We stayed here as a couple for 7 nights from 07/09 booked through Thomsons.
If you want a brief "heads up" then in summary this is a very nice hotel with one of the best views you'll get anywhere in the world. It has friendly staff, the food is good and it is utterly spotless in every respect. The only negative is that the walk into town down the busy main road, whilst not particularly far, is thoroughly unpleasant.
If you want more detail then our experiences and comments as follows:
Location - Set into the hillside at the extreme southern end of the resort gives the hotel probably the best view in Sorrento, not only do you get a panoramic view of the Bay of Naples you also get a view of the whole of Sorrento itself. It truly is magnificent and to wake up every morning and open the shutters to view like this is something pretty special! However, there is a downside to the location in that there is a 20min walk into the centre of town. The walk in either direction is not particularly strenuous but the first part of the walk down Via Capo, a very busy road with narrow pavements, is thoroughly unpleasant and downright dangerous in places as you have to step off the pavement to allow others to pass. Previous reviewers have indicated that the walk into town is 10min; this is correct in that you arrive at at the extreme southern end of Corso Italia. There is then a further 10min walk to Piazza Tasso which is the heart of the town although this is a much more pleasant walk. We are avid walkers but we found that the nature of the walk down Via Capo put us off our normal after dinner stroll into town. Another point worthy of note for potential travellers (particularly sun worshippers) considering hotels in this specific area of the resort is that the hotels which are set into the cliffs across the road (eg Belair, Settimo Cielo) are in full shade including the pool areas by early afternoon whereas the Minerva's rooftop pool area is is in full sun through to early evening.
Rooms - We had a 5th floor room with sea view and balcony. It was well above and set back from the busy road to ensure that noise was not an issue. The room decor was pleasant enough but struck us as a little odd, a cross between Art Deco and Ali Baba & the Forty Thieves, and seemed totally out of keeping with the traditional feel of the rest of the hotel. Our room was a little cramped, mainly due to the presence of a huge sofa, and lacked sufficient drawer space. The bathroom was adequate if a little poorly lit but the shower was very good. The bed(s) was large & reasonably comfortable and good shutter doors kept out the early morning sun. The A/C was just adequate and is controlled centrally despite the the controller in the room.
Service - All the staff were very friendly and obliging but they were not the most attentive from time to time although we are are perhaps being a little "picky" here
Food - We stayed on a half board basis. Breakfasts were very disappointing, set out in a very small area of the dining room the choices were unimaginative & repetitive, particularly the hot selection which consisted of hot dog sausages & scrambled eggs one day and fried eggs and bacon the next repeated through the 7 days of our stay. We had lunch here on a number of occasions and we found the menu varied and the food quality and quantity was excellent. We found it cheaper to lunch at the hotel than in the resort and the quality we enjoyed was as good as anything we had in the resort. Dinner was also generally very good with a decent choice of starters and mains. The pasta starters were generous portions and were absolutely superb, amongst the best we've ever had. Mains were a little more "nouvelle cusine" in portion size but more than adequate when balanced with the starters. The desserts however did leave a little to be desired with a very limited and uninspiring choice. All the meals were served on the terrace with one of the world's iconic panoramas spread out in front of you - fantastic!
Cleanliness - Absolutely spotless, we never saw a speck of litter or dirt anywhere. Empty glasses, crockery etc. were always moved quickly and tables everywhere were always pristine. The maids were like wraiths, so discrete you never knew they were there until you opened a door to a brand new room. Our bedlinen was changed every day & we can't recall this in any other hotel we've stayed in in!
Pool Area - Rooftop with a small pool, a very pleasant and well kept area. It was relatively small but we always got sunbeds when we wanted them although the black sunbeds were certainly the most uncomfortable I've ever had the misfortune to lay on! The blue ones were much better!
Drinks - Expensive as Sorrento generally is unfortunately! Beer (Nastro Azzurro) E3.50/bottle or E5 for Birra Grande (not worth buying the Grande - you only get an eggcup full more than a bottle!). Wine E4.50/glass or from E12/bottle (average about E18). Spirits E3.50 upwards. Cocktails E6 upwards. Coffee E2.50. Costly and it soon adds up! You can pay by drink at the main bar but in other areas its charged to the room which you can settle as you go or wait until the end of your stay.
As we said at the top, lots of positives and just one real negative - the Via Capo walk.
Lastly an apology to Caroline & Dennis our balcony friends! We are so sorry that we didn't say goodbye! We thought that your flight was early like ours and we would see you at breakfast! We enjoyed our chats and regards to mum and friends!
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Minerva Sorrento
- Minerva Hotel Sorrento