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Piantelle Camping
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Reviewed 21 August 2016

Having never been to Italy we asked around friends and family for views, Lake Garda constantly came up as a top destination and Piantelle was named by a couple of people as a great site.
The trip advisor reviews also backed this up and therefore I happily booked 2 weeks there in a mobile home this august (6th-20th).
My wife and I drove from the UK along with our kids and my daughters friend (9yrs, 14 & 14yrs).
The area is lovely and the site is in a great spot on the lake, we were greeted by friendly and professional staff and given our instructions and asked to pay a 50 euro deposit for loss of the key, we were also told that there was a cleaning fee should the chalet / mobile home be left in a mess - which is fair enough.
Our mobile home was basic (we've stayed in plenty over the yrs) but perfectly adequate for us and we were more than happy.
We had a great 2 weeks and enjoyed all aspects of the site - great location, plenty to see & do, great (cheap) restaurant, great pool, kids clubs and access to the lake itself.
When we required advice the staff were ever helpful and nothing was too much trouble, basically we had a faultless stay at Piantelle and would recommend it and give 5 stars normally, BUT..........
Come yesterday our last day, we had a 1200km drive back to Calais and had packed the car up the night before leaving us time to get up sat morning, feed the kids, pack the last bits and clean / tidy the mobile home.
All pots washed, dried and put away, all surfaces cleaned, all pillows and bedding left stacked on the beds, bathroom and toilet left clean and tidy, bin emptied and finally all the floors swept up. Now as far as i'm concerned that constitutes leaving the home in an acceptable state, my daughter even commented that it looked better than we found it.
However the cynic in me decided to go round the home and take photo's of how we left it - boy was i glad i did!
We checked out at 0900hrs and staff asked if we had enjoyed our stay, we said we had loved it, which we had. The lady on reception then spoke in a radio to someone (in Italian) and mentioned our home number - therefore I assumed she was asking a cleaner to check the home prior to handing our deposit back - again i have no issue with this.
My wife popped to the toilet while I waited and after a minute or so the lady beckoned me over a said that the cleaner has checked the home and found it in a 'filthy' and 'dirty' state and it would require extensive cleaning, therefore we would have to pay the 40 euro cleaning fee.
I was amazed and embarrassed as a dutch family were also present at the time being served by the other receptionist and they could clearly hear the fact that we were being accused of being 'filthy' and 'dirty'.
I asked the lady what was the issue and was told that the home was left in a filthy state, all the surfaces were dirty and the home would require extensive cleaning. I then explained that this was not the case and i stated that i was aware we had a responsibility to leave the home in a decent state and due to this fact we had gone to some length to get up early and ensure the home was left clean and tidy - i myself had cleaned all the kitchen and table surfaces so i knew this was rubbish. The lady apologized and said there was nothing she could do as the cleaner was telling her what she had found, it was at this point I pulled out my phone and informed her that I had actually photographed all the home after we had cleaned it - to say her face dropped was an understatement!!
I made a point of scrolling through the numerous shots of cleaned and stacked crockery in cupboards, clean and tidy bathroom and toilets, bedrooms with neatly stacked bedding and spotless work surfaces! Not to mention a fully swept floor!
The lady still maintained there was nothing she could do, i then pointed out we had better wait for my wife to return as she would go ballistic. Then suddenly the atmosphere changed, the other receptionist said a couple of words to the lady (in Italian) and then the lady simply slapped our 50 euro deposit on the desk and said it doesn't matter, here is you money. Not another word, no apology, no 'sorry it was a misunderstanding', no have a safe journey home, nothing.
I left without saying anything, but furious as i felt they had tried to fleece us out of our money with a cheap trick - which without my camera evidence i wouldn't have had an answer to!
I feel sure that if I had said 'please let me take you to the home' the lady would have simply said 'it is too late, the cleaner has cleaned up', leaving me without any evidence.
What was more annoying was the fact that the home was basic and not itself perfect - there were pieces of torn lino flooring, a broken clothes hanger, stiff pantry doors that didn't shut properly - but we never complained about these because we are reasonable people who realize these things happen and ultimately weren't not paying thousands of pounds and staying in the Hilton hotel - its basic accommodation on a campsite. Perhaps i'm wrong and should be expected to mop and scrub the floors and windows etc, but this raises the issue then of why employ cleaners? Obviously if a campsite has cleaners then this does not allow you to leave the place deliberately dirty, but where do we draw the line? I feel we had been more than reasonable in our actions.
I met my wife walking back to the car and told her what had happened and she was incredulous, as was our daughter who again stated we left it better than when we arrived.
This has soured the experience for us and it goes without saying we will not return and will advise all our friends and family the same.
It is a shame as the site and staff were great right up to that point.
If you do stay at Piantelle (as many will) i would advise you to take photo's before and after of any of the accommodation you stay in - to prevent the same happening to you.

Room Tip: Take photo's!
  • Stayed: August 2016, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
5  Thank Robert G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Giuliana C, General Manager at Piantelle Camping, responded to this reviewResponded 22 August 2016

Dear Robert,

Thank you for taking so much time to write your review, and we are sorry your departure had a negative impact on your otherwise enjoyable holiday. Cleanliness is vitally important to us, and we have a procedure to check how the houses are cleaned on our guests departure. As many point out we are a very close knit team and this is based on mutual trust between management, reception, and maintenance. When our cleaner advises us that an accommodation has not been left in a good enough state, we trust that this is true. It is of absolutely no interest or profit to us to charge a cleaning fee, on the contrary, it caused us far more work to clean the house as it was left. Our receptionists, who are polite and courteous, acted in the correct manner, and were allowing you an exception to the rule by returning your deposit in full. We are however sorry you felt any animosity due to the tense exchange. We hope you return to Lake Garda to enjoy all it has to offer in the future.

Giuliana Cavazza

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 August 2016 via mobile

Just been to Piantelle for the 2nd time after a 5 year gap. Just wonderful! Beautiful location on the lake, still incredibly clean and friendly. Fabulous view of the lake from our mobile home. Lovely restaurant on site. Two teenagers and one 10 year old; they didn't want to leave. Many an hour spent swimming in the lake. Need a car to be able to visit the area. Recommend Mont Baldo, Sirmione by boat, and Caneva water park. We don't normally return to the same place but I couldn't find another campsite that matched up to Piantelle!

Stayed: August 2016, travelled with family
Thank Rosie D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Giuliana C, Manager at Piantelle Camping, responded to this reviewResponded 13 August 2016

Dear Rosie,

Thank you. We are so pleased you had a good holiday and took the time to write here about this. We hope you come back soon!

Giuliana

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2016 via mobile

Stayed here for first time with our kids age 9 , 7 and 4 and hired a canvas holiday tent.
Site is easy to find , we drove from bergamo airport and hired a car.
The facilities on the site were good, restaurant, shop, pool and lake beach with direct access from the site.
The restaurant served good food, we ate their twice in the 10 days and the bar was reasonably priced for drinks and ice creams. The shop served fresh bread and croissants every morning plus other essentials. There was a bigger supermarket a short walk from the site.
The evening entertainment was a little repetitive but the kids enjoyed some of the shows they did in particular the lion king.
The play area was well equipped and again kids enjoyed this.
The site is a short walk into moniga del garda where there are more restaurants and you can get a ferry to sirmoine and garda. There is also more lakeside beaches up from the site.
The swimming pool is clean and has good number of sun beds. The pool is a good size and the toddler pool is good for younger ones as it is not too deep. Would like the ability to use inflatables in the big pool at the end of the day when it is quieter as Currently not allowed.
Pitches are spacious and enough room for table and chairs and car outside.
Reception staff were helpful and printed our boarding passes for us for our return. A good selection of leaflets in reception area for things to do locally.
The only thing I would like to see Is the toilet blocks cleaned twice a day as by time they are cleaned again in the morning they are rank and also the showers to stay on for longer than 5 seconds as is a pain when trying to wash hair!
Overall a great site for families and would recommend.

Stayed: August 2016, travelled with family
Thank Laura G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Giuliana C, Manager at Piantelle Camping, responded to this reviewResponded 13 August 2016

Dear Laura,

Thank you for this review. We are so glad you had a good holiday. Thank you also for taking the time to review us here.

We do, however, clean each toilet block three times a day. We do strive to always improve the way we work so I will take note of this as well as your suggestion on the timing of the showers. They are currently set to run for 30 seconds, so if you say they are running for less I will check this out myself.

Thanks again and we look forward to seeing you again soon.

Giuliana

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 July 2016 via mobile

This was our first camping experience with our daughter (almost 4) so we did a lot of research and went for Piantelle. We flew into Verona and hired a car. I would recommend car hire as trying to navigate public transport in the heat would've been a nightmare. We were greeted on arrival and given our keys (no bed linen though which was an issue that night!). We had booked a 3 bed mobile home as all the 2 beds were already reserved. It was in a private patch with a lovely veranda. Everything we needed was provided and the mobile home was spotless. The aircon was priceless as it was 35-38 degrees every day. The campsite itself is pretty big with 2 pools, a park, kids club, restaurant and bar. They also have a small shop selling basics as well as sun cream and poll inflatables. My daughter had a great time at the pool and at the evening entertainment which was excellent. Stefano and Daniel were great with the kids and genuinely seemed to like children which is always a plus! Overall, I would say Piantelle is a 4.5. A few things could be better though for example their pricing. Bike hire, washing machines and restaurant prices were all too high in terms of price/quality. That said, you could always cook at home and not rent bikes. We are considering returning next year but for just a week as 2 weeks was a bit too long.

Stayed: July 2016, travelled with family
Thank Tinyvictories
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 July 2016

We stayed here last year and this review is more or less the same with some updates as certain things have changed.

This year we took a taxi from the train station as the next bus was not for 2.5hrs, at a cost of €21.

At reception we just had to hand over our passports to be copied. The staff are very friendly. No wearing of armband required on this site. The receptionist rang Ian and Rachel the canvas reps to meet us. A husband and wife team who were friendly and very helpful. We made friends with them over the course of the 3 weeks and they go above and beyond in their job. Thanks Ian and Rachel for the chats and craic we had. We had requested the same mobile as last year which was a stone’s throw from the restaurant and small hill down to the lake.

The mobile was a 3 bed select with air con and a deck. The double bed was comfy. There was a small room with single bunks and another with 2 single beds. The lounge had a facility for a pull-out double bed. It also had a gas hob, full gas cooker, microwave, large fridge/freezer, a double shower and a gas barbecue outside. There were UK/IRL 3 pin sockets beside each European 2 pin sockets which was great as the adapters were not needed.
The toilet was small for 6 people but the shower was a double tray and the spray was strong. The shower block was across the way if people were waiting for showers.

The wifi was consistent at 50/80% depending where you were in the mobile. They site said they increased the strength this year.
We were at the lake a couple of days and I got it to 60%, but you had to be close to the gate. Viber and WhatsApp worked better this year especially at the restaurant. During thunder storms it was gone for a while.

There are 2 pools onsite, a round kiddie’s pool and adult pool. They were open from 10 to 7, with a life guard on duty. There was no lane swimming and no hats needed. The beds were free and they were actually the good ones like you see for rent on the lake shore for €6/8 a day. No food or drink was allowed at the pool. There was a small café area adjacent to the pool. We did not use the pool bar for eating so can’t comment on price or quality.
Just at the back of the pool was a large playground for the kids with all the mod cons. Close to the playground at the back of the site was the Roan and Go4Camp mobiles.

The entertainment for the kids starts around 8.30 to 10.30 and just beside the restaurant. Looked like all were having fun and its similar to other sites.

The camp restaurant is called Gusto Giusto. The pizzas were good and the rest was OK, not outstanding. But the double espresso with some hot milk were lovely. Prices for takeaway were same as restaurant prices. The staff were friendly.
The shop was a small room beside the bar/restaurant. It was more expensive that the local supermarkets. It always had bread or brioche though, till late in the day.

This side of the lake is great for swimming, especially for nervous swimmers as you can stand up just before the first buoys.
The walks on the lake were,10mins to Moniga port taking a left and 20mins taking a right, to 2 new café’s as Café Pippo has been demolished. A further 10mins to the West Garda Yacht Club and then you have to go out to the road away from the lake. We walked to Desenzano a couple of times on this route which took 90mins. It’s all path and a lovely walk. We also walked to Castello di Padenghe which is well worth a visit for the views alone.

The campsite have their own buoys on the lake to rent, just located well past their own jetty so there is an area for swimming in front. A few days two boats were tied to the jetty belong to the campsite. These were moved by Max the site porter in quick fashion as this is not allowed.

We found 5 supermarkets. (below times are for walking)
Italmark; This is in a small mall and is the closest but the most expensive. Out the main gate up the road 10mins. You would have passed it on the way to the site. There is also a bank with atm here.
Simply Market; This is about 15mins away. You can get to this by following the Padenghe sul Garda road which has a path the whole way now. Best way if walking is go to the lake and take a right. At Chiosco Salfor restaurant, take a right up the hill and you will come to the main road with a garden centre in front of you with a pedestrian crossing. Cross and take a right and it's on the left just after the roundabout.
Diu Discount; This shop is like Lidl but obviously Italian. It on the road to Manerba del Garda and has a footpath all the way. It takes about 20mins.
Pennymarket; This is also on the Manerba del Garda road past Diu Discount. There is no footpath past Diu Discount. It takes about 25mins.
Lidl; It takes about 30mins and is on past Pennymarket on the right.

Our favourite coffee/beer break this year was Recyclage Café just behind Italmark or the café beside Simply, cannot remember the name. They was always quiet and seemed to be used by locals. There is also a lovely café beside Lidl.
We did not have a favourite dinner restaurant as they were more or less the same. But we did go to La Pescatrice di Obertini Bortolo in Moniga port a couple of times. It's the first on left with a terrace overlooking the harbour.
For lunch we tried the "Menu Fisso" or set menu in restaurants Seradel (went here many times) and Francesco in Padenghe sul Garda.

The mosquitoes and biters were out some nights but all told not too bad.

Overall it's a really lovely site and was very quiet when we arrived at beginning of June but was getting busier as we were leaving.

The site has everything for families to mature couples. The boats connecting towns on the lake are not as frequent as the south and east of the lake.
The only drawback is the local bus service is not very good. We walked everywhere we need to go though.
Lastly for anyone into geocaching (great for kids) there are a couple of easy ones around here.

NOTE: We took a taxi on the last day to Desenzano train station that cost €30. It did not have a meter and was just a set price whereas the one we took on first day had a meter, €21 for same journey. So if you ask reception to organise a taxi get a metered taxi.

Tips.
Get the apps "Trenit" for train bookings and times, "Navigazione Laghi" for boat times and prices.

Room Tip: Close to the lake
  • Stayed: June 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank gerbid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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