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“Not so Grand”

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Excelsior Palace Hotel
Ranked #26 of 88 Hotels in Taormina
Freehold, New Jersey
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Not so Grand”
Reviewed 15 October 2010

We checked in to the hotel on October 7th. It was in the 70's and quite humid. when I went to turn on the AC it didn't work so I called the desk only to be told they shut it down in September but I could have a fan. We had to sleep with the windows open because the room smelled dank. Well there is alot of noise as the hotel faces the autostrada and in spite of it being down below you could hear every truck especially late a night, The mattresses were hard and the bathroom while being modern had a shower that flowed like a drip. Breakfast was good and the staff were helpful. Would I stay there again? Definitely NOT!

  • Stayed October 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank minddoc47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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chester
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 October 2010

Taormina in Sicily is a wonderful place to stay this was our second visit. Previously we had stayed at the Hotel Villa Dio Douro and thought we would upgrade on this vacation to the Excelsior Palace hotel. It cost another £600 so we thought we would be getting a 'little more'. Unfortunately we got a lot less. This hotel is graded as 4 star but in reality it is only 3 star and in the food department only 2 star. The biggest problem was that the air conditioning was inoperative and the reception staff would not give an adequate answer to why it was off. This made sleeping very awkward as you couldn't open the windows for fear of being bitten alive by the mosquitos so you either ended up with the sheets as a makeshift mosquito net or put up with the bites and the humidity. A fan was provided but only after asking along with a mosquito zapper but the damage had already been done. Along with this irritant the bathroom (for a 4 star hotel) was entirely inadequate, small, badly painted with streaks of paints running down the tiled walls, chipped tiles and a very grubby shower curtain which showed signs of former mosquitos which had been squished on it! The bedroom (again only upto 3 star) although larger than most Italian bedrooms showed signs of a desperate refurbishment, chipped and dirty furnishings, light fittings loose, grubby arms to chairs etc. The food was definitely not upto 4 star standard it was extremely basic and very repetitive so although we had payed for half board we ended up eating out more often than not an extra expense not needed. Breakfast was the usual cold meats/cheese etc and the only hot dish was bacon & scrambled egg (every morning) which wasn't replaced very quickly once it had been depleted. The staff were friendly though but didn't give us our wake up call on the day of our trip as organised the night before. The bar/lounge area was very pleasant although the drinks were rather expensive nearly 20 Euros for two G and T's (but you did get nuts and nibbles with them). It is in a magnificent setting though but I do believe that the Excelsior Palace is relying on this a tad too much to draw in the customers. Faded grandeur I can put up with if all the other important details that go to making a holiday memorable are also there but in this hotel they were evident in their lacking. Faded granduer sorry more like fading away into obscurity very quickly. If you are visting Taormina either go to the Villa Dio Douro or Jim Kerrs place the Villa D'Angelo or the two new 5 stars the Hotel El Jebel (had a very memorable meal there and was shown round the rooms (fabulous) by the head concierge and the brand new Hotel Metropole. I cannot see the Excelsior being there in another 5 years unless it has a major refurbishment, it's been left behind.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
4 Thank bobtail103
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lisburn, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 October 2010

This hotel is in a great location. The staff were very helpful and friendly. Our room was tiny, claustrophobic and very outdated. The air conditioning was switched off on the first night in the whole hotel and wasn't switched back on at all during our stay despite requests. It was impossible to sleep given the heat and we were moved to bigger room and given a fan. We sustained many mozzi bites as we had to open the windows. This hotel needs a major makeover to bring it up to date.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank moira39
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bournemouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 1 October 2010

Excellent in all respects, half board is very good value & the food excellent, 2nd visit as good as the first

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank BobT48
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amsterdam
Level Contributor
723 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 255 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 September 2010

The hotel looks stunning from the outside, and the location is amazing: great views of the bay and Etna.

But then: after crossing the beautiful public areas of the hotel, you arrive at the room, which is NOT a pleasure. The hotel was built in 1904 and probably last renovated in the 70s: browns and yellows all over, walls are completely bare (and high), beds are dodgy, bathroom is tiny and very unattractive.

But worst is the air-conditioning: it stops working "twice a day" - according to reception, because the hotel is so old and the system has to reset itself during "1.5 hours". This was not true: sometimes this lasted 8 hours. Temperature in the room rose to 26C, NOT recommended for a good night's sleep! Opening the window does not bring much relief, especially because of the highway outside.

As there was nothing that could be done about this, we changed hotels after 2 nights (2 nights early). Luckily our travel agent was able to find us a much better place quite quickly.

Excelsior Palace really needs to upgrade if it wants to present itself as a 4 star hotel!! (in spite of a fantastic pool - which is quite a walk from the hotel, and impossible to access if you are disabled or have problems walking)

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
5 Thank Alfred V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Belgium
Level Contributor
126 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 September 2010

I stayed in room nr 12. I say this, because I know that for example room 13 had a new bathroom.
My room was pretty disappointing for a 4* hotel. The size doesn't really matter but the room was too old.
I love the historic environment, but the room has to be new. My bathroom was horror. Old bathtub, with al leaking and lime showerhead.
If I wanted to use the toilet, my knees crashed to the toll roll holder and I'm not very tall. I bumped my head to the shelves. It was a big no no.

My view from the little terrace was not really nice. I think below my the hotel staff stayed, looking at the clutter.

Breakfast was no good for a 4* hotel. I reminded me at a very basic hotel that serves breakfast because the have to, not because they want to.

The staff was very pleasant and friendly.

The hotel looks great from the outside and had a very nice character, but I was not happy with the room.

  • Stayed September 2010, travelled on business
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
Helpful?
1 Thank Chantal H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ayr, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 September 2010

After reading some of the reviews our expectations were low, totally unfounded- what a place!

  • Stayed August 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank mcfarrolls
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Excelsior Palace Hotel

Property: Excelsior Palace Hotel
Address: Via Toselli 8, 98039, Taormina, Sicily, Italy
Phone Number:
Region: Italy > Sicily > Province of Messina > Taormina
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#18 Luxury Hotel in Taormina
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Excelsior Palace Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 88
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Excelsior Palace Hotel even to day after more then one hundred years its building is considered one of the most appreciated hotel structure in Taormina.Its architecture draw its origin from a context cultural and natural,Greek,Roman and Medieval.The Excelsior Palace Hotel looks over one of the most beautiful wiew of the world:Etna and the Bay of Naxos, the Greek Theatre, and the immense space of the Jonian Sea. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Excelsior Palace Taormina
Hotel Excelsior Palace
Excelsior Palace Hotel Taormina, Sicily

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