We booked our room well in advance and hotel’s Diamond offer looked like a reasonably priced and a very attractive package. When choosing between Apartment and Junior Suite accommodation, we picked Junior Suite (higher price) because of all extras it was offering, e.g. garage, beach towels, a little present in your room, welcome drink, bikes, beach facilities, Wi-Fi, newspapers, soft drinks. We made it clear in a booking form that parking facilities (garage) were essential for us. We looked at the hotel’s website. It looked very nice, a very impressive building. We read reviews on Tripadvisor. Fantastic! Well, the magic has disappeared the moment we entered the hotel. Marvellous building from outside was not so impressive inside. Small Bar area for the hotel of this size. When we asked about parking, we were told that there was no garage, only parking permit is available. When I showed our offer confirmation, the guy at the reception said it was their last year offer and a garage was not available anymore. I just wonder why nobody notified us by e-mail about any changes? And if there were changes and the package is not what we booked, obviously a price should reflect that too, shouldn’t it? Why nobody read our booking form where it was said that garage is required. If we knew about changes, we would choose a different option or a different hotel altogether. Sadly, the absent of “an offered garage” was not the only surprise. Hotel loses its character completely when you start walking to your room. There is a dormitory feel, hostel rather than a 4* hotel. And then we entered our Junior Suite. It was an apartment: kitchen and a living space. Not a room we had booked. When I went back to the reception and questioned it, the receptionist insisted that it was Junior Suite, Junior Suite has got a “sea view” (it was actually a back yard view with a little bit of sea that you can see between other buildings). I asked for their hotel prospectus. I opened a page with Apartments’ photographs and what a surprise - our room was pictured on that particular page. Receptionist’s answer: “It’s just a picture.” We were not offered a discount or anything else. I was shocked with the staff’s attitude and how they dealt with the whole situation. To add to insult our room was not a room in a 4* hotel: bathroom small and dated, shower is dirty, a missing button on a bed runner (a bed runner disappeared the following morning), a window handle was not fixed properly (loose screws, it came off), patched up painting on the wall, cracks on a wall, mini Bar consisted of 5 soft drink bottles, fridge has not been defrosted for a VERY long time, single beds requested for our children were non-existent, a sofa instead (once again our booking form was not read). I have got photographs to prove every point. We booked half board but at check-in nobody mentioned us about any restaurant arrangements. I wanted to make sure we were booked for an evening meal. Receptionist was not aware about it. That’s where I lost it. You can accept only so many things which are wrong. I did not know what to say. I just wanted to leave that place and we would do it straight away but we were travelling with two young children and had already spent 6 hours driving in the car that day. Fortunately 15 minutes later the receptionist confirmed that evening meal was booked. Restaurant: meal was an average affair, nothing special. What shocked me was breakfast. All breakfast dry/ cupboard stuff is ready for breakfast while guests are still having their evening meal. There are no covers for cereals. Basically everything is left overnight. Fresh fruit? There is a large bowl of “fresh” fruit placed on a shelf, quite difficult to reach. My daughter asked for an apple. When I touched it I could not believe that staff of a 4* hotel still left it in a basket. An apple was very soft and began to crinkle. It definitely was not fresh anymore. There is not a big choice of pastry, just pre packed stuff and cheap cakes. Chair covers and linen in the dining room was a bit tired, yellowish colour of what supposed to be white or at least beige. Area: it is OK. In general we felt that Viareggio is a bit overrated and the sea was far from being crystal clear. We were mis-sold the hotel’s half board package, Hotel is not 4*, apartments and Junior suite is the same type of room (receptionist’s explanations were pathetic). Our advice would be: stay clear of this place, but if you book, choose the cheapest room and you will most certainly get an automatic upgrade (seems to be the hotel’s usual practice). Think about this hotel as a 3* at best and then you probably won’t be disappointed. Even printed e-mail confirmation is proves nothing. Treat it as a guide. Only one member of staff tried to find a compromise and being helpful (Luca? Not sure about spelling. Thank you!). Note to the young girl at the reception: next time you make any happy comments about guests departure, please could you make sure your customer definitely DO NOT understand any Italian and has left hotel. We cancelled our last day of stay (at least something was correct in our booking offer – free cancellation). We paid the full amount, they took two drinks of our total bill, but, hey, what has happened to our Welcome drink, Beach facilities, Beach towels etc. which were all included in our package? We should argue, but we were just happy to leave Hotel Residence Esplanade’s experience behind us!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Just 50 metres from the beach, Hotel Residence Esplanade is an Art-Nouveau building in Viareggio centre. It offers large and elegant accommodation with minibar and a satellite flat-screen TV.Each modern room and self-catering apartment at Esplanade comes with a private bathroom complete with hairdryer and courtesy set. Air conditioning is provided in summer, and free internet is available.Restaurant Esplanade serves Italian favourites prepared with fresh ingredients, along with an extensive wine list.Set right behind the lush Pineta di Ponente pinewood, Residence Esplanade is a 20-minute walk from Viareggio Train Station. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Residence Esplanade Hotel