We usually like to stay at newer hotels for their non-frilly looks and modern conveniences, but Hotel Splendide Royal in Lugano made us rethink all that. During our recent trip to Lugano for business, the company booked for us a room at Hotel Splendide Royal, where we enjoyed both excellent modern amenities and the gracious service of a bygone era. The hotel seems to have undergone recent sensible updates and renovation, so although the decor is classic Belle Epoque, it exudes just enough rich elegance without crossing into loud ostentation, and the amenities are definitely not turn-of-the-last century: strong wifi; powerful rain shower; comfortable and very responsive heating & AC; well-designed room lighting with easy control from the foyer or from one's bed (!); quick elevator service; a roomy safe that accommodates our laptop, 2 ipads, and a few other items, etc.. Our room including the bathroom was quite spacious by any standards with a magnificently high ceiling. It was the kind and gracious service that made such an impression on us. It rained upon our arrival (& continued to do so on and off during most of our stay), so the hotel staff delivered an umbrella to our room as a gift with a very whimsical note “We tried our very best, but nature imposed its will” (to be sure, there were numerous umbrellas otherwise available throughout the hotel anyway); housekeeping was twice a day, with a turn-down service; everyone of the staff --from housekeeping, to the staff at breakfast, at the restaurant, and at the bar, to the front desk-- was uniformly polite and kind without being at all stiff or stuffy. After we were done with our work, we wanted to explore some of the surrounding towns, so the staff at the front desk very helpfully located the correct train information, recommended one town over another as the more interesting one to see (we agreed after having seen both), and offered their complimentary shuttle service to the train station. At breakfast, the staff was quick to offer caffeine in its various forms; by the way, the breakfast buffet was bountiful; it included both hot and cold dishes, with quite a variety of vegetarian dishes, and, supposedly accordingly to the staff, they served no pork products, likely to accommodate the not-too-few guests from the Middle East. At dinner, neither our breadbasket nor our water and wine glasses were ever empty for too long. We had an early 6AM departure, the staff at the front desk offered us tea or coffee while we waited for our taxi, and even after we declined, they were available within sight in case our taxi did not show up (it did though).
By the way, their restaurant La Veranda is quite good, but it is small, so book a reservation to be sure. Otherwise, try to have tea or lunch if only to have a view of the lake from the hotel: it really does make one feel privileged!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Housed inside an iconic Belle Epoque palace, the Splendide Royal is a refined hotel with a familiar atmosphere where 19th Century's grace blends with international contemporary flair. A state-of-the-art personilized service is provided by well trained and skilled staff, who quietly ensures the guests a pampering of local experience, through courtesy, dedication and attention to detail. Its tradition of hospitality, attentions and fine dining is valued by royal families, celebrities and famous artists since its opening in 1887. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Splendide Royal Hotel
- Splendide Royal Lugano