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“Lovely place”

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Casta Diva Resort & SPA
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Blevio
Certificate of Excellence
San Francisco
Level Contributor
140 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 267 helpful votes
“Lovely place”
Reviewed September 6, 2012

We spent four days at Casta Diva (CD) and enjoyed it very much. The service wasn't perfect, maybe not quite to five star standards, but I'm very surprised by the negative reviews it has received, Especially the ones that critized the staff's attitude. We found everyone to be very friendly and willing to help. Nothing but smiles from the front desk to the bell staff to the restaurants to housekeeping. There were a couple of small mistakes and inefficiencies here and there, but they were remedied quickly with apologies. Perhaps it should have been better for the price point, but service was far from a major problem.

We found the resort itself to be quite lovely. There is a main building/villa on the lake that houses many of the common areas and a few guest rooms. The other guest rooms are in multiple buildings along the surrounding cliffs. It's a very unique and dramatic set up. But, as many reviewers have mentioned, it does require either a lot of mobility or patience (as you wait for golf carts to pick you up). I enjoyed the hikes that were requried to get around because the views and scenary are so beautiful but we did see a few elderly and very young who were struggling with them. Better signage and design would help too; there was some trial and error required in order to learn the best paths. The spa and the bar in the main villa are simply stunning; we loved spending time there. The gym is small but modern, if a touch on the warm side (same temp as spa).

We stayed in a "penthouse suite" (odd name since it wasn't on the top floor) of one of the closer buildings and we liked it very much. It was quite large, had a great layout, stellar views and a huge, lovely terrace. I wasn't so thrilled with some of the decor choices, especially the very bright purple and gold bathroom, but everything was of high quality and working order. And it was so quiet - a great place to relax and enjoy the views.

We ate at the resort often and found the food to be generally pretty good. I think I liked the huge breakfast buffet the best. I wish it changed from day to day, but there were enough options to mix it up on my own. We preferred dining in the bar over the much more formal restaurant, but both had good food and service, albeit expensive.

My only real complaint with the resort was around car transportation. It was very difficult to get a metered taxi so we were often put in very expensive private cars. I don't know if it's some sort of racket at the hotel or whether it was just hard to get a taxi driver to come to the somewhat remote location, but ended up trapped into paying 2-3x the rate of a taxi on occasion. In some cases it was worth the extra money, as the prviate cars were much nicer and more dependable (always on time, sometimes early). But it would have been nice to have a choice in the matter. It just doesn't feel good to feel like you're being forced into exorbitant costs (30E to Torno, which is less than 3km, 120E to Bellagio - ouch). I'm still glad we didn't rent a car though; the narrow roads are harrowing and we like to have wine with our meals. We used the cheap and convenient ferry service out of Torno on a couple occasions, thankfully.

I'm not sure we would run back to Lake Como. We found it a touch boring, overpriced and hard to get around. But if we did return we'd likely go back to Casta Diva. I'm so glad we stayed there rather than Villa D'Este which is much larger, more expensive and old-fashioned.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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1 Thank eh555
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed September 4, 2012

Casta Diva Resort is a truly beautiful property on the banks of Lake Como in the village of Blevio, It is a historical renaissance style villa which is very exclusive & is tastefully furnished. It has a floating swimming pool on the Lake & most suites & private villas overlook the lake. It also has a Spa & offers a gastronomic experience created by their renowned Chef Allessio Mecozti who cooks a typical Italian cuisine with a modern touch. Their sommelier Antonio is also very knowledgeable & excellent wines from the Lombardy region served in their Bar as well as their restaurant L'Orangerie. We spent 2 delightful days & would highly recommend a stay of at least 3 nights to truly enjoy this wonderful property. One can visit the villages on Lake Como by boat.

Room Tip: Request for Lake facing rooms. All their suites face the lake but some of their standard rooms too f...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank amaladantas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed August 30, 2012

My husband, 18 month old daughter and I recently returned from a 4 day/3 night stay at Castadiva. We spent 5 days in Lake Lugano, then went to Lake Como. I am writing a detailed review because the hotel is only 3 years old and does not have as much feedback as other hotels. If you do not want to read the detailed review, my summary is that the main building of the hotel has good views of the lake (although our lake view room did not) and a good spa, but severely lacks customer service and tries to nickel and dime you every chance it gets. I would not stay there again and would not recommend it.

Main building
Castadiva is located in Blevio, a very small town in Lake Como. Upon arrival, our vehicle passed through a security check point, then went down a steep hill to the main building where the reception desk was located. On one of the few positive notes, when we arrived, there was someone there with wet towels for refreshing our hands and face and some hand cream from the spa. We then went to reception to check-in. I had booked a deluxe lake view room and was told that if there was availability, we would be upgraded. The receptionist told us that there was availability and that we were upgraded to a junior suite. She then showed us around the hotel. The main building had a couple of penthouse suites, but no other rooms. The spa was located in the main building. There was also a terrace where snacks like sandwiches/hamburger were available. There was only one restaurant (not including the terrace for snacks). The restaurant was near the main building, but not in it. The main building, the terrace and the restaurant all had nice views right on the lake.

Room
We had to take a golf cart to our room, which was up a very steep flight of stairs. I like hiking, but going up and down the stairs with a baby (and even without) got tiring. The room was very large, but that’s really all it had going for it. As one other reviewer noted, the idea of the rooms seemed good, but the execution was poor. First, and most disappointing, was that we didn’t really have a lake view. We had a garden area (which I note was nice), and if we stood in the corner of the garden on tippy toes, making sure our vision was not caught in the sight of the trees right in front of our face, then we could see the lake. As we paid extra for a lake view, this was disappointing. Second, although we had a large bathroom with golden countertops, golden floors, a large shower and bathtub, the shower water only got luke warm and barely trickled out of the faucet. We called reception and they had maintenance fix it. Although it was fixed, I expected more from a 5 star hotel. If any cleaning crew used the water to clean the shower, they should have noticed the problem and had it fixed before we were subjected to taking a barely luke warm trickling of water. Also, there was a gap between the shower door and the bathtub so water could easily find its way out of the shower and all over the bathroom, which it did. The sink faucet came out into the middle of the sink so when we turned on the water, it would spray all over the counter tops, even if we turned the water on low. Our room had a closet with four separate sections and there was also a large walk-in closet, which we didn’t use. I’m not sure who brings that many clothes on a trip, but I thought it was really unnecessary to have a closet in the room and such a large walk-in closet. I would have rather had the space used for something else. There was also one corded phone in the room that didn’t work well. The TV worked fine, but only had a handful of channels, all in Italian. There was also a minibar with water and soda that was complimentary and refilled once a day. They also provided 3 dry snacks – cashews, peanuts and Japanese rice crackers, which again, were refilled once a day.

I note that getting from your room to any other location in the hotel is a task in itself. You have to go down a myriad of steps and even then the design was poor so you have to go through the main building to get to the outside terrace (or climb through the fence). Also, to get to the restaurant from your room, you have to go down all the stairs and go either through the main building through the terrace area or go to the upstairs level of the restaurant and find your way down to the main eating area.

Services
The maid service came in the morning and again in the evening to turn down the bed. Although there were three of us, on a couple of occasions, they only left two towels for us.

The hotel offered room service, albeit for a 25 euro drop-charge per order. Since we had a baby with us, it was difficult for us to go to the restaurant at times so we had to use that service and pay the 25 euros. Not only did we pay the drop-charge, but we were also overcharged. As one other reviewer noted, the menu had the price of the pizza for 15 euros, but they charged 20. I ordered two pizzas because the room service attendant said that it was only one slice of pizza so we were overcharged by 10 euros. I called room service about this and was told I would get a call back, but never did. I also note that one pizza is a whole pizza and not just a slice so one pizza would have been sufficient. Since I had almost a whole pizza left over, I decided to save it for a little later. We went to the pool for 45 minutes and when we came back, the pizza was gone. I called reception about this because I told room service that I would call them to collect the food when we were done. Again, I was told I would receive a call back, but never did. After about three hours, I called reception and asked to speak to the manager. I was told that the manager was not there. The receptionist said she would try to reach the manager. About 30 minutes later, the concierge called and said he was the manager on duty. He also said he was the one who did not call me back because there was an “emergency.” He said he would send me a new pizza, but specifically said that that would be all he would do. I really wanted to detail all the issues I had with the hotel, but when he called, the phone was very loud and right next to the bed where my daughter was sleeping so she woke up and was crying so I had to attend to her. He said he was only going to be there for the next 10 minutes if I wanted to call back. I then asked if I could speak to him at any other time before we were scheduled to leave, but he said he would not be there for the next two days.

On our check-out date, I called reception first thing in the morning to see if we could have a late check-out, as check-out time is 12pm and our flight was not until 7pm. The receptionist said that she could not make that decision – only the manager could - but that the manager was not there and would not be there for another two hours. After a couple of hours, she phoned back and said that we could not have a late check-out because they needed the room. I have never before stayed in a hotel where the staff did so little to accommodate its guests. I also found it very strange that there was often no manager on duty and nobody that could make decisions about a situation.

When checking out, the receptionist asked if everything was okay with our stay. I said no, it was not okay. She just smiled and proceeded to check us out, not even asking what were the problems. If they cared about making customers happy, then they would want to know about any customer complaints and how to improve/resolve any issues. Compare this to many other hotels that ask you to fill out questionnaires, ask for comments and ways to improve.

The only thing I enjoyed about this hotel was the spa. There was an indoor pool that is heated and also a floating pool right on the lake that was also heated. There was also a steam room, sauna, Mediterranean bath and some other weird things like ice showers. Each room had instructions on how to use the room. Unlike the rest of the hotel staff, I found the staff in the spa very helpful. For instance, they helped me set up the shading umbrella and carried my towels. There was also a fitness center with technogym equipment that was nice.

Still, given the less than mediocre level of service we received from the hotel in general, it is not worth it to stay there just for the spa.

Food
We tried many items on the room service menu. The room service menu offered a variety of choices, including a hamburger, a margherita pizza, chicken sandwiches, beef fillet, fish, caesar salad and spicy wings. Most of the food was okay, but the pizza was not. Also, on one occasion, we were given stale bread, which was hard as a rock.

Breakfast was included in our room rate. On offer was a buffet of scrambled eggs, saugage, tuna sandwiches, ham and cheese sandwiches, cheese, fruit, nuts, a variety of cereals, yogurt, bread and pastries. There was juice available, but for fresh orange juice, you had to ask and wait for them to bring it to you, which sometimes took around 10 minutes. The breakfast was pretty good, but there were many small bugs (perhaps fruit flies) flying all over the fruit, which I found unappetizing.

We also ate in the main restaurant; however, we happened to be there when Russian chef Antonoly Komm was offering a tasting menu. We very much enjoyed the tasting menu, which was supposed to be all inclusive. As I do not drink alcohol, I ordered orange juice. They brought me grapefruit juice. Later, I ordered another glass. After 30 minutes, I asked about my juice and finally it came out – very hot. To make matters worse, I was actually charged 10 euro for each very small glass of juice, even though the 180 euro per person meal was supposed to be all inclusive. Perhaps it was because I gave my 18 month old daughter a couple of sips of the juice?!

We also ordered a pasta dish from the regular menu thinking I could give some to my daughter. The pasta did not taste good at all.

Location
Castadiva is about a 10-15 minute drive to Como, but about an hour from Bellagio. From Como, there is also an option to take a ferry to the other cities. To get to Bellagio, the slow boat takes 2 hours and costs around 10 euro and the fast boat takes 1 hour and costs around 15 euro. Como was okay, but note that the shops close from 1-3pm. Also, the hotel tried to get us and other hotel patrons to pay for a private boat to go around the lake. The private boat costs around 250 euros per hour. Also, one other couple complained that the hotel booked a taxi for them, which was not metered, and it cost 20 euros more than the metered taxi. As an aside, we used Panicucci taxi services from the airport to the hotel, which was recommended by the hotel in Lugano. We found the taxi service to be very reliable and reasonably priced. We would highly recommend it.

Conclusion
Comparing this to the hotel we stayed at in Lugano (Villa Castagnola) and other five star hotels we have stayed in, this hotel paled in comparison. The service was severely lacking. The design of the hotel was poor. The view from our “lake view room” was of trees and we were repeatedly overcharged. I found myself very upset at the end of the trip, rather than happy, refreshed and relaxed. I would not stay there again and cannot recommend it.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
20 Thank NatalieY602
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok, Thailand
Level Contributor
72 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
Reviewed August 12, 2012

The resort itself is very beautiful and charming in its own style. The location is great, but it might be a little difficult to reach by car (I went there by the resort's boat)

The room is huge! Me and my colleague had a room with a living room, kitchen and a spacious balcony, where we could enjoy the view of the lake and its surrounding mountains.

Breakfast was nice, especially for those who enjoy fresh fruits and cheese. For those who prefer meat, they might be a little disappointed. For dinner, you have to order in advance as they will not have things prepare too much in advanced.

I didn't get a chance to use the pool and other facilities, but everyone else was happy with it, so I guess it should be alright.

I had a pleasant stay there, but if I am going back to Lake Como on my own expenses, I would probably choose to stay somewhere less pricey.

Note: the rooms are divided in different villas, so you will have to walk quite a bit to get around or wait to get picked up by resort's golf cart.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Tabtim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
nyc
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed July 27, 2012

Kudos to trip advisor reviewers !! You were right once again. I stayed in the hotel ignoring the comments about poor service. It is a beautiful serene hotel. It is quiet ( which I like) and a bit isolated. The grounds are grande and gorgeous. The service however is mediocre. They seemed understaffed.

Two points : the hotel is situated on the mountain in different villas. There are a number of steps to climb to get back to your room. If this is a problem for you don't go. They offer golf cart service but you will have to wait.

The pool is no thrills. Just ok but on the lake with beautiful views

  • Stayed July 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank luv2escapeNyc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed June 24, 2012

We had a wedding at casta diva and the day was amazing due to the locatation, also the hotel is out of this world. There was minor problems like the aircon breaking with 70 guests present made our dining experience very hot! The food was fantastic, the staff on the day were excellent. After the wedding michaela was the worst receptionist in the world. She even made my mother in law cry! Service during the day was poor, you had to chase for drinks.... overall i think casta diva need to work on their customer service skills for the future. Before going back i will read trip advisor to see if any improvements are made. I would reccomend the owner or manager to visit dubai at the mina salam hotel and then you will realise what 5 star service is all about. One last thing, watch out for the robbing taxi drivers they all double the price if your staying at casta diva.

  • Stayed May 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank dp-umc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brisbane, Australia
Level Contributor
265 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
Reviewed June 4, 2012

Spectacularly beautiful lakeside location with amazing opulent rooms and public areas.
The hotel is hard to get to and hard to get out of, you either spend a fortune on (expensive) taxis or use their shuttle service which runs into Como 6 times per day. Unless you're comfortable driving on very narrow (the road from Como is often so narrow as to barely permit passage of a vehicle in each direction) European roads self driving is not recommended. Of course you might never want to leave as the hotel itself is pretty amazing. The Spa and Wellness area (a region of hotels I usually only pass through on the way to a gym) was amazing with its mix of pools and scented showers and sauna and steam room and spas and serenely relaxing.

The room was of typical size for a 5 star hotel in Europe with a bathroom (including huge bath) that was unusually large by any hotel standards. The decor was suitably opulent.

Buffet breakfasts on the terrace overlooking the lake were excellent; both the food and the view. Dinners were less impressive, particularly considering the price.

The daily refilling of the free in room mini bar was a bit patchy on the weekend but was of a high standard through the week.

The service (aside from restocking of the mini bar) was in general faultless and helpful.

I would definitely return.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank OchreSilence
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casta Diva Resort & SPA

Property: Casta Diva Resort & SPA
Address: Via Caronti 69, 22020 Blevio, Italy
Location: Italy > Lombardy > Lake Como > Blevio
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Blevio
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Casta Diva Resort & SPA 5*
Number of rooms: 73
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
CastaDiva Resort & Spa is a five-star luxury resort located on the east side of Lake Como, in the lovely village of Blevio, only 5 km from Como and 57 km from Milano Malpensa International Airport. The Resort consists of seven villas for a total of 73 rooms plus 2 private Villas and it is surrounded by a luxuriant botanic park over an area of approximately 26,000 sqm. A place of excellence and exclusivity, perfect for a romantic weekend or a week of vacation on the lake. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casta Diva Hotel Blevio
Casta Diva Resort & SPA Lake Como/Blevio, Italy

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