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“Charming & wonderful service - great view - cheaper than others but not cheap”

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Hotel Walter au Lac
Ranked #21 of 45 Hotels in Lugano
Mooball Australia
Level Contributor
73 reviews
44 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
“Charming & wonderful service - great view - cheaper than others but not cheap”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 January 2011

We chose this hotel based on the many good reviews below, and ultimately weren't disappointed. We only had one night in early January for a business trip and the hotel wasn't full by any means. Although we had booked a normal room we were upgraded to a room on the 4th floor with balcony, although I couldn't comfortably go out on it as I am tall the railing seemed very low. The 180 degree views were stunning, despite the overcast and sometimes misty weather. At night the lights on the hillsides, and in the trees along the lake were very pretty, although we did get some light seepage into our room from the light on the outside of the hotel which illuminates their sign. The room was charming with polished wood floors and nice rugs, very comfortable bed, reasonably attractive 'shabby chic' decor, very clean (if small) bathroom with bath and shower above and flatscreen TV (not much choice of English-speaking shows though). Heating (looked like reverse cycle split system) worked well and we didn't have too much traffic noise. Obviously we had the french doors to the balcony shut, and they appeared to be double-glazed. Reception were unfailingly helpful, happy and polite, with good English. We enjoyed walking up and down the old stair case which twines around the smallish lift. Breakfast was lovely with a good selection and lovely view to the lake. Didn't use the small sitting room but it looked charming too. We had arrived from Milan Malpensa by the express bus and were dropped at the railway station. We managed to find our way down the zig-zag streets to the hotel (all shops shut because it was 3 Kings holiday), but when we left the next day we walked only as far as the funicular and then took it up to the station - much easier. Our room was around Swiss francs 220, which was cheaper than many others we had considered in Lugano (without the lovely view) but still reasonably expensive compared to other countries. It was worth the splurge however.

  • Stayed January 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
2 Thank CowTails
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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268 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 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 (54)
Date | Rating
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English first
London, United Kingdom
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 December 2010

Very central hotel. It has an amazing view on the lake.
But unfortunatly it has very old fashion rooms and it's very expensive...
Very good brekfast.
Jimmy.

  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank jimmy3476
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cambridgeshire
Level Contributor
12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 December 2010

We choose this hotel for an over night stay, we live in Switzerland so are used to Swiss prices but this hotel was very expensive for what it was. It is in a great position on the lake and right by the town, the staff were helpful and gave us a great recommendation for a restaurant. But the room was small, looked very 'tired', chipped paint, bathroom very dated, very hot bedroom and we couldn't turn down the heating. There was a general air of needing a good bit of modernization. The hotel had a bit of charm in the main rooms, but the bed was very uncomfortable, the pillows very hard and it was very noisy on the main road. Yes the lake view is amazing when its clear but we have stayed in much better and nicer places for much less a night. All in all disappointed this time I'm afraid.

  • Stayed November 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank FamilyL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Level Contributor
60 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 November 2010

A very good friendly staff. We have been given a 5th floor spacious room with a balcony and a splendid view of Lake Lugano. The room was quiet, with a good double bed. The bathroom had its shower over the bathtub and this was not large enough; a person can experience some difficulties to stand up because the bathtub's botton was narrow and you may have to put your feet one in front of the other to achieve equilibrium. The breakfast was great. Our car was parked in another hotel about 5 min walking. We certainly would come again to this hotel.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank corrosio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Jersey
Level Contributor
75 reviews
38 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 November 2010

This is our second stay at the Hotel and we were not disappointed. We requested a box shower since during our first stay we found it difficult to get into a very high and narrow tub/shower combination. The shower was very good and large enough. Since our last stay the hotel has added flat screen televisions which are very nice. The programming is somewhat limited to those of us who are English speaking, but we did not travel to Lugano to watch TV. The hotel is located on the lake whith a spectacular view from every room. Although it is on a busy street noise is not a problem with the windows closed. Breakfast is more than adequate with many selections. I would also recommend a restaurant nearby, La Tinera which has very good food and is reasonable priced. You do need to get directions from the hotel however since it is on a side alley and is not easy to find.

  • Stayed November 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Vigevano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 September 2010

we stayed 2 nites and stayed in a room with balcony facing lake. very noisy road but the view was worth waking up too. the best part of the stay was the breakfast room. old world european charm. elegant room and it was magical the way the morning light spilled in. the little lounge next door with 2 computers was also another piece of old world charm. rooms are very clean. a little tired looking but still great.

Stayed May 2010, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank NANCYERWIN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miami Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
56 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 182 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 August 2010

I have to say I am deeply conflicted writing this review, because this is such a gem of a hotel I do not want it ruined by many tripadvisor travellers crowding me out in the future! But I like the hotel so much and I feel so grateful to tripadvisor for helping me find it I must pass the favor on.

My wife and I booked the Walter au Lac based on tripadvisor reviews, using the hotel website's online booking service. We were reminded of our reservation by email as the time drew near and had a polite follow-up afterwards. Everything was perfectly in order on arrival.

The hotel is in central Lugano right on the lake, with the small embankment road and narrow beach between it and the lake. It is next to a small and beautiful plaza where if you are lucky you can find car parking (we were lucky). It is an almost impossibly charming setting with truly spectacular views of the lake.

I usually stay in five star international hotels, so when I first entered the hotel it seemed a bit scruffy, but I was still very deeply charmed by the setting and by the warmth of the reception (love those Swiss hoteliers). Entering the room, a second floor lake view room with two large windows and a French door style balcony, for a moment the room also seemed a bit shopworn, until our eyes went to the view outside. Yes, the furniture is not new but the charm of the place is outstanding, far better than what I now think would be an out-of-place international sterility. Everything though not new was very clean, with clean, comfortable bedding as the Swiss do so well.

For dinner that evening the reception clerk recommended what ended up to be a perfect restaurant, the Antica Osteria del Porto (pricey but very good and casual), to which one can easily walk via the lake shore promenade and park. She recommended a drink at a local plaza nearby, also a wonderful idea. We slept very well at night, with shutters closed.

The next morning we had coffee in the room, and when that ran out I stepped down one floor to the breakfast room to get some more coffee. The breakfast room is an outstandingly charming, light and airy room on the first floor (that's the floor above the ground floor, for my American friends) with a divine view of the lake. After breakfast my wife and I went up to the roof terrace for the views. There is a hot tub on the roof terrace as well as lounging chairs for taking the sun.

In a lifetime of travel throughout the world in many hotels this has been one of the most memorable and pleasant I have encountered. I found it a fair value with a pleasant, relaiable and competent staff. Lugano is a gem as well.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank DimitriDonskoi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Walter au Lac

Property: Hotel Walter au Lac
Address: piazza Riziero Rezzonico 7, Lugano 6900, Switzerland
Region: Switzerland > Swiss Alps > Canton of Ticino > Lugano
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 45 Hotels in Lugano
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Walter au Lac 3*
Number of rooms: 37
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Walter Au Lac Lugano
Walter Au Lac Hotel

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