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“Discreet charm of a monastery.”

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San Giovanni Hotel Resort
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Saluzzo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed December 15, 2012

I was arriving in Hotel San Giovanni after a long drive from Chambery, crossing Tunnel du Frejus and the Alps in pouring rain but luckily on empty roads – it was May 1, 2012. I have never been to Saluzzo before and the sight of it emerging from the rainy fog was fascinating.

It was not easy to get to the hotel even with the GPS, since it is located in the historic city center with limited traffic; add to this the deluge and the main road closed for repairs; yet after some time I was finally there.

When one steps from her room onto the terrace, the view on the 14th century church of San Giovanni and the courtyard bathed in blooming rhododendrons makes one forget the trouble of getting there. There was some special magic to be in such an elegant and ancient place in a rainy day. The total absence of crowds well compensated for the weather. Indeed the outside terrace is perhaps the best feature of the hotel. It has many more:

1) The hotel’s design implies strong 4 stars if not more. It is richly decorated, keeping in a dark monastic style. The doors to the rooms are uniquely done, they are double-doors in fact. The elevator in a place so overwhelmingly full of character and charm was another comfort.
2) My room #3 was of an average to smaller size, with a comfortable bed. That room was centrally positioned, with the best view on the church and the courtyard. It was May 1 and the hotel was literally empty, perhaps this is why I got such a superior room. It was very quiet and provided for the great quality of sleep.
3) The bathroom looked smashing, decorated in somber grey and white colors. It had a huge bathtub and a bidet; there were nice toiletries and a bath robe.
4) The courtyard was absolutely splendid; the rhododendrons were blooming, making the place magnificent. The courtyard was part of the convent of San Giovanni where the hotel is situated. It is open to the public, but on May 1 there was literally no one disturbing the quietness. The view on the church towers from the terrace, framed at the bottom by the courtyard was probably one of the most amazing sceneries I had ever seen in any hotel.
5) There was excellent WiFi connection in the room, both my Android phone and computer worked very well with it.
6) Parking was safe and free in the hotel’s front yard.
7) The location of the hotel in Saluzzo is perfect, with the church of San Giovanni entrance around the corner; it is close to the Casa Cavassa, Torre Civica, the Castle of Marquises of Saluzzo, the panoramic terrace over Saluzzo and the main piazza Salita al Castello. It is also marvelous to drive to the nearby Abbazia di Staffarda, Castello della Manta and to the town of Savigliano; I greatly enjoyed visiting these historically, artistically and architecturally amazing places.
8) The hotel is located in a converted monastery, and the cloister is by itself a work of art, built in 1466. The capitals of the columns wear the fish symbol of the local noble family Cavassa. There is a reflectory with interesting frescoes in the Ferrarese/ Cosmè Tura style by the minor artist Aimo Volpi, 16th century. The church of San Giovanni has a great 15th century frescoes and an extraordinary apse in Burgundian Gothic style, in green Sampeyere stone. These are just a few marvels of Saluzzo, a jewel of Piedmont.

Not so good:

1) The problem started when using the bathtub – the water was not hot enough. It was barely warm for a shower, but once the bathtub is filled, it felt as a tepidarium. The day was not very warm, and I was very disappointed that although a great huge Jacuzzi bathtub was there, it was not really usable due to the lack of hot enough water.
2) There was some timer system in Jacuzzi, suddenly it went on and kept screaming for 10 minutes. I called the attendant but by the time he came, the siren stopped. It was extremely unpleasant to deal with all that, provided there were no instructions on what to expect from such a fastidious Jacuzzi system.
3) The heating system was hot air blow, controlled by some sophisticated device that did not work easily – I could not turn it on, but the attendant managed to do it. I wish the controls would be easier to operate.
4) All these difficulties were quite startling. I manage to travel alone through many European countries in a rental car with no problem, but the secret controls of this hotel’s room made the better of me.
5) The breakfast was not very rich; I expected more variety in Piedmont. I asked for eggs which seemed to cause disapproval from the hostess, yet she brought two soft boiled eggs, albeit without a hint of a smile.
6) The personnel were not overly friendly; I had to specifically ask for help with the bags. While the real estate of this hotel would qualify for solid four stars, the service is barely two. But yet again, the view from the room was above compare.

Overall, it is a beautiful hotel in a splendid location with nonchalant service. I stayed only one night and could stay more. I would recommend it still because of its strong "pro" points. Hopefully the service will improve.

  • Stayed: May 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank Gradiva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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33 - 39 of 134 reviews

Reviewed November 22, 2012

We were very impressed with this hotel. The hotel has been restored from a monastery and in fact is still attached to the church through a door from the cloistered courtyard. The hotel is sited high in the old town quarter and has all of the charm that you would like to see in an old property. Inside the rooms are very clean, chic and modern but retaining the character and feel of the building and history. There is parking in the yard at the front of the hotel. There is a restaurant with an excellent menu in the cellar of the hotel that compliments the surprises that you will experience. The staff were most helpful
Saluzzo is a good shopping town with a great choice to meet your needs. There are plenty of choices for restaurants if you are staying for a few days.
If your in this part of the country, make an effort to stay at the San Giovanni Hotel.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank theredman01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2012

San Giovanni is a wonderful hotel.
Luxurious yet understated. The rooms have been renovated very tastefully. View from the terrace is difficult to put into words - so stunning and atmospheric. We loved it.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank FishyF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2012

From the location, the setting, the architecture, to the way the hotel is kept, the staff..all was very nice.
This hotel provides understated luxury in a renovated monastery with a beautifull church attached to it. The location is perfect for a couple days in Saluzzo.
The room-terasse beneath the campanile and overlooking the courtyard is awesome.The bathroom was particularly cool, spacious and practical.
And, being in a province of culinary delights, the restaurant is a gem and it is the place to eat in this town !
I have been in a few very atmospheric hotels and I rank this among my top experiences.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank DominiqueetMarylene
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 22, 2012

Is situated in former monaster so you can enjoi the charming atmosphere and all facilities Room in monac stile all equiped large terrace fasing into the monac yard
Food is very nice Relaxing sensations

Room Tip: Ask whith the balcon
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  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank Irina S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 10, 2011

This lovely hotel, located up the mountain from the town proper, is as beautiful as it appears on the web site. Our room and bathroom had contemporary furnishings, simple but luxurious. The hotel retains some of its ancient features, like the dark wood doors that lead into each friar's cell, now a guest room, and remnants of frescoes on the walls. We had linen sheets, fluffy robes and good adjustable heat when the night became chilly.

Upon arrival, I noticed that the hot water was lukewarm in the tub and in the sink. The woman at reception came up stairs to check but seemed to think that was the normal temperature. We checked another room, but the water was no warmer. My husband and I went out for dinner, and by the time we came back, the water issue had been solved. When I thanked the receptionist the next morning, she was gracious and pleased to have fixed the
problem.

My only complaint s that my husband is not a lounge-around kind of guy, and I would have been completely content to sit in the sunshine on the patio, reading and enjoying the surroundings, but he had to keep us running to see sights. Oh, well - next time.

Room Tip: All rooms are beautiful, I believe, since the conversion of this monastery into a hotel. Most look o...
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  • Stayed: October 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank Donaldsdottir
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2011

We chose this place on the basis of a couple of reviews on Trip Advisor and were very satisfied indeed with it. It was surprisingly empty, although it certainly deserved to be full. It’s only been open about 6 months, so it may be that word has not had time to spread yet.

Converted from an old monastery, the bedrooms are the old monks’ cells. Our room also had a table on a terrace overlooking the cloisters, which was overlooked in turn by the old monastery’s medieval bell tower. The conversion of the monastery has been carried out superbly, very cleverly and sensitively, offering modern facilities in the bedrooms and bathrooms whilst entirely keeping the feel of the old buildings. The old church of San Giovanni is next door. The whole complex is very peaceful and hugely atmospheric – especially at night.

Staff were all friendly and helpful. All in all, this is a rather wonderful place. The only minor caveat is that the breakfast, though perfectly OK, is a bit limited.

We didn’t try the hotel restaurant, but the owner also runs another restaurant – Quattro Stagioni – in Via Volta, 10 minutes walk down the hill – a wide and interesting menu and wine list at a very reasonable price. We would also highly recommend the Taverna dei Porti Scur directly opposite it – very cheap for the quality of the food and the warm welcome of the (English speaking) owner.

Saluzzo doesn’t seem to get much of a write up in many guide books, and - in July at least – has few tourists. Why this should be is beyond us; the upper town is beautiful and very atmospheric, and the main town at the bottom of the hill is also an enjoyable place to spend a few days.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank CrackedActor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about San Giovanni Hotel Resort

Address: Via San Giovanni 9/A, 12037 Saluzzo, Italy
Location: Italy > Piedmont > Province of Cuneo > Saluzzo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Saluzzo
Price Range: $133 - $231 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — San Giovanni Hotel Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A convent of the XV century restored on this elegant italian charming hotel of 4 stars. The really quite 13 rooms ( 2 singles + 9 doubles + 2 junior suites) to live in the history of the Marquis. The amazing restaurant to tast the local food and wine of Piedmont. The wonderful conference room with a fresco of 1400 to make magical your event. The scenographic and evocative Cloister ideal for meditation. The unique and incomparable hotel in the mediaval side of Saluzzo. ... more   less 
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