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“Fabulous place to stay in a stunning location”

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Hotel de la Cite Carcassonne - MGallery Collection
Ranked #2 of 39 Hotels in Carcassonne
Certificate of Excellence
London
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“Fabulous place to stay in a stunning location”
Reviewed 18 June 2009

This hotel is a haven of peace and tranquility, where you can escape the crowds of daytrippers inside the walls of the medieval city. We had a garden room overlooking the ramparts and the chateau, it was the most wonderful view. The staff could not have been more friendly or more helpful and both breakfast and dinner were delicious. We would highly recommend the hotel.

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JNFLondon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Suffolk UK
Level Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 May 2009

I'd always wanted to go to Carcassonne and this hotel in particular. So courtesy of cheap Ryanair flights and my 50th birthday as an excuse, we decided to fly over for just one night. The flight times are great , leaving Stansted at 9.45 and we were at the hotel by 1pm as the airport is a short 10 mins from the town. The hotel is just what you'd imagine - charming, lovely rooms ( though a bit on the small side) local soaps and potions, and we were upgraded to a garden room with fanastic views , a terrace and access to the gardens. There's a lovely ( unheated) swimming pool too. The staff can't do enough for you in the hotel , though the main restaurant was closed so we dined at Chez Saskia- the hotel bistro and where you take breakfast. This was the only disappointment- the degustation menu was actually not great, and the service was patchy. If we go again , we'd probably choose a local restaurant within the city- there are lots of them . We saw all the sights of the town very comfortably within the afternoon - back to the hotel for a swim by 5.30 , and then a quick walk the following morning into Carcassonne proper before leaving the hotel at midday top catch the flight home!

  • Stayed May 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mikey19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dhahran, Saudi Arabia
Level Contributor
18 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 May 2009

Now I don't usually flash around the fact that I can afford to stay in uber-expensive and flashy hotels ,being a man of the people and all that.
However, having spent 3 nights in the Hotel de la Cite and having shared it with the likes of Bob Geldof & co. I figure that any guilt about not giving the money to the starving hordes can safely be jettisoned. Yes, Bob you didn't see me but I saw you and you definitely prevented a famine in Carcassonne by wining and dining in lavish style. Good 'ol Bob I say!
The hotel is part of the Orient Express group and boy does it show.
At 343 EU. per night in low season you might think that the Hotel de la Cite was a bit extortionate. Perish the thought. From the moment you are greeted by the super-helpful hotel staff in the carpark you know you have left the real world behind.
This is a world of immaculate staff, woody interiors, huge fireplaces, a barman who ices you glass before pouring a beer etc. etc. It's no Rat Trap Bob!!!
Carcassonne - la vielle cite- suddenly comes into view in a sensational manner if you drive from Toulouse. It literally hovers above the city and you set your beady eyes in a fixed stare saying "I want to go there and go right to the top." Now, instead of leaving the city at the end of each day with the rest of the rubes you can linger on and be the Sherrif of Nottingham if you stay in Hotel de la Cite.
Carcassonne old city is up a distractingly small side street and is a large moated castle town straight out of Robin Hood. That second reference shows you that I have not forgotten that they filmed that Costneresque movie within the old city. Geldof, Costner, what a rich life I lead!
Anyway, hire a car and park it within the hotel carpark which is guarded until 7pm. Leave it there. Even the most determined car thief is unlikely to hike all the way up to the city walls to nick it. You won't want to leave anyway.
From there the Hotel has this tiny cute car that drives you through the moat with centimetres to spare and whisks you to the hotel. Just about the only hotel which seems to provide that service. The rubes in the street make way and look anxiously in at you to see if you're someone famous...like Bob.
Anyway the liveried staff member goes into overdrive and lets you know that he loves you, the hotel loves you and anything you wish for can be yours. I pondered asking for a wench from the town but I reckoned most wenches could only afford to live in the unter stadt and I was right. Carcassonne old city is a large Alcatraz for tourists. No one else seems to be there and after breakfast you walk around with the rest of the inmates to drink (try La Trouvere...Bob did!), eat and buy fake medieval jousting gear.
We were upgraded to a Junior Suite which had breath-taking views of Carcassonne- straight out of the back page of Conde Naste. The bed was big enough for Robin and his merry men...or perhaps just Maid Marion. there was a wierd TV that arose out of a table a la Goldfinger. I never wanted to leave!!
Staff were discreet enough to leave you alone but always there to do anything for you. The bar ended up as one of those I-can't-quite -get-myself-to-leave places that took up night after night. It's good to be the Sherrif!
There's not a lot to do but have an incredibly romantic time with She Who Must Be Obeyed and live La Dolca Vita.
We ventured out to Queribus castle and pondered how the Cathars must have had a pretty windy life up there. Then it was back to the Hotel's Michelin star restaurant...yumee. If only every meal could be that good.
So check into Hotel de la Cite and leave the world behind. The memories will linger on as long as that irritating song "I don't like...I don't like...i don't like Mondays..."
Bob's your uncle!

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DoubleJacknCoke
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chichester, England
2 reviews
Reviewed 4 May 2009

I recently organised a 3-day conference at Hotel de la Cite for 35 delegates and have to say that it was one of the best events I've done - and it was thanks largely to the Hotel, its staff and the great dining (both the fine dining in La Barbacane but also breakfast and lunch in Chez Saskia). I read an earlier review that said Chez Saskia felt a bit cramped - I must say that was not my experience. Yes space was at a premium, but the ambience inside was great and staff really helpful and attentive. La Barbacane is a Michelin-starred restaurant so my expectations were high when having dinner there, but the dining experience was fantastic - the food, the staff and the ambience all struck the right chord. The bedrooms were elegant and extremely comfortable. I read an earlier review that said the hotel seemed a bit worn and drab - that certainly was not my impression, nor that of any of my guests. It was all subtle and understated elegance. The meeting room facilities were more than adequate and I have to say that the coffee/tea breaks were the best quality I've ever experienced. what really impressed me though was that the hotel staff were so helpful and accommodating to me when I wanted to arrange dinner in the new town outside the hotel - they came up with some excellent recommendations. The setting in which the hotel is located is wonderful - almost surreal, and I cannot recommend highly enough Hotel de la Cite. I will certainly be returning both professionally and as a tourist. By the way, there is a great local golf course just 2 miles down the road. And another thing, driving into the hotel over the drawbridge and up the cobbled streets can at first seem daunting, but it is very negotiable (and fun!)

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Zangalo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Niagara
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 April 2009

This review is over a year old but I am booking this hotel for the most important day of my life after just one visit!

Things I liked;
-We booked a superior room only (the least expensive room) and it was huge, beautiful, clean and so romantic with a gorgeous bathroom.
-The location! Within the heart of the cite, prepare to be transported to another time.
-The food, the michelin star restaurant's sampler diner with the matching wine was amazing, and very reasonable. I can not wait until they do our wedding lunch!
-Authenticity, the hotel is neither modern nor gaudy yet it is spotless, all of the necessities you need are there and the surplus of details all work in creating a rich medieval atmosphere.
-The service, we got lost on the way there and reception was very friendly in providing directions. We never had to wait and we were treated like royalty.
-Did I mention the food!!!!

The negatives;
-It is hard to find by car, the cite is VERY easy to find but the outer parking area was difficult to find until reception kindly gave us easy directions.
-The drive out! Even though we stayed at the hotel in late December there were quite a few tourists. We had to navigate our car from the hotel (it was moved for us from the outer parking lot by a staff member) through narrow streets filled with wondering tourists. A bit unnerving, but not impossible. I think the hotel offers a service to park your car outside for you but we foolishly refused. Hindsight.... Oh well it is an amusing tale to tell our wedding guests!

I not only would recommend this hotel to anyone, I am flying from Canada and putting all of my family, friends, aunts, uncles, grandmother and my future MOTHER IN LAW in this hotel because I trust they will love their stay.

  • Stayed December 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank tripslaot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
BOCA RATON
Level Contributor
22 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 January 2009

Over the Christmas/New Year's holidays, we traveled to Spain with a slight detour from Barcelona to the old city of Carcassonne. Carcassonne is about a 3 hour drive from Barcelona and was an interesting side trip. Traveling in the winter, we had the opportunity to view from a distance the majestic snow covered mountains of Andorra. Of course during portions of our drive we came across a fair amount of fog. A nice stop along the way is the coastal town of Pepignan France where we stretched our legs. I read before traveling to Carcassonne that in the summer, millions of visitors visit. I am grateful we were not there in the summer as the crowds would ruin the unique character of the city and probably make it a nightmare to reach, park, find a room and eat. As it was, over New Years, it was quite busy. My wife and daughter were quite amazed at the sight of the city, although after a few hours my teenage daughter was bored and my wife felt like she was trapped in a tiny version of Disneyland. Inasmuch as I enjoy medieval history and towns, I found Carcassonne a unique experience. Upon checking into the Hotel de la Cite, we were somewhat disapppointed. For an Orient Express Hotel with Orient Express prices even in the winter , it seemed a little tired and worn. We were shown to our room which at first glance appeared comfortable. However, when the band for the New Year's eve party started practicing below us, we knew we could not remain. The desk agreed and showed us to a room down the hall. Not only was this room likewise near the party, the odor of cigarettes in the room was so strong we could not bear to stand in the room for more than a minute. The hotel should have been embarrassed to show us such a room. In fact after we left, the door and windows to the room were left open for hours to allow the room to air out. We were then told that the only other room in the hotel was in the annex outside the main building. While it appeared quite comfortable, it was by itself and we would have had to brave the cold just to go to the lobby. Obviously, this is not what we bargained for. After further complaint, we were told that there was another room which had been reserved, but the guests had not shown up. We agreed to accept the room and found it comfortable for our stay. Breakfast at the hotel was nice and adequate. The only complaint I had was that the room in which it was served was quite cramped. On New Year's eve we ate dinner at one of the many restaurants in the old town. However, the next night when we tried to eat in the new city below the medieval one, we could find nothing but pizza restaurants or fast food so we returned back to the old city. I am glad we did as I got to try cassolet(not sure of the spelling) which appears to be a local dish and as with all French cooking, was quite good. On New Years day, everything was closed in the area so we took a drive to some medieval towns in the area including Montpoix. The countryside is beautiful and the towns quite interesting. Carcassonne is a nice side trip, but probably one night in the area is more than enough.

  • Stayed December 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Check-in / front desk
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank CruisinFlorida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HDCCarcassonne, Xavier Lablaude - Resident Manager at Hotel de la Cite Carcassonne - MGallery Collection, responded to this review, 30 January 2009
Thank you for giving us the opportunity to clarify a few of the issues from the review. It’s always upsetting getting a mixed review from one of our guests. Many of our clients come from very far destinations and we do our utmost for them to leave with a memorable positive impression from their stay. Some of the points mentioned by the guest are totally legitimate. We would like to apologies regarding the noise from the musicians doing their sound check and rehearsing prior to the New Years Gala dinner and we should have avoided assigning this particular junior suite (which is above the restaurant and has a terrace with a beautiful view of the ramparts and city) to the guest since the client was not participating in the New Years Gala Dinner. Showing an alternative accommodation that had a strong tobacco smell is unacceptable. Finally, an appropriate accommodation was found but the guest did loose valuable time.

The annex building that is mentioned is called the villa. This consists of three accommodations (one bedroom suite with a terrace, a junior suite and a deluxe room). It is ideal for large families. However, it is true that one has to walk outside and cross the cobblestone square (about 75 feet) to reach the hotel’s lobby.

Please also allow me to make clarifications regarding the next three points:

- High prices: Rates during the New Year are higher due to more demand. The Hotel de la Cité was very close to being sold-out on that date (only a couple rooms left). However, the hotel has seasonal offers available throughout the winter and other seasons.

- Millions of tourists.
The medieval citadel is especially crowded from the 10th of July to around the 20th of August. There are about 2 million visitors per year to Carcassonne (these are Wikipedia numbers) and just on Bastille Day, the 14th of July, there are more than ½ a million spectators for the fabulous fireworks. We do not want to have our guest think that the medieval citadel is always overcrowded because that is certainly not the case. In the summer, the best time to appreciate the citadel is in the early morning or in the evening when the majority of tourists have gone and when the temperature has cooled off. In the summer months, guest can relax in hotel’s park that has a stunning view on the castle and relax in the heated pool which is underneath the basilica.

- Access to the citadel
Please also note that from April to November, the Hotel de la Cité has a staff member, from 1PM to 8PM, at the designated entrance to the medieval citadel. There, the hotel has a certain amount of reserved parking spaces where we temporarily park the guests’ cars prior to having our bellmen drive the car to the hotel’s garage after 8PM when driving is allowed inside the walled city.

- The hotel being tired and worn.
The Hotel de la Cité closes each year for a six week period from mid January to early March. Each year, the hotel does renovations. Last year 11 rooms were renovated and all the hallways were re-carpeted. This year, “La Barbacane”, the hotel’s gourmet restaurant is being refurbished (new carpet, new paint, chairs re-upholstered, new mirrors, etc..).

We are happy that the guest enjoyed cassoulet, the local specialty. Unfortunately the guest was not able to find a restaurant of his likings on January 1 in the new city known as “the Bastide St. Louis”. Most were closed probably due to a busy evening the night before and January 1 being a “bank” holiday. It’s a shame because there are some charming restaurants in the new city, many of them hard to find because off the beaten track.

On a final note, we appreciate the fact that the guest found the countryside beautiful (and that is in the winter). Just imagine how beautiful it is in the spring, summer, and fall! There are many wonderful sites near Carcassonne which makes our hotel a perfect “home base” to discover our region known as the “Cathar” region.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tigard, Oregon
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 January 2009

I stayed her for a Buiness function and it was amazing. We had a room(the only room) right off the Pool courtyard and it was fabulous. The room as a little small but the feeling of "owning" the pool was delightful. Our room was off the main hotel and was quiet. It felt like we were the only ones there. Our room had a private door out to the pool area and was great for sitting out there to have our coffe or a late night drink. It was still a little chilly so we didn't actually go in the pool neither did anyone else so no one was out there. It might be a little more intrusive on the hotter days if people were out there all day but for the time that we were there it was very very private.

The staff was great and the overall location within the walled city was amazing. The shopping was fabulous and the food was dreamy. The only suggestion (which may be a France thing) was the coffe was just instant coffee and was yucky. But being from the Pacific Northwest where coffee is king you have a different expectation for coffee. A coffe pot would have been the over the top touch to make our stay even better. Nothing like a good cup of coffee to start your day in such a beautiful environment.

The grounds were well maintained and just as breathtaking if you went out to the back courtyard at night the Castle was lighted with made for some amazing pictures. The location was perfect in everyway. To walk around the city at night and take in the beauty was amazing. They people were ALL very nice within the city and since it was just myself and another female we felt VERY safe there.

  • Disliked — Coffee
  • Stayed April 2008, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank KES-29FAMILY
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel de la Cite Carcassonne - MGallery Collection

Property: Hotel de la Cite Carcassonne - MGallery Collection
Address: Place Auguste-Pierre Pont, 11000 Carcassonne, France
Region: France > Occitanie > Aude > Carcassonne
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Carcassonne
#1 Luxury Hotel in Carcassonne
#2 Family Hotel in Carcassonne
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel de la Cite Carcassonne - MGallery Collection 5*
Number of rooms: 59
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Standing between two historic landmarks, the Roman Chateau Comtal and the Gothic Basilica of Saint-Nazaire, the Hotel de la Cite is set in its own glorious gardens. With its solid stone walls, wood paneling and stained-glass windows, the Hotel offers luxurious hospitality and award winning cuisine in its two restaurants. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
De La Cite Hotel
De La Cite Carcassonne

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