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“Beautiful setting outside of Porto Vecchio”
Review of Hotel San Giovanni

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Hotel San Giovanni
Ranked #3 of 42 Hotels in Porto-Vecchio
Certificate of Excellence
Seattle, Washington
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Beautiful setting outside of Porto Vecchio”
Reviewed September 17, 2013

We stayed 3 nights at Hotel San Giovanni. The hotel is set on beautiful, well-manicured grounds that are really nice to walk around. Everyone who worked here was extremely friendly and helpful.
Our room was in the main building. The room itself was clean and basic with a tiny shower; definitely could use a bit of updating and decorating. When we first entered the room, it smelled damp but once we ran the air conditioning/fan, it got better. Overall, the room was comfortable and provided a good night sleep each night we were there.
We did not have a car, so it was about a 20-25 minute walk into Porto Vecchio. This was nice during the day, but was a bit less ideal when it was dark out.
We ate two nights at the hotel restaurant which was outdoors and beautiful. The food was very good (and the cheese selection was very tasty!).
We enjoyed sitting by the pool and swimming each day. The pool area is large and very nice. The one thing to note is that if you do not have a towel, the hotel will loan you one for 3 euro.
I would recommend Hotel San Giovanni. If I were to return, I may try to get a room in one of the other buildings if only so I could enjoy the grounds even more.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank rgam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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409 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed August 31, 2013

We stayed for 1 week in late August; this was our second visit. Hotel San Giovanni continues to deliver overall excellence at a reasonable (for Corsica) price.

The hotel is in the "2-star" category, which means you should not expect hordes of servile butlers wearing suits and white gloves to bow down calling you "Sir" and "Madam", carry your luggage around, bring you cold drinks or room service, or polish your shoes. However, who needs that? As a respectful and polite guest, you will receive very friendly and attentive service. Many of the personnel are relatives of the owner/manager (who is often on-site) -- and it shows! The service is more personal and genuine than would be possible at a hotel operated mainly by employees. That said, nearly all of the employees are also very friendly and helpful.

Lots of things have been done to make the guest's life easier without creating a need for lots of 24-hour personnel, and this is how they can keep the prices at a 2-star level. There is plenty of service personnel around mealtimes, but there is no concierge or room service. You will move your own luggage to and from the room (but the all-terrain luggage trolleys make that very easy even if you have a lot). Beach / pool towels can be rented for €3 (payable each time you want to change the towel -- so not necessarily every day). If you want to do laundry, it's a very reasonable €14 for a full 5kg load returned nicely folded the same day -- we only did one load with a family of 4 (including 2 children) staying for a week -- but if you want your laundry IRONED, it's as expensive as in any hotel.

Pros
--friendly, attentive and professional service.
--high quality, spacious rooms with comfortable beds, plenty of storage, and air conditioning
--hotel is in a very nice, well landscaped park, and rather well equipped for children (swing set, ping pong table, tennis court, and a pond with lots of frogs). The swimming pools is also very nice, and reasonably large.
--location is quite close to Porto Vecchio, towards the north west side, with easy access to the main road. If you choose where to go as a function of time-of-day and traffic conditions, then you have good access to a couple of less-busy beaches, and also to some nice inland attractions including some natural pools along a river that are great for swimming if there is too much wind at the beach.
--for dinner, they serve varied and high quality "family-style" cooking, which means the type of dinner you might expect in a private home. The limited number of choices at each meal allows them to use high quality ingredients while keeping the prices reasonable. If you cannot bear to eat either item on offer, it should be possible to ask for a simple alternative (e.g. a salad in place of the starters).
--breakfast buffet is "continental-plus": no cooked breakfast, but they offer high quality food items including good fruits, bread, hardboiled eggs, jams, Corsican version of Nutella (called Nucciola)
--in case you like sailing -- "Les Fauvettes" sailing school (with group courses for children from age 4) is only a 15 minute drive away

Cons
--hotel is not walking distance from the beach
--This comment applies to the whole area, not to this hotel: traffic during high season can be very dense in the southern part of Corsica. You can adapt to this either by getting up early, or by going to the nearby beaches like "Saint Cyprien" and "Pinarellu". If you try to leave at 10:30am for Palombaggia or or Bonifacio, then you will get stuck in traffic.
--they do have WiFi, but it does not seem to work well with certain websites (e.g. could not log into my office VPN)
--if you want a long menu with a large number of choices, a fitness center, a business center, room service, a concierge, and multiple servile personnel sucking up in order to make you feel important, then this is probably not the hotel for you as none of these things are present.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank SwissFamilyTravellin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancashire
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed August 3, 2013

I cannot understand why this is only rated as a 2 star. The San Giovanni is set in wonderful tranquil parklands about a mile or so outside Porto Vecchio. The food is excellent and the service absolutely spot on. It is owner managed and it shows. We didn't have the best room in the house (No 1) but that was our fault we only booked a week or so beforehand so it was the last room available. Not realy a place for young children although there were a few which is to be expected at the end of July.
If we are lucky enough to go back to Corsica then San Giovanni is definitely on our list.

Room Tip: A car is needed but you could just laze around the very pleasant pool
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank grumpydave42
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
W Yorkshire
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed July 28, 2013

We've just returned today from a week's holiday where we were based at the San Giovanni. They are proudly displaying their Trip Advisor award and rightly so. This is not "5 star luxury" or high-end cuisine, go elsewhere for that. What this privately-owned small country hotel offers is excellent food, fantastic service and an oasis of peace and calm. There are spectacular gardens which accentuate the relaxing atmosphere. We echo all the excellent comments made earlier.

Our room was comfortable and well-appointed with an excellent bathroom, it seemed freshly refurbished. There was just about enough cupboard and shelf space for our gear, and the small desk space became quickly cluttered. However, there was free wifi, excellent air con., and a balcony ! The breakfast buffet was plentiful and the 3-course evening meals lovingly prepared, in the style of 'good home cooking'. Highlight of the week was the duck breast and dauphinois potatoes.

Just minutes from Porto Vecchio and its many fabulous beaches, we can thoroughly recommend the San Giovanni.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Michael D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wimborne Minster, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
65 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed July 17, 2013

Peaceful and tranquil setting in a superbly kept garden, clean comfortable accommodation, Excellent buffet breakfast with a vast choice and plentiful home cooked evening meal, cheerful and helpful staff and a lovely pool. What more could you want?.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank johnmb100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
York
Level 4 Contributor
49 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed July 14, 2013 via mobile

We returned to San Giovanni after two years. We were not disappointed ! The staff - all of them - are as good as ever! Food good, location excellent, grounds fantastic and the whole ambience super! We shall return again!

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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Helpful?
1 Thank Richard S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lichfield, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
186 reviews
56 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 87 helpful votes
Reviewed July 10, 2013

The hotel exceeded our expectations, which were not high for a 2/3 star hotel. We had a superior "villa", which had its own terrace, with table and chairs, overlooking the garden. We must have been lucky from reading some of the other reviews as our room and bathroom were newly renovated and with internet connection. The best thing about the hotel, apart from the staff who were brilliant, was the peaceful atmosphere. The extensive gardens with lots of water features and super vegetation were a delight to look at and sit out in. We chilled out to the sounds of singing frogs, crickets and birds! We never ate breakfast but it looked great and the staff indulged us with water and milk so we could take tea in our room and never even charged for this. We used to walk into the town and port, which was a good 30 minutes but you could be there in 5 minutes by car. The town itself is quite classy, with lots of "upmarket" shops and numerous restaurants. It is a great place to stay as you feel that you are in the country but with all amenities to hand.

The downside for us was the amount of kids, which was okay during the day but in the evening we prefer to dine without them around! The food was good but we did end up going out to restaurants in the town. It would be a great place to take your kids though!

One reviewer referred to a "smell of humidity" but when we were there in May, we did not notice this ourselves.

Room Tip: It's worth paying extra for a superior "villa", preferably on the ground floor.
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Elaine W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel San Giovanni

Property: Hotel San Giovanni
Address: Route d Arca, 20137, Porto-Vecchio, Corsica, France
Location: France > Corsica > Corse-du-Sud > Porto-Vecchio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Best Value Hotel in Porto-Vecchio
#2 Romantic Hotel in Porto-Vecchio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Hotel San Giovanni 2*
Number of rooms: 30
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
San Giovanni Hotel
Hotel San Giovanni Corsica/Porto-Vecchio

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