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“Over priced average hotel” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa

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Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Via Aurelia Orientale, 369, 16035 Rapallo, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #10 of 30 Hotels in Rapallo
Limerick
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Over priced average hotel”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2010

My husband and I stayed in the Grand Hotel Bristol for 2 nights as part of a 3 week honeymoon around Italy. There is nothing 'grand' about this hotel. It is very average. The standard of accommodation is 3* at best and by no means does it match the prices being charged. We have stayed in far superior hotels for less money. The room was dated and in need of a paint and good clean. The service is appalling. Be prepared to be finished breakfast before your morning coffee arrives!!! The hotel is a good 10-15 minute walk outside Rapallo (not a pretty walk along the sea!) and the hotel pool is situated over a noisy and busy road - not an ideal setting for relaxation. The best thing about this hotel is the view.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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427 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Athens, Greece
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2010

Nice hotel, but too expensive.
But I can explain it because it's the most normal, not old-fashioned hotel in Rapallo.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Gmgr_CM, General Manager at Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa, responded to this review, August 25, 2010
Kind Guest,
many thanks for Your feedback and to spend time to write about us.
We are grateful You consider us a nice Hotel; reading carefulness Your review, we have understood You have noticed we are "the most normal" Hotel in the area.
In the matter of fact the Grand Hotel Bristol has been completely renovated and the space for Guests, together with all services offered free of charge (entire wellness area/pull area) is, considered, actually, unique.
Due to the Portofino Coast destination, and Customer's comment in general, vs services offered, we are not considered expensive.
We do respect and treasure Your comment and we hope to have the possibility, in future, to welcome You again in our Hotel.
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Washington, DC
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2010

My husband and I stayed here for three nights in early August and the hotel surpassed our expectations. The rooms were gracious in size and the bathroom was very well appointed. We've stayed in other four star hotels in italian resorts and we were more than pleased with the quality of the food and service of Grand Hotel Bristol. When we return to this area, we will definitely book at GHB again. As other reviewers have pointed out, the location is slightly outside the center of town and you do need a car to enjoy all the sights of the Italian Riviera. As such, the hotel offers a lovely affordable restaurant off the lobby and a Michelin quality restaurant on the rooftop and both of these options are much better than the dining in town.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Gmgr_CM, General Manager at Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa, responded to this review, August 25, 2010
Kindest Guests,
We wish to thank You for spending time reviewing our Grand Hotel Bristol.
It is such a pride to read the Hotel surpassed Your expectations!
Passion for hospitality is our leitmotif, Customer's satisfaction our primary mission.
Happy You would consider Grand Hotel Bristol a place to return; we are looking forward to welcoming You back, soon.
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Svendborg, Denmark
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2010

Very nice hotel - but when you pay Euro 7,00 for one beer - you think again - but nothing to complain about - very nice rooms - seaview...nice personal.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gmgr_CM, General Manager at Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 24, 2010
Dearest Guest,
we are delighted You have enjoyed Your stay, finding our Hotel very nice, with a nice Staff.
We are sorry You think our Beers range price is expensive, as we do have a list of these items (we do not like to advertise the names) , that offers a variety of products with different prices. We are probabely one of the very few places where You can find also find artisanal beers.
Thanking You for staying at the Grand Hotel Bristol, we wish You an happy summer.
kindest regards
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Berkshire
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2010

Location: When the weather is as hot as it has been this week i.e 32 degrees, a walk into town becomes something to fear. We did this every day to get into town and it was sapping even though we are fit and like walking. The road outside the hotel is very dangerous with cars and mopeds flying around the bend even with a zebra crossing of sorts which they usually ignore. Obviously a hundred years ago it was gentler traffic. As the sun beats down, any shade is pounced upon and the return journey uphill is not good. We always stopped off at a beach watering hole before we made that last leg but even a quenching iced coke couldn't alleviate what was to come! Once inside however, the view from the breakfast terrace was stunning with Santa Margherita and Portofino just across the bay with yachts and cruise ships setting a gorgeous scene.

Rooms: We were on the 4th floor. Room not bad size but as others have said, the carpet could do with a good clean. The dressing table mirror was askew as one leg was broken - how about fixing it a simple job I would have thought? Just about okay wardrobe space. Had a TV but for goodness sake how about investing in at least a news channel in English - all other city hotels have had at least this. The iron balcony is so small that you can't really have a chair on it and only the wide corner balconies were afforded this comfort, this would have been a nice touch to sit out and watch the view as the evening cooled down a little. The bed (two pushed together to make a kingsize) was kind of comfortable but this was a superior room which the drapery on the bed didn't convey although sheets were clean and softer than some. The bathroom was nice and fresh towels replaced twice a day and any request for extra pillows etc were accepted graciously from the maids who worked well. Little stingy though on the toiletries and no slippers or bathrobes for the superior rooms- not ours anyway. All in all, room was just okay but I will say that the rainhead shower was great.

Dining: Breakfast was served on a large terrace with gorgeous view of Portofino and SM and the waiters were suitably dressed as if it was a 5 star hotel with good attention to people's needs however, and I am not a fussy eater and love all different kinds of food, but apart from the first night which raised our hopes, it was a bit downhill after that. Soups were good (except for the rather mud looking spinach soup) and the starters were nice but most of the main dishes were insipid and I would suggest cutting out one of the pretentious courses and serve 3 good courses. The worst was the Friday night buffet. Bits and bobs for starters and the most insipid to date main courses under two tureens - really disappointing. Dessert was the usual tirimasu but even that wasn't up to par, and fruit served at breakfast was made up as fruit salad for dinner and tarted up a bit with a fan of apple slices. No variation on the four desserts as said plus ice cream and a small creme caramel and I think this and the unvarying breakfast menu has been mentioned before. Nice soft scrambled eggs for breakfast but very fatty bacon and small hard rolls and no lovely soft cheese silver wedges lying cold on bowls of ice like in other hotels. The waiters work very hard and one especially was really good fun and interesting to converse with but the kitchen is the key and something needs to looked at seriously.

Ambience: Yes a grand atmosphere but lacking in any kind of entertainment in the evenings especially as it is quite isolated - and I don't mean a full swing band. Perhaps a card table, a piano player - it just lacks that classy touch. Full marks to the barman though - such a nice chap and he certainly knows his stuff and will try and comply with any combination of cocktail.

Amenities: Biggest downside to an otherwise lovely pool is it's depth. This pool is very deep as has been warned before and off putting for anyone who is not a great swimmer. It gives on no confidence as there are no wide circle of steps to approach it gently as there should be just a very rigid steel set. Nice jacuzzi which is free but I should have reported the chap who got in as I got there and whilst I was gone for a minute I came back to find his swimming trunks lying on the steps so no way was I going in there like that! He quickly got the message and left wrapping a towel around him, a definite no-no!
The spa was expensive but as your on holiday pick the cheaper ones and enjoy yourself - a nice head massage or pedicure.

Summary: Not bad hotel but lacking in a few things but mainly flat location and could do with a new menu and ditch the awful buffet. Some of the waiters run around too fast - be efficient but calmness is a prime requirement. Lastly, we required to be checked in for our return flight and were told the previous day by the chap at reception that this would be no problem. However, on the following afternoon we asked the girl at reception to do this and she just wasn't able to and I had to go into the back office and do it myself on their pc which I shouldn't have had to but thank goodness I did - and what an untidy office it was too. Oh well, needs must.

Rapallo: All Italian town, lively, rocky beaches but full of people enjoying themselves and friendly. No serious shopping to be done in this town so just enjoy the atmosphere. Great boat trips especially in hot weather to Santa Margherita: Pretty, quieter than Rapallo and Portofino: Nice experience, very pretty but too much of a rip off and an expensive lunch which was far too expensive for what it was and the bread was stale. However, suprisingly, my favourite boat trip was to San Fruttoso. Longer trip which was just lovely and beautiful scenery of rocks and trees until you approach a little bay full of Italian families enjoying a day out. Pebbly beach but lovely to sit in the cool water lapping your legs. Stayed for quite a time and my rather sore shoulders prove it. Had lunch at one of the handful of small rustic restaurants and I mean really basic but great having mussels caught fresh that morning. It was too hot to get up to the monastry and I was happy where I was. This holiday was definitely not for historical sight seeing. We could have but we didn't make it to Genoa - far too hot for city walking.

All in all a different kind of Italian experience and really beautiful coast but choose a hotel nearer the town. We were spoilt by the Baglioni in Bologna last year so maybe that's why we were somewhat disappointed by some aspects of this hotel and its location - stunning terrace view was the highlight.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2010

The guy on the bar was absolutely lovely and so attentive. Makes an excellent Belini!

We stayed in the Hemingway suite - this room is lovely. However, the spa in the room was not cleaned to the standards you would expect from a hotel of GBH standard.

Location is not great. We had to drive to go for dinner, which when you like a glass of italian wine or a nice lemoncello to finish the meal is not ideal.

Additionally, we asked the gentleman at the counter for a later checkout and unknowingly to the staff my partner and me are both italian speakers and there was some dicussion with the other lady on duty, which he started off saying we could stay for a few hours, however, she overrode him for no reason and said they can only have 1 hour even though as they discussed there was no one in the room that evening.

This dissapointed me tremedously as they presumed that we couldn't understand and additionally, after paying to stay in the most expensive room they had you think they would extend for a couple of hours to allow us to enjoy the hotel before leaving.

Unfortuantely for them, this resulted in us not returning to GBH when we returned for 5 nights a couple of weeks later and instead went for Location, Location, Location in a value for money BandB in Santa Margherita...and additionally, meant that we did not have anymore spa treatments that afternoon.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Gmgr_CM, General Manager at Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 25, 2010
Gentle Customer,
we are deeply sorry we could not fully satisfy You expectations.
The Grand Hotel Bristol is not in the town centre and it has never been advertised differentely. This is one of the most seeked features by our Guests; as a matter of fact to be located at 1,5 Km from the chaotic centre, which is reachable through a scenic path, is considered a plus.
We feel right to apologize for the "non-standard" of cleaning in the Suite Spa even if our Guests and mistery guest give us duly a very high score on cleaning; we will be glad to solve all our Guest's problems, as we are at fully disposal, but we do need to learn about it during the stay, not after checked out.
I am sorry to be really surprised about what You contend on Reception Staff; they are well educated and above all in favor of Guests and, does not matter which kind of room, as all our Customers are "Guests" , a late check-out is permissible only if does not disatvantage the following one. The Hemingway Presidential Suite has been occupied that night.
We feel raised in reading Your satisfaction about Bar service and the excellent Bellini.
Absolutely "Guest oriented", we will treasure Your suggestion, for which we thank You.
Kindest regards.
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UK
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
114 helpful votes 114 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2010

This is a really fantastic hotel in a perfect position 10-15 mins walk along a pedestrianised walkway from the centre of Ravello (mainly uphill). The views from the hotel terraces are really lovely with a view of Rapallo/Santa Margherita and Portofino. There is some traffic noise as the hotel is situated on the main road into Rapallo but this did not bother us. You can also hear the trains passing by from time to time but again this was not an issue. There is also a bus stop right outside the hotel if you don’t have a car or don’t fancy the walk (2 euro or 1 euro if you buy tickets in Rapallo from the bus station or tabachi shops)!! The staff through out the hotel are very friendly and professional and made us more than welcome. Our room was on the 2nd floor on the side of the hotel with a small balcony overlooking gardens and the sea – it was lovely to have the French doors open and have a nice breeze in the room. The rooms are kept very clean – the towels were changed 2 x daily and every evening fresh towels were left in the room for the morning. There is a safe in the room which is very easy to operate. There is also a mini bar in the room – we bought our own water/drinks in Rapallo and chilled them ourselves as they were very expensive from the mini bar/pool bar (5 euro for can coke or 3 euro for tiny water).

There is a large room where breakfast is served or you can have it outside on the beautiful terrace with an amazing sea view. Breakfast is a buffet – the only hot items are scrambled egg and bacon but there is a huge cold selection of cheese/meats/cereals/fruit/breads/yoghurts and juices – the staff serves you with tea/coffee or cappuchino. We never had dinner in the hotel as we prefer to eat out in the evening so can’t really comment on the food at dinner.

There is a lovely swimming pool and decked area with lots of sunloungers – there were always plenty available. We also used the “wellness centre” every day – there is no charge for this and it included a Jacuzzi/sauna/steam room/relaxation area and fancy showers. We never used the spa but you could have a full range of treatments if you wanted to. There is a pool bar but as mentioned earlier it was very expensive.

The hotel is in a great location on the Italian Riviera and it is really easy to visit anywhere on the coast by car/bus/train. We went to Santa Margherita/Portofino (by boat)/Camogli/Cinque Terre/Zoagli/Sestre Levante/Montallegro (cable car from Rapallo).

I will definitely be visiting the hotel again.

  • Stayed June 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gmgr_CM, General Manager at Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 25, 2010
Kindest Guest,
we are very glad You could enjoy completely our marvellous area, choosing us as Your perfect base for several sightseeing.
We would always like to be a special place to remember and, like You wrote, to visit again.
Many thanks,
our best regards.
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Additional Information about Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa

Address: Via Aurelia Orientale, 369, 16035 Rapallo, Italy
Location: Italy > Liguria > Italian Riviera > Rapallo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Spa Hotel in Rapallo
#4 Business Hotel in Rapallo
#5 Luxury Hotel in Rapallo
#7 Romantic Hotel in Rapallo
#10 Family Hotel in Rapallo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Hotel Bristol Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 83
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Stunning views, amazing service in one of the most beautiful corner in the world, Tigullio Gulf.In a 1908 Belle Epoque Hotel, completely refurbished, the atmosphere is always happy, colours are light, Staff is smiling.Perfect spot to visit Cinque Terre, Forte dei Marmi, Portofino, Genova and the entire Riviera Ligure.Amazing food, local and international, Staff attentive and pleased to be useful. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Hotel Rapallo
Nh Hotels Rapallo
Grand Hotel Bristol Rapallo

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