We have stayed at Althoff Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg (Bensberg) booking two rooms each time. Previously, we have stayed in Garden Suites, Deluxe rooms and Superior/Standard rooms.
We have always looked forward to an outstanding experience at this "Leading Hotels of the World" property.
While it has been two years since our last stay, our return visit on October 28, 2013 was sadly disappointing.
The exterior of the hotel remains an impressive experience but the rooms we were shown to were sadly becoming tired in appearance. The "sheer" window curtains were dingy grey and,
in spots, tattered.
One of the rooms reserved for us was a "smoking" room. The lingering stench of stale tobacco reeked so badly that even the staff escorting us to the room were gasping. Opening the door to the room caused the smell to escape into the corridor forcing us to ask for room change(s).
Despite designating rooms for "smoking," there are many options to removing the smell of stale tobacco from such rooms - charcoal filters, cleaning solutions, room air neutralizers are but a few. By proper cleaning, filtering and neutralizing, designated smoking rooms could be occupied by non-smokers as needed.
As returning guests, and the hotel knew or should have known of our multiple stay status, we feel we should have been offered alternative, equal or "upgraded" rooms rather
than "downgraded" category rooms despite the inclusion of breakfast, apparently the only solution available to the acting assistant front desk manager.
The hotel removed its small "business center" for reasons the staff was unable to explain. This space now remains dark and empty. While hotel-provided computer centers are pretty much the norm, all the front desk had was a laptop which was not in operating condition....hardly worthy of a "Leading Hotel." Not every guest has a laptop or I-Pad or similar. Many count on the business center for outside communication.
The common areas still have beautiful chandeliers. However, they appear lackluster and gummy due to lack of cleaning.
We were informed of new management having taken over since our last visit. If this is some sort of "austerity program" or directive put in place for whatever reason it should be seriously rethought as to cost savings vs. benefit, appearance and guest comfort.
Our thanks go to our friend and front desk manager, Anna U. even though she was on vacation at the time of our arrival. We recognize Judith H. and Marlene K. for their assistance and efforts to please.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- In a truly fantastic location, high above the Cologne lowlands and with a wonderful view of Cologne cathedral, one of the largest baroque palaces in Europe awaits you. It is the spirit of history that fills and enchants the 5 star Althoff Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg. The multitude of details from times long gone still tell tales of unique people and moments that characterise this building so much: Goethe and Beethoven, as well as Napoleon and the Medici family resided here. But today you can enjoy stylish luxury in the magnificent, historic chambers and in unmistakable Althoff ambience. Supplemented by personal service, Joachim Wissler's 3-star cuisine in the gourmet restaurant Vendome and a Beauty & Leading Spa that satisfies even the highest demands. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg Hotel Bergisch Gladbach
- Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg Cologne
- Grandhotel Schloss Bensberg Hotel Cologne