‘Hotel’, as far as the B&B Hotel Meraviglie at Maratea is concerned is a bit of a misnomer. It is not. No restaurant and rooms are as cramped as I last experienced in the army half a century ago. One has to admit being taken in (yet agi'n!) by the almost misrepresentational PR job so favored by hoteliers. ‘View’ of the ‘mare’ is visible between badly topped pines. But that is unfair. Walking down to it is a doddle, but a sweat up. Just in time for a shower at the pool. Few, if any of the criticisms below have been seen anywhere. Why? There is a lot going for the place, but there is much to dislike too. For some reason the latter have not been sufficiently aired.
CONS: 1. The bed feels as if it is at least of 10-20 years-vintage. Our double bed was a plank with a ridge in the centre; 2. The air-conditioning system is in urgent need of an upgrade. It too must hark back to 1980’s. As soon as we woke it was switched off for a merciful release from the incessant loaded hum. Open windows mercifully let in the early morning air. 3. The room is so small that if one wanted to use the fold-down writing desk one would have to sit on the bed. Be careful not to place any weight on the folded-down flap because any pressure threatens to separate its hinges from the rest of the desk. The plank-like bed acts as chair. So this dispatch is being typed on the laptop placed on the bed with my right leg folded between it and me; 4. The bathroom light connects to a fan that is so loud that the best bet is not to switch it on at all and leave the door to the room open as needs allow; 5. The setting has not been used to full effect. The magnificent ocean is patchily visible through the maze of aged pines that have seen their best days long ago. A few require removal. There is no point in hiding the magnificence behind mangled pines – as a photograph attached shows. There is a limit to the virtues of aged (and badly topped) trees; 6. The bar-‘fridge’, is, as in all the B&Bs and hotels we have visited anywhere, including the US, little better than a cool box. The real reason for their inefficiency is the almost total lack of ventilation provided. Too small a space is occupies to expel hot air generated by the cooling process. At least here the hot air is provided an escape, but at the bottom three inches above the floor and below the fridge, as if hot air does not rise, which it does and fills the entire space occupied. The cabinet door cannot be opened to allow for a more efficient fridge because, also as in many places we have visited, it is attached to the actual ‘fridge’ door. 7. No lift; no bell-hop. 8. It is not cheap. 9. Wi-Fi is also not Fi. Connects and disconnects at random. Exceedingly irritating. 10. One glass - in the bathroom.
PROS: 1. The only unqualified success of the place is its flooring. Superb flooring. 2. And I like the bees being fed ham (picture will prove this to cynics) at breakfast. It keeps them away from the tables. 3. The grounds are very well tended with a gardener busily watering early in the morning. 4. Friendly female staff. [The wrestler in the bar - sometimes at the front desk - is always grumpy, threatening and unsmiling even when tipped.] The barman at the pool is a delight. [Noisy giggly adolescent Danes not so – but that was just our bad luck. Narcissists are the bane of an hotelier’s life.] 5. The partially cleared rocky ‘beach’ is a gem. [Be prepared for pure salt in the eyes when swimming in the Tyrrhenian sea. It deep cleanses!]
Conclusion: We won’t be back. One expects more. The printed hype is a disservice to the establishment. Expectations are unreasonably heightened. But if the owners heed criticisms it could be a very nice place to overnight.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Immerso nel verde dove riposare e' una virtu'. Due ettari di pineta sul mare con scogliera liscia attrezzata nica nel suo genere.Provare per credere. ... more less
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