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“Rather disappointing this time” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel des Balances

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Hotel des Balances
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Am Weinmarkt, Lucerne 6000, Switzerland   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 64 Hotels in Lucerne
Gloucestershire, England
Top Contributor
200 reviews 200 reviews
145 hotel reviews
Reviews in 130 cities Reviews in 130 cities
307 helpful votes 307 helpful votes
“Rather disappointing this time”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2007

We had stayed at Des Balances on a previous occasion and booked our rooms confidently, knowing the hotel and its location to be suitable for our needs (ourselves and our two elderly mothers) On this occasion, however, we were rather disappointed - not only were our rooms rather small (to be fair, we had booked online at a discount price) but our memories of a smart, upmarket hotel with modern, well equipped rooms were not as accurate as we thought - and even the large, river view rooms had the same small formica wardrobe!. Certainly, the bar/restaurant was friendly and offered a warm welcome, but there was no real alternative place to sit and relax in the evening and the lack of a cosy lounge was a drawback. When there was a function in progress, the whole of the ground floor was taken over, leaving only the bar/restaurant available for hotel guests.

The staff were friendly and helpful (with the possible exception of the receptionist who claimed to have booked us a table at the restaurant she recommended and gave directions to - only for us to arrive and find it closed every Monday!) but we would have found porter/concierge helpful in our circumstances, too (there appeared to be none)

We enjoyed the restaurant very much indeed and both the service and the quality of food we experienced for an extended family lunch was very good indeed. I was, however, surprised that this fine Swiss hotel does not have home-made Birchermuesli on offer for breakfast...possibly the only hotel in Switzerland to serve pre-packed pots of the factory-made variety!

The location of Des Balances is unbeatable, the building itself is wonderful and the exterior breathtaking. Yes, we'd stay here again, but perhaps we'd not have such high expectations.

(One lasting memory is of the huge floor-to-ceiling mirrors in each room, hung at possibly the most unflattering angle and one which must make every guest wonder whether they really should eat the pillow chocolate, however wafer-thin it happens to be!)

  • Liked — Location, location, location
  • Disliked — The lack of somewhere to relax with family/friends
  • Tips/Secrets — Check if your cheap deal will result in a cheap room!
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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554 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (127)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
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English first
milton keynes UK
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 14, 2006

As per all the reviews this hotel lived up to expectations. Friendly staff, the rooms were lovely decor and of quite a good size. The delivery of chocolates to the room on the evening of arrival is a nice touch. The location is what makes this hotel - right in the centre of the old town and right on the river. It stands majestically on the river and the whole atmosphere makes you feel you are staying some where special and are important. A few minutes walk to both the train station, this is an excellent hotel for the price and deserves to be number 1 on TA.

  • Liked — interior decor
  • Disliked — restaurant - not really my food and a bit pricey
  • Tips/Secrets — stay here!
  • Stayed November 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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London, UK
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2006

Our stay at Des Balances was wonderful. It is difficult to know where to begin when singign the hotel's praises but I shall try. The location is nothing short of excellent. In the heart oft he pedestrianised shopping zone and right on the lake, in full view of 'the' bridge. (You can get to the front of the hotel through this zone so don't worry). There are many wonderful restaurants very close by and the hotels' restaurant food is delicious. Breakfast was excellent too and the the waiting staff very friendly. In general, we found the staff to be ever so helpful and professional. Our room was very spacious, even though it was not one of the new refurbished ones. It was still very clean and tastefully furnished. We travelled with an 8 month old and there was plenty of space for the cot etc. A lovely touch was that each evening, a housekeeper turned down beds and left chocolates! Our rate included breakfast which made the already excellent value even better and at breakfast each morning, the hotel provides information on weather and activity suggestions for the day. We loved everything about Lucerne and Hotel Des Balances.

  • Liked — location
  • Disliked — nothing disliked
  • Tips/Secrets — use the driving directions the hotel's website provides
  • Stayed November 2006, traveled with family
    • 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)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
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London
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2006

I stayed for 2 nights in Nov 07. Lovely boutique hotel, beautiful views from the river side - I would heartily recommend booking a river view, as these rooms have a little balcony and a truly magical setting. Food from the restaurant was a little dull, but the bar/restaurant area is modern and aesthetically pleasing. Centrally located, about 5-10 mins walk from the Bahnoff (train station) and close to all museums, shopping etc. (Recommend the Rosengart collection - wonderful Picassos, Klee, Chagall). It is difficult to navigate your way there by car, but valet parking is available.

The room I had was small, bathroom a touch undersized, but all was clean and comfortable. A pleasant, mid-size hotel of 5 storeys right on the riverfront. Lovely.

  • Liked — The view, and free internet point was handy too.
  • Disliked — Food quality from the restaurant.
  • Stayed October 2006, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Oak Hill, VA
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2006

We stayed at the Hotel Des Balances in early October for 2 nights and it was amazing! There is no other way to describe the view and hotel location besides exceptional. We had a river view room and it was definitely worth it. Everything is within walking distance to this hotel, including a ton of restaurants and all the sites. The room itself was superb, very large, clean and modern. The hotel staff was wonderful; spoke perfect English and very helpful. The breakfast buffet was great…fresh breads, juices, bacon, etc. I would highly recommend this hotel to anyone going to Lucerne and we will definitely stay here again!

  • Liked — Location, Staff, Rooms
  • Disliked — Nothing!
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 4, 2006

You absolutely can't beat this view. We just returned from our honeymoon and our two days here were a definite highlight. Waking up and watching the sunrise out of our window was unforgettable.
The room itself was clean and simple but not outstanding. If you go, make sure you have at least one dinner at the restaurant downstairs.

  • Liked — view
  • Disliked — price
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 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.
Los Angeles
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2006

We had a wonderful stay here. It is definitely worth the price to get a river view. The room was a good size and very clean. The bed was comfortable too. The staff was friendly, helpful and they spoke English. The location was fantastic. It was centrally located and we were able to walk to all of the shops and restaurants. From the train station, it was only about a 7 minute walk. We also had an enjoyable and delicious dinner on the terrance of the restaurant.

There is no air-conditioning in the room. With the windows open, you do get a slight breeze. We were there at the beginning of Sept. so the weather was quite nice anyways so it didn't matter too much.

We would definitely stay there again!

  • Liked — The location and cleanliness
  • Disliked — no air-conditioning and only one english channel
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel des Balances

Address: Am Weinmarkt, Lucerne 6000, Switzerland
Phone Number:
Location: Switzerland > Canton of Lucerne > Lucerne
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Lucerne
#3 Luxury Hotel in Lucerne
#4 Romantic Hotel in Lucerne
#4 Business Hotel in Lucerne
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel des Balances 4*
Number of rooms: 57
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hotel Des Balances - a four star superior property – is located in the beautiful heart of Lucerne’s Old Town. The ideal starting point for shopping and sight seeing.It has 56 tastefully renovated rooms and suites with a view of the famous Chapel Bridge, Jesuit Church and Mount Pilatus.Enjoy market fresh creations in our Restaurant Balances with lounge, bar and terrace directly at the river Reuss. 14 Gault Millau points stand for culinary art.Individual premises impressively combine tradition and modern comfort and provide the perfect framework for your unique event.Treat yourself to insBrational moments at the Hotel des Balances. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Des Balances Hotel
Des Balances Lucerne

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