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“needs improvement to match up to 5*”
Review of Hotel du Palais

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Hotel du Palais
Ranked #2 of 64 Hotels in Biarritz
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed September 29, 2012

PROS:
- Superb position of the hotel - unbeatable view over The Bay of Biscay.

- Immaculate service from front desk and concierge. Helpful and polite, the staff handled our enquiries (reserve tables in the restaurants, renting bikes, booking train tickets, etc) with much commitment.

CONS:
- The hotel is very well maintained on a daily basis, but might benefit from a refurbishment, especially bathroom needs renovation. It's nice to have a generous selection of Hermes shower and perfume products, but a proper hairdryer (instead of the provided cheap plastic one attached to the wall) and power shower/modern fittings would also be useful.

- The room we stayed in (on the second floor, overlooking the ocean) had very weak soundproofing: the sound of smashing doors and the guests next door watching TV was rather annoying if not unbearable.

- Staff in the beach bar, L'Hippocampe restaurant and at breakfast in La Rotonde doesn't seem to be friendly and enthusiastic to take orders. They performed well in showing the top of self-importance and producing an impression as if they're serving other very important guests.

- I wouldn't say, considering the price range, that the food quality in the restaurants, L'Hippocampe and La Rotonde, is superb. L'Hippocampe is more like a brasserie, or a beach cafe, though the menu and the price tag are exactly the same as in La Rotonde, where gentlemen are required to wear jackets and ladies accordingly have to follow the strict dress-code. I excepted much more from the dinner in La Rotonde: it seems you pay for the meals to enjoy a full range of silver next to your plate. The main dish I ordered was a total disaster: tiny overgrilled sole with three small steamed potatoes without herbs/lemon garnish for as much as €48.

If you want to experience the history with a lavish touch of elegance and royal allure, and feel like being apt to follow some formalities without caring much about the price, then the Hotel du Palais is worth staying in.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank hidden_shine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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229 - 235 of 1,138 reviews

Reviewed September 14, 2012

Stayed one night for business during winter time, weather was awful, what can you do ! Eventhough, my stay was very pleasant. I was upgraded to a seaview room, that was really a treat. The ocean was just amazing. The hotel is a landmark in the region so i really wanted to try it especially since it was my first time in Biarritz. Winter time is for sure not the best time to visit this city...
My room was perfect and huge with a tiny balcony but enough to get out and enjoy the view. Its very traditionnal but you wouldnt expect a modern decor in this palace.
Had a drink at the bar before dinner at the restaurant. Very elegant but the sound of the piano was too loud.
Dinner at the michelin restaurant was very good and tasty.
Professionnal service.
The bathroom was a bit 70 s style but nice.
Wifi was very good.
Breakfast was a true experience. Many local products such basque cake. Very pleasant. Wish i could coe ack during sunny day but its pricy in summer.
Had a look at the spa, very nice. I didnt try it though as i was on business. But i saw one treatment room overlooking the ocean ( wow) and the hair salon ( super wow)

  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled on business
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2  Thank coolguyparis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 16, 2012

Although I stayed there a while ago, this hotel still is - by far - the best hotel experience of my life. In fact, from arrival to departure, everything was perfect. The hotel, centrally located, is a museum and you nearly feel royal by just staying there, and being so close to this many antiques (the hotel was the Home that Napoleon III built for his wife Eugenie). The restaurant of the hotel, although expensive, was to die for and the service there, more than stellar. The pool is very well furnished and the access to the beach, extremely easy. I would go back to Biarritz just to stay in this hotel again.

  • Stayed: September 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank Scott B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2012

Our second stay in this iconic hotel which has the best location in Biarritz and is a most beautiful hotel. The staff are so well trained, professional and very friendly. The common areas are spacious and decorated in the most beautiful antique furniture which you can actually sit on not just admire. The concierge arranged for us to travel to Bilboa to visit the Guggenheim, a private transfer which all went smoothly. There is so much to love about Biarritz and staying in this beautiful hotel. Our ocean view room was gorgeous, understated quality and style. Walking around Biarritz is very easy, the shopping is fantastic, the beach is great but staying in Hotel du Palais is what Biarritz is all about. La Rotonde restaurant is so welcoming and elegant, The Hippodome is a great place for lunch by the pool, the pool is large with plenty of chaise lounges to accommodate guests and each of these places have the most enviable view of the beach and township. I had my haircut while staying in the hotel, the best haircut I have had in years! We travel for the European summer every year so when planning our next trip, we simply have to go back to the Palais, we love it!

Room Tip: 418 is a great room with views in three directions, the main beach, straight out over the ocean and...
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank ontheroadsince73
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2012

Not many hotels in France offer as much as the Hotel du Palais: directly located on the ocean, a very large pool, an excellent terrasse overlooking the beach and sea, direct access to a great beach, very good restaurants (not only serving good food and offering professional service but set in a decor and with a view of the ocean that is just grand), a first class spa, a very pleasant indoor pool, immaculate grounds with interesting areas for childrens and golfers. The hotel also defines Biarritz. The rooms could be modernized and may not offer all 5 stars amenities but they are very comfortable, clean and have a lot of charm. The rooms still offer a luxurious experience. We were there for a romantic weekend and hope to bring our teens in the future. The hotel du Palais is a wonderful base to explore the Basque country, practice surfing and enjoying the gastronomy of San Sebastian.

  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Emma011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 31, 2012

Hote du Palais overlooks the Atlantic Ocean at Biarritz SW France. The building is exceptionally elegant and is without exception the most stylish building in the whole of Biarritz with it's outdoor pool, terrace, mini golf course and children's play area. The very best for me was the Spa. This pool is so calm and relaxing and designed to look like one in Ancient Greece. The service was excellent throughout the 3 days I stayed there. Perfect for a special romantic holiday. The meals were best in the restaurant rather than the outdoor Hippocampe situated by the pool. I detest having to inhale smoke from other diners while enjoying a meal and unfortunately Hippocampe allowed the guests to smoke. The bedroom was beautiful, clean, comfortable with a luxurious large bathroom and high quality products by Hermes. I shall definitely return and highly recommend this as one of the very finest luxury hotels in France.

Room Tip: We would have preferred a sea view but accepted a rear room directly above the front entrance althou...
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Margaret R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 29, 2012

My husband and I spent 2 nights here recently and while the public spaces have that Grande Epoch feel, details keep it from being perfect. On arrival we had a an excellent reception, great. We were shown to our room which was on the 5th floor, recently renovated and very cozy. But strangely in a new renovated suite they had no iPod dock or player!? Odd. We had a very nice dinner in their pool restaurant that evening, nice service and good quality we chose it because my husband just didn't feel like a jacket and tie for dinner and the other option is more formal. The other strange thing is that while they have full size Hermes soap and Perfume in the bathroom there is now hair conditioner! In a middle of the road hotel I expect this and bring my own, however in a 5 Star establishment I expect it and save the space in my luggage. When I asked the cleaning staff about this all I received was a very Gallic shrug of dismissal.
The concierge staff are very helpful and seem very busy. We rented bikes which were very nicely delivered to the hotel, points for this! We rode to a nearby town and along the coast which was fun and beautiful. During this time we had to move rooms, down 2 floors to a larger and lesser room in my opinion although the price is quite a bit more. I found the decor tired and a bit dated my husband could not log on to the WiFi. When the Tech came up to the room he did not seem terribly motivated or knowledgeable. My husband ended up sorting it out for him. After our bike ride we were a bit hot and thought we would sit in the sun a bit before dinner. From our room we could see several loungers available. This is where the hotel really drops in our estimation. The pool has Cabanas along the side, these must be reserved in advance and this of course comes with an additional fee......All other chairs are organized around small tables and you can only sit. No chance of reclining here. Seriously? Also getting the attention of the waiters here in the cheap seats is like seeing a unicorn.......For a hotel in this category they SERIOUSLY need to rethink the pool area. Fine you want to charge rich russian oligarchs a lot of money to sit in a cabana fine, but surely they could take some of the area where the current children's playground is and have terraced loungers over there. I was recently at the Beau Rivage in Lausanne and they used this approach to much success and we were happy to be a bit farther from the actual pool to have less noise from the children playing in the pool.
So for dinner we decided to try a local restaurant and the concierge were helpful knowledgeable and prompt. This sort of inconsistency is why i can't rate this hotel 5 stars but also why I at times think they are just average.
For location and architecture they have a unique position and this Hotel is beautiful it just feels as though it has split personality disorder.

Room Tip: Try for a room that has been recently renovated, 5th Floor.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank marlena m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel du Palais

Address: 1 Avenue de L'Imperatrice, 64200 Biarritz, France
Phone Number:
Location: France > Nouvelle-Aquitaine > Pyrenees-Atlantiques > Basque Country > Biarritz
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Biarritz
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Biarritz
#1 Luxury Hotel in Biarritz
#2 Family Hotel in Biarritz
#4 Romantic Hotel in Biarritz
#13 Business Hotel in Biarritz
Price Range: $369 - $567 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Hotel du Palais 5*
Number of rooms: 153
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Du Palais Hotel
Du Palais Biarritz

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