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“Great Views of Lake Como”

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Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior
Norwich, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Great Views of Lake Como”
Reviewed 3 July 2012

We booked a long weekend through Hotelsbooked.com via groupon, to this hotel. Although after paying, we then found several bad reviews about this company. Obviously we became skeptical and contacted the hotel who confirmed our booking. Upon arrival at the hotel we were greeted with some spectacular views of lake Como. Check in was quick and one of the receptionists spoke very good English. We took our bags up to our room, which we found to be very spacious and clean, even for a budget room. The hotel has a free hotspot area and even an iPad connected to the internet for everyone to use when it was available, which seemed to be quite often. We went all inclusive, which means free food and local drinks. The range of drinks on offer at the hotel seemed quite generous. The food was standard 3 star buffet food for all meals. Suitable for most. However they do not label their dishes, so it is guess work most of the time. There is a menu at the front of the restaurant but we found this didn't always match with what food was actually laid out. We soon realised that the food was quite repetitive and didn't really have an italian feel to it. There was not much variety but for the price, you can't really complain. We just went out one evening to an Italian restaurant to get a bit more choice and this made up for it. The hotel has access to a swimming pool about 100 metres down the road. The pool is an adequate size and sits nicely in front of Lake Como with picturesque views. However, this is a public pool and not just for hotel guests, so if you don't get there early it is difficult to get sun loungers by the pool. Unfortunately the hotel do not provide you with beach towels, so you have to rent these for 5 euros each, if you do not take your own. The pool also makes you wear a swimming hat for some reason, which you have to buy for 3 euros. There is also an outdoor terrace at the pool. For those going all inclusive at the hotel, you get free soft drinks, local beer, local red and white wine at the pool but no spirits and you are only allowed these up until 9pm. However, the hotel itself has an outdoor terrace which overlooks the lake. The only bad thing is that the bar is 3 floors down and you have to get the left which you have to wait ages for but if you just get loads of drinks at one time, there is not really a problem if you can carry them all. Overall this is great value for money and is great for a short break. This is a hotel more suited for the older generations who have their coach trips and not too much to do for younger people but certainly still worth a visit.

Room Tip: Obviously the rooms with lake views should be a good buy, we were in a standard deluxe room at the b...
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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2 Thank Ady F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Edinburgh
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2012

Just back from a holiday at the Britannia Excelsior on 30th June. We have two wonderful weeks in Italy and took advantage of all the boats going to the surrounding villages. The Hotel was fine. The reception staff were a bit grumpy but I cannot blame them totally as people have read the reviews and immediately when they arrive ask to be upgraded. Everyone cant. We had paid for a Deluxe room and were room 542 which was find, missed a balcony though. The dining room could be better organised, making the servery a one way system and someone actually directing people that way. The staff were friendly and helpful. I agree with a previous review would be better to be a half board hotel than an all inclusive. Be aware if you go that transport everywhere is quite expensive so account for this before you go. Brill hols, cant believe I am back to work it all seems like a dream now

  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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4 Thank Elaine S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
scotland
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2012

Where to start, when we booked this we upgraded to a deluxe room with a balcony and a lakeview and also asked the travel agent (Thomsons) to inform the hotel that it was our 32 wedding anniversary and if possible to get a posh room.
When we arrived at the hotel on the 9 May we were shown to our upgraded boxroom, which was clean but very small, wardrobe doors hit off bed, fridge door hit off bed, legs black and blue and you could not walk pass each other it was one way traffic only. The room we were in was 517 which was supposed to be big and room 518 next door was twice the size with extras such as tea and coffee making facilities and a chair at dresser ( not enough room in ours for one ) and two way traffic.
The annoying thing about this was that we paid for these upgrades (approx £260) a year beforehand via the travel agent. The night we booked in there were people at the reception asking if they could upgrade to bigger room with a lake view and it cost them between 20-40 Euros for the week for two of them, who is the dafty then!!!! However, I have to say that the view from the room was utterly amazing probably the best in Italy.
Now onto the FOOD, breakfast it was mmmm okay some days and poor the rest, Lunch, was not too bad and the evening meal well if you timed it wrong it was like feeding time at the zoo and there was very little choice left, and the quality left a lot to be desired at times.
The bar, it is down in the basement a little gloomy but the quality of alchohol was resonable the only problem was the slightly older patrons liked the free booooze a little to much at times, it had its funny side though.
The staff, Reception, oh dear grumpy at times and some communication problems with them and our Reps, the bar staff, some grumpy some happy but not any of them poured the same size of measures, the restuarant staff were the hardest working always smiling and could not do enough for you.
Part of the problem is the short stay bus tours who when they come in they are shown straight in to the dining room and it could be 3 bus loads.
It's a pity that this is an all inclusive hotel only as there is a definite compromise on the quality of the food. Better quality food on a hb basis would be preferable as there are nice little bars and bistro's around which don't get the business they deserve as the location is ideal central for all areas and the views across the lake are to die for.

To finish off Cardenabia is lovley with plenty to see and do and the ferries are very reasonable to travel on, also a trip to Switzerland is a must.
We read the ratings before we went and it is like lots of these i think you have to be open minded about it.

Room Tip: Rooms on 5th and 6th floors with lake view are great, hardly any noise from the road below. Time it...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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10 Thank 999rangers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers are raving about these Cadenabbia di Griante hotels

Bognor Regis, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2012

Paid extra for lake view room, large, plenty of storage, fridge, safe no extra charge. Towels changed every other day, clean and powerful shower in shower cublcle. Food average, good choice every day, serving area chaotic and badly laid out servery. Staff very helpful, plent of wine and beer served at table. All inclusive saves a lot of money on local spirits wine and beer. Only problem is the one hour journey to get away from lake north and south to reach motorways if going on coach excursions. Can recommend Shearings as coach driver was fantastic. Entertainment in bar during evenings, very large terrace overlooking lake for evenings. Lido with swimming pool, bar and restaurant 100 metres away belongs to hotel beer and wine also free.

Room Tip: Pay extra for lake view or balcony, ask for shower although very few rooms have a bath, take travel...
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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4 Thank kcgveg21
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
england
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 July 2012

spent a lovely week here in may.excellent room overlooking the lake,you really need to book a room with balcony and lake view to get the best out of your stay. no pool here but a short walk to the hotel lido where your all inclusive still stands plenty of sun beds and a lovely terrace where to sit and watch the boats and ducks and swans.The food at hotel is plentiful and the drinks are very good.There is a lift from the bar up to a sun terrace,a lovely place to sit after dinner with a brandy and coffee! there is music in the bar from 9pm on most nights.Only one negative and that is when you arrive at the airport(gerona) after a really short flight less than 2 hrs only to find that it's a 3and 1/2 hr coach trip to como.that's a bit of a nuisance but that was our only complaint

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank magruth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kelsall, England, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 July 2012

lovely weather(13-20th june)hotel very good,food great for 3***,no charge for safe in room or fridge.But take a travel kettle if you enjoy a cuppa in your room.Also,if you like going on the trips take more cash, as the rep`s don`t take credit cards!!! Interested to see all the wine experts drank the house wine(as it was free!!!!)

Room Tip: pay for upgrade at hotel as it`s a lot cheaper.
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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10 Thank Keith J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
west sussex
Level 4 Contributor
42 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 July 2012

This hotel was obviously once a very posh hotel, sadly the same cannot be said today.
The first impression that we got was that the reception staff were quite abrupt almost to the point of being rude! The room was quite nice, but even though it was large there was very little drawer space. The bathroom was ok but the shower cubicle was so small that even I being small could not turn round easily in it. The room was cleaned fairly well but the beds were not made particularly well.
The dining experience can only described as poor! The restaurant is hoplessly understaffed,many times we would eat and the table was not cleared between courses. The food itself was reasonable, always hot which we find is normally a problem with buffet food! Because of the understaffing issues the waiters seemed generally miserable which obviously does not make things any better. The tables were set mainly set up for large parties as this is a big coach party hotel, so we often had to sit on these amongst people we did not know. Another problem that we encountered was that the restaurant was very noisy!
As many previous people have said, the packed lunches were poor, just ham and cheese rolls thrown together with no butter!
The bar was another joke, yet again understaffed, sometimes we had a queue of about twenty people! The bar area was dull and dingy being in the basement, although there is a sun terrace up two flights of stairs or via a very dodgy lift with doors sometimes closing on you as you get in, knocking your drinks out of your hands!
The location of the hotel is not the best on the lake with a busy road right outside the entrance, with nowhere really nice to sit and admire the views.
To sum up, we would not reccomend this hotel,or Cadenabbia for a holiday on Lake Como, but would return to Como, going to Menaggio, Bellaggio or Lenno which are nearby and much more picturesque, on a bed and breakfast basis, because the restaurants are very nice and not that expensive!

Room Tip: Make sure you book a lake view room and not just an upgraded room, as these do not have a lake view!
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  • Stayed June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank das137ww
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior

Property: Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior
Address: Via Regina 41, 22011 Cadenabbia di Griante, Italy
Region: Italy > Lombardy > Lake Como > Cadenabbia di Griante
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 5 Hotels in Cadenabbia di Griante
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior 3*
Number of rooms: 284
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Britannia Excelsior is set on the shores of Lake Como and is a former 19th-century inn. The beautiful guest rooms are tastefully decorated with luxury fabrics and antique furniture. The hotel boasts four bars four restaurants and two swimming pools open seasonally.RnrnJust 50 metres from the Cadenabbia landing dock, the Britannia Excelsior offers free parking and beautiful views of Bellagio. RnrnThe centre of Griante is a 10 minutes' walk away. Free public parking is available near the swimming pool. All rooms at the Britannia Excelsior Hotel are equipped with satellite TV and private bathroom with shower and hairdryer. Some rooms overlook the lake and some even have a balcony. RnrnFree Wi-Fi is available in the public areas and breakfast is a continental-style buffet available daily in the main restaurant. Both the buffet-style restaurant and the a la carte, lakeside restaurant specialise in classic Italian and international cuisine. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Britannia Excelsior Hotel
Hotel Britannia Excelsior Cadenabbia
Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior Lake Como/Cadenabbia Di Griante, Italy

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