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Les Gens de Mer
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Reviews (224)
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Reviewed 30 June 2013

We spent the last 2 nights of a 4 week French holiday in the delightful town of La Rochelle. Our timing was not great being the first day of both the sales and the international film festival. After failing to find a room we across Les Gens de Mer and grabbed the last room available, which happened to be a triple. More expensive but at least a bit more room.

The Hotel was clean and comfortable, the staff efficient and friendly enough. Their English was better than my poor French so communication was not an issue. The Hotel is well situated about 5 minutes walk from the Tourist Information office and in a small park, which certainly helped with the aspect of the property. Little to add really, it certainly served a purpose and it had parking at the almost reasonable €7.50 per day.

A couple of smallish negatives. The TV reception was poor, only 2 channels (1 and 2) watchable, the rest kept breaking up. A cup of filter coffee was €3.10, but one downside of La Rochelle as a whole is the desire to over-charge. We paid top dollar for the room but that was probably down to our timing.

La Rochelle is well worth a visit and after several trips to France I was pleased to finally make it to the town. Even by French standards it is not cheap, so it probably is wise to take care where you eat and drink. There are hundreds of options though.

I would probably rate the Hotel as good rather than very good, but better than average. I would stay again.

Room Tip: Noise is not an issue, would probably ensure I had a balcony next time.
  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank middleageoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 September 2012

Pleasant clean rooms. Serviced daily. Shower a bit tired, but room adequate. Located within walking distance from main station, but fairly quiet. Buffet breakfast, no main meals but drinks available. Good value.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank Webhound P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 August 2012

Just back from a week's stay in Les Gens de Mer. Tariffs were high with August being the peak season, but this hotel's facilities are quite good. We booked what they describe as 'a comfort double' which had no balcony but were able to change on arrival to the only room they had left which did have a balcony. The room itself was very small with the cramped ensuite bulging into it. Very hot too, being carpeted and without aircon. But the balcony did provide a lovely, cool outdoor space. On the third floor, it was shaded by a tall maple tree growing in the adjoining park. Sitting there felt like being in a tree house; it was very relaxing. The decor throughout has a kitschy, marine theme.
The hotel has a large staff and standards of helpfulness and friendliness vary from person to person, with some people being very pleasant and others quite aloof. Housekeeping was a bit niggardly with the supply of toilet rolls and shower gel - I had to ask for more of these on two occasions over the week. The cleaning itself was perfunctory but adequate. Breakfast is €9 per person, so we skipped it and breakfasted in the waterfront cafés. The location of the hotel is great, about a 5 minute walk from the old port's main drag, which means it's close to the action but still a peaceful place to sleep. If you're staying for longer than a few days, I'd advise giving them a ring to check what kind of room you're getting - the sizes and shapes seem to vary a lot in this hotel.
A tip: The prices in the small 'Superette' across the road are an outrageous rip-off. We noticed that a 1.5litre bottle of Coke on the shelf was €2.50 while the same item in the chill cabinet was €3.50. When we queried this we were told with a sneer 'Quelqu'un a fallu travailler en ce cas...' i.e. 'Someone had to do some work in the second case'. Enough said. Alternatives are Monoprix in Rue Chaudriere or some small 'Coop' mini-markets dotted around the town.

  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank wanderingmaeve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 May 2012

We used Les Gens de Mer as a quick overnight stopover during a road trip. We chose the hotel as it had parking and I'd heard that parking was tricky in La Rochelle. I was a bit nervous about how close it was to the station, as in my experience, most stations are where the dodgy types hang out, but it was fine. The lady at the reception was really helpful and friendly and even pointed out that parking outside on the street (which was easy to find) was free until 9am the next day, so we didn't need to use the hotel parking. The rooms were simple but nice and we had a great view over the park to the harbour. Well-decorated, clean and comfortable. I can't comment on the food as we were out of there first thing, but I'd recommend it to anyone going to La Rochelle. It was really convenient and only a 2 - 3 minute walk before you're in the town centre.

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank 1SG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2010

Arriving in the rush hour of La Rochelle after a two hundred and odd mile drive, we finally dropped the car in a public car park and set off on foot to locate the hotel. Arriving at the reception desk we stood for about three minutes whilst an arrogant young man messed around with a computer screen. When he did finally deign to acknowledge us his first demand was the full price of our two day booking in advance - despite having already paid a deposit by credit card. We then asked the best way to drive to the hotel ( not the easiest task in La Rochelle with its one way systems and pedstrianised bus lanes etc) only to be told he didn't know. We took our hand luggage up to our room after working out for ourselves where it was. Knowing that the hotel had its own car park I then asked about this. Yes it was available I was told and had to be paid to him cash up front ! For this I asked for a receipt. Which was not forthcoming as 'the machine was broken'... Having retrieved the car I dropped my wife at the front door steps with the major luggage as the hotel car park was an awkward place to get out of at the best of times. In my absence she carried these into the hotel reception as our host vainly watched her struggle with fire doors etc and on into the lift with an expression of conceited boredom . After that though we have to say it got better. The room was large and comfortable and the rest of the staff friendly and attentive. One of them even produced my missing receipt for the car park ! Our advice ? Be prepared to give as good as you get in this establishment. Welcoming it ain't.

  • Stayed: May 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank bleriot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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