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“good and bad”
Review of Hotel Cerere

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Hotel Cerere
Ranked #1 of 33 Hotels in Paestum
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 10 September 2011

the good:
- the common areas have a very elegant feel are light and airy, comfortable and there are a lot of nice open spaces
-a very large swimming pool
- one receptionist was able to speak english reasonably well
- internet was reasonably priced at 15 euros for 3 days

the bad:
- the rooms are poorly positioned at the front of the building overlooking the street and parking lot. no views here!
-the pool was closed early one day without notification because of a wedding. our usual dining room was taken over by the wedding as well. we were not informed and after asking at reception were led to a small, tired looking conference room cluttered with chairs and other storage items. a very loud, bad sounding band kept the music going until well after 1am.
- we asked the reception about going to paestum by bus and she reluctantly gave us directions to a grocery store where we could ask. i asked how long it would take to get to the grocery store but she curtly said she didn't know. she was keen to call a taxi for us (11 euros for the 4km trip). After an hour on a wild goose chase, we retured to the hotle and booked the taxi. she was much obliged.

the ok:
- the rooms are fine but not 4 star, they look a little tired and are a bit on the small side, although the ceilings are nice and high. the bathroom shower stall is tiny but everything in the bathroom is functional and it was clean. there is a flat screen tv but no english channels
- the food was nice but the wine list consists only of white and red house wine by the bottle. house wine is usually bottom feeder plonk but this was better than that.
- the location is good if you are interested in things in the immediate area but if you want to see naples, pompeii or the amalfi coast it is pretty far away so get ready to pay extortionist rates for a taxi, hire a rental car and experience deadman's curve as many times as you'd like, take a tour (only pompeii is on offer) or mess around with buses and trains that don't come all that frequently, the 'choice' is yours.

  • Stayed: September 2011, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank addie00063
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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47 - 53 of 636 reviews

Reviewed 23 July 2010

We stayed at Hotel Cerere for our 10th anniversary as part of a package from Transat Holidays. The package came with flight, 8 nights with two meals (breakfast and dinner) and a car for under $2000.00 each, a great price. I could write endlessly about the terrific week we had but I'll try to be brief.
The flight landed in Rome (why not Naples, one hour away?) and so we had a four hour drive south to the hotel in crazy Italian traffic with a GPS (we had never used one before...can you say crash course?). The thing about Italian driving, they drive fast and offensively with often no regard for lanes, signals, etc. so be defensive! It took a day or two but soon I was driving like a pro.
The hotel is itself is smaller but gorgeous (many Italians have their wedding receptions here). Everything was impeccably clean at all times (although to be fair, there were only about 50 people in the whole hotel). The rooms were VERY small compared to North American standards but neat and clean. The 10" TV got 3 fuzzy Italian stations but we weren't there to watch TV. The dining room was a fancy reception room and the service was very good. Italians have many courses, of which pasta is only the second (an appetizer) so that may take a little getting used to. The food was good to great with a real taste of Italy and the free bottle of wine with every meal was a bonus...my wife doesn't drink wine so I had it all to myself but you can have it corked and either take it to your room or finish it the next night. The staff was always friendly, courteous and helpful even if the language barrier was difficult at times. The pool was gorgeous and the beach was a five minute walk but the weather was the coldest for that time in almost 40 years so there was no swimming for us (the average temperature is around 23-25 degrees Celsius so we brought lots of summer clothes that we didn't even take out of our suitcases...every picture has us in the same warm clothes!). There isn't much to do within walking distance and in fact the nearest city, Salerno, is 35 minutes away.
We jammed our week with things to see and do, the best preserved ruins in the world at Paestum (only 5 km from the hotel), the ancient city of Pompeii, the volcano Vesuvius, a whirlwind day in Rome (where we had our vows renewed...a highlight), a ferry down the Amalfi coast to Capri, a visit to a buffalo farm where they make REAL mozzarella (a must) and a visit to Reggia di Caserta (a 17th century palace larger than Versailles...well worth the one hour trip).
If you want any other info on these sites or travel in Italy in general, let me know.

  • Stayed: October 2009, travelled as a couple
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18  Thank argento2665
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 September 2009

We stayed here from August 24th - September 7th on our honeymoon. I had found this trip originally on selloff vacations but eventually booked the same trip through my travel agent. First thing is that a lot of the websites and travel agents turn up a search for this hotel when looking in the city of Sorrento. This hotel is nowhere near Sorrento! If anything, it is close to Salerno but it is still about 30-45 minutes away. That being said, the hotel is located about 3 kms from Paestum. Paestum is great little town that has ancient Greek ruins dating back around 2500 years including three Greek style temples in surprisingly great condition. If you go to the archeological site, a trip to the museum is a must. Anyways, on to the hotel, it takes about 4 hours to get to the hotel from the Rome airport. It is really long but usually the drivers stop off midway for a 15-30 minute break. The hotel is quite small with the main building being only 3 floors total but there is also a separate section which is for the residences. The hotel is very nice and clean on the outside and even nicer on the inside. The lobby is very elegant and very clean and has a very nice decorative style. The rooms are small if you compare them to North American hotels but if you compare it to European hotels, it is a standard room. The rooms are a little outdated but very nicely maintained. My complaints about the rooms are, 1) a queen size bed consists of two single bed mattresses put together and 2) the walls are seriously paper thin. We did not have neighbours too often but when we did, we heard everything. On top of that, you also hear the conversations going on outside. Some people have mentioned it previously but this hotel serves as a wedding reception and Italians get married on any day of the week. In the 10 days we spent in the hotel, there were 5 weddings. It is actually pretty cool because the hotel goes all out for the wedding as they have a very nice fireworks display for the wedding reception. This comes at a cost because the pool is closed to the hotel guests usually at an earlier time and also, it can get quite loud at times so you can expect to get woken up at some early morning hours.
Our package included breakfast, dinner and a half liter of wine per night. However, once we were there, it is actually a bottle of house wine per night included. For a house wine, it is actually very good. The food at dinner was simply fantastic. The way the dinner works is that if you have the meals package, you select between one of two choices for your first course and you select between one of two choices for your second course followed by a dessert. The selections are done the night before so when you come in, you can expect your first plate within 5 minutes. The first course is usually pasta or rice with a second course with meat or fish. They also have a mini buffet at the front of the restaurant with many fresh ingredients. We were here two weeks and the food was so good and it did not repeat much. The restaurant is very elegant and service is really good and professional. There is no dress code to go to the restaurant but dressing up is always nicer. Breakfast is pretty limited to cereal, croissants and bread rolls, a typical continental breakfast.
The pool is very nice and big but closes at 6:30pm. The beach is about 300 meters from the hotel but the hotel also offers a free shuttle to the beach. The beach is great! There is a reserved section for the cerere with plenty of chairs available and there is white sand with crystal clear water. Around the hotel, there a few restaurants including some fantastic self serve places which were quite cheap. There is also a few grocery stores/pharmacies (super mercato's) around the area.
Paestum is ideally located to travel. There is a train station on the same street as the hotel, about 3 kms away (Cappaccio - Rocadaspide station). You can walk to the station if you are up to it or take a car service (about 10-15 euros per trip). You can take a train to Naples for 4 euros and it takes about 75 mins. From Naples, you can take a high speed train to Rome which is about an hour away. The high speed train is about 40 euros per person but has a direct train ride from Naples to Rome and the comfort level is much higher than the interstate trains (not to mention a lot less graffiti).
Also, as mentioned by other reviewers, Arizona viaggi does a lot of tours including pompeii, naples, capri, amalfi coast, caserta and paestum at night. The tours are reasonably priced but take note, the tour guide does not speak english. I speak italian and was ok . My wife and I both speak french and the tour operator did speak fluent french but as a whole, not many people here speak english except for Lucia at the front desk. In 14 days, we were able to go to rome for two days, two days in my home town which is in another state, tour excursions to pompeii, capri and naples. Everything was fantastic. The boat ride to Capri is definitely a highlight as you see some spectacular landscapes.

  • Stayed: August 2009, travelled as a couple
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9  Thank danlandia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 August 2009

It's a fine hotel. The staff are lovely. But, it's a haul to Almalfi and the other hotspots. The hotel is in a huge beach zone - lots of inflatable beach toys for sale and beach bars.

The beach itself is great. The pool looks lovely but I think they'd prefer you had a drink by it, rather than swim in it - no lounge chairs.

Restuarant is quite good, but gets empty early at night and there's nothing within walking distance.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Stuart727
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2009

We spent 2 weeks at the Hotel Cerere at the end of Sept. 2008 & really enjoyed our stay. The staff were friendly & helpful, the meals were delicious & the weather was perfect for visiting. We had booked at the residence as the rooms are bigger but we the residence is located 2 buildings away from the main hotel & going back & forth for meals was not convenient. So we moved to the hotel & found it very comfortable & clean and a good size for a European hotel room. The large balcony was very pleasant.
The hotel has a beautiful pool which is very sheltered so even at the end of Sept. we were able to enjoy the sun although the water was a bit cool. The beach is beautiful & only a 5 minute walk from the hotel and the chairs & unbrellas provided by the hotel were reallynice.
We had rented a car for most of the time we were there & were glad we did as the hotel location is not very convenient for public transport. With our GPS we managed to get around very well with no problems although the Amalfi coast was a challenge but elsewhere the driving was easy and the roads well marked.
We visited Paestum, Mount Vesuvius, Pompeii, Capris, the Amalfi coast, the Cilento coast and it was all really interesting & beautiful.

  • Stayed: September 2008, travelled with family
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2  Thank jenren034
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 January 2009

We arrived in Rome and it is a long drive with not much to see.....would be better to land in Sorrento.

The staff was excellent. Luigi the owner was there all the time and Omar was so helpful and amazing (speaks french). Anything we wanted they were happy to provide. If we were going on an excursion....we asked for and early breakfast and they accomodated. If we wanted to swim at night time when the pool was closed....they gave us permission (it closes early). There were a billion weddings though. So if you don't like weddings....this is definately not for you. Luigi was hillarious though and being honeymooners he would always call us down to give us champagne and goodies. One night there was a disco on the beach and you have to let the hotel know you want to go as it isn't advertised on location or day ect. The pool is amazing.

Our room was okay. We had a fabulous balcony and the bathroom and linens were awesome. The bed...not so comfy...but...c'est la vie. We literally spent 5 hrs a day in the hotel sleeping...that's it.

The location was okay. The bus shuttle to the beach was great and the beach itself was spectacular. The hotel has a private section and it's perfect. Lots of vendors on the beach which I personally loved. We bought a raft and strongly recommend it as lots of people had them. The sand is hotter than hell :). The lounge chairs and umbrella's were plenty and we never had to rush to get one. They were clean and very comfy. There is a lifeguard. The sunsets were awesome and a gazillion shooting stars at night. Very safe beach and area.

The food at the hotel was great at lunch and supper. However we were in Italy so we wanted to try other places.

Our favorite place is on the beach called "Lido Mediterraneo" it's the brother in law to the owner of the hotel. It has the best view being on the beach and music and fresh seafood that you pick your catch. The pizza is outstanding as they have a wood oven on site. They go out of their way to treat tourists fabulous. They actually got a waiter to drive us to the opera in the ruins (about 15minutes) rather than take a cab. Our last 4 days were spent 100% eating there because it was perfect. Seriously best cappucinno ever and great price for wine....live music.

Although we saw it all Capri/Amalfi ect.... our favorite place ever was the Cilento Coast. It was truly spectacular and we saw so many Grotto's ect. If you book through the tour agency you get a boat tour of the grottos and a trip that makes you want to stay there. Having seen Amalfi and Capri...we would go to Cilento Coast in Palinuro first.

Everyone had problems booking tours. We had no problem because we found Arizona Viaggi Tours and they were so incredible and well priced and picked up right at the hotel. Book early though as they sell out very quickly because they are one of the only guides. www.arizonaviaggi.it arizonaviaggi@tiscali.it

We had so much fun and although the hotel was not in the prime typical beachfront location. It's style and beauty and service was superb! For the small hiccups there were fabulous people to make sure you felt at home. They even let me use my email from the front desk since the cafe down the road was broken for 4 days.

Not an ounce of rain in July...super hot and sunny and loved it!

Mary- Anne and Bruce

  • Stayed: July 2008, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Gillema
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 November 2008

My girlfriend and I stayed at Hotel Cerere in the last week of August 2008.

First thing that you need to know if you flew in at Rome, you need to either drive or take the bus for roughly 3-4 hours before arriving at the hotel. But the wait is worth it!

This is a very nice hotel. The lobby is almost all made of marble and everything is very clean. The hotel staff was all very nice to us and tried to speak English and French with us to give us a hand (we were surprised by how many people in the region spoke French!). Even the cleaning ladies did their best to speak English with us. We will never forget the carta hygenica means toilet paper!

The beach is less than 10 minutes away from the hotel and it is very nice that the hotel has a reserved section because there are plenty of people in the public sectors. Restaurants, grocery stores (very useful if you are going to have an excursion in more expensive places like Pompei or Capri), fruit stores, photo stores, etc. are all walking distance from the hotel.

Apart from the food of the hotel that is delicious (this has been discussed in greater length in other reviews) we strongly suggest that you get mozzarella di bufala from the cheese store and of course Limoncello, the region’s liquor.

For the summer time, a few free bus shuttles were organized in the region either to go to Agropoli or to Paestum which was a great idea. The train station isn't too far either and from there it is very easy to go to Pompei, Sorrento, Napoli, Capri, etc.

The only thing that was kind of disturbing was that our room was located just above the pool / garden. Since the hotel is specialized in weddings and that the receptions (at least during the summer) have occurred in the garden, it could be a bit noisy at night (though everything ended at midnight). I suggest you ask for a room on the opposite of the pool if that could be a problem for you.

Another thing that was a bit annoying was that the pool was closed after 19h in the evenings. With the weather during our stay averaging over 40 degrees, it would have been nice to have access.

Although a little warmer than season averages during our stay, the weather was in the low forties Celsius without a single drop of rain so be sure to be equipped to face the heat if you are going during the summer.

All in all, this is a dream place for a relaxing vacation and you will still get to see a lot of great places without too much running around.

  • Stayed: August 2008, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank hsjh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel Cerere

Address: Via Laura MAre | Localita Laura, 84063 Paestum, Capaccio-Paestum, Italy
Region: Italy > Campania > Province of Salerno > Capaccio-Paestum > Paestum
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Luxury Hotel in Paestum
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Paestum
#3 Best Value Hotel in Paestum
#3 Family Hotel in Paestum
#6 Business Hotel in Paestum
#7 Romantic Hotel in Paestum
Price Range: £71 - £145 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Cerere 4*
Number of rooms: 59
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Cerere is an exclusive refined hotel, located at Paestum, just one kilometre from the archaeological area and the National Museum; at 350 meters from our private beach. Directly managed by the owners, the complex is made up of a central structure, containing 38 rooms ando 2 suite all with private balcony, air-conditioning, satellite TV, mini-bar, hairdryer and cable radio, and of an annexe, about 30 metres from the hotel, containing21 rooms and two-bedroom apartments with 4/5 beds. The hotel also has a tennis court, a 5-a-side soccer pitch, a semi-Olympic pool, a private parking area with surveillance, restaurant and private beach, equipped with parasols, sunloungers and changing cabins at just 200 metres away, easy to reach with the hotel minibus shuttle service. Open throughout the year, The Hotel Cerere also has a well-equipped conference hall, with a capacity of between 100 to 400 seats and spacious and elegant restaurant rooms with 100 to 500 places, which make the ideal setting for receptions and especially for wedding banquets. For quality of service offered and the professional attention and efficiency of the management, the Hotel Cerere is the ideal place for a comfortable and relaxing holiday a stone's throw from the limpid and clean sea, not far from some of the most popular resorts of national and international tourism, such as Capri, Pompeii, the Pertosa Grotto, Padula Priory and Naples. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cerere Hotel Paestum

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