This hotel is like the "Curate's Egg" - good in parts and bad in parts!
The building was originally a very grand private villa right on the shore of Lake Como
immediately next to the famous Villa Carlotta with its wonderful gardens. Therefore, the situation
is excellent (despite a rather busy road between the front of the hotel and the lake).
The views are magnificent , and it is important to stipulate for a room with lake view and balcony.
The original building has been considerably extended to form the hotel and there is a fine
dining room with sliding windows and outside terraces at top level from which the view can be enjoyed.
The public spaces including the entrance foyer and staircases, etc, are very grand, but by contrast,
our bedroom appeared distinctly "spartan" with walls that looked bare and colourless with no hanging pictures. The beds were actually quite comfortable although the bed covers had seen better days . As there were no proper chairs to sit on , we dragged in two which we found in the corridor outside our room. The only full length mirror was concealed behind the door (we had to be ever so careful not to damage it as the door handle touched the mirror every time we opened the door).
However, we did have a fine large balcony about as large as the room itself ! One afternoon, the gardener walked over the balcony to water plants, without giving us any notice, with a clear view into our room which obviously was an intrusion into our privacy. Help!
The TV in the room was a tiny (about 14") old-fashioned set with poor selection of channels, mounted almost at ceiling level giving one a cricked neck to look at and there was no free wifi or internet available.
The Lake View from the room, however, was breath-taking.
Really, our main criticism is the poor standard of food and variable restaurant service. We were on half-board. Breakfast was buffet-style. Quality of the food was often second-rate and frequently items on the hot plates ran out (see pics. attached) and they were not replenished. Coffee was especially awful , you may be wise to bring your own jar (from home or the supermarket)! There were almost always queues waiting to get in as soon as the doors opened. Dinner was also buffet-style for the first course and the dessert. The queues at dinner were even worse and the restaurant could get very crowded and noisey. The food was often not brilliant - and most certainly not Italian cuisine at its best! At times, although the wine price was fairly expensive, the wine service lacked professionalism (eg, once, they brought a bottle of wine with the wrong vintage . When we queried it and requested it to be changed, the senior waiting staff had a very poor and negative attitude, instead of apologizing for bringing the wrong wine ordered) . Frankly, meal times in the hotel was not an experience to look forward to and enjoy, but rather a necessary "fuelling stop" to assuage hunger.
OUR SUGGESTION AND ADVICE:
Our advice would be to opt for bed and breakfast only, with special request for a room with a lake view and balcony and to enjoy eating out each evening in a local restaurant. (One evening, we went out to a local restaurant -the "Red and White" -for dinner and we had a most enjoyable meal and the wine list was absolutely amazing.) . Also, do not think that the hotel is of 4 stars standard, just think "package tours, crowded, tourist class" instead. That way, you will be less disappointed !
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Hotel Cadenabbia Di Griante
- Grand Cadenabbia Hotel
- Grand Hotel Cadenabbia Lake Como/Cadenabbia Di Griante, Italy