Hotel Federale is right down the hill from the train station and at the top of the hill which descends into Lugano's old city center. We stayed in early December of last year and found the staff extremely helpful and friendly with good recommendations for places to see and spots to eat.
Breakfast in the hotel is delicious - cheese, meats, hearty breads and pastries plus delicious dark roast coffee and more. We also had a convenient and delicious dinner in the hotel one night as well, but vegetarian options are slim.
Accommodations are nice, but not super luxurious - comfortable firm beds and spacious rooms. We splurged for the Superior Double room on the very top floor - the views were unbeatable and it was enjoyable to open up the balcony doors in the brisk winter air. Definitely recommend this hotel - a solid choice.