I contacted the hotel directly about bookings, rates, availability and my email was responded to promptly and in English. You can check the hotel's website yourself - www.hotelborgoverde.it/eng/home.
We (myself, mother and my two sisters) arrived at Catania airport late, we took a bus from the airport to Catania's main train station and then got a taxi from there. This was as the hotel was unable to arrange for a taxi to meet us at the airport. However, the hotel had given us the telephone number for a local mini cab firm but none of the telephones at the airport seemed to work. The whole journey was around 25 minutes. We also noted that many buses to and from other cities such as Interbus and SAIS Trasporti also call at the airport; to or from Catania's main train station, very cheap, worth considering.
On arrival at the hotel, we were greeted by a very friendly and hospitable gentleman, unfortunately, we did not take his name. We saw him on a number of evenings and he was always very friendly and helpful. In the mornings, we had Moira at reception. She was exceptionally helpful, very friendly and spoke excellent English (although she encouraged us to practise our Italian with her!).
The rooms (we had two twin rooms) were very comfortable and kept clean with daily maid service, fresh towels provided as and when needed, TV (only Italian stations), electronic safe, mini bar and both rooms had a balcony with table and chairs.
The hotel has a beautiful garden, which contains a swimming pool but this is permanently closed off, there are sun loungers to sit around it though. In the reception area, breakfast is served from 7am - 10am. Coffee is freshly made to order by the barista - another very friendly girl, not sure if she spoke English as we only spoke to her in Italian. Breakfast was excellent - though it looks small - there are choices of cereal, bread rolls, ham and cheese, croissants and pastries, and fruit. If you come to breakfast around 9am, a lot of food maybe gone, but don't worry, fresh food will be brought out. Eat as much as you like. You can eat inside or outside.
As for the location, it is a little way out of town. During our stay, there were roadworks in progress which meant that the bus stop outside the hotel was closed. So in order to get to town we had to walk down the hill, Via San Nullo and cross a roundabout. The fermata (bus stop) is just after the roundabout. Its about a 15 - 20 minute ride into town depending on traffic! Also there is the Ferroviacircumetnea (FCE) - its a train, which runs around the base of mount Etna. It's an excellent way to see Mount Etna and is just a bit further on from the bus stop. Also in this area are shops, local supermarket, tabaccheria (kind of like a newsagent in the UK), they usually sell bus and train tickets, stamps, postcodes, soft drinks, sweets.
Overall, this is a great place to stay, the main place in Catania is centred around Via Etnea, this area can get very busy and noisy, so staying a little way out is a nice place to relax and the road the hotel is on is very quite. The staff are really friendly and helpful.
My only negative would be about when we left. We had decided to take a bus into town and then to get either an Interbus or SAIS bus to the airport, as we had used Interbus to travel to Siracusa, it had only taken 15 minutes to get to the airport from the main train station, however the hotel had convinced us to take a taxi, with the company they had suggested we call on arrival in Catania; they said that the cost would be 24 Euros. Although more expensive than taking the bus, taking a taxi was more convenient however, when we arrived at the airport the driver stated that the fare was 34 Euros because he had to take the "tangenziale" a bypass, and the journey took twice as long as the bus.
I would also like to add that we visited the town of Randazzo, a small town with great views of Mount Etna, we meet some really nice people who advised us to eat at a restaurant called Etna Quota Mille - www.etnaquotamille.it/en/home - I throughly recommend it. Great restaurant, amazing prices, and stunning views of Etna and the surronding area.
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Borgo Verde
- Borgo Verde Catania
- Borgo Verde Hotel Catania, Sicily