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“Excellent hotel”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Cefalu Sea Palace

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Cefalu Sea Palace
Ranked #1 of 35 Hotels in Cefalu
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Excellent hotel”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 July 2014

My wife and I returned to the Cefalù Sea Palace hotel, where we love to be. It is a very good hotel, very well situated with a private beach and pool area. Everybody in the staff are extremely friendly and everyone has a smile and a greeting ready at hand. The rooms are clean and fresh, the people in the reception are very helpful, the beach bar is excellent as is the restaurant. Half board is very good value!
Sture L

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Sture L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (119)
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Brighton and Hove, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 July 2014

In May I spent a two-week holiday in Sicily at the Cefalu Sea Palace, for my 70th birthday. The hotel and staff were truly excellent but I have to give special credit to Vicenzo, the head chef. Not only did he provide very good four-course meals every evening but I had the best service ever in a hotel for my medical need for a strict gluten-free diet. He provided wonderfully creative courses, especially deserts, which are usually the most difficult for me. I came home seven pounds heavier rather than the usual seven pounds lighter. Arleene Piercy

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Arleene P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bristol, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 July 2014

My wife and I returned to Cefalu after 43 years and it is still a beatiful place to visit. We highered a car and drove for just over an hour from Palermo airport to the hotel, which has its own car park. The Cefalu Sea Palace is well well situated adjacent to the sea front. It has its own private area of beach and is within a short stroll from the centre of Cefalu. The service in the hotel is excellent and Fabrizio went out of his way to make our visit a memerable one. I read a number of reviews before booking this hotel and was concerned at a couple of the comments but, having been to this hotel, I could not fault it. The food in the hotel is marvellous and there are some suberb restaurants in Cefalu if you want to eat outside the hotel. John and Janet. Bristol

Room Tip: We had a garden room and it was lovely
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank JohnR7250LZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
107 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 July 2014

Can I begin by correcting another review by commenting that Cefalu is pronounced:-
K (as in kettle) e (as in egg) fa (as in a long way to go) loo (like cornwall town). Enough said on that subject but not one member of staff in this hotel was either aloof or unfriendly in fact all were very affable and curteous. Rooms were all cleaned to our entire satisfaction and cleaning staff were all polite and well mannered as I would come to expect in a hotel of Platinum rating. For the record, Saga do not do this hotel but you will have corporate events with multiple Ferrari's to boot. So I guess that must be the' jet set' then. Now for my review, On arrival we were warmly welcomed by Gino who took away our cases and brought them to reception. We had no problem with being allocated our room 212 and found this to be both commodious and clean. Yes, I know I did not mention about the house rule in regard to hanging out the dirty laundry over the balcony, but this is a 4 star (unquestionably) hotel. That may be o.k. in a cheapo hotel but it is unacceptable to both other guests and management alike.
Pamela and Fabrizio on front of house were both lovely and could not do enough for us.
If you are inarticulate you will not know them but ask and you'll find out who is who.
Likewise all staff in the dining room were respectful. If people come to expect a wide variety of food then they do not have to eat the same thing every day. There was plenty of fresh fruit, pulses, yoghurts and cereal. Fresh bread daily, a selection of cold cuts, a variety of local cheeses and some herbs fresh from the nearby mountains. To cater for the 'general holiday maker' there is also bacon, sausage,fried and scrambled egg but alas no beans what a shame eh. Though there is toast and tea to have yourself a nice cuppa. You choose what You want to eat at the beakfast buffet then pick up some fruit if you like on the way to the beach where guests can enjoy the loungers and parasols all being provided at no additional cost but no doubt incorporated in the package.
The beach overall is sandy with some rocky outcrops but where commonsense prevails you will not encounter these or 'general holiday makers' either. They would not afford this accommodation in any case. A point of note here, 10 euros is charged to non residents to use the facilities provided. You can also get wifi on the beach as well but why would you after all you have come for a relaxing break. On the who's who, All of the beach staff have tee shirts with their names on so unless you can't read you know who you are conversing with at any particular time! Their names are Enzo (Vincenzo) Alessia, Marco and Sofiane who by the way speaks 5 languages his native tongue being French. All are extremely polite and of good character. There is a general code of dress when dining in the beach bar i.e. no beer belly on display to put other guests off their food. That said, put on a teeshirt or sundress in respect to other guests as this is how to conduct yourself properly.
The bar menu though being limited is of good quality and reasonably priced with Enzo
the CHEF, in his attire , turning out some of the best pizza in Cefalu (check pronunciation as above) and freshly prepared salad alongside a warm sandwich (that is on purpose).
To summarise then, Thomson honestly portrayed the Cefalu Sea Palace as an award winning Platinum hotel of 4 star rating and I wholeheartedly concur. Personally my overall experience as a first time visitor to Sicily would give me no hesitation in returning to this hotel. I recommend that if you should ever come to Cefalu then you must stay at the Cefalu Sea Palace Hotel.
Ciao.

Room Tip: Don't accept a garden view it's above the kitchen. Choose level 3 and not overlooking the ca...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank skotia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tonbridge, Kent
Level Contributor
51 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 July 2014

Well as we always like to be positive let us start with the fact that we had a great time in Cefalu or Chef - A - Loo as they like to pronounce it. One thing to note is that this particular resort is about a 90 minute drive from Palermo Airport and even further from Catania Airport. We got a private transfer for 90 Euro's each way with Cefalu.It (contact info@cefalu.it and ask to speak to Kristina whose english is very good.) which was far cheaper than the £310 Citalia were quoting. The town is lovely with lots of great restaurants (not too pricy and try the Chat Noir or Black Cat, the bruschetta is to die for!) and cobbled streets with little boutiques and "tut" shops as we call them. The Sea Palace is about a 10 minute walk away and it's a nice stroll along the sea front as the hotel is perfectly located. Be warned though the waves, although impressive can be quite high and swimming was not allowed on some days.

The hotel is very clean and the rooms are adequate (we had a large balcony with shower but no bath) and the pool is also clean and well kept with free loungers and umbrella's (never a problem with obtaining these and no people reserving them at 7 in the morning!). Free Wi-fi in the rooms is a bonus.

However, the hotel is not quite sure if it wants to appeal to the jet or saga set rather than the general holiday maker and this is where the problem lies. The staff are not over friendly and in fact a little aloof. Having name tags might be a start because you have no idea who you are talking to at any particular time. Breakfast is adequate without being superb and lunch at the pool bar or beach bar (free loungers and umbrella's here too on your own private part of the beach) is also pretty good. The pool bar manager was the friendliest staff member we encountered and also very professional. Please note that you are not allowed food or drinks not purchased within the hotel in your rooms nor are you allowed to do other little things like hang your swimwear on the balcony. We we felt this was all a bit pernickety and is another example of the hotel management believing they are a 5 star hotel.

However, our one real gripe is that Citalia are mis-representing this hotel within their 2014 brochure. They claim each club room has a garden view with sea views being available at a supplement which is to be expected. However, our club room 103 with supposed garden view was basically overlooking a car park. The Citalia rep was not prepared to explore any way of getting round this and actually stated "it is what it is". Well thanks for that, really helpful! In fact if we had not of contacted our Citalia rep about this particular issue I doubt if we would have heard from her as she was more anonymous than a lottery winner not wanting any publicity!

This is the second time we have visited Sicily and it is a lovely island, the people are friendly and it's not that pricy. The weather is hot in July and August without being unbearable and is well worth a visit if you have not been before. Both Cefalu and Taormina are recommended.

Room Tip: Pay extra for a sea view as you might end up looking at cars going in and out of a barrier
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank mikepdews
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Widnes, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 15 July 2014

Excellent hotel , more than 4 star in our opinion. I agree with EssexLin1 early morning flights to Catania and then 2 1/2 hour transfer with Thompson is very tireing first day.

Staff were all brilliant from desk to breakfast to bar, we were on B&B, our prefered method, but we did have a beautiful steak in the fourth floor restaurant with great views over Cefalu and the sunset over the sea.

I would certainly stay here again if we ever go back to Cefalu.

Room Tip: All rooms are fine, we had sea view.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Alan_Pauline
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Colchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
52 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 July 2014

We first saw this hotel in the Thomsons brochure but didn't like their extremely early morning flights nor the two and a half hour transfer from Catania, when Palermo is only an hour away! We were told that this is because Thomson have only recently started to come here and their flights are set to Catania! As a result we booked the hotel directly, B&B, and took Easy Jet flights to and from Palermo and used Holiday Taxis for the transfers. We arrived mid evening, easy check in and we were soon taking an exploratory walk on the sea front promenade. It was a Saturday night and the Beach Bars were already playing music and lots of young people were walking around.... but not lurching around drunk as is common in the UK on a Saturday night!
We had a lovely room, sea view, and nice aspect of the town which curls around the coast, with a decent sized balcony overlooking the swimming pool area. The bathroom was equipped with a shower and bidet alongside the toilet. The rooms were kept immaculately clean by the maids who came every day to change towels etc. One plus in this hotel was the provision of beach towels, although we are used to taking our own. The hotel also has a private beach area just across the road where there are sun beds and a beach bar, which is economically priced and a reasonable choice of food. It had only just opened the week before for the summer.
Breakfast is served in a restaurant on the same level as the swimming pool. There was the usual choice of continental cereals (their version of cornflakes, rice crispies and muesli) and cooked eggs and bacon as a buffet, with the usual cheese and ham. Coffee and beverages are self serve from machines.
The first few nights we ate at the roof garden restaurant at the top of the hotel. It has a great view as the walls are mainly glass. Fascinating to see the sun go down and suddenly dip below the horizon. The Sunday evening was a Sicilian buffet which was a little daunting as nothing was labelled so no idea what half of it was! The desserts, as always in these hotels leave a lot to be desired: too much artificial cream and strange sweet pastries. Plenty of fruit for those that can eat it though. We ate there twice more though, from the menu, when we were too tired to go out, before sampling the local restaurants for the rest of our week, and found the food quite okay but not spectacular. They were quite flexible though: the couple on the table next to us the first night were celebrating a big wedding anniversary and the maitre d' had organised a special seafood meal for them at their request.
The hotel is situated a 10-15 minute walk from the town, so we got a bit of exercise going backwards and forwards. We often walked to the cathedral courtyard for coffee and croissants and down to the marina/beach. There are a lot of small gift shops in Cefalu selling the usual trinkets and some vintage items. Not a place to do any major shopping. We didn't go on any organised trips this time because they all start far too early in the morning but we did go to Palermo one day on the train, just an hour away, and hopped on the sightseeing bus. Wouldn't bother with Palermo again, it was just a typical big city.
Back to the hotel, the American Bar by the swimming pool also serves snacks and the bar is well equipped for every nation! During the day lying out in the hot sun, their ice cold vodka and blueberry juice just hit the spot! After dark the hot chocolate was lovely.
As usual we were disappointed that tea and coffee were not provided in the rooms. The clerk on the desk says that every Brit says that but they hadn't yet persuaded the owners to provide it. The hotel owners were on the spot and often in the bar in the evening.
When we were there they were just setting up the garden restaurant with a big screen for the World Cup. We did actually have dinner on the swimming pool terrace one evening, as they also hosted a celebration party for a local family.
One little quirk and easy to miss is the pond that is home to a few turtles!
There is a gym room with some machines that we used a couple of times, but they are rather crammed in and we did miss some mats on the floor.
But all in all, we would definitely recommend this good quality hotel. The staff were friendly and efficient and it was very clean and comfortable.

Room Tip: Definitely choose sea view and there are plenty of them as the hotel is tiered away from the road.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank EssexLin1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cefalu Sea Palace

Property: Cefalu Sea Palace
Address: Lungomare G. Giardina, 90015 Cefalu, Sicily, Italy
Region: Italy > Sicily > Province of Palermo > Cefalu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Cefalu
#1 Spa Hotel in Cefalu
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Cefalu
#3 Family Hotel in Cefalu
#4 Romantic Hotel in Cefalu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Cefalu Sea Palace 4*
Number of rooms: 83
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Cefalu Sea Palace Hotel Cefalu
Sea Palace Hotel Cefalu
Cefalu Sea Palace Sicily

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