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La Rosa sul Mare
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Reviews (124)
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29 - 34 of 124 reviews
Reviewed January 1, 2006

Ah, the Hotel Rosa sul Mare in Siracusa, Sicily… Advertised as having “charming apartments, situated on the most beautiful hillside of the Plemmirio nature park and sea reserve, with cliffs of white rock and flowered terraces gently sloping down to the Ionian Sea”, the Rosa sul Mare offers “…an oasis of scents and colours from the typical Mediterranean vegetation, with panoramic views on a sea where dolphins usually pass through and a coastline maintaining the ecosystem.” Whatever that means!

What a lovely description – although it fails to mention that the hillside backs on to a particularly shoddy warren of residential roads and dirt tracks, surrounded not by a lush nature reserve but by acres of graffitied derelict buildings and wasteland, most of which are covered in litter and swarming with flies.

As for the apartments themselves, they’re charming enough in a bog-standard Euro-condominium kind of way… but not for the reception staff on site. On arrival at 8pm, in the dark, exhausted after a three hour drive from the airport, our first greeting from the surly owner was an instruction that if we wanted to park on-site, we would have to pay €10 per day for the privilege.

On reaching our apartment, before any introduction to the room amenities, we were grilled on the subject of breakfast, on offer at €10 per person per day. On reviewing the breakfast which had clearly been laid out much earlier in the day (a couple of dismal looking nectarines, a 1-serving box of cornflakes and a yoghurt pot) we declined. We were then told that, in that case, we could not use the kitchen or its facilities.The only item we were allowed to use was the fridge, but we were not to touch any cutlery or crockery. And we were warned that if we dared to disobey, a €35 penalty would be added to our bill.

By this time, we’d been at the hotel about ten minutes and had received nothing but grief. But there was more to come…

The next morning, fancying a swim and a spot of relaxation in the sun, we located the pool and sundeck. However, before we could use the facilities, we were warned that we would have to pay €100 for the privilege during our week’s stay. This explained why, despite the hotel being full, both pool and deck were deserted… and set to stay that way for the whole of our stay.

It became quickly apparent that there was absolutely no atmosphere, no feeling of community, no vibe at this supposedly ‘hip’ hotel. With so many restrictions, boundaries and hidden charges, most guests did what we did – escape every morning to private beaches in more salubrious areas, returning only to kill the flies in the room and go to sleep.

Unless visitors are keen long-distance walkers with a penchant for trekking across landfill municipal dumps and arid insect-infested wastelands, a sealed car is a must for this area. But beware, book your car in the UK before you leave, as the nearest rental operation is at Catania airport, an hour or more’s drive away from the Rosa Sul Council Tip…

Saddled with temperamental air conditioning that failed on a daily basis, the absence of new towels or bed linen (despite promises to the contrary) and a toilet system that proved incapable of dealing with the not-unreasonable challenge of toilet paper (!), we sat in the darkness of our terrace (thankfully included in the price of accommodation), waiting an eternity for the sun to come round to our benighted side of the hotel. Robbed of the will to live and risking life and limb on the rusted ‘death-trap’ sun loungers, we considered our options. Behind our improvised sight barrier of towels (draped across the open balcony front to prevent the staff and various family members wandering by and staring as they stood around chatting at the tops of their voices), we took the decision after 4 interminable days to move on to a proper 4-star hotel, notwithstanding the fact that we had paid for 7 days of this dismal accommodation in advance. And strangely, when we left, the staff seemed unsurprised… I suspect we were not the first to jump ship.

In summary, this hotel is predicated on a series of half-truths, untruths and frankly misleading omissions. It appears to exist solely as a means for the owner to extort additional rent from his punters and I would urge any self-respecting traveller with taste, discernment and any expectation of a welcoming relaxing break to avoid it at all costs.

26  Thank Horrified-of-London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded July 3, 2006

Whilst I believe strongly that everyone should have the right to "air their views" regarding their holiday experiences, I feel that the negative comments posted from this client were purely driven by their anger regarding a completely separate issue and not based on the reality of the situation.

La Rosa sul Mare has been receiving very positive feedback for many years regarding the high standard of our accommodation and the services that we offer.

The coastal area in front of La Rosa sul Mare is a recognised "protected coastal resort" and as such offers crystal clear seas and stunning views.

I would suggest that when reading such extreme comments such as this, it is essential that they are taken with a "pinch of salt" as they are clearly not objective. Also, consideration should be taken for the other positive feedback regarding La Rosa sul Mare that are posted on this site and indeed on other travel sites on the internet.

Thank you for your attention regarding this matter.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
16
Reviewed October 23, 2005

After a disastrous stay at Hotel Roma in Ortygia town, we moved on to the La Rosa Sur Mare by the Arenella area. We were slightly worried about finding our way from Syracuse to the hotel but it turned out easier than expected. Head down the S115 toward Arenella, turn left after the Q8 service station, go straight on past the first roundabout. Hotel is about 4km down on the right.

It is well-worth the 20 mins trip there. Our junior suite booked through hotelclub had splendid views of the cliffy beach. Whilst the furnishings felt slightly dated, the sheer spaciousness and gorgeous views more than made up for it. The design of the hotel meant that all rooms had either a terrace or balcony overlooking the waterfront. We spent the afternoon wandering around the cliffs and lazing by the poolside. All v. romantic & rejuvenating.

A money-saving tip is to decline both breakfast (10 euros/person) and garage parking. There are numerous places to eat (cheaply) by the coast and ample parking along Via dei Diamanti. A true gem on the Sicilian coast.

  • Stayed: October 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
6  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 18, 2005

We stayed at La Rosa Sul Mare for our one year wedding anniversary night and it was truly an incredible place to stay. The hotel is situated above the Ionian Sea with crisp white walls and beautiful landscaping. The interior of our hotel room could be easily compared to a fancy 1 bedroom apartment and was very pleasant. We had a gorgeous, unobstructed view of the sea. There is a swimming pool where you must wear a swim cap, but you can walk down a flight of outdoor stairs to access the sea, which is a must-do. There are rocks, not sand, so wear water-shoes if you have them. There is also a big sun-deck built over the water. We loved this hotel and found it to be very romantic.

  • Stayed: August 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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5  Thank emull78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago
Google Translation

Room Tip: Tous les appartements ont vue sur la mer. Nous étions 5 personnes et notre appartement était vaste et au calme.
  • Stayed: April 2018, traveled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile
Google Translation

Stayed: April 2018, traveled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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