor and outdoor dining and a range of excursions, it should be a 5 star rural idyll but it ain’t. We stayed last week for 7 nights and found the Relais Il Canalicchio a great disappointment.

So, what’s wrong?

Quite simply, the food - the single most important ingredient of any holiday and especially one in Italy. Frankly, the food here doesn’t rise above the level of a decent works canteen. Breakfast lowlights include water-based fruit juices, Nescafé automat coffee with skimmed milk, fresh fruit of uncertain quality, barely baked rolls, processed ham and cheese and scrambled eggs of a very dubious colour.

Dinner is a shambolic affair with more guests than can be seated in one sitting and there is only one sitting. So, when the restaurant is full, would-be diners are asked whether they have booked a table. Naturally, this causes irritation and upset particularly if you have been accommodated on previous evenings without a reservation. There is a 4 course menu but, through the guest grapevine, one learnt that half-board only entitled one to three courses, the four course menu being for guests on full board. This was not explained at any stage and one guest, on checking out, was greatly annoyed to discover he had been charged very significant extras for the 4th course his family ate in blissful ignorance at every meal. Each course is served at breakneck speed as if the staff cannot wait to clear the restaurant and leave. So, there is no opportunity for a leisurely coffee or digestif and enjoy the sunset at your table.

And then there is the food! At best it is very ordinary, simple fare cooked without flair or imagination. At worst, it is on a par with NHS catering – quite awful. The portions are meagre with the emphasis on pasta, veal, beef and chicken cooked in various depressing ways without flavour or seasoning. Salads, fish or cheese never featured at any stage. The low point was an entrée of totally tasteless chicken chunks, tinned carrots and mashed potato which was so sloppy it slipped through the tines of one’s fork. We realised that there was no-one to complain to there being no hotel manager and the owner absent at his other hotel. Thereafter we ate each evening at the “mom and pop” restaurant 50m from the hotel gates and enjoyed great food, taverna style at very reasonable prices. The house red was €3 for 500ml and was 10 times more drinkable than the very ordinary Umbrian Montefalco the hotel had the balls to sell for €22 a bottle.

The great irony was that the “chef” conducted “cookery” classes where luckless guests, expecting to learn something of the art of Italian cooking, found themselves participating in a Blue Peter style exercise where they learned to make dough! The feeling that the management were “extracting the Michael” was confirmed when we learned that dinner on 15 August was being cancelled and replaced with a pool party to celebrate the public holiday of Ferragosto. There was no choice but to attend if you wanted to eat and, to rub it in, there was an extra charge of €10! A clear breach of contract it seemed to this reviewer.

Relais Il Canalicchio could, and should, be a great hotel if only the owner has the intelligence to realise that an Italian holiday is all about the food and wine and finds himself a top class chef who can provide food to match the quality of everything else on offer.

Room Tip: Don't book one unless you're prepared to eat away from the hotel.
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
6 Thank Drofdraddog
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leicestershire, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 August 2014 via mobile

As has been outlined in many reviews, this hotel is a little all over the place! Beautiful venue, and the communal areas of the hotel were lovely. We stayed in the tower room, which was fantastic; stunning, panoramic views, some of the furnishings a little tired and long showers not an option...came close to flooding the bathroom twice due to a very lazy drain!
The staff were great, though very stretched, many having to multi task, and seemed to be there 24/7.
The big let down was the food, eating in such stunning scenery only raised expectations, which were far from being met. Limited menu is understandable, however standard was not. Anti pasti and pasta dishes generally reasonable, but mains were not good.
We used the restaurant at the bottom of the drive on the last night, which was lovely.
Trips out are offered, quite expensive but if you don't want to drive, then a good option for getting out and about to Perugia, Assisi etc.

Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
4 Thank Ren C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hook, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
136 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 August 2014

This hotel should be the most wonderful place to stay but sadly not.
Its position in the Umbrian hills is unrivalled, a former village converted for the tourist what more can you ask for, sadly much
There are positives, the views, the staff and the quirkiness of staying in a converted village, but this hotel really does need attention, both staff and quality wise
I suppose my main concern was the poor quality of food.
The first night we arrived late and decided to eat in, a shame as it coloured the rest of our stay
I accept a limited menu, especially as the hotel is isolated, but that is no excuse for half cooked risotto (part was fine). It felt that the kitchens had run low on this item and added more rice which had no time to cook, it was definitely crunchy.
The food was plonked on the plate with no finesse.
As for the main course, meat stew with cold chips and green beans so overlooked I thought that they were tinned
The dining room was hugely undermanned. Piles of dirty plates left as the staff manfully tried to deal with the situation. 2 waiting staff when I was later informed there should have been 5.
We voiced our feelings, unfortunately the staff were aware of the problems, we were obviously not the first
We agreed to try the dining room again on our last night, although better than the first night, it really was not good. Overcooked oily food. This time it seemed that every member of staff had been drafted in to support the waiting staff, including the receptionist
And don't hold your breath for breakfast
On our last morning a waiter informed me that he was overworked and needed help, hardly appropriate, but just confirmed our thoughts. Funny though there were then 4 receptionists on duty
Our booking was for a County Suite, what we got was a room with terrace. We were told that we had been upgraded, I think not
When we were shown to our room, There was no explanation of the facilities we were just left to get on with it, quite unwelcoming, but then it was not a member of the reception staff that greeted us. I was unaware of a second pool until our last day!
The room itself was a good size, with a lovely terrace, but no privacy. It was overlooked from above and from other balconies on the same level. And please explain why a large urn of plants was placed in a manner which obscured part of the view
Wallpaper was beginning to come off the wall, not drastically, but certainly attention is needed. The feel of the room was Laura Ashley 1980s
Also the shower enclosure was very small for my 6'5" husband
I could go on and on with other minor issues but really do not see the point other than to mention that WiFi is a HUGE issue here. Again I understand with the isolated setting and old thick walls that it must be difficult but it was not until. 3.00 am on our third night did I manage to get WiFi in our bedroom. I had to go into the bar or reception to connect, the communal sitting rooms were not even a possibility. I cannot see how this hotel can be referred to as being available for business meetings.
The management appear to think that a view is an answer for everything, it is not
NB a car is essential if you want to see the area, this hotel is isolated, which can be said to add to its 'charm'

Room Tip: No room particularly stands out, they all appear to have disadvantages
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Kate_boots
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stroud,Glos
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 August 2014

We went to the hotel on a last minute offer and travelled hand baggage only to keep cost down. As always I looked at the hotels website and some reviews before travel and the hotels website mentioned, "the village" and, "the medieval town",so I relied on being able to buy last-minute items there. We were met at Perugia's small airport by two helpful and friendly women, who took care of our luggage and then to the hotel,pointing out places of interest on the way. We arrived on ever smaller and more rural roads after a half hour drive. The hotel complex has been lovingly restored, and it is on a hilltop so the views are spectacular, but other than some holiday flats and a small local restaurant, there is nothing else for miles. We were not the only ones so deceived. Our room was lovely and also spacious,the staff friendly and helpful.The food was classic Italian and plentiful although not "fine dining as claimed,but it was freshly cooked and good. Lunch was a bit of anon event, there was no menu or price list and the staff had.to.be searched for during the day.Most people had hire cars and were out.all day. The. place was.Very quiet and if you are content to relax around the pool or do.road walking to nowhere in particular,then it's fine ,very beautiful buildings, spa looted and gym a bit passe. We did have lunch a couple of times and a few drinks but at the end of our stay were presented with an unblemished.Bill

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank EileenCicuttin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 August 2014

With a groupon we went to Canallichio for three days. We encountered a stunning view, wonderfully restored little village transferred into an Hotel. Absolutely great. We did get a room in the extra building, big room, spacious and absolutely fine. Only not the charm of the hotel and the medieval atmosphere.
The Dinner was prefixed, nothing original, no time or attention spend on the food although the view on the terrace was absolutely breathtaking, a real shame and a missed oportunity to make a stay really special and worth coming back !!!! The same with breakfast, not really good, bad orangejuice kind of water, bad coffe from an automat !! There is a lack of positive quality to make the stay in this hotel special. The venue has great possibilities, the managment does not know how to do it right. Original Cappucino is with whole milk , here they serve it with low fat milk horribile !!!
A shame because of the poor service and food we will not book a second trip.

Room Tip: Book a room in the ancient buildings !! And eat somewhere else
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Alberto t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canterbury, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 August 2014

We have just returned from Umbria and felt we should say a few words about the hotel we have just stayed at. The reviews from previous guests were very mixed, but overall we found all issues raised were resolved. We had a good deal including transfers and from the moment we met the staff at Perugia airport they were so welcoming and friendly. The Hotel is based on a complete village on the top of a mountain. This has a Church situated at the heart of the complex and is ideal for weddings etc. They have a section of apartments slightly away from main area with own pool etc. On arrival at the hotel we were shown around and felt very much at home. We had a half board deal and when the 4 course dinner was served it was beyond belief. Traditional Antipasti, pasta course, amazing main course and an exquisite dessert every night without fail. To top this the view from the balcony watching the sun set in the mountains as we finished was incredible. The Head Waiter was such an efficient guy, had all the staff buzzing and so seamless. Very well organised, just the sort of guy who work in the Ritzy or Savoy in London. Excellent English spoken by all front facing staff. I agree with some previous comments regarding the bar service but during peak times the bar was always manned appropriately. You only had to ask reception and they found the duty barman in a few minutes. We did not use the Spa facilities but other guests said they were above average. Yes, some areas of this quaint hotel are getting tired, but clearly the owners are working through upgrades in some areas so I am sure that within a short space of time all will look pristine again. We only booked this holiday through Fleetway Travel 3 days before flying so the deal we had was exceptional, but this aside the cost to stay was still very favourable if you booked direct . Yes you need a car, we did walk around the area but after 3 days definitely need transport The hotel has a minibus and MPV. This hotel is top of the list of all hotels we have been to in the last couple of years, long may it continue to trade! 10 out of 10

Room Tip: The rooms overlooking the bar area can be a little noisy until about 9pm
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank manofkent1957
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Relais Il Canalicchio

Property: Relais Il Canalicchio
Address: Via della Piazza 4, 06050 Canalicchio, Collazzone, Italy
Phone Number:
Region: Italy > Umbria > Province of Perugia > Collazzone > Canalicchio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Canalicchio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:4 star — Relais Il Canalicchio 4*
Number of rooms: 37
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Relais Il Canalicchio stands like a small gem inset into the summit of a hill. The picturesque town built around the Castello di Poggio, which dates to the 10th-11th centuries, dominates the town with its imposing tower and a splendid little church close to the vineyards and olive groves at the centre of the lush Umbrian countryside. The luxury Relais has almost completely remodeled and enclosed the town of Canalicchio, an intact and resplendent oasis of peace, where only the twittering of birds interrupts the relaxing stillness. Inside, the historic and rural origins of the place are obvious; it still has its apparent castle-like structure and boasts an enormous and exquisite millstone, the old press and some lovely arches, evoking the enchanting atmosphere and charm of times gone by. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Relais Il Canalicchio Di Collazzone
Relais Il Canalicchio Umbria, Italy

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