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“The charm grows on you”

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Hotel International au Lac
Ranked #10 of 45 Hotels in Lugano
Certificate of Excellence
Sydney
Level Contributor
13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“The charm grows on you”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 July 2012

I stayed here after traveling all day from France. It was good value for the price in the area. After the initial shock of the way the doors open and the 1970's decor, this hotel was charming with a lovely breakfast and the bar area had a pretty view

Room Tip: This hotel is in great need of a renovation, but it is typically Italian style and it has an old wor...
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  • Stayed July 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank JodsSydney
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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400 reviews from our community

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    5
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (71)
Date | Rating
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English first
Vereeniging, South Africa
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 July 2012

I stayed there for two weeks and the staff were fantastic! Great breakfast and best of of all was the swimming pool! Good location!

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank roelien g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dublin Ireland
Level Contributor
37 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 July 2012

Stayed here late June and found it to be easily accessible and most convenient. Car parking adjoining and the swimming pool and gardens were most welcome in 32 degrees. Breakfast was very good and we would definitely stay here if visiting Lugano again and would recommend it to all.

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
1 Thank Bill P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Geneva, Switzerland
Level Contributor
42 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 June 2012

This hotel, placed 50m from the lake and at the edge of the pedestrian city centre (tourist area) provided a very pleasant stay for my friend and me during a long holiday weekend in Switzerland. When I say Switzerland, I mean it in the most Italian sense of the word!

When we arrived, together with my labrador, we all (Desmond included) were greeted warmly, and the staff even allowed me to check in using my small command of Italian. They also spoke French and Spanish (and I suspect German). We arrived a bit early for check-in, so they took our cases and placed them in our room for our return later in the day. The staff greeted us each time we came and went.

Our room was an economy room in the back of the second floor, so we only had a view of the building and courtyard (and were 5m from the back patio). The room was clean and comfortable with plenty of space, and the daily cleaning service was friendly and well-accomplished. The "matrimonial" bed was standard for Europe - two twin beds connected.

We didn't use the pool, as it was rather chilly, but it's a nice back garden with patio - from one side, you can see clear to the lake.

Morning breakfast was a generous buffet with meats, cheeses, yoghurt, meusli, croissants, and some cooked food. When I had to decline the fruit salad due to an allergy, the delightful Italian waiter found some fresh cherries for me in the kitchen. Go early, though, as yummy treats like smoked salmon are eaten sooner than others.

If you can, do walk up the stairs. The paintings along the walls are unique collections that span from botanicals to nudes to unexpensively framed old family pictures.

Wi-Fi is either paid or accessible for free from the lobby and first floor lounge (which also features a lake-view balcony).

Room Tip: If the view is important to you, pay for that variety of room. (No free upgrades like in the U.S. or...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank delraycat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wales
Level Contributor
34 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 June 2012

We stayed here in early June 2012. The hotel is situated close to the lake and at the end of a main shopping street, with top-end designer shops very close. On the other side of the hotel is an old church with delightful medieval friezes. We had a superior room, with a balcony and lake views. The shower is at waist height and the towels are not large. It was very difficult to get the room cool enough to be comfortable for sleeping in despite leaving the AC on all day while we were out. The decor is suited to the feel of the hotel; dark wood, solid antique furniture and fin de siècle comfort. It is certainly comfortable, and all is spotless, as you would expect in Switzerland. The breakfasts are fine, if slightly at the mass-market end of the spectrum, but plenty of fresh fruit, meat, cheese, bread, cereals etc. The dining room staff are not always totally on the ball, and the coffee at breakfast could be better, but this is pretty good for a three star. Reception staff were all highly professional and very helpful, we asked for more pillows and these were produced almost instantly, and the cleaning staff were also very courteous and respectful of our privacy.

The swimming pool was unheated while we were there. I am not sure if this is because it was mostly raining, and when there is steady sun, they heat it, or if this is the norm, so be prepared for a refreshing dip! The changing facilities are a little quaint, essentially one room with a toilet and hand shower, but there are plenty of towels.

One slightly disturbing aspect of our stay was the bar man. The only place for free wifi is in the bar and restaurant on the first floor, so we spent some time in there, at least to begin with. However, we were put off by the bar man's approach to hygiene - he farted very loudly while we were sitting there, and, on one occasion, stood behind the bar running the water in the sink for a long time, while standing there doing nothing. My partner had the distinct impression, based on some hand movements at the front of his trousers that he was relieving himself in the sink, but I stress that this was only an impression, which we could not have proved, and we were the only people in the room at the time. It was enough to put us off, however! This is a shame, because for the most part, as long as you are not expecting five-star standards, this is a very nice place to stay, fairly quiet, with lake views and a pool area with a bar, very clean and mostly professionally staffed. It has been in the same family for a long time, and has a pleasant atmosphere. We spent some relaxing days there.

My tip, however, would be to stay over the border in Italy, where everything is much, much cheaper, and visit Lugano for the day (the train takes half an hour).

Room Tip: Only a few rooms have lake views, if you can afford it, go for one of these.
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Canolista
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
, Owner at Hotel International au Lac, responded to this review, 13 July 2012
Dear Canolista,
Thank you very much for writing an extensive review about our property. We are glad to read that you enjoyed your stay with us and that you are recommending to fellow travellers to book our superior lake-view rooms. I am taking this opportunity to anticipate our room upgrade plans for the coming winter breaks (from November to March when the hotel is closed) that will concern all lake-view rooms and a fair part of the standard rooms.

On another matter please allow me to say that our barman did not deserve your words. He is a loyal employee of our hotel since 12 years and you just need to leaf through our guest books located in the hotel lobby to see how appreciated he is by our guests. He spent his life serving customers from around the world behind bar counters. I can assure you that your lines devastated him a few months before his well deserved retirement.

Thank you for choosing Hotel International au Lac for your recent visit and we are looking forward to welcoming you soon again.
Sincerely yours

Roberto Schmid
Hotel International au Lac, Lugano
Fam. Giulio Schmid, propr. dir.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oslo, Norway
Level Contributor
341 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 260 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 June 2012

We stayed here for 2 nights and it is the most expensive hotel we have stayed in Switzerland so far. We wanted a hotel with a lake view and this was the cheapest in the area. We got a lake view if you turn your head slightly to the right. A building is across the hotel.

The hotel's interior is old and grand. Quite regal. The hotel room for 2 people was quite big with a terrace. It was on the 5th floor, last room at the end of the hall. The beds were nice to sleep on. It was carpeted which I do not personally like but for 2 days, I can bear it. The bathroom is a bathtub and they put a shower which is not attached to the side but towards you if you stand infront of the bathtub. A little bit outdated here but maybe they don't have the funds yet to refurbish and modernize their bathrooms.

Breakfast was included in the price and I would say, very good selection! I give it a perfect 10.

The hotel has a very nice garden with a swimming pool. As tourists with only 2 days allotted in Lugano, there was no time to take a dip.

I only rate the hotel 4 out of 5 because of the price. I find it pricey but the proximity to the lake increases the value of this property.

The hotel is in the shopping area. Right outside is Louis Vuitton. It is a shopping paradise for those who have bigger budgets.

Room Tip: The last room on the 5th floor with a lake view is nice. Probably cheaper if you will order the room...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Travellingisagift
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Amsterdam
Level Contributor
207 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 117 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 May 2012

We came into Lugano on a Friday evening without having made a reservation. I had stayed here once a few years ago and new the hotel. They only had two single rooms available and after checking some other hotels, that were all full, we returned and took the 2 rooms. Both were singles, very small, but the beds were comfortable and they served the purpose - a good sleep after 12 hours of driving. Staff are really friendly and curteous, breakfast is very good (included in the price) and the best thing is that the hotel has a private garage, which you realise is invaluable if you try and find a spot to park on any of the streets.
Location is very close to a range of good restaurants and the rooms have a view across the road to the Lake.

Be warned - Lugano is not cheap.

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank PaulDAmsterdam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel International au Lac

Property: Hotel International au Lac
Address: via Nassa 68 | Piazza Luini, Lugano 6900, Switzerland
Region: Switzerland > Swiss Alps > Canton of Ticino > Lugano
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Romantic Hotel in Lugano
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel International au Lac 3.5*
Number of rooms: 80
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Prime location in the old-town quarter and shopping district of the city centre and on the lake-promenade.Historical Downtown Hotel with extended facilities such as private garage parking, lobby-bar, garden with swimming-pool and WiFi Internet. A variety of restaurants, pizzerias and typical bars are located close to the hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
International Au Lac Lugano
International Au Lac Hotel

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