We ended our trip at the Grand Bretagne with a four night stay in a deluxe room.
The good: Great location, service was by and large up to the standards of a deluxe historic hotel with very few missteps. Check-in was rather efficient. Concierge services were excellent. The GB Rooftop Garden was sublime; we ate there for breakfast each morning and had maybe half a dozen meals there throughout our stay. Nice outdoor pool with attached bar. Room was a bit on the smaller side but clean and functional with good amenities.
The bad: Probably not the most exclusive place I’ve been to; there were quite a bit of cruise-ship tourists who frequent here in large groups so if you like peace and quiet or a more formal atmosphere you may want a smaller hotel. Similar to the Ritz Paris, the Grand Bretagne has a bit of a built-in clientele and a whiff of the “you are privileged to stay here” attitude instead of the “we are privileged to have you” outlook. Turndown services missed once. No tour of the facilities on check-in.
The ugly: The “ugly” was provided outside by the anarchists and protestors as we arrived the day after the internationally-publicized riots. They unfortunately smashed the marble steps in front of the hotel and in general caused quite a bit of mayhem in the Square during our stay especially in the evenings. The response of the hotel staff to all of this was something I will remember for quite some time: calm, cool, collected, and very protective of their guests. They made it very apparent to us that our safety was their priority and I never felt intimidated for a moment.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- With breathtaking views of the famed Acropolis and Parthenon, regal Constitution Square and the Parliament, lush Lycabettus Hill, or the original Olympic Stadium, the Hotel Grande Bretagne offers unrivaled perspectives of Athens' mythical history. Each of the 320 guest rooms offers enchanting views of the hotel courtyard or a spellbinding panorama of the city's timeless landmarks, while the exquisite interiors pay homage to Greek culture with intricate moldings and classic decor. ... more less
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