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“Good business hotel in great location”

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Novotel Geneve Centre
Ranked #40 of 106 Hotels in Geneva
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed February 14, 2009

Quick and friendly check-out. Room was of an adequate size and was very modern with the usual amenities such as minibar and flat screen TV. The hotel also gives out free transport tickets for the duration of the stay in Geneva which comes quite handy when using buses and trams. Breakfast was very good, with loads of cereals, baked goods, etc. The location is very central and close to the train station Cornavin and the red light district, which may put some non-Europeans off. It is however common with most European towns. Never felt unsafe though.

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled on business
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Thank globetrotterboy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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702 - 708 of 1,296 reviews

Reviewed February 8, 2009

My boyfriend and I arrived in Geneva for an overnight trip by train and had not booked anywhere to stay. After a quick search of the net we found that the novotel was a mere 5minute walk away and for a relatively reasonable 160Francs (not including breakfast). Being keen to explore the city we promptly reserved a spot and strolled over to the hotel.

The check in was quick and the staff efficient and friendly. Unlike previous reviews, I found their English more than competent and from what I gathered, the man serving us was fluent in German too. (my boyfriend handled the booking and undertook the transaction in his native German). He even handed me a cute plush toy meant for children after overhearing me gushing about a cute picture on the wall!

We wandered about the area which was very ethnic but the weather was horrible and we retreated back to the hotel and our spacious room with two comfortable double beds, free internet access in the room (if you bring your own computer) and clean kitschy bathroom (N.B. there is no view whatsoever to speak of, we kept our curtains firmly shut). We also found the lovely spa (and small gym) downstairs where we ended up relaxing for 3 hours.

It was only at night when we really got a feel of just how dodgy the area was. there were prostitutes on every corner and groups of rowdy young men running around - however, I still felt relatively safe as there are plenty of artsy/jazzy bars around the area adding to the atmosphere. Not a place I'd come with children though.

There are plenty of places to eat around the area - again, mostly ethnic food and the old town is a 15minute walk away. From the hotel, one can easily avoid the seedier streets by walking by the river for most of the way.

The only fault I can think of is that for that price, breakfast really should be included, though I guess it's switzerland and really, everything is expensive!

  • Stayed: February 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Alisa04
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 20, 2009

For all kind of stays in Geneva this is value for money.

Right next to the train station and the lake of Geneva with easy access to visit Geneva.

The hotel is what you can expect from a Novotel.

Clean and modern. The staff is very friendly and service-orientated.

Booked this hotel on the Accor website and paid EUR 120 for 1 night which is cheap for Geneva standards.

Very practical the transportation pass free of charge gived at the check-in.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank alberto82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2009

Arrived in Geneva on an EasyJet flight from Rome. Discovered during the flight that the city of Geneva offers a free 2 hour public transportation voucher for arriving passengers. The voucher can be picked up from automated machines in the luggage hall BEFORE you exit through customes. One voucher is needed for each person travelling. My son and I used this to transfer to the central station from the airport.

Arrived at the main station in Geneva and easily found the Novotel. Essentially, exit the station's main enterance, turn left, walk about 2 or three blocks and turn right on Zurich street. Hotel is another 2 or 3 blocks down on the right hand side.

Check in was quick. Had to remind the clerk that our room rate did indeed include breakfast, he stated "no" and then corrected himself. Room key is needed to access the elevators and to power the lights in the room.

Room was modern with a separate toilet area from the main bathroom. No issues with noise from other rooms and overall I was quite pleased with the room set up.

Breakfast was standard for European hotels. The smoked salmon was a nice added touch. Hard boiled eggs, various breads, juices, yogurt, cold cuts, cereal. There was also hot food items available: sausages, scrambled eggs.

Although other reviewers have posted comments regarding the sketchy nature of the area, I did not encounter any of this. I shared the previous postings with my teenage son and he was quite dissappointed that we did not see any prostitutes in the area. I also did not encounter any roving gangs. The area was pretty quite and there was not a lot of action on the street. I can understand why some may feel uncomfortable walking around on deserted streets. There is also a sign at the hotel's door minding guests to keep an eye on their belongings when waiting outside of the hotel.

Overall, a great choice if arriving or departing by train.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled with family
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2  Thank YYZAC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 20, 2008

A very modern hotel with nice rooms and obviously been refurbished recently. However this hotel is not suitable for families as there is nowhere to get something to eat without venturing into the nearby "red light district "streets with gangs on every street corner. I joke not, the main restaurant was closed each night we were there and the hotel is situated in the middle of nowhere in between rows of adult shops and dodgy looking cafes that you certainly wouldnt want to take your children into.

The hotel were very unaccomodating with providing an alternative for dinner apart from suggesting we picked something off the room service menu, which was extremely expensive and again had nothing for the children.

This hotel is basically a nice hotel, but in the wrong area. Fine if you want to get taxis everywhere, but not suitable if you want to walk the streets and explore the local area.

  • Stayed: December 2008
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Thank Critical_TravellerUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 14, 2008

Were only here for the night, were unaware its in a red light district but felt pretty safe with two teenage girls. As most reviews have said the staff aren't exactly the best at customer service. They do struggle with english, but we got what we needed done and had no dramas. The two mac computers were really good to use and free!! a short 5min walk from the trainstation and plenty of restaurants around.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
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1  Thank sl1910
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 30, 2008

I spent three nights at the Novotel Geneva on my first trip to Switzerland. As a seasoned travelled who has visited every contient and started travelling before I could afford decent hotels, I'd say the Novotel has the least helpul and most incompetent non-service oriented staff I've ever encountered. Training is desperately needed!

The Good:

Rooms - clean and comfortable with modern furnishings and up to date bathrooms. Both Ethernet and wi-fi are available and the in-room entertainment has many options.

Location: As a single woman traveller I never felt unsafe, if it's in a red light district it's pretty tame. There are bars around and the vibe is certainly immigrant (African, middle eastern, Indian). Lots of exotic and interesting restaurants nearby and a shot walk (3-4 blocks) to the lake.

The Bad:

Staff:

First, there is no local guide in the room, you know the Guide you find in virtually every hotel listing nearby amenities like banks, clinics, shopping, florists, places of worship etc as well as services and fees. An guide to the entertainment unit and asociated costs can be found on TV itself.

That said, I called the front desk looking for the location of a local medical clinic as I was suffering from leg cramps post flight. First, the clerk didn't understand what a medical clinic was in either French or English and I am fluent in both. Assuming the health care model doesn't include clinics, I described my problem and asked where a local would go. She suggested emergency but didn't know any local hospitals or directions to a hospital. She insisted I should simply get into a cab and ask for the local hospital. Needless to say I called my travel insuance to get direction for this clearly non-emergency situation but it was non-the-less very frustrating. If I'd had a more serious medical condition I'm certain I would have died before getting assistance from the front desk.

The next morning I asked the front desk if they could change currency as I needed to take a taxi to my business meetings and wanted to ensure I had sufficient funds.

1)Hotel doesn't change money...despite currency exchange posted behind the front desk!

2) Desk clerk simply emphatically said "no we can't do this", then proceeded to call a cab for me. I had to tell her to stop as the money issue had to be resolved first. I asked for the nearest bank. She directed me to Lausanne Street marking a X at the corner or Lausanne and Zurich. I asked if the bank was on the corner, and her reply was simply if you walk along Lausanne you will eventually find banks. Lausanne is not exactly a small street! I left the hotel stressed and worried about finding a bank and hailing a cab in time for my meetings, imagine my surprise to find a currency exchange open directly kitty corner to the hotel on Zurich street! You'd think they clerk might have mentioned it. Thankfully the staff at the Currency Exchange were both pleasant and helpful.

3) Finally, for those who aren't fluent in French, I would avoid this hotel at all costs. The staff do not speak or understand English and everything must be explained in French.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled on business
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1  Thank AnotherFish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Novotel Geneve Centre

Address: rue de Zurich 19, Geneva 1201, Switzerland
Phone Number:
Location: Switzerland > Canton of Geneva > Geneva > Pâquis Navigation
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Green Hotel in Geneva
#28 Luxury Hotel in Geneva
Price Range: $160 - $387 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Novotel Geneve Centre 4*
Number of rooms: 206
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Novotel Geneve Centre is a 4 star hotel located in the heart of Geneva, close to Lake Geneva and 15 minutes from the UN headquarters. The hotel features 206 rooms, a restaurant, bar and 6 meeting rooms for conferences and seminars. This 4 star hotel is equally suited to business trips and holidays with your partner or family. In addition to the fitness centre and spa, with relaxation room, hammam, sauna, solarium and massage room, guests enjoy free public transport. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Novotel Geneve Centre Hotel Geneva
Novotel Hotel Geneva
Novotel Hotel Geneve Centre
Novotel Geneva
Geneva Novotel

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