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Relais et Chateaux La Reserve
Ranked #6 of 26 Hotels in Albi
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 10 May 2013

Very friendly and helpful. Beautiful situation on River Tarn. Very peaceful. The food at dinner is rich and complicated, so not suitable for anyone with a delicate tummy. Big swimming pool on a lovely terrace. Ideal for visiting Albi.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank xyz907
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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49 - 55 of 201 reviews

Reviewed 21 September 2012

After a long day of travelling my friend and I stopped at La Reserve to enquire about a room for the night. The hotel was not full, however the first price the receptionist quoted us was more then we were willing to spend for one evening. At this point one of us used the washroom as we continued to discuss the price of the room after which I did the same. Once we determined that they were unwilling to lower the price and we decided to leave. The receptionist then accused us of simply entering to use the washroom. As an owner and operator in the hotel industry for over 20 years I found this extremely insulting and unprofessional. I was thinking of perhaps taking my wife there for a holiday next year, but now I would never recommend La Reserve to anyone at any price.

  • Stayed: September 2012, travelled with friends
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6  Thank J_S1049329
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2012

What a gem! Beautiful setting, great bedroom and bathroom, super friendly staff, great pool, and heavenly pool.

Thank you all!

Room Tip: We had a lovely room overlooking the pool and the River Tarn. A real treat!
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  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Helen F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 June 2012

The location a few km outside Albi on the banks of the river Tarn was fantastic. We enjoyed our balcony overlooking the swimming pool and lawns leading down to the river. Albi is a wonderful old medieval city but city centre hotels seemed a bit cramped so we were pleased to be on the outskirts. We enjoyed relaxing during our 2 night stay. The food was good but both the evening menu and breakfast were very expensive for what they were. Everything seemed to cost extra and at high prices which felt a bit mean as we paid €238 per night for a very small room. Overall nice but not very good value for money.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank advice55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 August 2011

We spent a very enjoyable 2 day break at the hotel. The rooms are comfortable, the location is excellent (just outside Albi and on the river), the staff are well organised and helpful and the food imaginative and well cooked and well presented. This is a typical R&C hotel located on the fringes of an historic town: it has a good pool and grounds for those who want to stay all day, access to the town and surrounding villages is easy and after a day's sightseeing there is good food available in a relaxed atmosphere.

Room Tip: In a hot summer garden view rooms provide a quiet alternative to the sun and pool (which many river...
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  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank ABC_1956
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 August 2010

La Reserve is a venerable establishment in Albi on the banks of the River Tarn, right off the main road that leads to Cordes-sur-Ciel, another tourist draw. Now that Albi has been named a UNESCO World Heritage site, more people are bound to visit.


We celebrated our 20th anniversary dinner there and were quite disappointed. The setting is pleasant. On a summer evening, everyone was dining at tables on the terrace near the pretty swimming pool, overlooking a lawn and the river.

As one other reviewer here mentions, the welcome at the front desk was rather formal and chilly, though the young serving staff in the dining room were pleasant, friendly and capable. We both ordered the 45 prix fixe dinner. While we waited, I had a glass of champagne--which later turned out to cost 14 euros! That's a bit steep for this part of the world!

The meal itself was quite disappointing. Standard, bourgeous French hotel food.

They try to be modern and innovative--but it just didn't work.

The amuse gueule, a puré of gazpachio, lacked élan and had a metalic taste.
My husband started with carpaccio of duck --which he didn't enjoy at all. I ordered the melon with a mint granita. Original idea, but the granita tasted too much like granules of frozen toothpaste!

We both had fish to follow--dorade (bream) and bar. Mine came with polenta--which is rarely found on menus here--but it poorly made and served in one of those cookie-cutter round shapes so beloved of a certain tired style of French cooking. The ratatouille that accompanied my husband's fish tasted like it had been poured from a jar.

The fish was okay--just bland & dull. It was so processed (no head, bones, tail) that we wondered if they had really been prepared in the kitchen--or if they came out of some packet.
Although it was a 45 euro menu (which is fairly high for the Tarn), no salad, just a choice of cheese or dessert. The cheese was not a cheese board, but a piece of chevre, roquefort and brebis (we think). No one told us. Albi is close to the caves de roquefort and it is terrible to see a local restaurant serve 2nd class roquefort. Even some supermarket roqueforts taste better than what they served. We make fromage du chevre ourselves, and were not impressed with the quality of their offering--more supermarket fare?

My dessert was a hot chocolate soufflé filled with fruit (cherries?), which may have been anoher attempt at originality, but turned out icky.

The only wine by glass is local Gaillac--which can be good. However the first white was so awful I had no qualm returning it. They kindly changed it, but the second was barely better. This is perplexing, since good white Gaillacs are not hard to find! My husband fared better with the red.

What was good? The bread rolls and the service!
If you're a foodie, pass this place by....

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank DiscerningSoul
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 April 2010

I must be in France every 2/3 months and I am based in Provence. My travels take me from one end of the South (Nice) to the other cote (Biarritz). And between?So many wonderful regions and experiences. I thought I'd share some of my favorites as I've stayed at so many hotels and sampled from 3* Restaurants down to the popular local bistro in many towns between both coasts.

I was looking forward to La Reserve after a hard day of work in Touluse and the weekend approaching. I have to admit that it was one big disappointment after another. For a R&C of 4/5*, it doesn't begin to approach any other other 'High end' hotel along the route between Nice and Biarritz and yet the attitude and prices are certainly in keeping with the true 'luxe' hotes. The rooms are clean but they truly need a major renovarion for the prices they charge. It was circa luxe 1970s. The grounds were rather austere and even our balcony looked out onto a sort of garden..field..or something....with a river behind it. Just not good vibes. The formality of the front desk was not something I was accustonmed to in the more relaxed 'France Meridonale'. Certainly walking in wearing jeans instead of the Armani suit I had prepared for dinner was found to be looked down on. And on what basis? This is a hotel that is coasting on its years of 'comme il faut' from 20-30 years ago. It jist felt...worn and cold. Of course the rooms have decent beds, bathrooms and such...but everything feels worn. The restaurant of which we had a demi-pension fared no better. Wehad just left 3* chef Michael Guerand where his easy going stlye fills his amazing 3 star restaurant and hotel. The restaurant at 'La Reserve' was cold, way too formal with a classic French menu that seems to have ignored al the wonderful discoveries that chefs like Savoy, Bras, Cagna and Trama have incoporated into the world of today. Stodgy and decent but nothing specisl meal. This hotle needs a number of adjustments: attitude towards guests, full renovation of the bedrooms and main meeting areas and most...a new chef and a new dining room. La Reserve simply does not belong in the category that it is still listed. Pass it by and head for Micjel Trama in Puymirol!

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank LeTerrible
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Relais et Chateaux La Reserve

Address: Route de Cordes, 81000, Albi, France
Phone Number:
Region: France > Occitanie > Tarn > Albi
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Luxury Hotel in Albi
Price Range: £212 - £317 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Relais et Chateaux La Reserve 5*
Number of rooms: 28
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Also Known As:
La Reserve Albi

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