I am a little surprised by some of the unreserved praise lavished on this hotel by some reviewers. We stayed in May 2014. The hotel has an enviable position right on La Concha bay with a broad, attractive promenade outside which leads to the magnificent beach. I cannot fault the friendliness of the staff or the attentiveness of the service; the valet parking in particular was much appreciated as the streets in San Sebastian are busy and there is a one-way system which is somewhat confusing (even our Satnav got slightly lost). Our room with balcony overlooking the sea was spacious and very comfortable; the marble bathroom was well-equipped and also large with two basins and lots of storage space. I'd advise against the rooms on the other side of the hotel which overlook a small and traffic-ridden square.
There is,though, something odd about this hotel. It seems they have reconfigured it to remove a lot of the rooms which were once for the guests and turned them into private suites used for weddings etc which means that for hotel guests there is little in the way of pubIic spaces. On our last day there was a wedding reception and the guests were having their welcome drinks in the hotel lobby: we actually had to fight our way through the assembled flower of San Sebastian society to get out the front door! In addition the bar area doubles as the only lounge so has the feel of a rather grand station waiting-room in the evening when it is very busy (there were several large tour groups, both British and German, staying there at the time).
There is one dining room which, although advertised as a gourmet Brasserie, is in fact the rather austere breakfast room complete with self-service buffet area. We did not try the food as the setting was very unappealing: 'looks very ordinary' as my husband remarked on the night we arrived. That said we had no trouble finding excellent restaurants and Tapas bars in which to eat a variety of wonderful food. Hotel breakfast at 19 Euros is a bit on the pricey side and we opted for the delicious croissant and coffee avaliable at the bar from 10.00 am.
All in all it's a good hotel in a fine position but in my opinion only just merits its fourth star because of the limited public space available. Even if they spent millions on it I do not see how it could ever be ranked higher because it simply feels cramped; I think they have made a commercial decision at the expense of the hotel's amenities for guests. Definitely not quite what we had expected from the website.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel de Londres y de Ingleterra is a luxury 4 star boutique hotel located right in front of the beach of the La Concha bay of San Sebastian - Donostia. Our beautiful location on the Basque Country coast and comfortable hotel rooms with stunning sea view makes the hotel perfect for a romantic weekend escape or relaxing summer vacation. ... more less
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