We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“The good, the bad & the beautiful” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior

Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 7 more sites!
Save
You added Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior to your Saves list
Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Via Regina 41, 22011 Cadenabbia di Griante, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Surrey
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“The good, the bad & the beautiful”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2012

Just returned from a week all inclusive here. Arrived by hire car at 9.30pm from Milan Malpensa airport & thank goodness we had borrowed a friend's satnav or we would still be lost now! Reception staff said we had missed dinner but set a table in dining room with salads, cold meats & cheeses & said they had upgraded our room to a lakeview at no extra charge! Very elegant, old style hotel. Room was fairly small but beds very clean & comfortable, shower small but worked well & we had TV with BBC & ITV & a free in room safe! Magical views from bathroom & bedroom were across Lake Como to Bellagio - perfect. Room had ceilng fan & aircon. You could leave balcony doors open but road outside quite busy & noisy (& this was low season). Food was a let down. You won't starve but there were problems & you need to arrive at the start of each meal otherwise it is too chaotic & some food choices will have gone. All food buffet style & a crowded servery area. Breakfast juices were dire - tasted like supersweet squash. Bacon was typical european i.e very fatty: Scrambled egg was quite nice unless you hit a 'rock hard' day or a 'runny day' or sometimes you were faced with an empty tray of dried up egg which was never replenished. You could also have cold hard boiled eggs, tinned fruit, natural yoghourt (scrumptious), muesli or rice krispy type cereals or porridge (not tested). Bread rolls had rock hard crusts - watch your teeth! Coffee from the waiter had an unusual tang & was drinkable if you were desperate. Coffee from the machines was poor but the hot chocolate was good. Tea - not tested! A fruit basket was usually on offer although much of the fruit was bruised or looked of poor quality. Lunch was included, and the soups/pasta/pizza/cold salad plates were good but everything else was mediocre apart from fish which other diners said was very good. The salad plates appeared to be left on the refrigerated servery area until the evening meal & the cubed (Spam?) was looking decidedly dry around the edges by then.Desserts were usually cake based or tinned fruit , although I was told that the ice cream choices were excellent. Red or white wine & beer was free at mealtimes as was sparking or still water. If you didn't want lunch in the dining room the hotel did a packed lunch consisting of 2 large soft baps, one with cheese & one ham, a bottle of water & a jam filled croissant. This never varied so you wouldn't want it everyday! You have to pre-book a packed lunch by 7pm the previous day. Dinner was almost a repeat of lunch. Meat courses were usually beef or pork, sometimes chicken. Alcohol & soft drinks were free from 9am until 11.45pm and they were varied & plentiful. Staff were very helpful & friendly. For the price we paid this was a very reasonable holiday & we knew in advance from Trip Advisor that the food was not the best. About half of the guests were on Shearings or Leger coach trips, the rest were a mix of Italian, German & French who certainly seemed to enjoy all the food. There was a singer in the bar on a couple of evenings but we mostly took our drinks onto the upper sun terrace & chatted to other guests as both the bar & dining areas were very hot. The weather was excellent while we were there & there was a lot to do. Dont miss Villa Carlotta 5 mins walk from the hotel - fabulous gardens - admission 9 euros if under 65. Bernina Express & St Moritz trip was good, cost 50 euros each for full day out. Boats criss cross the lake & stop a few hundred yards from the hotel. Hotel also has it's own shuttle boat & I think you can buy a weekly pass on that. Don't miss Bellagio across the lake. Menaggio is another nice little area a bus ride from the hotel - a couple of cafes there have fabulous ice creams with no additives. We drove to Lake Lugano & Lake Maggiore. Take the ferry from Stresa on Maggiore to Bella Isola - beautiful island with lots to see & great little shops on cobbled streets to wander around. If you decide to hire a car make sure that you can take it across border to Switzerland, some companies don't let you & the Swiss border is not far away from Cadenabbia. Also borrow a satnav with euromapping = lifesaver. Parking is a problem around the lakes - usually 1 euro per hour but there aren't a huge number of spaces. There is free parking at the rear of the hotel but not many spaces & I think you would seriously struggle to get one in high season. Free WiFi in reception area & staff were happy to research things on their computer & print bus timetables, route maps etc. They also gave us their business card when we left & said if we had problems at the airport (French air traffic working to rule) we should contact them if we needed help. Luckily our flight was only delayed for an hour or so but we appreciated the gesture.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,664 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    327
    518
    386
    206
    227
See reviews for
222
945
63
13
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 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
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (573)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cheshire
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2012

Just back from a Shearings holiday staying at this hotel for 4 nights. The location is superb; the hotel décor is grand and for a 3-star hotel very elegant. I thought the food was good, best to eat it freshly prepared as one late lunch, the schnitzel was impossible to cut. Plenty of choices. We found the wine rather strange: some days it was drinkable, and the next day not. There isn't a choice of types of wine, it's white or red, so just stopped drinking it. The staff are wonderful, very, very friendly. We found the hotel very generous. Someone has mentioned the packed lunch, but I enjoyed this - two crusty white rolls with ham and cheese and a sweet 'croissant' sort of thing, plus a bottle of water: no extra cost if you are all-inclusive. I also avoided the hot breakfast in favour of the very crusty rolls and jam, with super coffee.

My room (a single) was 342 overlooking a side road with a view of the mountain at the back. It was smallish but sufficient for one person, with twin beds and a quite large bathroom, with the usual size shower. Not unattractive, and beautifully quiet. We popped our heads into some rooms at the front being made up, and they were gorgeous, large, very airy and with the wonderful view of the Lake - but the Lake Como roads are mad - coaches; cars; lorries; and even car transporters through the tiny roads, and passing the lake view rooms. Plugs are the usual European 2-pin, but you don't need a hairdryer (one on the wall by the bathroom mirror); and there is a notice asking people not to use kettles in their rooms for safety reasons. But all the European chargers etc will fit.

In short, I heartily recommend the hotel and can't wait to return.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Durham, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2012

I have just returned from a 9 day holiday during which time I stayed at this hotel. I have to say I could not have been more pleasantly surprised at the quality of the food on offer. Initialy I was sceptical at the buffet style meals which formed part of an all inclusive holiday, however the meals were excellent, hot and plentiful. Althought it was self service the hotel staff were on hand at all times to offer assistance if required. Fish dishes were cooked as and when you wanted and there was plenty of variety of meat dishes and salads. Pasta dishes were particularly good and the meal periods spanned approx 3 hours which I felt was flexible and meant you didn't have to plan your day around meal times. One of the things I particularly liked was the choice at breakfast time and the fact that full english breakfasts were available which is often not the case in Italy. The room we stayed in was spacious and clean and the drinks (both alcoholic and beverages) were in constant supply. The staff at the hotel were polite, curtious and helpful and made you feel welcome. The location of the hotel was fantastic, just a few yards from Lake Como and as a result the scenery and views were breathtaking. I would recommend this hotel to anyone and would have no hesitation in booking a return stay myself.

Room Tip: It is likely you will be given the option of room upgrade for a few more Euros (20 or 30). If so ch...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brentwood, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 4, 2012

dont have a packed lunch terrible! rooms made up for food well worth upgrading for 40 euros ut have one at the back,the traffic noise starts at 5am and doesnt go till after midnight! Go after 1st april no boats from nearby jetty till then!!

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stuttgart, Germany
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
43 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
170 helpful votes 170 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2012

...that this hotel caters to and apparently survives from the large bus groups, overwhelmingly retirees and senior citizens, mostly from Britain and Germany. If you book the all inclusive, be careful when you go to the meals, giving the restaurant staff time to recover from the onslaught when they open for each meal. The groups seem to have their schedules based on the earliest meal times possible. The breakfast was TERRIBLE, so expect no better. The other meals were generally OK. The pasta sauces were quite good. The salad bar was the best feature. Overall I found the staff in the hotel to be as friendly as could be expected considering that they were clearly only about half the number needed to do the job properly. Tip them; they earn it. The rooms and public areas of the hotel were OK. They seem pretty nice on the surface, and only if you look deeper will you find the wear and tear. The housekeeping on our floor was well above par. She was energetic and friendly and did a wonderful job. The area of Lago di Como where this hotel is located is relatively quiet. Don't come here for the nightlife. The boats were not running on full schedule yet, so this time of year, it is difficult to get around without driving. There is a bus stop directly in front of the hotel, but the bus did not seem to run on the schedules provided. We gave up and took the car after waiting and waiting...All in all, if you are here to see the beautiful scenery and look around the lake area at the small characteristic towns, this is a fair base if you get a good rate.

Room Tip: Get the room with a view. This is the reward.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
home
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2012

Just returned from a 9 day holiday with Shearings. I was concerned about the previous food reviews so stocked up on sickness preparations. I should not have bothered as the food was excellent - piping hot and plenty of choice. The fresh pasta and pizza being especially good. This hotel is the best 3 star that we have stayed in in Italy. We upgraded to a deluxe room with a balcony and lake view on arrival at the cost of 40 euros for 6 nights and it was well worth it. The room was lovely, with a large ensuite and a powerful shower. Don't miss a lake tour and a ride on the San Bernina Express. You will not be disappointed if you book this hotel.

  • Stayed March 2012, 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 13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2012 via mobile

This is the best hotel I have stayed at. I journeyed around Italy for a month and this is the place I never wanted to leave. The staff are so lovely and the location is in paradise. They even organized a trip for us on a cruise boat around the lake and the incredible Bernina train line. We spent an amazing day traveling on the Swiss rail to St Moritz with a lunch they packed for us There are mountain walks and beautiful villages to explore before returning home to a great meal every night. The views from the balcony were perfect as I was so pleased with the room and bathroom. We have recommended this hotel to many people. Couldn't ask for more.

  • Stayed February 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior

Address: Via Regina 41, 22011 Cadenabbia di Griante, Italy
Location: Italy > Lombardy > Lake Como > Cadenabbia di Griante
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Cadenabbia di Griante
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior 3*
Number of rooms: 284
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Hotels.com, Expedia, Booking.com, Priceline, TripOnline SA, Despegar.com, Travelocity, Odigeo and Tingo so you can book your Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Britannia Excelsior Hotel
Hotel Britannia Excelsior Cadenabbia
Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior Lake Como/Cadenabbia Di Griante, Italy

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Grand Hotel Britannia Excelsior, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.