We made the fatal mistake of falling for the pictures on the hotel web site and reading the reviews which sounded ok on Trip Advisor, booking and then when we returned home realising that we had been reading the reviews of the other ‘Hotel Hermitage’ up the road in Forte dei Marmi. Yes it was a stupid mistake, one we will never make again.
That said, the photos on the web site do look ok, with a modern attractive feel to the dining room and lobby.
The reality: Yes still a modern feel to the entry of the hotel but when you get up stairs to the room something different. We had booked adjoining rooms for the kids 10 and 8, we were totally shocked. We have an expression in our family ‘lucky we didn’t bring the cat!’, the reason being that if we had there would not be room to swing it. The rooms were supposed to be double but were just big enough for a double bed. I realise that Italian hotels are known for small rooms but having been to Lido De Jessolo last year we were expecting similar.
For what we were paying this was a total disappointment. This hotel was not cheap. Before going we spent a week at the beautiful Villa Il Poggiale south of Florence, which is fantastic with enormous rooms and is truly an extraordinary hotel. The Hermitage was 30% more expensive and about 1/3 rd of the quality. With rooms about 1/5 th of the size.
Although the rooms were clean they were tired in décor and soft furnishings. The bathrooms were also in need of some serious work. One good point, the balcony was big and quite nice.
The swimming pool was ok from afar, once up close, like the rooms, in need of some work. During the times when we did not go to the beach and spent time by the pool, we were generally their alone, so no atmosphere and no one for the kids to play with.
The hotel beach 5 minute walk from the hotel was ok nice sand and clean, but no more than ok.
Evening meals were unusual. Generally two options for main course available, which had to be booked the night before, plus one dessert, fruit and ice cream. What was served was just about passable but was made up of cheap ingredients.
Breakfast again just about passable being the usual Italian offering.
In terms of the staff, generally friendly with little English. No one to help with bags when we arrived, had to carry cases containing the kitchen sink et al up a spiral staircase unaided.
We booked 10 days and left after 3.
We tried to avoid discussing with the kids what the ladies were doing standing on the street corners when going out at night and returning later.
This part of the Tuscan Riviera is worth avoiding. Much better to be in Forte dei Marmi and not Marina Di Massi.
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