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“Great location in the heart of Florence”

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Helvetia & Bristol Hotel
Ranked #133 of 420 Hotels in Florence
Certificate of Excellence
Tonbridge, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
91 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
“Great location in the heart of Florence”
Reviewed 30 October 2011

We stayed at this hotel for seven nights in October. We had booked a deluxe room, but on arrival were upgraded to a small suite by the friendly staff on reception. The furnishings suited the grand style of the hotel and everything was fresh and clean.

The location is excellent - we saw everything we wanted to see in Florence without getting a bus or taxi - and we could return to the hotel during the day, as the major sights were so close by, which suited us well.

As you are in the middle of Florence, there is some noise from outside (including the bells tolling the hour from 7am), but we closed the shutters and accepted this as a compromise for the great location.

We enjoyed the breakfast, with a reasonable selection and a nice location to eat.

We were recommended the hotel by friends and would do so ourselves.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank PDnBS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luana M, Assistant General Manager at Helvetia & Bristol Hotel, responded to this review, 4 November 2011
Dear Sirs,
We would like to thank you for your comments concerning your stay at the Helvetia & Bristol. It is always a great pleasure to receive positive feedback.
As you know, our Hotel is situated exactly in the heart of the historical centre of Florence and, even though our rooms are sound proofed as much as possible, some external noise can be heard. for which we apolgize.
We hope that you enjoyed your long stay with us and look forward to pleasure of welcoming you again in the not too distant future.
Thanking you for your support, we send you our best regards.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (86)
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English first
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
31 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 October 2011

I've stayed at Helvetia & Bristol (H&B) three times, and I've had nothing but great experiences. Most recently, I was there with my girlfriend in August 2011 for 3 nights. The staff is fantastic: accommodating, efficient, and friendly. We were upgraded as part of the Amex FHR program, and the front desk clerk actually gave us a double upgrade. Our room was large, high-ceilinged and had a great view.

It's a fantastic location, close to everything but quiet. It is situated just steps away from one of the main squares, making shopping, museum and other touristy trips quite easy. It's also close to the train station (a no greater than 5 minute taxi ride).

I agree with some of the other reviews that the rooms and facilities are in need of remodeling or refurbishment. I would hate to see the place overhauled and ultra-modernized, but I do think it needs a refresh (new carpets, drapes, bathroom, furniture, etc). I also think that if these updates were ever to occur, the rates H&B could command, given its location and level or service, would be a significant increase over what it charges now. Because the hotel needs a refresh, I'm giving it 4/5 stars. That said, I would (will) definitely return and I highly recommend it.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank goodonpaper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luana M, Assistant General Manager at Helvetia & Bristol Hotel, responded to this review, 4 November 2011
Dear Sirs,
Thank you for taking the time to write your opinions regarding your stay at the Helvetia & Bristol.
We do appreciate hearing from our guests, as their comments are vital for us to continue improving our accommodations.
We are delighted to learn that you enjoyed your third stay with us and sincerely hope that you will always make the Helvetia & Bristol your "home" whenever you are in Florence.
As you have been able to experience, the Helvetia & Bristol is a luxury hotel, Florentine Reinassance style, housed in an historical building offering different types of rooms, in fact no two are alike. Because of such particular ambience and decor, our aim and main objective is to constantly renovate and refurbish both our rooms and facilties.
Thanking you for your patronage, we sincerey hope to welcome you back soon again to the Helvetia & Bristol.
Yours sincerely.
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Arkansas
Level Contributor
116 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 October 2011

This hotel is perfectly located near the main shopping area of Florence. The staff here was so helpful to us making museum ticket reservations as well as dinner reservations during our stay. They are very friendly and were very eager to help in any way. The beds are very comfortable. We were in the perfect location for all the places we ate during our stay. The train station is only a 10 minute walk too.

Room Tip: If it is very warm outside, I would inquire about the a/c. It was around 90 degrees during our stay...
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  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank lovetogoAR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Annandale, Virginia
Level Contributor
27 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 130 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 September 2011

I've been reading some of the snide comments about this hotel and the level of service, and I have to say that some people are likely communicating their own attitudes and behavior in their reviews. My husband and I are experienced travelers, and we received excellent, friendly service at this hotel (probably because we didn't high-hat the people there).
It is true that the hotel could use a facelift, but we experienced no problems with anything being less than perfectly clean. The maid service was efficient, and did not seem unfriendly at all (there may have been a language barrier for some). The breakfast buffet was plentiful and good - and the coffee was stupendous.

Our visit to the hotel coincided with our 25th anniversary. We mentioned this at the desk, and the hotel gave us a nice bottle of prosecco on ice, and recommended a lovely restaurant we would never have found for ourselves, near the Uffizi.

The location is very central. We were on the first floor (second floor, American), and I was concerned about noise, but when the thick wooden shutters in the room were closed you would never know a thing about being on a small but busy street. We slept like logs. It was very easy to walk anywhere we wanted to go.

Oh, and when we asked for a taxi, it was ordered instantly and came very quickly to take us to the railway station. I have absolutely no complaints about the service at this hotel; as travelers, it's always a good idea to remember that we get what we give.

  • Stayed September 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Linda_22003
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luana M, Assistant General Manager at Helvetia & Bristol Hotel, responded to this review, 29 September 2011
Dear Sirs,
We wish to express our gratitude for your kind comments concerning our Hotel and
we are most grateful to you for your courteous words of appreciation.
We are really delighted to learn that you and your husband enjoyed your stay with us and that both our staff and services have somehow contributed to render your time in Florence a successful one.
We sincerely hope to have the pleasure of welcoming you again to the Helvetia & Bristol in the near future.
With our best regards,
Luana Malloni
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
outside nyc
Level Contributor
67 reviews
37 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 September 2011

Recently stayed here and was disappointed totally with the room, service and value. Location, while near the city center, is in a loud neighborhood weekend nights.
There must be a better spot in a wonderful city.
Maid service was rude and front desk believes themselves more important than they are.
Just to complete this lousy stay, our last morning my wife found a slug in breakfast salad; lucky we could laugh at it.

  • Stayed September 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank OutsideNycStevie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luana M, Assistant General Manager at Helvetia & Bristol Hotel, responded to this review, 29 September 2011
Dear Sirs,
Thank you for your comments even though we found them rather personal and particularly negative.
Concerning your opinions about the quality of our food, we assure you that we continuosly strive to offer the best fresh and genuine products and to prepare delicate but tasty dishes, and so far have received many compliments, so we are extremely sorry for the inconvenience you encountered.
With regard to the location, we are surprised to read such comment as the hotel is situated right in the very heart of the historical centre of Florence! Fronting the well known Palazzo Strozzi, between Piazza della Repubblica and Via Tornabuoni, Florence’s most exclusive shopping street.
The Helvetia & Bristol enjoys a longstanding reputation and prestige not only for the ambience and decor, but particularly for the professional staff and personalized service for which we receive continuous appreciations.
However, we regret that, in this particular case, in spite of our best intentions, we failed to make your stay as pleasant and memorable as you had anticipated on your advice.
With our best regards,
Luana Malloni
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Northampton
Level Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 September 2011

An upgrade to a superior room is clearly worth the extra cost. Very attentive staff and restaurant dinners first class if expensive. The breakfast "buffet" however was not up to scratch for a 5* hotel - we've seen much better elsewhere in Italy at 4* level. Night noise levels in the surrounding streets and square are a nuisance for we country dwellers and the air con. was both noisy and fairly ineffective. Why do the Florentine emergency services find it necessary to use their sirens continuously at 4 am?

Room Tip: 456 seemed pretty good
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  • Stayed September 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JohnLawrence
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luana M, Assistant General Manager at Helvetia & Bristol Hotel, responded to this review, 7 September 2011
Dear Sirs,
Thank you for choosing the Helvetia & Bristol Hotel for your stay in Florence.
Concerning your comments about the breakfast meal, we must admit a certain surprise, as our guests may enjoy a generous hot and cold meal selection from our Buffet i.e. fresh fruit, stewed fruit, different type of bread, brioches, butter, jams, cereals, fresh cheeses, assortment of cured meats, salads, orange and grapefruit juice, scrambled eggs, sausages, bacon, home made cakes, yoghurt, besides the choice of coffee, American coffee, cappuccino, chocolate, tea or infusion.
However, it is sad to learn that in your particular case, in spite of our best intentions, we failed to make your stay as pleasant as you had anticipated.
With our best regards,
The Management
Hotel Helvetia & Bristol, Florence
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Arlington, Virginia
Level Contributor
10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 September 2011

We went to Italy for our honeymoon and it was the first hotel we stayed in and my heart sank. We walked into an old room with beat up carpet and stains on the wallpaper. We had used a travel company to plan the trip so I expected something a little nicer for what we were spending. I do have to say that the service at the hotel is great. Everyone working the front desk and all the servers were awesome. Also the location is pretty great since you can walk everywhere. It was my least favorite hotel on our whole trip and I wouldn't recommend it for a honeymoon stay... it would be fine for business.

Room Tip: Try and get a room not on the first floor it can get loud in the morning
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  • Stayed August 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Laura1565
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Luana M, Assistant General Manager at Helvetia & Bristol Hotel, responded to this review, 22 September 2011
Dear Sirs,
We would like to thank you for bringing this matter to our attention, it is with the help of comments such as yours that we can enhance continuously and satisfy customers needs. We value customers feed back extremely seriously and consider it the base of a successful strategy.
Please accept our most sincere apologies for any inconvenience that took place during your recent stay in Florence and we are truly sorry that the matter was not brought to our attention at the time.
This does not reflect our usual high standards of service and now action has been taken to ensure that a similar situation does not re-occur.
With renewed apologies, we thank you for your understanding and remain at your complete disposal for any future assistance you may need.
With our best regards,

The Management
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Additional Information about Helvetia & Bristol Hotel

Property: Helvetia & Bristol Hotel
Address: Via De' Pescioni 2, 50123, Florence, Italy
Phone Number:
Region: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Florence > Florence > Duomo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#79 Luxury Hotel in Florence
#81 Business Hotel in Florence
#100 Family Hotel in Florence
#106 Romantic Hotel in Florence
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — Helvetia & Bristol Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 67
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Helvetia & Bristol, a historic property located amongst Florence's many cultural treasures. The Hotel Helvetia & Bristol is undoubtedly the only place to stay when in Florence. As a World Heritage site and magnetic cultural destination, it is the focal point for any visitor, and we are blessed by being at the heart of it all. Our front door opens onto the Palazzo Strozzi, a masterpiece of Florentine Renaissance architecture, along with an enviable location in the luxury shopping district. Our rooms and suites offer tasteful colour palettes and the carefully chosen antique furniture, objects d'art, paintings and rich furnishings are our hallmark in design. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Helvetia And Bristol Hotel
Helvetia Bristol Hotel
Helvetia Bristol Florence

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