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“Hotel has JUST been completely renovated...”

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Hotel Maria Cristina, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Sebastian
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 19 July 2012

I just stayed here with friends, and was impressed to find the hotel had just completed (a week prior to our checkin) a nine-month renovation, leaving it looking like a brand new hotel. Although this was my first stay here, I can say without a doubt that prior reviews which mentioned the hotel "showing its age" or "being threadbare" must be references to the pre-renovation Hotel MC. It looks sparkling, beautiful, and elegant-- like staying at a palace (with nice contemporary touches).

The room:

The room was large by any standard (and huge by European standards). You could have fit a bed in the bathroom, which featured an excellent shower with a rain head, a separate bath tub, and enclosed commode and bidet. This was not the customary spartan European bathroom. The rooms were well decorated with a stylish combination of contemporary furnishings which blended well with the traditional architecture. The bed was spectacularly comfortable.

The personnel/service:

The personnel at the hotel were always courteous and helpful. We had a last minute addition of a third person in the room, requiring a rollaway bed, and the request was honored without complaint (although the bed did come with a 55 euro charge), but they moved us to a larger room to accommodate the bed without asking.

Most of the staff spoke decent English, and were always polite, even with unusual requests. The concierge was patient and responsive, although they did not seem to have any "special powers" or "pull" when it came to reservations at restaurants, but they were diligent with tracking down requests.

The location:

The location was great-- a short (10 minute) walk to the large beach through old town, and minutes by foot to a great selection of shopping a good restaurants. We only needed a taxi to and from the hotel to our transportation in and out of town.

A few complaints (would deduct 1/2 a star):

- Like at most expensive hotels, wifi was pricy @ 19 euro per day, and the provided passcode would only work for one device. This meant we needed to call down and fight for additional codes to connect all of our devices (multiple laptops and smartphones). They should provide one code which works for several devices, especially given the price of daily wifi. However, they do offer two modern computers in the lobby for free internet use (and they're connected to a printer for free printing), and lobby wifi is free.
- Local calls are FAR from free. We made two brief local calls only to discover we were charged more than 5 euro on check out. If you need to make local calls, stay elsewhere or make other arrangements.
- The 3 elevators were frequently out of service (or 1 or 2 of the three, but sometimes all three). I'm sure this is related to the recent renovation as they appear to be brand new, but it occasionally meant walking up stairs to get to and from the room.
- At the time of our stay, they offered no spa services on location.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank twf2000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 17 July 2012 via mobile

Check in was easy and we dealt with English speaking staff that were happy to help with whatever we needed.
Rooms were clean and well-appointed. Very roomy for hotel by European standards. Breakfast was the same type of buffet we've had in numerous other hotels in Spain and throughout Europe. Location was the best perk of this place. The hotel is within walking distance of shopping, tapas bars and the beach. Because of that, we spent little time in the rooms, but we'd definitely return.

  • Stayed: July 2012
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Thank Michael H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 July 2012

The Maria Cristina lived up to its stellar reputation. My wife and I stayed in SS at the Maria Cristina for 3 days and 2 nights. Check-in was extremely prompt and efficient. The team there was able to provide us with a detailed local area map, including a separate map to highlight the "top-rated" pinxtos bars in the old town. The location of the hotel is ideal, as it is around the corner from the bus station (not that you'd need it, the town is very compact), the beaches and the old town. The room and the beds were excellent as well. They recently completed a massive renovation of the entire property and everything was new, tasteful and clean! Well done!

Room Tip: If you request a room overlooking the river, you can see the beach from your balcony! Obviously, hig...
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  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank BAUBAUSUN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 May 2012

San Sebastian is a very prosperous city in the wealthiest region of Spain and Maria Cristina is its crown jewel hotel. It's very centrally located, only 5 minute walk from the incredible concentration of superb dining in the old town. As SPG Platinum I got an upgraded to a Jr Suite with a terrace. The suite is very large with a separate living room and the terrace if truly fantastic, we had friends over on several occasions for drinks and you can really throw a nice pre-dinner cocktail party for 7-8 people on the terrace with a great ocean view. Hotel staff was superb. The furnishings were starting to show some age but I believe it is being renovated this year. Cannot imagine staying elsewhere in San Seb and the terrace suites are definitely worth the splurge. We tried a couple of the 3-star Michelin's in town, Arzak was very good while Akelarre was just ok, too much show too little taste. But the meals that we remember the most are the tasting menus at Bar Zeruko and A Fuego Negro - a mind blowing take on modern tapas. We now have our next San Seb weekend trip fully planned out, 2 nights in the Jr Suites at MC, dinners at Zeruko and Fuego Negro, bliss.

Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
2  Thank drazhen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 April 2012

When I valet parked my car, they left it out front ao long that the city towed away, and arranged to return 2 days later. The hotel initally insisted on charging me for the nightly parking fee, .but would cover my ticket and towing fees.
The dated room contained a carefully folded bath robe, fresh with fecal wipes, and mentstrual blood. When I discreetly drew it to management's attention they indicated that I must have created this multi-fluid mess. There adversity toward me was astounding.
The location is great, but I can't even think about it without wanting to take another shower.

Room Tip: Check all sheets, towels, facecloths, and definitely bathrobes for prior use - expecially scarring i...
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  • Stayed: July 2011, travelled with family
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16  Thank marcmcman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
maria-cristina-hotel, Director General at Hotel Maria Cristina, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Sebastian, responded to this reviewResponded 10 August 2012

Dear Mr. Marcmcman,

I am sorry to hear that your experience 10 months earlier than your review was not up to our standards. It’s totally unacceptable for us to see what you have been through especially the way you felt members of our team have responded to your claim. I really regret what you have been through I would like to get in touch with you personally to review those comments. Would you be kind enough in sending me your details to our hotel email address: hmc@luxurycollection.com
Best regards and looking forward to hear from you.
Michel Nader (General Manager)

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 February 2012

Lets see... the room was large in size as opposed to most European Hotels, which was nice. The bed was comfortable. The shower had trouble draining so I stood in 3 inches of water when I showered. I wore sandals every time, because it just didn't feel very clean. It was also very dark. We got room service for breakfast, it was pathetic and terrible. For 80 us dollars it was a complete rip off. We had trouble with billing when checking out and the staff was not accommodating what so ever. We stood there for 30min arguing about our bill, and never did come to an agreement. We are Starwood members so I took it up with them when I was back in the states. I would not recommend staying here.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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12  Thank Kymbolde
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 December 2011

Our stay here was one of the best we've ever had. First, the location is great - right in the middle of old town walking distance to everything. But the hotel itself combines great service with great old world style and elegance. We are Starwood Platinum, so we were upgraded to an excellent suite, but even without the upgrade we loved the hotel. Parking is easy with the attached underground parking garage (n.b. it was very expensive as is usual in Europe) and we never ate at their restaurant due to the plethora of restaurants and bars in the area. Eating pinchos like locals is so fun, unique and delicious!

  • Stayed: August 2011, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank tomclubireland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Maria Cristina, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Sebastian

Address: Paseo Republica Argentina, 4, 20004 San Sebastian - Donostia, Spain
Phone Number:
Region: Spain > Basque Country > Province of Guipuzcoa > San Sebastian - Donostia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in San Sebastian - Donostia
#1 Family Hotel in San Sebastian - Donostia
#1 Luxury Hotel in San Sebastian - Donostia
#1 On the Beach Hotel in San Sebastian - Donostia
#1 Business Hotel in San Sebastian - Donostia
Price Range: £202 - £617 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel Maria Cristina, a Luxury Collection Hotel, San Sebastian 5*
Number of rooms: 136
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A Century of Elegance in San Sebastian - Since opening in 1912 the restored Hotel Maria Cristina has been closely linked to the history and cultural life of San Sebastian. The lavish Belle Epoque interior is filled with soaring columns, 19th-century portraits, rich silk brocades and glorious chandeliers making for a truly opulent experience.Experience gracious hospitality on a grand scale in the hotel's rooms and suites. Decorated in a sophisticated palette of greys and white, the rooms are a quiet haven of luxury. Style, technology and a dazzling range of services which combined make for an unforgettable stay. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Maria Cristina Hotel

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