We've just returned from a 5 night stay and overall were pleased with our choice of hotel.
However, to make it a really special hotel, they desperately need to address some issues:
1) The allocation of rooms seems haphazard and not in relation to what has been paid. We booked a 'superior' room well in advance and put in a special request for a balcony (had read on TA that room 402 was superb with double balcony) At first we were told that was fine and then a few days later we received an email saying we would have to pay a supplement to ensure a room with balcony. We reluctantly agreed. On arrival we were allocated room 502 which I excitedly thought would be similar to 402 with double balcony etc. I was wrong. We had one tiny balcony despite the supplement paid and despite the fact we'd booked for 5 nights in a superior room. Maybe there needs to be more different price categories for the rooms ?
2) The lighting in the room is a real problem if you want to read. Yes, there are directional reading lights over the bed but if you want to sit on the bed or in a chair its so dimly lit that its impossible to read. We mentioned this to reception but they said the idea was that the room should be romantically lit. That's fine but just provide some additional lighting in the form of an angle poise or something for those that want/need it. Also the shelving units alongside the bathroom were so poorly lit, it was like unpacking in the dark.
3) There was nowhere comfortable to sit (except on the bed) By the table in the corner there were 2 office type chairs - not exactly comfy in a 'superior' room (see photo)
4) The design of the bath area was dangerous. The bath was enclosed in a fixed glass panelled area and it was like an obstacle course to get in. It was hazardous to get out of when wet and slippery. Moreover, it was impossible to access the taps/shower without getting into the bath first, thereby potentially being sprayed with freezing cold or very hot water. Reception accepted that it was a design fault and they were slowly changing the bathrooms.
5) On our second morning at about 9am we had no hot water at all.
6) Providing a Nespresso coffee machine and a free mini bar was much appreciated and a nice touch but how silly to provide just 2 capsules of coffee, regardless of length of stay - it will inevitably frustrate guests. Luckily we'd read on TA about the' 2 capsule only rule' and took some from home with us. (One could also buy from the Nespresso shop on the corner of Rua Garrett)
7. The front desk staff seemed to vary a lot in terms of efficiency, helpfulness and experience. Mariana was delightful but another lady and one man were quite abrupt. Also you felt that some of the staff were rather inexperienced - we wondered if the management were new to the hotel business? It would have been nice to have been warned about the train strike on the day they knew we were heading off to Sintra.
On the positive side, the location of the hotel cannot be beaten. Its bang in the centre of things and so close to all transport links, shops and restaurants - a huge plus. Also if you don't want to pay 15 Euros for the hotel breakfast, there are loads of lovely cafes very close by.
For us the housekeeping was efficient although we were out all day on most days so had no idea what time they did the room. Mini bar always replenished with water etc.
The hotel doesn't claim to be 5 star and for the amount paid we felt it was reasonable value, mainly due to its brilliant location.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Santa Justa HotelDesign Boutique 4 stars Hotel located in the commercial and financial center of Lisbon A Baixa. Also located in the surroundings of one of the most famous monuments in the city the “Elevador de Santa Justa”.Its excellent location between Praçca do Rossio , Chiado and Praçca do Comércio, allows Santa Justa Hotel to offer its guests the best shopping and cultural attractions.Besides the surroundings tranquility, courtesy, elegance and comfort are the charm and grandeur of the Santa Justa Hotel. Enjoy the light, enjoy the history, enjoy Lisbon, enjoy Santa Justa Hotel. ... more less
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