I wanted to make a special point to write about our stay at the Hotel Del Mare recently from October 11th and 12th, 2013. On Friday, 10-11-13, we left Rome to head to Sorrento, via Naples, to see Pompeii. This particular day was the 14th day of our 17 day trip throughout Italy. All was going well with traveling by train and bus. We left Rome in the morning and took the fast train to Naples. This train arrived on the upper floor in the Naples station and then we needed to go down a floor to the Circumvesuviana (local train) to travel to Sorrento. I had a back-pack on and was pulling one suitcase while my wife had a bag strapped over her shoulder in front of her and another suitcase. I stopped to buy the train tickets and pulled out my wallet to pay for the tickets (1st mistake) I should have had the cash needed for the train tickets ready and only pulled that out of my pocket, not my entire wallet. Then we found the train platform and we were waiting for the train to come. We had been told to not be to the back of the train due to pick- pockets. There were so many people waiting to get on the train, we could not get to the front of the train. The train came and passed us by, by two cars. We had to run to get to the last door and once we got there, the train was packed full of people, mostly young men, so I pushed my way onto the train. I had my hand on my wallet in my front pocket. When I turned to check on my wife, she was half in and out of the train, she then got pushed, so I let go of my wallet (second mistake), to help her, went back to my wallet and in that split second my wallet was gone. I turned to the young men behind me and demanded my wallet, however they all gave me a blank stare. At that moment, I realized that all of my cash and credit cards were gone (third mistake-always separate your cash and credit cards on yourself and between your wife and yourself). Also, keep your money belt well tucked into your pants - below your naval, with a card and some cash, do not wear it at your stomach level, and keep your shirt tucked in!
We decided to go to Sorrento where the Hotel Del Mare was located and see what we could do. Once there, Giovanni Galano-the owner of the hotel, gave us directions that the credit cards need to be canceled as soon as possible. He allowed us to use his phone multiple times to contact two banks to cancel the cards. (Tip here, have your credit card phone numbers with you) Then he allowed us to still use his phone to process through one of the banks, a Western Union Money Transfer, so we could get some cash. Through the whole process, Giovanni was so very positive and stated multiple times that this has happened to many people who use the train and are not cautious, and that everything will get better. After about 5-6 hours since my credit cards and cash were stolen, I was able to get replacement Euros from a Western Union Rep about 2.5 miles from the hotel. Once back to the hotel, Geovanni was still there checking on us.
We checked into our room and it was great, plenty large for two people and so very clean. We did not over look the water, yet had a small balcony, however the hotel has a beautiful balcony/terrace on the top floor that you can use and look out over the whole lagoon. Breakfast choices every morning were very plentiful and fresh. Due to being away from the main street of Sorrento, the noise was very minimal. The walk from the train station took us about 20 min and was not bad at all. Giovanni’s staff was so very helpful and every time we saw them, they reassured us that all is well. Their service to us was nothing less than being like family members, they truly care about the people who stay with them!
My wife and I would highly recommend the Hotel Del Mare in Sorrento to anyone and we know that Giovanni knows how to give you the best service available in Sorrento!!! To avoid the train issues at the first couple of stops out of Naples, you can take the ferry from Naples to Sorrento, otherwise try to sit in the first car of the train and have credit cards and money divided as stated above. We did take the train back to Naples from Sorrento, and we were in the first car and had no issues at all the entire way. We also took the same train from Sorrento to Pompeii for an afternoon, again with no issues at all.
Scott and Deb
E-mail Giovanni with your desires. He will accommodate the best he can.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
I will not forget easily your distress when you arrived at the hotel. I only did what anybody, with a conscience, would have done, my dearest Scott and Deb. Your description of how people should behave, when they arrive at Naples Railway Station, is just enlightening and I hope many people will make a good note of it.
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I will send your letter to our Authorities: the Mayor, the President of Sorrento Hotel Association, the Chief of our Police Department, the Chamber of Commerce etc. to condemn these outrageous crimes that every day fill in the chronicle, at the expense of vulnerable holidaymakers whose only blame was to choose to come and visit this part of the world.
Thank you very much Scott and Deb for your contribution to draw attention to this disgraceful behaviour of a very small minority of my fellow countrymen I am ashamed of.
Should you ever consider coming this way again, please let me know, I will be honoured to welcome you again.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.