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“Great holiday marred by food poisoning”

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Grand Hotel Gardone Riviera
Ranked #2 of 19 Hotels in Gardone Riviera
Certificate of Excellence
Loughborough
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Great holiday marred by food poisoning”
Reviewed August 26, 2008

My wife and I spent two enjoyable weeks at the hotel in late June this year booked through Crystal Holidays. Unfortunately the holiday was marred by an outbreak of food poisoning at the hotel. We first noticed this two days before we left when a number of guests were either absent from dinner or left dinner feeling unwell.

On 24 June we received a note in our room from the holiday company informing us that there was suspected food poisoning at the hotel and advising us what to do if we felt ill.

Later that evening we were visited in the room by a member of the hotel reception and a doctor, who asked my wife questions about our health.

Staff dealing with problem on behalf of the hotel and travel company dealt with us in a rational and sympathetic way.

We have so much enjoyed our holidays at the hotel for the last three years and would very much like to stay there again.

However, we have seen no reports on TripAdvisor or elsewhere as to whether the hotel's problems with food poisoning have been resolved.

Is there anybody who has stayed at the hotel in July or August who could update us on whether the hotel has returned to normal operation?

We would be reluctant to return until we know that reputable UK travel companies are offering holiday packages to the hotel.

Please can anyone help?

Many thanks

Peter Mills, England

  • Liked — Location
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Grandpa Mills
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
180 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 194 helpful votes
Reviewed August 18, 2008

We stayed here for five days on our honeymoon having come from four nights in Rome. I have to confess that choosing this hotel was not one of better decisions. There was nothing objectively wrong with the place. The room had a bed, wardrobe, bathroom and balcony looking out over what I assume was the lake (it was covered in fog the whole time - not the hotel's fault). And it was clean.

But the whole place - furniture, decoration, carpets - had clearly seen better days when Churchill apparently stayed there some years previously. The bathroom was a bit of an early 80s smoked glass nightmare and had a cloying smell of mould pervading the place the whole time.

We were staying half-board (another big mistake) and I swear that when we walked into the hotel dining room (which reminded me of something from Hi-De-Hi), we must have lowered the average age by about 15 years. The food was unspectacular and I wasn't surprised to learn that there was recently (July 2008) and outbreak of food poisoning here.

Best of all, the serving staff seemed to be on some Italian job creation scheme because when one's order was taken by a particularly grand waiter (in a tail coat), it was then immediately handed to a minion (in a much smaller coat - length of coat tail clearly indicated hierarchy) who had to dash off to the kitchen with the order. Then when the food arrived. A special serving table was drawn alongside one's own table (which one had to use every night), the meal on a platter was placed on the serving table, the food then transferred to a plate and then finally the plate was moved (with a flourish!) to your place setting. What on earth was that all about?

We decided to eat out on subsequent nights.

Did this place have any redeeming features? I'm sure in the height of summer (rather than mid-September), the terraces are wonderful places to take the sun, but as a base for exploring the rest of the lake and the surrounding region, it was pretty poor too. I would recommend either Riva del Garda or Sirminone for that.

In summary: an error of judgement on my part in booking this hotel and not one I will be repeating in a hurry.

  • Liked — Leaving
  • Disliked — Arriving
  • Stayed September 2003, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
10 Thank SW19Traveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
St Leonards on Sea, UK
Level Contributor
91 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 229 helpful votes
Reviewed July 13, 2008

This was our third trip to Gardone and our first stay at The Grand,we had previously stayed twice at The Savoy Palace an excellent hotel but were unable to book a lake view room this time.

The Grand's best features compared to The Savoy Palace are the splendid lake views from the bedrooms, the pool location, directly on the lake, the best cocktail bar in Gardone and the location of its restaurant which is as close to the lake as you could get..

We had booked a few days before the poisoning scare and after eight days there are none the wiser to the cause, after receiving assurances from the hotel we decided to brave it and were pleased we did, although some information from the management would have been helpful. After 3 days we overheard a conversation that the restaurant which had been offering a limited dinner menu was to close for dinner until 19 July, we enquired at the front desk who advised us that we would be offered a choice of restaurants to eat at. Our request was to eat at The Savoy and our request was granted . The Grand compensated us with free wine and bottled water throughout our stay and with a late checkout. We had the best of both worlds, make no mistake the chef at the Savoy is the best, creative and beautifully presented food.

Breakfast at The Grand lacked imagination, tinned fruit juices and tinned fruit cocktail is not what good hotels are made of. Because the kitchens were closed they introduced a cooking station on the lakeside with a choice of egg and bacon. How simple it would have been to have offered a choice of omlettes, or other variations.

We really feel for everyone who has suffered from recent events, without The Grand, Gardone is finished, every business there is suffering. It will take time for them to recover from the current crisis and we hope they do.

There are many excellent hotels in this beautiful, tranquil area, we have experienced two of the better ones. Although we were staying at The Grand the welcome afforded us by the management and owners of The Savoy Palace was very special, and will live with us for a long time.

Enjoy, whatever your choice.

  • Liked — Superb lakeside location
  • Disliked — Nothing to dislike
  • Stayed July 2008, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank BLIZZ-WHIZZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wetherby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
69 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed June 30, 2008

This was my fourth visit to this hotel and it was lovely to see many of the same staff members who are always so courteous, charming and helpful.

During my visit the hotel had a food poisoning incident, and when I left the kitchens had been temporarily closed for thorough steam cleaning, although the actual cause of the poisoning had not been confirmed. Temporary kitchens were erected and outside caterers have been employed until the kitchens re-open, hopefully on the 1st July.

The events have been very sad for everone who was affected and it would appear a possible cause is some rogue fish which could happen at any hotel or restaurant.

The staff were distrought at the events and are doing everything humanly possible to get things back to normal.

I personally would have no hesitation in going back to the hotel again and am already thinking about booking for next year. There is no other hotel on the lake quite like it for position. I am a relative newcomer only having visited four times, many are into double figures and spend 3-4 weeks at a time there - I think that says a lot!

  • Liked — The hotel's position on the Lake and lake views and balconies for single travellers
  • Disliked — Shower only - no bath
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank DorothyT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
london
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed June 17, 2008

i was travelling for work and was booked in this hotel by mistake however what a find. i was not disappointed. the hotel is located on a a busy main road however i was driving from milan's bergamo airport and the drive was very easy and straight forward only two roads! the staff were so friendly and welcoming. they are very used to enlish guests so english is very well spoken and understood. the staff were very efficent and genuinely wanted me to enjoy my stay. the room keys are proper brass hotel keys not rubbish plastic keys. i checked in and was pleasantly surprised to fine i had been upgraded from a single room to a double room. ensure you have a lake view. the hotel is long and is built alongside the lake so the majority of rooms are on the lake and have a view. the higher up you are the better the view. their is a little pool and you can swim in the lake. the lobby is as the hotel's name suggests 'grand'. the best thing about the hotel was the food. i had dinner from the a la carte menu. the two dinners i had was amazing. the first night i was there i had the grilled sea bass and it was presented excellently. the taste was even better. the second night i had prawn and avacodo salad and the scallop risotto with wild leeks. wow! they were all amazing. the cheese board was well appointed and varied from evening to evening (as it should) the waiters were so lovely and very attentive. the hotel does attract an older cliente. the hotel bar was brilliant as the crooner playing the keyboard was a real character. the bar staff again had very high standards and even thou there is 600 rooms they remembered what i had ordered the previous night and the cocktails were very good. caiprinha was very well mixed.

  • Liked — the excellent food and the brilliant staff
  • Disliked — the singer in the bar
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
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    • Cleanliness
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank LondonSuzic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Solihull ,West Midlands
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed May 13, 2008

Booked with Crystal, paid for single room with lake view but first night spent in roadside room because no lake views available! Strange that the couples on coach got lake views, made a fuss and got lake view on second day.
The hotel is very comfortable and clean. Food good but drinks double the cost of next door hotel. Ferry boats on low season timetable until end of May so some trips didn't allow for much time at destinations.

  • Liked — Good View eventually
  • Disliked — Hard bed
  • Stayed May 2008, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank seb08
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2008

Longest hotel I've stayed in - seemed to be endless. Sits right on the lake, and a wonderful location. Lake boats leave regularly next door to the hotel. Could not be better.
Must have a room to overlook the lake - other side is a VERY noisy road. Worth the extra cash.
Hotel clean and pleasant. Reception staff very welcoming, always friendly - as good as it gets.
Restaurant staff very attentive - friendly - good English - willing to share info. Head waiter knowledgable and kindly.
Watch the prices of the bar - high.
Bedrooms small but very clean and excellent staff to service.
Downside: food is limited in style and taste. Dinner has short menus with little choice. Breakfast basic continental - not much more. If more imaginative breakfast and dinner, would be top class.

  • Liked — lakeside location
  • Disliked — evening meal with small menu
  • Stayed April 2008
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank lakelover34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Hotel Gardone Riviera

Property: Grand Hotel Gardone Riviera
Address: Corso Zanardelli 84, 25083 Gardone Riviera, Italy
Location: Italy > Lombardy > Province of Brescia > Gardone Riviera
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Gardone Riviera
#2 Family Hotel in Gardone Riviera
#2 Luxury Hotel in Gardone Riviera
#3 Romantic Hotel in Gardone Riviera
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Hotel Gardone Riviera 4*
Number of rooms: 167
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Built in 1884 as the first hotel on Lake Garda, the Grand Hotel Gardone testifies the elegance and style of an era. The view of the lake is majestic and very picturesque, and becomes even more impressive with the ever changing light, sun and shades during the day and night. The hotel has 167 bedrooms and Jr. Suites with balcony, offering every comfort with a splendid view of the lake. Refined cuisine with local specialities can be enjoyed at a candlelight à la carte dinner on the terrace restaurant “Il Giardino dei Limoni” by the pool. The menu of the day is served at the lakeside restaurant with veranda, while at the pool snack bar you can have a quick informal lunch. The Winnie's Piano Bar offers the opportunity for a drink and dance after dinner. There is a private beach, a solarium terrace along the lake, heated swimming pool, whirlpool, sauna, steam bath, massage and beauty parlour, jetty for motorboats, internet points and Wi-fi in all the public rooms. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Gardone Riviera
Gardone Riviera Grand Hotel
Grand Hotel Gardone Riviera Lake Garda, Italy

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