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“Some bad, some good”

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Sauerland Stern Hotel
Ranked #5 of 38 Hotels in Willingen
Reviewed 16 March 2014

This is a huge hotel; and therefore impersonal.

The rooms are spacious and basic. It has a small bathroom. The bedding is great.

The hotel building has only 3 elevators. This is way too limited for the capacity of the hotel. Be prepared to wait for a long time or take the stairs.

The breakfast / dinner restaurant is buffet-style and very large. The choice is basic and limited. The service was slow and not very attentive.
And a few incidents:
We saw a sneezing cook above a bread basket, not holding his hand for his mouth.
A waiter put back a dirty fork that fell on the ground back on the table.

The personnel in the reception are friendly and helpful. The rest was rather impersonal.

We also experienced a lot of small unsupervised children (screaming, running) who kept the elevators occupied by playing with them (1st floor).

We used the 5 course diner in restaurant Gutshof Itterbach. The food was ok-ish. The staff not very attentive: nobody asked about us for allergies or other wishes. Our drinks only arrived, after repeated asking, during the first course.

The location of the hotel is perfect. Close to the slopes and the village. Everything is in walking distance.
Another good thing: free parking.

The swimming pool is being renovated and therefor closed. The hotel offers an alternative close by.

Room Tip: Room on the south side have great views on the ski-slopes.
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  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank jvdv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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23 - 29 of 173 reviews

Reviewed 2 March 2014

Sauerland Stern Hotel:

This hotel is so big and so characterless; it made me think of these DDR / Russian cement colossus…no spark of charm whatsoever.

FOOD
Even though the hotel is advertising with multiple restaurants available, in reality only the buffet is included in the half-pension package. No Grill- or Italian restaurant for you, unless you pay for your dinner AGAIN. The buffet is a big deception. It is prepared for mass consumption…without taste, without anything. The eggs are boiled GREEN…the Frikandel that you can serve for breakfast seems the exact same left-over from the night before. The salads are the same every day. The ingredients are the cheapest they could find to feed the mass…and you notice. In our family we love coffee…but the coffee in Stern Hotel is absolutely undrinkable. Again the cheapest Robusta kind they could find.
During one dinner our table collapsed. They forgot to fixate the table legs. The candle, the wine, the plates of food, everything crashed with lots of noise on the floor. Oh yes, the wine…we are convinced that the wine had extra tap water in it. It wasn’t drinkable. Order a full bottle that they open at the table, do not order per glass ;-)
Last but not least: when there are many guests they reserve a table for you where you have to eat every day. For breakfast and dinner. You cannot choose a nice table at the window or so. No…business processes come first to control the people mass.

POOL
The hotel also advertises with a nice pool and gym. Well...their pool is closed for a long time, because it burned, together with the sauna. It has to be rebuild completely and will be closed for months. Yes, you can use the Tropical Swimming pool on a 5 minute walking distance via empty, cold underground tunnels (see pics), but only for 1,5 hour a day, after asking admission tickets at the reception every time you want to go. That 1,5 hour include changing time, so you actually swim much shorter. If you stay longer accidentally, you have to pay a fine. If you lose your admission chip, you have to pay 60 Euro’s fine. Per lost chip.

GYM
Now, the gym. The gym is okay really. Don’t forget to bring a bottle of water, because there’s no water tap at all. It is the opening hours that are absolutely crazy (see pic for opening hours).
The hotel personnel agrees, but they cannot change it: it is not their own gym, it is located in another building at the other side of the street…with another owner, and he does not want to adjust it. You can work out from 10:15 – 12:15 and from 15:30 - 20:30. In the morning you go out after breakfast…you come back at 18:00…you fresh up and change clothes for dinner…you have dinner with your family and then suddenly it is 20:00 o’clock. Too late to go to the gym. We stayed there a week and I only worked out once. Very frustrating. On Sundays the gym is open from 10:15 – 12:15. CRAZY!

WIFI
You will have to pay daily and PER DEVICE for your Wifi if you want it in your room. You can ask 30 minute admission tickets at the reception with long complex usernames and passwords. And then when you are in the middle of typing an email; poeefff, connection gone because 30 minutes passed. Then you can go to the reception again and ask for a new code. And then you will have to register again.

BEDS / ROOM
The mattress was so hard on top that our shoulders hurt while sleeping sideways. On the other hand, in the middle you lay in a hole…causing pain in your back. Terrible.
The TV is very very small and old. Even the kids were complaining, they had never experienced such a bad TV experience, they didn’t know that was possible.
The room is spacious, but cheap. Like the whole hotel basically.

LIFTS
The lifts are so slow and inefficient that you better take the stairs. Try to get a room on the first floor, not the sixth. IF you want a room, we will never go there again.

RECEPTION PERSONNEL
We asked for a ski-school for the kids. We got the home address of the owner…probably the address where the school was registered at the Chamber of Commerce. She didn’t know how to arrange it or where the skiing area was. They did not inform us about the WIFI policy, etc. We had to figure it all out by ourselves.

We are not spoiled travelers; the main issue of this hotel is that it lacks charm and affection. Cooks do not cook with passion; all the personnel seem robots in a big factory. DO NOT GO THERE, DON’T SAY WE DIDN’T WARN YOU!

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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6  Thank 007Jerry1975
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 October 2013

Yes, it is a good conference hotel but serves as a recreational holiday hotel as well. The restaurants are big and noisy, food is good and plenty. Rooms are clean and really spacious. Most ..maybe all of the rooms are equipped with a balcony. There is renovation work on-going (fall 2013) and that disturbs in the daytime. All in all something to recommend. Certainly would stay there again.

Room Tip: In fall 2013 take a room facing to the valley. Renovation work less disturbing.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank Markku L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 August 2013

The hotel is big and can service a lot of people, but the facilities are old, smokey, the lifts did not always work, for the price i believe there are better places. The meals were basically the same every day, which if cheap is fine, but the hotel advertises as being better and from the outside it looks nice.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled on business
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Thank RobertPatrick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 August 2013

I would love to thank the very accommodating, service-oriented staff for an absolutely wonderful conference experience in Germany. It was our first such experience in Germany and we hope to return. Our rooms were very spacious, filled with natural light and clean. There was plenty of closet space to unpack for a week-long stay. Views from the hotel are absolutely beautiful, as well. A real highlight is the food! Without a doubt, the food at Sauerland Stern Hotel was the best "conference food" we have ever experienced.... and the service at mealtime was exceptional.

The little village of Willingen is charming and has lots of shops and restaurants of all varieties. This village is within a 10 minute walk of the hotel, as are many other amenities to meet any need a visitor may have.

Take note: There is no air-conditioning or internet in hotel guest rooms. Bring a fan if you will be there in hot weather, as we were and did! Also, the internet is available in the lobby area, but is not always accessible without a long wait.

Room Tip: Try to book a room away from the central hall. The noise seems to travel upwards when children are...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank kfcmills
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2013

The Saurerland Stern hotel is an excellent facility for conferences. Staff are competent, friendly, and service-oriented. There are many restaurant locations in the hotel that provide excellent food based on your budget. They offer many conference rooms and break out rooms with multiple configurations. Rooms are clean and comfortable, most with balconies that overlook the town or the mountains. Beds are great. In-room internet is not free; you can buy by the hour, day, or week and it is passable, not fast.

There are many good strolls available: in the lovely village of Willingen, in the hills behind the hotel, or up the gondola / ski lift.

Some reviewers say that it feels a bit dated. Maybe, but what mattered more to me was that it as an effective facility with staff that knew what they were doing. All in all, this made a great location for an effective business conference.

  • Stayed: July 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank JTSeattle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 July 2013

A beautiful and terrific hotel surrounded by mountains on all sides, tremendous view from every window I looked out of, a 1000 miles away from India it was a relief to see a Punjabi girl right at the reception greeting us without actually knowing even a word of Hindi. We had gone there to attend a business conference at Dusseldorf and as we stayed at this hotel, we wanted to try out skiing too as it was the perfect weather but this year because of the weather conditions skiing was closed at the peak time. Nonetheless, the view and comfort of the hotel made up for the things that were missing, the service was excellent , the food served was great but not very apt for Indian taste. This hotel would be a heavenly experience for people who enjoy drinking with 50 types of Beer and other alcoholic drinks served.

All in all, a great hotel with a perfect escape from the summers in India and superb scenic beauty.

Room Tip: Rooms on the mountain side should be chosen to enjoy the scenic view.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank hirawat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sauerland Stern Hotel

Address: Kneippweg 1, 34508 Willingen, Hesse, Germany
Region: Germany > Hesse > Willingen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Ski-In / Ski-Out Spa Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 38 Hotels in Willingen
Price Range: £126 - £178 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Sauerland Stern Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 524
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