This hotel is in a wonderful setting in Ortigia, overlooking the harbor. And the hotel has a "grand" appearance from the outside and from the common rooms.
Now, the problems:
The rooms on the first floor (and maybe others) are basically two-story closets. At some point, a builder took the first floor, which has very high ceilings, and divided it into miniscule rooms (like 100 square feet--maybe) and then inserted a staircase in each room so as to create an alcove. So you essentially get two rooms, a bottom room with room for a table and a TV (and nothing else) and a top room with a bed (and nothing else). The stairway linking them is pretty high--about ten feet--so not disability friendly at all. And the bathroom is on just one of the two floors (the bottom floor in our case, the top floor for our traveling companions) so getting to it if you are on the wrong floor can involve a climb. The pictures on the hotel's new website border, which make the rooms appear spacious, are downright fraudulent.
The breakfast for what is allegedly a "4 star" hotel are ridiculous. Great breakfasts are one of the joys of traveling in Sicily (fresh orange juice, fresh bread, fresh ricotta) , but not here. The "orange juice" is a high-fructose fruit flavored something-or-other. The cheese is processed by the slice--probably Kraft's. The bread could tasted and felt like Wonder Bread--hay, maybe it was Wonder Bread. In short, if for some reason you liked the Breakfast you could always replicate it, when back in the states, by going to your closest Seven-Eleven.
Internet service was spotty--save your documents every few minutes or you will lose them.
The only nice thing to say is that Ortigia is a really nice town, and I would rather have gone there--and stayed at the Grand Hotel--than not to have gone there at all.
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Hotel Syracuse
- Grand Hotel Ortigia Sicily/Syracuse, Italy