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“very nice hotel... shame about the entertainment”

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Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior
Reviewed 21 April 2014

my wife and I just returned from this hotel, we arrived at about 10:00 in the morning and were told our rooms wouldn't be ready until about 11:30 / 12:00, but we approached reception anyway, and checked in immediately we were offered a room upgrade for 40 euro's that we took straight away despite not knowing what we were upgrading from ... lol the room they gave us was 115, it had a lovely view over the lake, but my wife had been looking forward to having a bath ( we only have a wet room at home lol ) and the on-suite was shower only ,we returned to reception right away, asked the young girl if we could have a room with a bath, and was swapped
to room115 next door ,A huge corner room with a smaller but adequate balcony with stunning views over the lake to snow capped mountains with a on-suite bathroom bigger than our front room. the maid who looked after our room was amazing, very thorough, even leaving us towel sculptures on the bed every day, ( although the maid who did it on her day off,( wed I think) was very basic not even touching the bathroom) but that was ok, The food is, despite what other reviewers have put, was fine. a large self service buffet style very well organised to say they are feeding a couple of hundred at a time. at breakfast you can get a continental breakfast from seven, the hot "English" breakfast started at eight, we had both and both are fine. and even though there are vending machines for tea coffee etc, the hard working waiters with bring you your drinks to the table, water tea or coffee, during lunch and dinner, they will bring you a jug of wine ( red or white ) and / or a beer. other reviewers are right about the evening bar I'm afraid, there seems to be no atmosphere its set in the basement, with only high windows set along one wall, and all the seats are crammed in, the bar staff do a fine job serving but there are just not enough of them, and only one half of the bar seems to be used. and sometimes the queue waiting would be 20/ 30 long. no here comes the evening entertainment......he must be some sort of relation of the owner or be blackmailing them in some way, the entertainment is very very poor, probably the worse I have seen in any hotel any where in the world,( so at least they set a record there then ) he comes on at 21:00 every weeknight, and plays the organ and sings a few songs mostly old ballads from Elvis etc but in a dodgy Italian accent ,this would be fine as a novelty once, but he is on every night, and never changes. its the same songs in the same order at the same time every night and I never saw him smile or have any interaction with the audience, although a few "oldies" did get up to dance about 22:30 but he stops and leaves at 23:00 and the bar is open till midnight . all in all Cadenabbia and the surrounding area is really beautiful and for the most part the hotel is excellent, I think if I were lucky enough to return to the area,I would choose another hotel, simply due to the evening entertainment and the atmosphere free bar.....

Room Tip: the upgrade for the room is worth it for the view, entertainment is shockingly poor
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank nixtrix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 21 April 2014

Traveled with Leger Holidays to this Fantastic location. Britannia Excelsior is a very good 3 star Hotel,with a very reasonable selection of food for Breakfast, lunch and Dinner but don`t forget you are in Italy and they are laying on meals for all Nationalities. It is buffet style but the choice changes daily, a general thumbs up. Our room was clean and tidy and dressed down every day. For a large hotel with many guests the Staff are good dealing with any problems or just a simple bit of info about walks,Buses,Ferry`s and local attractions. We will return.

Room Tip: Rooms with lake views well worth the extra money, but a nice sun terrace over looking the lake if no...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Richard C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2014

Just returned from a week staying at this wonderful hotel on the edge on lake Como in Cadenabbia. We went on a last minute coach trip with Shearings.

This hotel deserves more than it's 3* rating. The interior is superb, classical Italian. Great and varied selection of food, with a large and beautiful dining room. Upgrade (40euro) to front facing room on a high floor if you can. Rooms are large, beautifully furnished and with views over the lake to die for. The staff are all friendly and helpful and the owners are always around for you to talk to. I cannot recommend this hotel highly enough.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Richard H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2014

I spent 5 nights at this hotel, the room was clean and nice but I had a problem with the soap and shower gel: I only got it once, then I had to request them again by calling the reception. Food was fine, but prepare to experiment almost the same dishes every day, at least for breakfast.
The only thing I completely disliked was the attitude of the male receptionist: always irritated and never available. I have no idea why they still keep him, he doesn't look nice, he speaks poor English and he's extremely arrogant. I hope he works for free...

Room Tip: Pick a room with a view to the lake if you don't mind the noise form the terrace underneath!
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled on business
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1  Thank Oana_tgz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 April 2014

We were booked in for a week on arrival we had a very nice room at the side of the hotel with a view across the lake after are first shower a very pungent sewage smell came from up from the pipes, we complained the the next morning and they said they would sort it out. On arrival back from a day trip where we were lead to believe the ferry was free to bellagio when it wasn't - not until the summer and we had to pay 9 euros each which made a few crossings very expensive over the week as there is very little to do in Cadenabbia with one shop a bar and one restaurant close by. I did notice on my return from Bellagio workers outside the hotel down in the sewage system which I thought was efficient as I only complained in the morning, on returning to our room we bumped into the cleaner who gave us a can of air freshener to mask the smell. After spending another sleepless night in the room due to the sewage smell, I was starting to feel very unwell with respiratory problems. I went back to reception and told them I would not be staying in that room and need to be moved elsewhere or to a different hotel. The only good thing was the hotel owner offered me a new room which was upgraded to the front of the hotel as far as possible to where the original smell came from which is on the right hand side of the hotel, I did hear many other customers complain about the smell and also a couple in our party was also moved due to the smell. Further more the all inclusive drinks in the hotel were very poor and the food was mediocre. Finally the evening entertainment was absolutely a joke some guy playing a electronic organ singing very badly I was disappointed they didn't get the bingo out as it felt like I was staying in a turkey and tinsel hotel in Blackpool.

  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled on business
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3  Thank stevensgp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 April 2014

This was our second holiday at the Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior and it certainly lived up to our high expectations. Any location on Lake Como is stunningly beautiful, but what sets the family-run Grand Hotel apart and in a league of its own, is the warm welcome of the staff, the attention to detail and the high standard of cleanliness and cuisine. What is more, is the high level of investment since our first visit in an amazing floating swimming pool and the creation of an amazing Lido experience. Our meal with 30 others in the Lido was awesome... the food, the views, the music, the dancing, the craich! ... an unforgettable evening. A hidden gem: after trips to Bellagio, Varenna, the Villa Carlotta, get the walking guide for Mennagio and take Walk 3 which is 4 1/2 hours into the hinterland leading to an amazing agritourismo restaurant La Vecchia Choderia and order the trout from the trout farm behind the restaurant. Off the tourist trail... just amazing... and cheap! Make a point of meeting the owners Ross and Doriana and son Tom... lovely people with the interests of their guests at heart. Witnessing a young man proposing to his girl friend ..on one knee, on a bench opposite the Grand Hotel... said it all. Grazie mille, ciao and arrivederchi. We will return!

Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
2  Thank garryhudson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2014

We stayed here for 6 nights in April 2014 and had a lovely holiday.
This fabulous hotel is in a wonderful position facing the lake and has great views looking across to Bellagio and other pretty towns along the lakeside.(It is a 3 star hotel but was better than some 4 star hotels we have stayed in.)
The hotel is furnished very stylishly and has a rather grand aura throughout. The front entrance opens up to display a wonderfully impressive chandelier and the reception area has a grand piano which adds to the ambiance of the place.
Our room was on the 6th floor and we paid 40 Euro supplement for an upgrade to a lake view and balcony. It was well worth it. Our room was also furnished in keeping with the style of the hotel and it all looked very ornate .It was very clean and had very comfy beds.
The sunny and bright dining room was very large with lovely big windows overlooking the lake.
We were on an all inclusive deal which was one of the best we have had...even speciality coffees included.. It was a buffet service in the dining room ..very popular. The food was always tasty with loads of choice... plenty at breakfast, soup, salads, pasta , pizzas, a choice of 3 meats/fish for main meal with vegetables at dinner and lunch with at least 6 delicious Italian ice creams to chose from or pastries and cakes and fruit for desserts... Everyone on our coach said the food was amazing.
The bar area is on the lower floor and it is here we spent most evenings. Some nights there was a singer/ musician on to provide entertainment. The drinks were served quickly so not much waiting around. We could not fault the service from all the staff throughout the hotel...they were always very polite and helpful and seemed very happy to be working there.
The hotel has a swimming pool/lido just a few yards from the hotel but the hotel opened up a 2nd new floating swimming pool on the lake just before we left..it was a very ingenious piece of engineering with floating decks with sunbeds and parasols and a bar shaped as the front of a ship.,,it will be very popular I am sure.
So all in all we had a marvellous holiday at this hotel...met some lovely people and made some happy memories....the only bugbear was the journey on the coach and ferry to get there which was a bum numbing 25 hours in total ! But we would do it all again to stay here.
Loved it...Go there... you will love it too....

Room Tip: There are at least 3 lifts for the less mobile...so no problems getting to your rooms. The upgrade i...
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  • Stayed: April 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Janbilly32
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

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: £79 - £1,052 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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