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“Beautiful property, a bit overpriced”

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Hotel Montarina & Backpackers Hostel
Nebraska
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Beautiful property, a bit overpriced”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 July 2013

We stayed 2 nights here (3 adults) in the hotel portion of the property. Great location, near train station & funicular but not a lot of noise. Gorgeous property, lush vegetation, nice pool and breakfast area, efficient if not overly friendly staff. Rooms are small, but clean and with sufficient closet space. Our TV/remote did not work, but we weren't there to watch TV so that was not a huge bother. Our balcony door/window did not latch completely. By US standards this is overpriced for what you get--around $200 a night plus another $18 or so apiece for continental breakfast. But for a European resort town, it's to be expected, and was the average "budget" hotel price everywhere we went in Switzerland.

Room Tip: If you are worried about train noise, ask for a room on the side opposite the station. (We faced th...
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank NebraskaLobo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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211 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (14)
Date | Rating
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English first
Valais, Switzerland
Level Contributor
95 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 179 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 July 2013

LOCATION: Hotel & Hostel Montarina is located up on a hill overlooking Lago Maggiore, at Via Montarina 1.

Lugano furnicular and train stations are a quick 5 minutes' stroll away. When you exit the station at the back (away from the Old Town), just head towards the left, then go up a steep slope leading up to a 19th century historic building with a pink-and-white exterior.

To reach the Old Town and boat pier (whence cruises on Lago Maggiore depart), you need to take the Lugano Città–Stazione furnicular downhill. The furnicular station is conveniently located within Lugano train station and the service runs from about 5:20am till 11:50pm daily; frequency seemed pretty good with a furnicular departing every 5~10 minutes.

ROOM: We stayed in a clean and spacious Antique Room decorated in an archaic 19th century style. As befitting its name, the room had really creaky floorboards and worn-out, vintage furnishings: 2 single beds; a pair of bedside tables with reading lamps (1 of which didn't work); small desk by the hearth; 2 chairs (clearly in need of new upholstery); a huge armoire with hangers and ample storage space (door was badly jammed, had to be pried open with great difficulty...)

BEDS: both were clean and comfortable. Pillows were much too soft for my liking. To conserve energy and water, bed linen was not changed during stay.

BATHROOM: no ensuite facilities but in a corner of the room, they have installed lighting, mirror and a shelf above a wash basin. Clean towels together with 2 tiny bars of soap and 2 packets of hair-and-body-wash were provided.

Communal bathrooms and toilets are located in the hallway. These shared facilities were not always found in a clean and tidy state... Unfortunately went into a toilet where the previous user failed to flush, thus I was faced with a huge 'unpleasant surprise' in the bowl ~ totally ruined my morning!

Shower stalls were quite small, so it could be a tight fit for some people. Water pressure in the shower was adequate but took a while to adjust the water to a comfortable temperature...

F&B: room rate did not include daily breakfast, which was available at an extra CHF15 per pax. There was a self-catering kitchen on the ground floor as well as vending machines for drinks and snacks.

SERVICE: Room Reservation, Check-In & Out all proceeded smoothly. The multilingual staff are fluent in English; service was efficient enough but not exactly warm.

FACILITIES: there is no lift nor porter service so be prepared to lug your bags up the stairs. Hostel has coin-operated washer and dryer somewhere but we didn't utilize the laundry facility here. The property offers free WiFi and there's a swimming pool for guest use.

IN SHORT: For the rates charged, I wouldn't want to stay in an Antique Room again, not with its creaky floors and worn-out furnishings. The shared facilities also fell short in terms of comfort and hygiene levels...

Besides the Antique Room reviewed above, there are other room categories available at Hotel & Hostel Montarina. If you don't mind paying higher rates, you can probably enjoy a more pleasant stay in their Comfort Rooms which have ensuite facilities, air-conditioning and flatscreen TV.

A major down side to staying here is the tiresome daily trudge on that steep slope leading up to the property. On my next visit to Lugano, would probably choose a different hotel more conveniently located downhill in the Old Town.

Room Tip: Antique Rooms have shared facilities & old, worn-out furnishings. Comfort Rooms with ensuite fa...
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank LeChat_EnVacances
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Malaysia
Level Contributor
38 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 June 2013

We have a night stay in this resort like hotel in an ensuite double room at 1st floor, there are 1 single bed and 1 double bed (2 single bed put together), our room have 5 windows, 2 facing the back, 2 facing the side which we can see the reception building, and one is facing part of the lake and snow-capped mountain which offer us good view. Toilet is attached in the shower room, but comfortable in size. Hair dryer is available upon request with CHF10 deposit at the reception, same with adapter. For the mattress, my was good but my hubby one is not so comfortable, which made him didn't slept well. There are TV in the room too. But no kettle to boil water.
The self catering kitchen is very tiny, which allow only one or two persons cooking inside. But the dinning room is big, with 2 tables outside at the balcony which offer good view.
Since many good reviews about the breakfast here, we paid CHF15 p.p for it, but discovered that it's just a very simple Swiss breakfast, we were having this type of breakfast or even better every morning in other hotels in Swiss but it's included in the room rate, no extra charges. The only credit is the restaurant is in a beautiful garden.
The location is near to the train station and the Bernina Express bus station (to Tirano for Bernina express train).
While in Lugano, don't miss to visit Mt San Salvatore, which offer spectacular view especially up to the roof top of the church at the top.
Don't waste your energy by foot to the town centre, you can take the funicular just in the centre of the train station to the town in 2 minutes. It's free with Swiss pass and about CHF1.10 or 1.20.

Room Tip: Choose a room facing the front, so you can see mountains and part of the lake and Lugano night view...
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  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank JessB_Chris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
20 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 June 2013

The hostel itself was beautiful and close to the train station and the staff was great but it could use some improvements; we had a private room on the 3rd floor (no elevator) which had no room in it at all since there was a platform bed with 7 mattress across the whole back wall which only left a 3 ft wide space for us to keep our stuff and get dressed (not the mention the sink which i think would have splashed onto the bed if we used it. There was a skylight in the room but no windows. The bath rooms were very clean, but the blankets provided were full of hair and the pillows were tiny. You also have to rent a sleep sack to sleep in. The other issue was the lighting; out room was so dark we could barely see and the hall light was on a timer and would would not come on sometimes. I did pass another room on the bottom floor and it did look much nicer, but the room we had was not the best.

  • Stayed May 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank m r
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
36 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 April 2013

Pros -- Liked the breakfast, the view from the restaurant...and most importantly, when I said that the mattress was uncomfortable, and the WiFi didn't work -- I returned in the evening to find a new mattress, and functioning WiFi. Good location five minutes from the train station, and not far from town center and lake. free parking!

Cons -- The dependance was a bit like a dormitory...thin walls,and the neighbor's snoring. No soaps or shampoos were really available (that was just odd, frankly). Trains passing by on occasion at night...a bit noisy.

Room Tip: Main building -- avoid the dependance if you can.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank immerunterweg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Zurich, Switzerland
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 April 2013

Staying at Hotel Montarina was the perfect retreat from the hustle and bustle-- this charming hotel is incredibly clean and bright; the rooms have everything one could need for a relaxing, restful visit to Lugano. It's situated on a hill on the far side of the train station, and it is about a ten minute walk to trek downhill to the center square of the city. Alternately, you can take a funicular easily down to the touristy part of town. We stayed in one of the comfort rooms in Montarina, which was just perfect, with our own bathroom and private balcony. The breakfast was incredible, with friendly waitstaff, a wide variety of buffet choices, and fresh baked Italian delights. Nothing like a cappuccino to start the day!

Room Tip: I liked the comfort rooms because of the private bathroom.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Cait K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
28 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2013

This hotel is located very close to the train station in Lugano. The grounds are well kept and there are little garden paths you can meander along to reach their small vineyard and pool. Our room was a nice size and it was very clean. It is a short walk into town from this location and the views at night are great looking over the Lake. The brunch in the morning is worth the expense in their beautiful brunch/sitting room.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jaclyn M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Montarina & Backpackers Hostel

Property: Hotel Montarina & Backpackers Hostel
Address: via Montarina 1, Lugano 6900, Switzerland
Region: Switzerland > Swiss Alps > Canton of Ticino > Lugano
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 10 Speciality Lodging in Lugano
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2 star — Hotel Montarina & Backpackers Hostel 2*
Number of rooms: 130
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Also Known As:
Hotel Montarina & Backpackers Lugano
Hotel Montarina And Backpackers Hostel

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