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“Faded elegance with bizarre rooms and disappointing breakfast” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Hotel Ortigia

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Grand Hotel Ortigia
5.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Viale Mazzini 12, 96100 Syracuse, Sicily, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #28 of 66 Hotels in Syracuse
Scarsdale, New York
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Faded elegance with bizarre rooms and disappointing breakfast”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 3, 2012

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.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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261 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (30)
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English first
Southampton, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2011

Do not stay here . We went for 5 days - 2 days private and 3 days business . This is supposed luxury hotel . We had to change room because the first room was very smelly . The second room was the noisiest room we have ever stayed in and the aircon barely worked . Our friend tried 3 rooms and then left to a different hotel . There is no fresh juice , hardly any fresh fruit , nowhere to sit in the sun , the leisure centre/pool is always closed , the boat to the beach was not running ,and the 2 times we tried to pay the bill they tried to rip us off for an extra 40 Euros a night and then an extra 116 Euros a night . Siracusa is a lovely place , but to enjoy it do not stay here

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled on business
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Leeds, United Kingdom
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2011

We stayed for one night only, our room was not very clean the bathroom had a horrible smell and the breakfast was not great either. On the plus side it has free parking and is in a good location. The front desk staff are really helpful.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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Dublin
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2010

A pleasant stay. Staff were friendly, rooms if a bit dated were clean and comfortable. Breakfast was great, good selection, one of the best we had in Sicily and the view from breakfast room was fab. A great location to explore the area with free parking opposite. Overall not very luxurious but very good value for money and staff were nice.
Great restaurans and shopping nearby

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2010 via mobile

not good for bussiness trips. Wifi unaccessible from the room they gave me,and personnel indifferent,not even tried to apologise for the "free wifi connection available".The rooms seem quite good but overall the services were below expectations

  • Stayed December 2010
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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San Francisco
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 7, 2010

Having spent nearly three weeks traveling in Sicily, we were very disappointed in the Grand Hotel Siracusa. While it had many of the trappings of a grand hotel, it fell short on most accounts. Lights didn't work (even after asking for repair), heating system was awry, promised internet reception in the room was available only in the lobby (making a working vacation nearly impossible), the breakfast was second rate (nothing hot except the coffee, which was not up to usual Italian standards, unlike most places in Sicily we stayed), and the desk service -- particularly a rude evening receptionist (male) -- was often misleading (such as walking directions).
I would not recommend that discerning travelers stay here or tour companies use this hotel.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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East Anglia
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2010

My husband and I stayed here for four nights in early November. We felt the room we were first shown was very claustrophobic and asked to be moved, as it was out of season this was no problem and we had a beautiful room on the 2nd floor overlooking the marina. The staff were warm, welcoming and extremely helpful throughout our stay. The hotel is not ultra modern, in fact it is a little faded and old fashioned but to us that was a great part of its charm. We were very comfortable throughout our stay and would certainly return.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Hotel Ortigia

Address: Viale Mazzini 12, 96100 Syracuse, Sicily, Italy
Location: Italy > Sicily > Province of Syracuse > Syracuse
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Syracuse
#6 On the Beach Hotel in Syracuse
#17 Luxury Hotel in Syracuse
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:5 star — Grand Hotel Ortigia 5*
Number of rooms: 58
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Grand Hotel Syracuse
Grand Hotel Ortigia Sicily/Syracuse, Italy

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