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“Group trip” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Santa Lucia e le Sabbie d'Oro

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Hotel Santa Lucia e le Sabbie d'Oro
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Contrada Santa Lucia, 90015 Cefalu, Sicily, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #26 of 35 Hotels in Cefalu
Saulkrasti, Latvia
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Group trip”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 9, 2013

Location of Hotel and serviss is fine, but for October could be more enterteiments in the evenings. If there are some complainings about noise from rooms close to Bar, maybe it worth to decide whom to offer those rooms.
15 - 20 min walk to Cefalu Old Town. WC needed close to the Beach otherwise it all smells like WC.
Dinners are great. Reception very helpful.

Stayed October 2013, traveled on business
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272 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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  • Polish first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
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English first
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2013

Well I can honestly say this was by far the worst hotel we have ever stayed in. We arrived at about 9 in the evening, at reception they just took our passports and gave us our room number, no welcome no other instructions about availability of a late dinner. thankfully the stand in for our rep told us that a meal would be available for us in the dinning room, and passport would be returned in the morning. I have to say that the guy on reception proved to be the most unfriendly person you could ever wish to meet, and not many of the other reception staff were much better. think they were on the defensive as we understand there were many complaints.
The evening meal turned out to be two slices of processed cheese and a desert spoonful of rice salad, desert was a very under ripe peach. my thoughts then were " this does not bode well" and I was proved unfortunately to be correct. Throughout the week the food was cold , of poor quality and very little of it. There was only a choice of two with each course, one night our main course was a piece of roast chicken with spinach, nothing else. Pudding was always fruit , except for gala night when we were treated to the smallest slice of an Almond ice cream confection. Breakfasts if possible were even worse than dinner, continental only , or the most overcooked scambled egg, or boiled egg, but worst of all a cup of tea was only warm not made with boiling water as it should be, cannot say what the coffee was like as I don't drink it. Beverages were not available at any other time, but could be bought from the bar with massive mark ups. Most people seemed to be taking in their own water or wine, and the waiters seemed not to notice.
The room was ok, was very dated but reasonably clean. we had a sea view which turned out to be a very bad mistake, as the terrible music below went on till 1 in the morning most nights and all sea view rooms were particularly exposed to this.
The swimming pool looked ok although I did not go in it, the sun loungers round the pool were plentiful and were not readily occupied as on trying the ridged plastic beds the proved to be so hard and uncomfortable that half an hour was all we could bare. So we found that the ones on the beach some 90 steps below the hotel were marginally more comfortable.
By the middle of the week we were in dire need of some decent food , so took to having a really nice lunch out, so at least we were not to hungry when presented with some of the horrors from the hotel kitchen.
The final straw came for us when on the last evening we enquired about the promised curtersy rooms only to be told that because the hotel was full there were not any available, but that if we got out of our rooms early we would get guaranteed storage of our suitcases until 4 that afternoon. In fast the maids were knocking on doors trying to hurry people out of their rooms before the 11 am deadline. There were no public toilets in the hotel apart from those in your room, there were other toilets, but for some reason the hotel kept them locked. There were many people leaving at the same time as us and because of pressure from us they did eventually leave the toilets in the Blue Bar open.
I did have a pop at one of the reception staff about the general standards at the hotel, but he was unimpressed and seemed incapable of even seeming remotely sorry. In fact I asked him if he was sorry and he refused to say so. So I think this particular hotel was run for the comfort and convenience of the staff rather than the guests are rather than nothing being too much trouble everything was too much trouble.
I note that amongst these reviews are one or two glowing reports, I will leave it too you to decide as to their authenticity.

Room Tip: Any room would be poor, my advice would be give this hotel the widest birth possible, and steer your...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2013

HOTEL ROOM AND BATHROOM: room dated but big.
Double bed arranged after arrival and requesting at the reception. Found out that what we call 'double bed' Italians mean 'matrimonial bed'. You need to ask for 'matrimonial' if you do not want to have two single beds. That was sorted out the next morning.
ROOM (on the 6th floor, facing the sea) furnished with two single beds, joined together, two night tables, desk, two chairs, TV, small fridge, double wardrobe (with a small safe inside), a wooden rack next to the wardrobe for your suitcase.
Cleaning was done daily. All towels changed daily.
BATHROOM large, with a bidet. Shower was a disappointment. The main fixture was broken but the hand held shower was working - no problem.
Wonderful view from our room window. The closest to sea I ever stayed.
RECEPTION: large, with free Wi-Fi. You need to ask for a password from the reception staff. Staff helpful and friendly.
DINING ROOM: plenty of space, with a view to the swimming pool. Food average but plenty. Thursdays and Sundays - special dinner menus - lots of choice and very good food.
Wonderful coffees, lunches, snacks, etc. available next door, at the hotel le Sabbie d'Oro. The two hotels linked with a long, glass corridor.
OVERALL - excellent holiday, wonderful weather, great food. Food not very expensive. Coffees (per person) - E1.60 to E2.00. Lunches - E7/8 - E12 (and more). Le Sabbie d'Oro coffee bar serves very nice and cheap lunches.

Room Tip: Rooms facing the sea and the swimming pool have an excellent views but can be noisy late in the even...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
74 reviews
36 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2013

We read the existing reviews on TA before booking, and now we've stayed there, have to say some of the criticisms are unfair. Given that prices in Cefalu are not cheap, we did not feel this hotel was out of line on value. (We also had an extra good deal by booking through Thomas Cook - much less than any other rates we saw - so it is worth spending time on the internet before booking.) Here are the drawbacks as we saw them: the north side rooms have sea views and are cooler, but in the evenings the music from the Blu Bar is loud and goes on until 11:30 or 11:45. But there are compensations: the sound of the sea to send you to sleep and the wonderful sea views and views of the town. The worst thing for us was the shower in our room - it sprayed hot water and that was about it; the enclosure was falling apart and bits of the shower itself were in very poor condition. The food was variable in quality; the buffet breakfast was fine and unless you're going to move a long way upmarket to somewhere that will cook breakfast to order I don't think you can complain. There is plenty of choice between sweet and savoury food, eggs, yoghurt, cereal etc. and there's lots of it. The evening meal at worst sometimes produced tired, over-cooked food, but at its best was very acceptable. The proximity of the train line on the north side is of little consequence; there is virtually no movement at night and the rest of the time the trains go by very slowly. The walk to town along the promenade, once you are down the steps, is flat and easy and takes about 15 minutes. The positives: the evening meals on Thursdays (a "gala" dinner) and Sundays (hot buffet) are a notch above the rest. The hotel is clean and the staff, without exception, helpful. (A tip - if you want a double bed rather than two singles, ask reception to organise a "letto matrimoniale", which results in the two single beds being pushed together and made up with large sheets to hold them in position; not ideal, but it kind of works. If you say "double bed" to them they get confused and think you're asking for a double room, which you've already got.) We strongly recommend the hotel's own coffee bar (at the opposite end to the reception area), which is not expensive and is used by the locals and is ideal for people-watching. You can also get a cheap take-away lunch from the rosticceria counter, as well as pastries and ice-cream. The hotel is very cosmopolitan and was being used by large numbers of Russians and Poles, as well as Scandivanians, Belgians, Germans, French and Brits. Overall the atmosphere was very good.

Room Tip: North side for sea views and coolness; south side is quieter.
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Cornwall, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
23 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2013

Our 8-day holiday in Sicily was from 16th to 23rd September 2013.
Bit of a con really as first day entailed setting off from home at 0930 and travelling to Exeter Airport which is close to our home, but with the travelling and the faffing experienced at Exeter Airport we did not arrive at this Hotel in Cefalu until 2330 where a budget meal was waiting for us, although who feels like eating then? The return trip was as bad as we had to vacate our room by 1100am and then had to wait for 5 hours to be collected by coach for the 2 hour drive to the airport. We eventually arrived home in the UK at 2330 (What a coincidence!) So the 8 day holiday we booked was in reality a 6 day. In fact you could say 5½ daysdue to the fact that the mandatory welcome meeting at 1000am on the second day was pretty well a waste of time due to poor Guide skills. Their ability to translate to English does seem to need more practice. I will refrain from naming them, or the travel Company on this posting. But might on another! Our hotel was a good 2 hour drive from the airport and strangely every excursion we went on had similar travelling times both ways.
More con was they impose a one Euro a day per person 'City Tax' meaning 16 Euros had to be paid on leaving hotel.
Even more con was that if we wanted to use the air conditioning then that would cost 8 Euros per day. Needless to say we didn't!
More con was the excursion we booked to Etna took us to the base that cost us 58 Euros and
if we wanted to go higher we could travel by the cable car up so far and then to the rim by 4x4 trucks. That costs an additional 68 Euros per person. We did do that because my wife wanted to.
All 3 excursions that we did all seemed to involve a 2 hour plus coach journey each way from our hotel, meaning 5 hours of each of those was spent in a coach!
We found the tour guides to be pretty but rubbish, so pretty rubbish!
Very poor at translating and very poor at looking after the groups as a whole so missed out on a lot of the dialogue.
The Hotel room was OK, despite the train running past every half hour! The Hotel food was OK but repetitive. (I am not a pasta lover!) Service from the various Hotel staff was OK but felt a bit mechanical. The ice creams we bought out were very tasty. The sea was warm on the two occasions we dipped. We had a lot of welcome sun.
My wife had a 5 Euro massage on the Hotel beach area by a Phillipino woman which she thoroughly enjoyed. I declined feeling I might not be totally satisfied!
All in all, a new experience, with some enjoyable moments, but we did not realise Sicily was so big. Their driving is manic and the traffic can be terrifying when trying to cross the roads. They ignore anyone on a zebra crossing and continue to drive in front or behind you at speed, so not sure what the point of those crossings are!
The one train journey we did was OK but difficult as they have a validation process you have to put your ticket through before each journey and failure to do that is an instant 40 Euro fine. Difficult because we had problems finding any helpful person to explain that to us.
We have now decided any future holidays would be to smaller destinations like we used to do to the various Greek Islands on our first encounters.
We were dismayed at how rude, bad mannered, and selfish people have become in crowds, and that includes us older Brits.
Perhaps it is because we have to become like the people from other Countries in order to survive.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Exeter, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
68 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2013

Our first impressions of this hotel were mixed. We were first shown into a very nice room on the ground floor, with a balcony & sea view. We later went down to the excellent 'Blu Bar' for a coffee and very good music, which ranged from Elvis to Santana to classic Italian ballads. The trio of musicians were the best we'd heard, with guitarist, keyboard player who also had a great voice, plus the occasional saxophonist. On leaving the bar, however, we were told by a hotel employee that our room 'might become flooded because of a water leak next door' and whisked us away to another room on the 1st floor, on the other side of the hotel, which turned out to be very noisy and about 5 minutes walk away from the dining hall! We were not convinced about the water leak, as the room was soon occupied by someone else! The air con was turned off, so it was much too hot at night, but if we opened the window we had constant traffic roaring past us until the early hours. We really should have complained, but we overheard someone else requesting a quieter room, to be told the hotel was completely full...
Having said that, the place was spotlessly clean and the cleaning staff were always friendly and smiling. The waiters were fine, but the rest of the staff looked deidedly unhappy and were rather surly! When I requested a second pillow, I was given a folded-up blanket in a pillowslip - not conducive to a good sleep!
The pool was quite nice - clean and deep enough for swimming in, which is just as well, as the beach was down 102 steps, that is, without the twenty steps from our room to the pool area, plus another 18 from the pool to the steps - yes, I did count - my knees are still aching!
The food was what you would expect from a 'budget' hotel - plenty of it but rather monotonous, with piles of pasta, tasty though it was. The breakfast and dinner were basic, but the 2 'special' nights we had (Thursday & Sunday) were much better, with musical entertainment and a great buffet on the Sunday.
I should think we would have enjoyed our stay more if we had had air conditioning and a better-placed room, plus nicer reception staff.
N.B. We had to pay one extra euro tax for every night's stay, which we hadn't been warned about.

Room Tip: Definitely ask for a room away from the front entrance and road!
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
Isle of Man, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 10, 2013

Hotel, Food in Hotel, Poor quality, Entertainment, ok if no wedding going on, if wedding, entertainment poor.be prepared to walk a lot around hotel and lack of toilets, fancy toilets only open when wedding on.hotel staff no consideration in mornings making lot of noise, vacate your room by 11 am that's ok but be prepared for a rude person ringing your room or banging on door just after 10 am to get u out.little hotel shop good for lovely pastries/ice cream, but at nite ladies on your own will be stalked and followed to room , u must tell staff about this, so they can approach the stalker and get rid, nite life in cefalu, rubbish, u have to travel quite a way for clubs etc..New Market hols, RUBBISH, / REPS RUBBISH.LITTER IN STREETS LIKE I HAVE NEVER SEEN BEFORE, FILTHY, PLACE LOOKS TIRED, PAVEMENTS DANGEROUS, 102 STEPS TO BEACH, GET THERE EARLY AS THE FOREIGNERS HAVE IT ALL BOOKED UP FOR THE WEEK, OR TWO. WOULD NOT RECOMEND THIS PLACE TO ANYONE, GLAD TO BE BACK IN CIVILISATION AND WHERE MANNERS COST NOTHING. SMALL PLANET AIRLINES MEANS SMALL AIRCRAFT NO LEG ROOM AND NOT VERY BRIGHT FLIGHT ATTENDANTS.On the up side old Cefalu town very pretty / clean..

Room Tip: Demand sea view, one lady was overlooking the bins, and in staff quarters, hotel would not move her,
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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 Santa Lucia e le Sabbie d'Oro

Address: Contrada Santa Lucia, 90015 Cefalu, Sicily, Italy
Location: Italy > Sicily > Province of Palermo > Cefalu
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Cefalu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Santa Lucia e le Sabbie d'Oro 3*
Number of rooms: 257
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Also Known As:
Hotel Santa Lucia e Le Sabbie D'Oro Cefalu, Sicily

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