My girlfriend and I were in fact planning to stay at another hotel in Dubrovnik but were re-accommodated due to an official summit taking place at our original hotel.
Our first impressions of the hotel were good; the lobby and reception area is very inviting and open. I have to say that this hotel is BIG; think less intimate luxury boutique and more giant cruise liner and you'll be on the right tracks! The check-in process went very smoothly and quickly and we found ourselves in our room within 15-20 minutes of arriving at the hotel. It made more sense after a few days of staying at the hotel and getting familiar with the landscape of Dubrovnik but initially we were not expecting to go DOWN 11 floors from the lobby to our room, however the hotel (and most of Dubrovnik) is built on a hillside so this layout is perfectly understandable. In fact, as the breakfast area is only one floor below the lobby, walking up 10 flights of stairs was a good way to get some blood pumping before breakfast in the morning! Most guests would of course use the elevators (which incidentally we found to have a funny system of arriving when the call button was pressed).
Our room was not too far from the impressions I got from looking at the website before arriving, although it is becoming clear that the ultra-modern decor that was built two years ago is already beginning to fall apart; there were noticeable ceiling and wall cracks throughout the whole hotel and, aside the 'teething issues', a few things odd with the room in general:
- there was a funny mood lighting strip that had fallen apart but nobody had bothered to fix
- the sink could not be plugged so there was no way to fill it up with water (which I like to do when shaving)
- the bathtub took ages to drain, even when having a shower.
- the room terrace area was not very well maintained (the drain looked tired with dry leaves and one of the sun-loungers was torn and damaged).
- The 'intelligent lighting' system was infuriating and I often found myself trying several switches before getting the right one.
- No wifi in the rooms (only a LAN cable connection). I didn't have my laptop on me though but was surprised that there were only two computers in the business centre (just a big dark room by the reception)!
- There was music being played through lots of ceiling speakers in the corridor, and although a nice feature in the day, could be heard rather loudly at night too (not the biggest Celine Dion fan at 2am)!
The service in the hotel was OK, I wouldn't call it 5 Star at all; more 3-4 Star at best. We both found it odd how we had to ask at least twice for anything (room service, ice, restaurant bookings, fresh dressing downs as ours were taken by housekeeping but not replaced). Also the times at which the room was cleaned varied each day (on the first day they knocked on the door at around 9am and then 3pm on the second!).
Our rate included breakfast which we took advantage of. The breakfast selection itself was amazing; lots of choice to suit almost every taste (no oriental food though), however breakfast also felt like being in a railway station - lots and lots and lots of people running around getting food all the time! Not to complain though, there was plenty of good seating both inside (air conditioned), and outside (no air conditioning but a great view and lots of sunshine so please take a hat and sunglasses if you're going there in the hot months). The breakfast service, however, did struggle to keep up with all the guests. We often found no cutlery or napkins at the table we were allocated and, despite being asked if we wanted tea of coffee (we chose coffee), we mostly had to find a waiter to ask for some coffee again! Nevertheless the staff were very friendly and welcoming.
The hotel also has a spa, fitness and pool area located on the 'beach' (no real beach) floor at the bottom of the hotel. The fitness room had all the basics to keep fit throughout our stay, but definitely not the best gym I've been to - the equipment could have been better maintained and I found it really odd that 'Hotel Policy' was not to provide drinking water in the gym area! The spa itself was OK; it had a few saunas, steam rooms and relaxing pools, but lacked that 5-star something. Found it more of a 'here's the spa' rather than a 'welcome, enjoy and let us know if there's anything we can do' attitude. And finally the pool area was similarly OK. There were plenty of sunbeds to lie on, but got taken very quickly by the sheer volume of guests and we found that there was generally a lot of noise and activity in that area rather than peace and serenity - just our personal preference.
All in all not a bad stay - I don't think I would stay again given the choice. The hotel is a fair walk to the historic town centre (about 15-20 minutes) but there was no free shuttle service as in some other hotels. I was a little surprised that we were offered the chance to win a free holiday at the hotel in return for a good review - a bit contradictory if you ask me, but I would like to think that this review is a fair portrayal of my impressions at the hotel. Overall not bad, but definitely not 5 Star.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A landmark of exceptional Croatian hospitality, the waterfront Rixos Libertas Dubrovnik has been reborn as the ultimate contemporary design hotel with luxurious facilities for discerning travelers. Home to 254 guest rooms that combine panoramic views of the Adriatic Sea with pampering facilities that indulge and inspire, it is conveniently located only 15 minutes away from Dubrovnik Old Town and 25 minutes away from the Dubrovnik International airport. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Rixos Hotel Dubrovnik