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“Not really four star...” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Grand Hotel Miramare

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Grand Hotel Miramare
Ranked #29 of 88 Hotels in Taormina
Certificate of Excellence
Wimborne, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
64 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Not really four star...”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 23 June 2014

This hotel has a good location, on a quiet road (although our room was at the back), and only 10 mins walk to the main part of town, or 5 mins to the cable car which led down to the beach. The staff were helpful and a little on the formal side. The pool area was tranquil (no kids while we were there!), towels were provided and the pool bar did drinks and light lunches on a terrace with gorgeous views over the sea.
Now the negatives - the rooms are somewhat tired and the whole place really feels as if it was last overhauled about 20 years ago. Our room was small, with a wardrobe but no chest of drawers. The bathroom was pretty disappointing, with small bath and rather sad weak shower over it.
However, we had fresh laundry and towels every day and the standards of cleanliness were good. Breakfast was satisfactory but nothing special, although the pastries were lovely and fresh.
So in conclusion, nice enough but not a four star by my standards.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank kerh71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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383 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (90)
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English first
Munich, Germany
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 June 2014 via mobile

Sadly the once great hotel is now really tired. Great location and lovely views, however the rooms are 1 star standard. Our room had a really disgusting and tatty bathroom. Not what you expect or are paying for. Sad to say this hotel has really been let go. I would try elsewhere.

Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank SpencerJones60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cannock
Level Contributor
30 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 June 2014

Now I do not want to cast this hotel in a terrible light as that it is not. Indeed it is a beautiful Hotel with charm, character, a lovely sunbathing, pool area and pool bar (down 184 steps, which presented no problem for us but could do for someone less able) and views to die for. The cleanliness of the establishment is faultless and we found the staff friendly and helpful, but for us to return there are too many negatives as it is.
Throughout the Hotel and it's rooms you get the impression that in many areas it is tired and crying out for some T.L.C. Not anything major, on the whole nothing that new fixtures and fittings and a coat of paint wouldn't put right, but it does need this urgently to justify it's 4 star rating in our opinion, and to put this wonderful Hotel back where it should be, amongst the best in Taormina.
Sadly there are other minor issues which would take so little putting right, but once again we feel it is what one expects of a decent 4 star establishment e.g Breakfast. A little more choice please regarding the English option (Continental was excellent), us English are fussy we like our bacon and eggs hot, and every day the same luke warm offering of cherry tomatoes, bacon and scrambled eggs was put out. Some fried and boiled eggs, along with a few mushrooms would have been very well received.
As in many Sicilian Hotels there is no dedicated bar, but it was not easy to get a Coffee or an alcoholic drink at any time during the day or evening which was a little annoying, consequently very few people used the facility at all which is a great shame, considering the beautiful terrace area the hotel has with like I say magnificent views.
The location of the Hotel for the beautiful shopping area, Restaurants and Bars is excellent, a pleasant 10 minute uphill stroll takes you to the start of this wonderful towns center. The beach is easily accessible via the cable cars (3 minutes walk from Hotel) for 6 Euros return, or you can walk down the hundreds of steps yourself, mind you will need to be fit to walk back up them. The beach itself is very nice but personally we would have been disappointed if our Hotel was located down there away from the center and nothing like as beautiful.
All in all we had a wonderful stay, but as previously stated would be reluctant to return to this beautiful Hotel until it has been restored to it's former glory.

Room Tip: Pay the extra for a sea view as they are well worth it considering the wonderful views.
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank happyhollsCannock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Leeds
Level Contributor
52 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 June 2014

Beautiful location with fantastic views. Very clean & comfortable rooms. Worth paying for a superior room to get the view and large balcony. Very helpful staff. I have a food allergy and they provided special cereals and bread for breakfast.
The swimming pool was a good size with plenty of beds etc. Towels are provided, too. Lovely gardens with numerous orange trees which also line the terrace by the pool. Drinks and lunch available from the pool bar and separate eating area. Staff attentive and helpful. Also very near the cable car for the beach and a short walk into the main part of town.

Room Tip: Ask for a superior room. Some of the other rooms have balconies but they are in the shade and you ca...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank deniseanddoug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 May 2014

We booked this Hotel for a 5 night stay through Kuoni. The brochure showed the Hotel in a good light, 4 Stars, nice period villa and only 68 rooms. We chose a sea view room on a B&B basis.

The Hotel building is lovely, the situation is ideal for walking to Taormina, taking the cable car to the small beach and is near to the bus station. The views are exceptional and the terraced gardens are well stocked and beautiful in a wild but classic way. The large rooms housing the bar, restaurant and breakfast rooms, were the only decent rooms with some character. These are the good points!

The Reception area is small and dull. Nothing has been done to capitalise on the terrace leading from reception nor to make the space attractive and inviting.

Our allocated room had a single narrow window which didn't do justice to the magnificent view. The room was dark, with a single chair, classic but tired furniture and without any wall decoration. The bathroom was primitive with a small shower tray and a plastic shower curtain. This we found unpleasant and very dangerous since having pulled the shower curtain around the tray and turned on the water, the shower curtain stuck to your body due to the tiny shower tray. The noise from the plumbing was extraordinary. The toilet flush could be heard universally around the hotel and when other guests used their shower it sounded like a waterfall in our bathroom. Towels were very thin dish cloth cotton which had no absorption and really could only be used once. Having no heated towel rails, these just stayed damp.

Corridors were dark, gloomy and unaired and some resembled occasional storage areas rather than attractive common parts.

Breakfast was adequate if uninspiring. We had read on this site that you could ask for eggs to be cooked to order but not one of the waiters volunteered this information. On our second morning we ordered fried eggs and the reaction from the other guests when these arrived indicated that they had no idea this option was available.

Internet access was very poor and when enquiring about Wi-Fi, we were told to bring the Ipad to reception to be 'programmed': why this Hotel deemed to keep their password a secret is beyond compression but of no real concern since internet access was so weak and sporadic.

We found the Reception staff unwelcoming, curt and inefficient. No information was offered on the use of the room safe, Wi-Fi, use of the pool, restaurant times (which was closed for the majority of our stay) etc..! The only concern seemed to payment of the local tax and the charges per day for parking.

Despite all of the above the most disappointing aspect of this Hotel is that it appears devoid of any personality and pleasure. The staff are generally 'grim faced ' and look unhappy. The waiters, concierge and cleaning staff really look downtrodden and miserable. However, if you approach them and ask a question they are all very pleasant and helpful. The only pro active, communicative and joyous staff member was one of the waiters (I think his name was Gaetano ). Such a gregarious and professional man who completely changed the uncomfortable atmosphere of the hotel when on duty (maybe he should be the Manager?).

There are many things wrong with the running of this Hotel, it is not comfortable, an uplifting experience and the absence of a 'warm heart' really doesn't encourage you to linger. There is an unhelpful and 'penny pinching' attitude from the Reception and Management. It really does not warrant it's 4 star rating.

So maybe we just were unlucky and had a bad experience but we would never return or recommend this Hotel: our personal choice. We are also very disappointed with Kuoni because we had confidence in their reputation of only offering good Hotel's of a certain standard; in this instance they failed the customer.

I am sure anybody who reads this review may of had a better/worse experience than us but for a relatively expensive 5 days this Hotel did not deliver on any pleasurable level.

Room Tip: Difficult. The rooms with balconies or a terrace are not really private. We did consider upgrading t...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Mike P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Essex, UK
Level Contributor
46 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 May 2014

Nestled in a prominent position in the east of the quaint Greco/Roman town of Taormina is the modest Grand Hotel Miramare, with views over the Ionian Sea towards mainland Italy. It is furnished well and has a semi-resort feel about it with its swimming pool, poolside bar/ restaurant, communal terraces, lounges and manicured Mediterranean terraced gardens. There is an access issue with the pool which you should bear in mind if looking at this hotel however, in that the pool is at the bottom of a terraced garden, which whilst a lift will take you the equivalent of 4 floors down to, there are a further 100 or so steps down to the pool, poolside restaurant and terrace. Whilst the steps are well appointed with wide steps, handrails, staggered benches and lighting this will not be for everyone. If you are a sun worshiper, you need to use the poolside area by 2pm, as the sun will go behind the hotel after this time, given the hotel's position on a headland.

It has a friendly, warming and efficient staff who really made it their job to tend to our needs and make us enjoy our stay. We felt like 'one of the family' - despite 200 guests, they always seemed to know who we were when we needed our keys back - without us quoting our room number. They were very efficient in fixing a light bulb that has blown in our room. When ever a member of staff passed us they would acknowledge us with a friendly greeting and reception staff helped us arrange a private jeep-tour of Mount Etna with a local guide and provided good advice on whether taxi/ bus was better to get to Giardini-Naxos railway station and places to visit in the area.

Breakfast was held in what appeared to be a former ballroom, with a glazed terrace overlooking the Ionian Sea. It was delivered on a buffet basis with a good selection of bread, pastries, cakes, bacon, eggs, cheeses, meats, fruits and cereals to whet your appetite. A never ending supply of tea and coffee was also possible, in addition to fruit juices. You certainly wouldn't go hungry and they also had a selection of Sicilian preserves to try such as "Prickly Pear Jam".

I did not find that it was looking as tired decoration wise as others have commented, but I found that it was a little tired in respects of its TV and channel offering. It has been a while since I have actually seen a TV set in a room, as opposed to a flat screen TV and the screen was quite small. The only English speaking channels were News channels, so this really did not offer anything for us. Wi-Fi was free, but was only available in the reception area, which was a blessing or irritation depending on your desire to stay 'connected'.

The hotel is in a good location - away from the hustle/bustle of the centre of Taormina, but only a 10 minute walk if you wanted to shop, find a restaurant or look at the main sights and 5 minutes from the cable-car which will you can take you down to the coastal hamlet at the foot of the cliff with its pebble beach, habour and the Isola Bella. It is also opposite the town's bus/taxi station - the buses are very cheap and frequent to use to get yourself further afield.

In terms of Taormina itself we found it a wonderful place on its own and to stay in as a base to explore the wider area. The Greek Theatre was breath-taking with its views towards Mount Etna and it regularly holds concerts by well known Italian/ International artists (James Blunt was due to play in July 2014 for example). The pretty streets and alleyways are well kept and clean and you can go to the centre of town and visit the restaurants which are family run, including Taormina's famous Wunderbar, where Elizabeth Tayor and Richard Burton used to go.

We were also able to hired a guide and jeep to take us up Mount Etna and also used a local bus to go to Castelmola, which overlooks the town of Taormina. Buses will take you to Giardini-Naxos as well.

All in all, it was a relaxing place to stay. It just needs some its technology bringing into the 21st Century.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Stormyroo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2014

Following all advice about hotel locations in Taormina, the Miramare occupies an excellent location and is approximately a 10 minute walk from the town centre. The hotel itself, while offering absolutely stunning views is starting to appear dated and trapped in a previous era of grandeur with décor starting to appear old and in need of modernisation. Our bedroom, while clean and spacious was surrounded by exceedingly noisy 'plumbing' with pipes ratting into action both late at night and early in the morning. The breakfast room is somewhat antiquated and offers an average breakfast - do not expect an extensive morning buffet. Although we visited the Miramare in mid April, a word of warning regarding the swimming pool area - owing to the position of the hotel on the 'far side of the Taormina' hillside, the sunshine is quickly lost by mid afternoon. Overall, this hotel is average if you want somewhere to crash for a few nights while exploring the area - don't expect an out of the world hotel experience. Customer service was also poor on our departure with no interest shown regarding our stay.

Room Tip: Do not get a room along the same corridor as reception (to the right of reception as you enter the h...
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  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kim B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grand Hotel Miramare

Property: Grand Hotel Miramare
Address: Via Guardiola Vecchia 27, 98039, Taormina, Sicily, Italy
Region: Italy > Sicily > Province of Messina > Taormina
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#20 Luxury Hotel in Taormina
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Hotel Miramare 4*
Number of rooms: 68
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Grand Hotel Miramare is located only 400 meters from the centre of Taormina, just a short walk away from the funicular and the Greek theatre. The hotel, an old villa, is set within a verdent park and offers a spectacular view of the Messina Straight and Calabria. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Hotel Taormina
Grand Hotel Miramare Taormina, Sicily

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