The prologue associated with our stay at the Hotel Splendid is contained in a previous review entitled Hipark Hotel, Nice and Qwerty Travel.
When booking I had requested a superior room on a high floor with a sea view and so, 4 weeks before departure and without printed confirmation of our booking (Qwerty Travel issue Hotel Vouchers 1 week before departure) I had telephoned Qwerty travel to enquire what type of accommodation we could expect. I was speaking with Sam (the trouble shooter who had literally booked this hotel for us and supposedly listened to my requests) her attitude was very aggressive, she was telling me her opinion of what I had requested but not what I could expect to get, as politely as possible I terminated the call.
I telephoned the Hotel Splendid direct and spoke with receptionist Natelle who was very helpful with a pleasant and bubbly attitude. She confirmed I was in a superior room on the 3rd floor with a balcony and sea view. I said I would prefer a higher room. She offered 4th floor but without balcony, she explained all sea facing rooms were classed superior, some with, some without balconies, my booking hadn’t included a balcony, the hotel had allocated a balcony to me. If I wanted the 5th floor with balcony it came with a premium of 15 euros per night extra, I agreed to pay on arrival. The cost continues to climb.
Our son in law transferred us to the Hotel Splendid. First impression was that reception is small with a small seating area to the side. On entering our room I was disappointed with the small size, about 10ft X 12ft with a 6ft X 6ft en-suite (bath/shower,toilet,basin) off from it. The room contained a small double bed, 2 side tables, wardrobes (one cupboard holding kettle, teacups and makings, very useful) and an armchair? There was also a side table about 12” deep making the space at the bottom of the bed even narrower. The balcony was small 10ft X 3ft 6” but the outlook was fantastic, a splendid view over the marina, the harbour and the casino and conference/festival centre. The view made up for a lot of discrepancies, in fact the view was the only thing the hotel had to its credit. There is no doubt in my mind that anything detrimental I could write about this hotel would have absolutely no effect because of its location and its popularity with the yachting fraternity but it is not of 4* standard. It is a family owned hotel and it needs some updating. The breakfast is very mid- range, there is a nice terrace with 8/10 tables and a view over the marina, it is O.K. if you don’t mind the pigeons, we tried it one day but ate inside the remaining days. When it rains (which it did) everybody is squeezed inside. There is one small, very slow antiquated lift. Reading the hotel 5th floor plan, I noticed the rooms to either side of ours were 50% larger and when I questioned this with reception was told these were ‘privilege rooms’ and demanded an extra premium. We had not been made aware of this option and as there was a regatta running this particular week and the hotel was full we could not buy an upgrade as all rooms were taken. My wife suggested the room was for sleeping, true but it is nice to have space to move about. She said the bed was comfortable, true but small. She said the view from the balcony would be the same, true. When the weather permitted, it was nice to sit on the balcony with a glass of wine and watch the regatta. We were not blessed with good weather and there was about a 50/50 mix of sunny periods and heavy squally showers, on the inclement days it was good to watch the tall yachts, in the distance, filtering in and out through the low cloud and rain, it was reminiscent of a real life Turner sea’scape . There were races each day of different classes and on clear days the view was fantastic. Walking around the marina was interesting to watch the crews mopping the decks and polishing the brass, they sparkled. I talked with one crew member who seemed to be giving instructions and he told me that whilst the yacht (medium sized) was registered in Portsmouth, England it spent all year in Cannes, it was insured for £4 million and it cost £1 million per year to operate/maintain? There was the additional interest of watching the cruise ships drop anchor and the passengers being ferried ashore. Dining and drinking in Cannes is expensive, we found a small restaurant on Rue Jean de Riouffe ‘La Avion’ Pizzas and mains ranged 12/18 euros and they had a plate of the day about 12 euros but these were snatched up by 13.30hrs, we were always too late but they did look good. Service was good and friendly but at our final meal there Friday 28th Sept. the wife of the owner told us that the business was sold and from Monday it would open with new owners. If they continue in a like manner, they cannot lose? We went to look at the catering arrangements and menu at the Casino and everything appeared reasonable, we wanted to take the family there but we had to sign in with I.D. (passport, driving licence etc) at the door and we were unable to ascertain the policy for children? We gave up on the idea. On Saturday our daughter and son-in-law were delivering us back to Hotel Hipark in Nice, we had said that we wanted to take them to lunch and they came up with a restaurant en-route, 1 kilometre Nice side of Antibes ‘La Toscana Sarl Sici’ 1791 Route de Nice. It was a busy, bustling restaurant with a series of menu options to choose from. We each opted for the 3 course menu with several choices of the main course. For starters it was help yourself at the salad buffet with a selection of meats, pies, fish, vegetables, salads etc, etc. A first class meal could be made from just the buffet but it was cold. We each had different mains, I had suckling pig with chips, it was delicious and an ample portion. We also had a sweet, I was the only one drinking wine and had half litre of red. The bill for 4 = 62.20 euros. Best and cheapest restaurant meal we had had in a week.
We were now back at the Hotel Hipark for 2 nights, one way or another we had had a very hectic week and we planned to do nothing except eat, drink, read and view for the next day and a half. The idea of preparing a meal on Sunday appealed to me so we did our shopping at Carrefour. 2 nice fillets of fresh sea bass, risotto rice, some other tantalising bits and pieces and we had a delicious Sunday lunch washed down with a nice white wine. It was the most relaxed I had been for a few days, visiting with family is pleasurable but can be hard work fitting everything in. The kitchenette facilities worked perfectly.
This review is, I admit, is not only a review of the hotels but also a criticism of Qwerty Travel. My opinion is they are more interested in the profit they are making than ensuring their clients get a satisfactory deal. They are best served selling other providers 2/3 day packages for their 10% rather than creating anything bespoke. My mistake was continuing to book with them after being given the opportunity to bail out, I trusted them. I have learned a fairly expensive lesson but I can live with it. As I have previously stated, it is much cheaper, easier and interesting to be involved in making your own flight, hotel, carhire arrangements booking on the internet, you, yourself are in charge of your requirements and reading hotel reviews will help in your decision, if you have missed anything it is down to you and you learn, at least you haven’t paid a third party for it and phoning your chosen hotel direct with any enquiries before you commit is a safe option.
If you can afford it and you enjoy space the privilege rooms are the ones to go for. A seaview room...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.