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“Successfully balancing the old and new...”
Review of Hotel National

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Hotel National
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Davos Platz
Reviewed January 24, 2012

My wife and I have been to the Hotel National three times over the last seven years. It is a fine “époque” mid-sized hotel in Davos that has a certain traditional Swiss charm to it.

Previously Hotel National was run by a local family, and had a very dedicated clientele who had been coming to the hotel for years. The hotel now is under new management (for over a year now), and the couple who are managing the hotel are doing a great job. (They used to run The Esplanade Hotel up the hill, which is now being converted to luxury flats).

The National is part of a small Swiss hotel group, and this has implications (both pro and con), but it also has resulted in a bit of upgrading and refreshing to the house.

They have updated the furnishing and décor of the guestrooms. Previously the rooms were a bit dated – but in a quaint Swiss way. The new “look” has kept the best features (the lovely old pine-wood walls and cupboards) but have updated the rest with more modern furnishings, flat screen TV’s and so on… nicely done. The bed was very comfortable with fine linens, and the new pillows and blankets give it some style. The rooms were spotlessly clean and tidy, and additionally they have also completely replaced all the older windows, so no more drafts and super quiet. (This was especially helpful when the snow removal trucks were working outside in the night!)

The public areas of the hotel have not been renovated – but they are still very comfortable – especially the lounge with a big fireplace and complimentary coffee and cake every afternoon at 4PM. (mmmm!)

They have also just opened a new “après ski spa” - a great addition! There are a couple (personal sized) whirlpools, a steam room, a dry sauna, and sunroom with big windows to the adjoining park. It is all very modern, quiet, comfortable, and well designed.

For our stay we took both breakfast and dinner as a package.

Breakfast is buffet style, and you can also order eggs cooked to your specifications. The buffet itself is very good, with different breadstuffs, cheese, meats, fruits, cereal, muesli…, all very fine. There is now a big ugly “self service” automatic European coffee machine – one of my few critiques – as we used to enjoy getting a nice pot of coffee and another of warm milk on your table… but I guess that is “progress”. This is not really a problem, but somehow it is indicative of the need to optimize costs, and doesn’t quite fit with the up-scale image of a 4 star hotel.

Dinners are five course affairs. The portions are on the small side, but with five courses this was perfect. The quality of the cooking was fine, and there was always a meat and vegetarian options (important for us!). The chef was trying to be (just a bit!) innovative, so it seems the kitchen is also being renewed a bit. The main course still comes under silver domes, which are all lifted simultaneously… so there is still some nice traditions remaining.

The service throughout our stay was excellent. Friendly, helpful, and genuinely hospitable, it is clear that the new team is making efforts to re-establish the Hotel National in Davos, and it is also clear that they are now trying to broaden their client base to attract younger and international guests. We had a number of nice conversations with the staff, including the driver who drove us to the rail station and who has been working at the National for 14 years. We were impressed with their hospitality and professionalism (this is probably obvious from this review!).

Hotels in Davos are very expensive at the best of times, and the National is not an “ultra luxury” hotel; it is an honest traditional Swiss hotel in Davos with a focus on hospitality. The combination of the new team and the old hotel seems to be a delicate balancing act. The team is trying very hard to upgrade the house, its offerings, and its stylishness, while still respecting and promoting the tradition of the place. My wife and very much enjoyed our time at the Hotel National, and will certainly go back again in the future.

Room Tip: The rooms on the south side have nice big balconies with views over the small park, but the (cheaper...
  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank canswiss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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10 - 16 of 46 reviews

Reviewed January 23, 2011

Our second visit as we had enjoyed the previous one. If anything the food was even better than before. There was a good choice at breakfast and dinner. However we found the wine expensive (although the Swiss Franc was very strong at the time). Staff were very friendly and helpful and the bedroom clean and comfortable. We had a large bathroom which was great for a long after-ski soak.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank ZuzEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 30, 2010

I managed to get a single room in spite of the ice hockey champion ship. The room was very tidy, the single bed comfortable but calvinistically narrow, so that I was afraid to fall out. The floor tiles of the built in wet cell were ice cold- the management of a four star hotel in a mountain metropolis should have thought of such a small detail. It was perfect but boring. Nice thought that the room had a balcony with a reclyning bed, view on a forest, reminding me of literati how had come here to heal their tired lungs. Breakfast buffet was perfect, Wifi did not work in the room, but in the lobby.

  • Stayed: December 2010, traveled solo
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Thank jointadventures
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2010

Room: very old (although South one with important extra cost), cupboards awfull. Food: correct for this category, but breakfast buffet almost empty 30 min. before end time, so had to ask for bread and cheese. Dinner: our 2 desserts, identical, came at 15 min. distance. Dining room tables: so old and dilapidated that would not even fit a mountain chalet. Wellness in other hotel, 700 m., up the hill; good luck by poor weather or winter. French does not appear to be a Swiss language: even manager does not speak it. Apparently, their comprehension of being a "historical hotel" means that any investment in renovation is unnecessary. Spend ++ nights in hotels every year, but 1st time that we had to decide to get out and move to another one.

Stayed: July 2010, traveled as a couple
1  Thank mcmutrux
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 15, 2010

Hotel has been refurbished to a high standard. Food very good, not large portions, but with 5 couses including a salad bar, no need to go hungry. Tea and cakes served between 4 and 5. Breakfast buffet very good.

  • Stayed: March 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank ZuzEngland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 17, 2010

Reading the comments on Trip Advisor before our journey I was dreading our holiday but it was completely different to what had been said and had to join TA to put our view across as we feel the hotel was getting a raw deal.Yes it is an old hotel and some features of it may need updating but the staff were courteous and very helpful at all times and the food was exceptional. There is an a la carte restaurant but there is no need to use it as the five and six course dinner is superb.The hotel is spotlessly clean, comfortable ,with a Swiss charm. We enjoyed our holiday very much.Don't be put off by the comments of others. .

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with friends
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Thank NisaField
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 27, 2009

We stayed at this hotel for a week during our christmas vacation in Davos. The staff and dining are very good, considering that you're staying in an alp village. We also found that the breakfast had a lot to offer and certainly had a better selection than normally on our skiing vacations.

The location is not ideal, since the closest lift (Jacobshorn) is about 600m away from the hotel. Bus stop is about 200m away but the hotel is uphill from these two mentioned locations. Another thing that you should consider is the church (Marienkirche) right next to the hotel, so make sure you get a room facing south. Otherwise you will need earplugs to get away from the bells.

The rooms we stayed in were a bit worn, especially the bathroom color was quite hideous (not from the last two-three centuries). It might be that we did not have the refurbished rooms and during the week we thought that we should have asked for an upgrade in the first place. The room was also very warm and it was impossible to get the heat down from the radiators. Only way to cool down was to keep the window open for quite some time.

The service and dining in the evening were very nice. They also had quite good selection of wines to choose from. We were served four course dinners every evening. One thing that we found a little odd was that there was nothing special for the Christmas. In some of the other places we've stayed in they've always had a special christmas dinner, but here they served the normal course. For New Year's eve they will have a special serving. There is a nice little fondue restaurant just down the main street (Gentiana) where we had our christmas dinner.

All-in-all a good stay, but I would propably not give the hotel four stars. Maybe ***+ would be in place!

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank samiva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel National

Address: Obere Strasse 31, Davos Platz, Davos 7270, Switzerland
Location: Switzerland > Swiss Alps > Canton of Graubunden > Davos > Davos Platz
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Ski-In / Ski-Out Spa Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Davos Platz
Price Range: $262 - $350 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel National 4*
Number of rooms: 60
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The hotel National is a family runs 4 star hotel located in Davos Platz. The Promenade – the main avenue of Davos – is just a two-minute walk away. Free local busses leave here every few minutes. The Congress Centre is just a short 12-minute walk away. Enjoy a holiday with access to the pulsing heart of Davos, and yet with all the peace and tranquility that this sunny place has to offer. Breathe in the fresh mountain air – relax – recharge your batteries! A pleasure spot for both seasons: winter and summer holidays. In the winter the region offers six unique skiing areas. There are more than 45 miles of prepared cross country ski runs plus 40 miles of cleared winter walks and trails. In the summer months the landscape around Davos Klosters and its beautiful meadows, woods, pastures and above all mountains is accessible by 700km of singed and maintained hiking trails. It is also a paradise for biking, walking, water sports and a lot of other outdoor activities.The hotel offers 60 rooms, a dining room , the à la carte Restaurant Mignon, a hotel bar and large lobby with fire place for tea and after dinner, Internet corner and free WLAN, wellness area (sauna, steam bath, whirlpool tubs, power shower, quiet zone), massages and a beautiful park (in summer).All rooms are fitted with bath or shower, toilet, hair dryer, direct-dial telephone, radio, cable-TV, safe and mini fridge. The rooms facing south have a balcony and the Superior ones a small sitting area. Family rooms with an interconnecting door upon request. ... more   less 
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