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“Absolutely Fantastic” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Des Tourelles

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Des Tourelles
2.0 of 5 Hotel   |   2 blvd. James-Fazy, Geneva 1201, Switzerland (Saint-Gervais Temple)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #64 of 106 Hotels in Geneva
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Absolutely Fantastic”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2008

Yes it is true that this hotel is not much to look at but the experience i gained from the hotel was absolutely amazing. The hotel staff are very friendly and they are even willing to let you use their kitchen to prepare simple meals from the grocery store. This is a plus for those who are trying to keep their trip low budget, because the meals in Geneva can get quite expensive. The hotel gives you free bus passes, which let you use the bus whenever you need during your entire trip. I was in room 34, and the view from the balcony was breath taking. A perfect vision of the river and the mountains beyond. There were two double beds and a single, and there was still enough room to fool around. Geneva is a small city, so it is convenient to walk from place to place. The hotel is very clean and cozy. The charm that this little hotel has to offer goes far beyond 5 star hotels. I would stay here again for sure, it was absolutely lovely!

  • Liked — View, Service
  • Disliked — Small Washroom
  • Stayed March 2007, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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49 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (5)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Turkish first
  • Any
English first
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2007

Had my Reservation and checked in. The place is absolutely terrible. The foyer smelled bad. The rroms were stuffy. You can open the window but then you cannot sleep. Lots of noise; many people stumbling in early in the morning. There is absolutely no reason to stay at this hotel.

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — Everything - - No redeeming qualities
  • Stayed April 2007, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Grove, Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
238 reviews 238 reviews
146 hotel reviews
Reviews in 135 cities Reviews in 135 cities
284 helpful votes 284 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2005

Hotel des Tourelles is a convenient, comfortable French style hotel very near the main Geneva train station. We had asked a friend who resides in Geneva where to find a cozy, economical B & B and this was his recommendation. We stayed one night and were pleased to find a cube refrigerator, 20-plus channel cable television/radio, teapot (with only camomile “tea” and sugar provided, however), and an adequately furnished toilet/shower. Des Tourelles was walking distance from the central railroad/bus terminal, itself conveniently connected to the airport by frequent free trains, and we thought the hotel was easy to find. (Even and odd building numbers are on opposite sides of the street but not necessarily directly across from a consecutive counterpart.)

The bed we had was typical of Switzerland (not very luxurious; low to the floor) as the bathroom was as well (small, utilitarian, rubber floor) but over the years we have stayed in three or four Geneva “economy” hotels (nothing is inexpensive in Geneva) and this was the best we have found so far. Things were a bit rag-tag (insufficient electrical outlets, a missing baseboard, some chipped paint, nowhere for the refrigerator but the floor) but the room was clean, a small fold-away suitcase platform was provided, and there were individual table lamps beside the bed with a convenient switch there for the overhead light there as well.

The elevator was more spacious than in most phone-booth style French hotel lifts but steps still intervene blocking wheel-chair access. Desk staff was very friendly and cheerful and the breakfast area was bright and comfortable. We found the “left luggage” services of the hotel more convenient than storage lockers at the train station and the tram/bus service nearby was frequent.

This birthplace of Presbyterianism and home of Rousseau seems always to be the same. The historic district is a steep climb without public transit (unless you hire a taxi to take you part of the way to a specific destination) and the commercial zone seems less gilt-edged than Zurich and less quaint than Basel. However, Lac Leman always is a feast for the eyes, the climate is superior, and the room faucet dispenses Evian water with no price tag--the best tasting public water in the world! Tourist suggestions: if at all possible, when in Geneva get to the Bodmer Museum, one of the world’s finest private collections of literary antiquities and relatively unknown. Also, ask folks which local bus to take to the nearby cable car to ascend the top of Mount Saleve on a clear day. (Take along your passport since you must cross into France to get there!)

  • Stayed December 2005, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
11 reviews 11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
77 helpful votes 77 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2005

Stayed here just for the night in Sept 2005. We got more than we expected. We had a fantastic room with its own little enclave with table and chairs looking over the river. The bed and bathroom were fine.

This is not the Hilton but it is a good budget hotel. The floor is quite creaky and it could do with a renovation for sure.

Location was good, only a 5 minute walk from the train station.

Breakfast was typically European fare and was adequate enough.

The big positives were that you had a bar fridge, fan and alarm clock. These are basic in hotels anywhere else in the world, but in Europe that's like 4 star. This was a big winner for us so we could enjoy some cheap COLD beers overlooking the river.

The traffic noise was kept out by double glazed windows, although we were the furtherest room away from it. There was a room that virtually overhung the 4 lane bridge - that may have been a different story.

  • Stayed September 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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A TripAdvisor Member
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2005

We found the staff unwelcoming and unhelpful. breakfast was served grudgingly so we took to going out to a local cafe instead. Would not stay there again.

Stayed December 2004
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
66 helpful votes 66 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2005

Des Tourelles is a basic, functional hotel without frills. Its appearance is somewhat old fashioned, and I suspect it is a while since it was last decorated. However it is certainly clean. Bedding is made up daily, and fresh towels are also provided daily.

The rooms are small, but the ones at the front of the hotel are slightly larger and have good views of the Rhone. The bathroom is very small, but again functional, and the shower has decent pressure. There is no air conditioning in the rooms, although a fan is provided. This does mean that on a hot night it is necessary to open the windows for ventilation, and the streets around the hotel are quite noisy at night.

Breakfast is basic - a couple of rolls, some cereal and a croissant. Coffee, fruit juice and yoghurts are provided in a buffet arrangement. The breakfast room is fairly small and gets quite busy on times.

Staff are helpful in a Swiss sort of way - they're not the warmest hosts, but if you need anything reception is manned until 10pm and can provide water, beer and a few other snacks and drinks.

The hotel is conveniently located about 5 minutes walk from the central station and most of the main city streets.

In summary, a basic hotel with no real problems, and about right for the price in Geneva.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Tx
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2005

For the money, I suspect this hotel deserves a 4, though one should be aware there's a good chance that it's going to cost you more than you first thought when looking at the advertised deals.

The greatest strength of the Des Tourelles is its location and the large size and airiness of the corner rooms. It is right on the river so has great views out window, short walk to the jete, two tram lines by it so easy to get to train station etc. The corner three-person (three twin beds, no doubles beds) rooms are also quite large and high-ceilinged for a relatively inexpensive room (by apparent Genevan standards) with a delightful breakfast nook in the corner turret. We greatly enjoyed watching the water and activity from our nook while eating the delightful cheese, croissant, fruit and tea/coffee breakfast provided. My husband ate in the dining room and I think enjoyed a more elaborate breakfast. My husband also found the pallet-mattress beds quite comfortable--I thought they were certainly OK. The staff were pleasant in a detached way.

Biggest downside is that we never saw the fine print that "children free" only applied to children under 7 and the booking agency never asked her age. It was a huge shock when our bill was 50% greater than expected because our child was 13. (The shock was worse because we'd turned down a slightly cheaper special at the Mandarin Oriental because we thought it was too expensive! I tell myself that room was probably much smaller and the view not as nice.) Even the booked price was higher than what was advertised when we first went to the site.

Other noteworthy drawback was the creatively tiny bathroom --I literally bruised my elbow and it was hard to dress after showering in it. And, the room was sadly undecorated . . . wonderful Victorian structure . . . just needed color and design sense which would not have cost a penny more than the drab and random "design" choices.

None the less, we'd be very likely to stay there again due to the room size and location. Even though it cost a lot more than I expected, I doubt if we'd do any better, and there was a lot about the room and view that was charming, plus the location couldn't be beat.

  • Stayed March 2004
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Des Tourelles

Address: 2 blvd. James-Fazy, Geneva 1201, Switzerland
Location: Switzerland > Canton of Geneva > Geneva > Saint-Gervais Temple
Free Breakfast
Hotel Style:
Ranked #64 of 106 Hotels in Geneva
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2 star — Des Tourelles 2*
Number of rooms: 23
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Also Known As:
Des Tourelles Hotel Geneva
Des Tourelles Geneva

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