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“Beautiful hotel, brilliant location” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Riva del Sole

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Hotel Riva del Sole
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Via Lungomare G Giardina, 90015 Cefalu, Sicily, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #17 of 35 Hotels in Cefalu
Brentwood, United Kingdom
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Beautiful hotel, brilliant location”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2013

I stayed here with extended family (party of 7 including 1 child) for a week at the end of May. The hotel is perfectly located, easily reachable from Palermo (which we flew in to - c. 1 hour drive) and right on what must be the best beach in Sicily. We had 3 rooms across 7 people, and each room was extremely spacious, clean and well maintained. Whilst there were messages in the rooms requested that no food or drink were consumed in them, no-one questioned us buying bottles of water for the night so that did not cause a problem. Breakfasts were well varied, and whilst it was disappointing that they are served in the basement rooms rather than the beautiful restaurant, that was my only negative comment here. The hotel's best asset by far is the staff. The concierge spoke brilliant English and was so warm and welcoming. And I must also mention the bar staff who looked after us in the evenings and made a drink before bed with the family a really lovely time. The only point I would flag to any other families staying is the lack of pool (clearly mentioned by the hotel - we did not expect one) - the sea can get quite rough so if you have young children wanting to swim, maybe consider a villa/hotel with a pool to accommodate this. All in, the hotel made our stay even more special and I highly recommend to anyone. Previous issues flagged on this website (lack of hot water, lack of internet access) were not encountered thankfully so I think the owner has taken note.

Room Tip: Sea view is definitely worth getting if you can.
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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208 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
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sydney
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2013

We stayed at Hotel Riva del Sole in mid May for 1 night. It is perfectly located in Cefalu opposite the beach and just a short 5min walk to the old town.

The service was fantastic, our bags were taken straight up to our room and we were always greeted by multiple staff members on the ground floor. We had a sea view room with a balcony which did not disappoint. The room was clean and spacious. There was a safe and a mini bar fridge. The bathroom was small yet good. The hotel offered free wifi which worked well for us. It was still fairly cold so breakfast was served inside with a large selection of Italian pastries and yogurt. The hotel also offered free parking at a large lot next door, on the road the hotel is very easy to find as it is well signposted. It is a 3 star hotel with 5 star service, I would definitely stay here again.

  • Stayed May 2013, 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
whitehouse station
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 31, 2013

lovely hotel with a fabulous staff, across the street from the beach. They also have a very good restaurant(which we ate at). We had a room facing the garden which was very nice. Rooms also face the beach and the sea with nice balcony's. Elevator is available. Breakfast included. Want anything, just ask. Cleanliness beyond belief. I have read some negative reviews about certain things, I will tell you that those people should stay home and go to the Jersey shore. Typical American tourists who think they deserve. NO. This pace is wonderful, so Go.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Havre de Grace, Maryland
Top Contributor
162 reviews 162 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 66 cities Reviews in 66 cities
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 11, 2013

Having screwed up and missed booking one night's lodging, we searched TripAdvisor and decided to try Riva del Sole. We were not disappointed.

The hotel is immaculately clean, with marble lobby floors and tiled rooms. Breakfast buffet was abundant, with ample choices for healthy eating, as well as pastries. The view from the dining room is an expansive ocean view.

Service staff at check-in as well as at breakfast were helpful.

The hotel is right on the waterfront, across from the esplanade. Would definitely stay again.

Room Tip: Better to stay on the top (2nd) floor.
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Helsinki, Finland
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2013

Very well-kempt and spotless hotel. We had spacious room with a sea view. Enjoyed sitting on the balcony and watching the locals on their evening promenade, passegiata. The sandy beach is just on the other side of the street and you can get beach towels from the reception. The hotel has its own little parking place which comes handy for those with a rental car.
The place seems to be family-owned and I suspect it is run by the solemn-looking older gentleman in guard at the reception and keeping the staff members, and the customers alike, on their tiptoe. It is the first time I have stayed in a hotel where "it is forbidden to bring own drinks or food in the room", assumingly in order to make the customers use the overpriced mineral water and soft drink content of the minibar.
The hotel seems to be saving on hot water as well as on air-conditioning - both of which were turned off and not available even on request. It is a pity, since the owner could have an excellent rating for his hotel by just providing these basic services and a smile to his customers, who nevertheless pay a comparably high price (125 e per night) for their stay.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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SoCal
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

After a tiring drive in the off-season, we chose this exceptionally pretty hotel on the waterfront for its location and--after being shown the room--for its beauty. Unfortunately, a nerve-soothing, before-dinner shower proved impossible on this chilly day; the hottest water available was not even tepid--far too cold to bathe in.

I spoke to the employee on the desk, who said they had been having some "technical" problems. He said he would look into it, and within a half-hour, there should be hot water. But he looked strangely nervous as he said this, so I waited a half-hour and then ran the hot water full strength for ten minutes, just in case the water heater might be, oh, half a mile away. Of course, the water was still only tepid. So I phoned him and told him this.

He said, "Oh, but it has been fixed."
I said, "I assure you it has not been fixed. There is no hot water."
With a tired sigh, he said, "I will look into it again. In another half-hour, there will be hot water."

And in another half-hour, there was indeed slightly *warm* water. Not hot, but if you did not add ANY cold at all, it was just bearable.

In the morning, before my shower, I tested the water, and sure enough, the hot water had been--I am sure--turned off during the night. So, I called the desk and told the guy again that there was no hot water. He was basically a pleasant person, and we went through the same routine as the night before. By being polite but persistent, I got WARM water one full hour later.

In addition, although it was an unseasonably cold spring, the heating in the room was turned OFF.

And finally, for a premium price in a premium hotel, there was NO wifi in the room. You had to go to a common area regardless of the fact that it might be 1am--very inconvenient for international travelers en route for months at a time.

At times, there was a very sour-looking older man on the desk, handling what looked like old-fashioned ledgers. From the fear and embarrassment the employees showed around him, I suspect this was in fact the owner, and that he was exactly the sort of skinflint, who--to save money--would deliberately shut off the hot water in the bathroom, as well as the climatization, plus the wifi in the rooms.

If my guess is right, this policy will bring him no profit, for (a) who in his right mind would ever return to such an hotel? and (b) who--after reading on tripavisor that there is no hot water and no wifi in the room--would even THINK of stopping there?

Room Tip: First things: 1. Go into the bathroom and turn on the hot water. If, three or four minutes later...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Santa Barbara CA
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

This is a beautiful hotel right on the beach, large rooms, friendly greeting, entirely first class. So why no hot water? And they don't even seem particularly worried about it. If you are thinking of staying here and if a shower is important to you, be very wary of their assurances that it will be fixed in 30 minutes... This hotel would have scored excellent, save for this glaring, glaring deficiency.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Riva del Sole

Address: Via Lungomare G Giardina, 90015 Cefalu, Sicily, Italy
Location: Italy > Sicily > Province of Palermo > Cefalu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Cefalu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Riva del Sole 3*
Number of rooms: 116
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Riva Del Sole Cefalu
Riva Del Sole Hotel
Hotel Riva Del Sole Cefalu, Sicily

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