My girlfriend and I took a 17 day vacation and traveled through Sweden, Denmark and Germany. In every instance except for this hotel, we stayed at a hotel that was rated in the top 10 on Trip Advisor. Munich was the last stop on our trip, and we stayed in Munich for 3 nights. When I was working on putting this trip together, I tried to stay within our budget, and considering Munich was our last stop, there was only so much money left that was allocated for the last 3 nights of hotels. At the time, this hotel was listed #97 on Trip Advisor. But my budget was dwindling, and the Excelsior fell within my requirements with respect to location and budget. I was VERY leary of this hotel due to the relatively poor Trip Advisor rating, and during the entire duration of the trip I was dreading what I thought might be in store for us.
Having said all that, I cannot for the life of me understand why this hotel is rated so low?? How could anyone not love this place? Of a 17 day trip through 3 countries, the Excelsior by far had the worst rating, yet it was our favorite hotel of all the hotels we stayed at. It's a block away from the Anna Hotel, which is rated in the top 10 on trip advisor. Since the Anna was the hotel I really wanted to stay at (but was well above my allotted budget), I was curious to see what made one so much better than the other. The Anna Hotel was definitely more modern, but it doesn't have any of the ambiance, class or vintage style that I felt the Excelsior had.
But enough of my rambling. Obviously I loved this hotel. As with every review I provide a list of Pro's and Con's, so here goes -
--- PRO's ---
1.) Concierge - When we arrived the concierge immediately took our keys and took care of the parking for us (parking I do not believe was all that close to the hotel itself). We arrived a bit early and the room was not immediately ready, but when we came back all of our bags were waiting for us in our room. The front desk couldn't have been nicer and looked up various sites and also helped point me in the right direction with respect to dropping off our rental car at the airport since we rented in Frankfurt and were returning the car in Munich.
2.) The Interior of the Hotel - The entire interior of the hotel just has an elegant old world class to it - we really thought it was both beautiful, victorian stylish and quite unique. You felt like you were staying at a 5 star hotel here, and the staff could not have been more accomodating and nicer.
3.) The Rooms - they are relatively small rooms as most european style hotels are, but they were clean, classy and the shower had excellent water pressure. I felt the beds were comfortable, and they were the first pillows we liked since beginning our trip through europe 14 days earlier.
4.) Location - Your in walking distance to just about everything - I'm going to butcher the spelling but just go with it - the glockenspeil, residenz, hoffbrahaus, all of the main art museums and galleries - and the train station is about a block away (if that).
5.) Breakfast - The breakfast was excellent. A little pricey at 20 euro per person, but the hotel was very reasonably priced so I didn't really care if I spent a little extra on the breakfast. eggs, bacon, sausage, croissants, pastries, fresh fruit, tea, coffee...you name it.
--- CON's ---
1.) Neushwanstein Castle - My only real problem with the hotel is that we specifically asked them about the castle, and not once did they mention the fact that it is currently under construction. I’d give them the benefit of the doubt, but it had apparently been under construction for several months. We spent the very last day of our trip taking a 2 hour train ride to the castle, only to find that the entire facade is covered in scaffolding. You couldn't see a thing. Not only that, but buses/trains seemed to have extremely odd schedules. We left at 10 am, arrived at 12 and were told at the train station that the last bus left at 2:44 to make the 4 o'clock train back. The castle only allows for guided tours....it takes a half hour just to walk to the castle....and the first available guided tour started at 2:20. We were completely screwed. We never even got to see the castle and essentially spent our last day just riding on the train all day and sitting in bus stations. Why do I blame this on the hotel? Because when I asked the front desk initially about the castle, they promoted an $88 euro all day trip to the castle, not once mentioning the construction work. It really was a bummer to end our trip that way. We thought we were saving the best for last, turns out it was mostly just a monumental let down of a last day. Extremely dissapointing.
2.) Location - Although the location is great because everything is in walking distance, the numerous beggars all along the street near the hotel reminds you right off the bat that you are in the city, and you have to take the good with the bad and keep your wits about you. I never felt unsafe - there are tons of outside cafe's and people walking around even late at night, but I wouldn't have let my girlfriend walk around the area alone either. This was a very nice city, and is considered "the safest city" in Europe, so no worries there. It just had those elements that one would expect from a city as well.
--- OVERALL ---
I know those are two big knocks, but overall, this hotel was beautiful. I thought the staff made a conscious effort to take care of us (other than the castle debacle), and they just did the little things that made them head and shoulders better than the other hotels we stayed at. This hotel deserves a significantly higher rating than what it received. The Anna Hotel is a top 10 I believe on trip advisor. It's almost double the cost and didn't hold a candle to the excelsior. This was the lowest rated, AND cheapest hotel of our trip, and turned out to be the best. The Excelsior comes highly recommended.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Excelsior by Geisel is one of best located hotels in Munich city centre. The hotel distinguishes itself with traditional Bavarian hospitality, elegant country-house style and personal service. This family-owned and managed first-class hotel is a member of the Preferred Hotels & Resorts group, and delights its guests with an incomparable blend of relaxed atmosphere and warm Bavarian sophistication The ground floor luxuriates in refined country-house style and ceiling frescos. The upper floors are a little more modern. Business people from Munich and all corners of the globe use our elegant conference rooms with lobby for their company events. The hotel houses a traditional restaurant that serves delicious Bavarian-Italian specialties, and an outstanding selection of fine wines - Vinothek by Geisel. Situated just across from Munich's central railway station, the Hauptbahnhof, the Excelsior receives its guests in a quiet location not far from the old Botanic Gardens. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Orbitz, Hotels.com, Agoda, Hotwire, Travelocity, Priceline, TripOnline SA, Cancelon, HotelQuickly and getaroom.com so you can book your Hotel Excelsior by Geisel 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:
- Excelsior Munich
- Excelsior Hotel Munich