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“Stunning hotel, excellent location, BUT service far from 5 star”

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Alvear Palace Hotel
Ranked #9 of 447 Hotels in Buenos Aires
Melbourne, Australia
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Stunning hotel, excellent location, BUT service far from 5 star”
Reviewed July 4, 2010

My husband and I stayed for a week at the Alvear Palace Hotel as part of our trip to South America. Below are my personal observations of the hotel and the service during our stay:

Location: Perfect. Recoleta is simply stunning. A beautiful part of Buenos Aires. Safe, clean, historic, imposing and you are a short taxi ride to anywhere. Having been to nearly everywhere in BA, i would not hesitate in staying in thsi part fo town again.

Hotel: Alvear Palace Hotel is located in a historic building, 5 min walk to Recoleta Cemetary. Beautiful building inside and oustide. Rooms are decorated in antique / old world furniture, fresh roses in vases, lovely bathrooms, all hotel areas are very clean and well maintained. Looks wise, this is truely a 5* hotel.

Service: This is where I was very disspaointed. When paying over $500 USD a night you do not expect teh following to occur: Upon arrival we were congradulated on our honeymoon and then taken to a room with two beds! I had also requested a 'quiet' room as I am a light sleeper and this twin bed room was right OPPOSITE the two lifts. We were told that no other room was available at that time and that we would be moved the next day. Of course I heared the lift the whole night and didn't sleep. I called the reception in teh morning and they told me to speak to them after lunch time. After lunchtime they 'upgarded' us to a room at the very end of the hallway. The room was lovely with a little sitting room in front. The next couple of nights were great but then every night the noise from the neighbouting apartment that shares the common wall with the Alvear Hotel was terrible. Every follwoing night a bellman would come after I made the call complaining about the noise, would say "yes, they are terribly loud but there is nothing we can do as its neighbours building" and them move us to sleep to another room for a night!!!! EVERY NIGHT. I felt that was simply terrible for the money we paid. The hotel also has a 'butler' for every level, we saw her onely once when we checked in and never again. One night in the lobby bar we ordered coffees and cakes and cakes simply did not arrive. After numerous questions and enquiries with various waiters who all pretended to go and 'investigate', I asked to speak to a manger and told her exactloy how I feel. Their response was to present us with a bill for the coffees and apologise. I mean seriosuly???????? Granted, after we got back to our hotel room that night there was one chocholate cake waiting for us with a "with our compliments" note... Conceirge was not particularly informative, he answered the questions I asked and did make a booking I requested for the tango show at Faena Hotel which is an absolute must. Also, as it was raining most days, you coudl not borrow an umbrella from the conceirge as they were all apprently taken. The pool was closed for renovations whilist we were there and we were not aware of this when we made the booking / thsi information was given to us in teh form of a note in our room. The breakfast each morning was fantastic, service great and the quality of food and choices perfect for me. I am not a big eater so I do not rate mountains of food at a breakfast buffet so those who expect a cruise ship type buffet may be disspointed. But I thought that the choice of pastries, fresh fruits, cold meats was excellent, fresh and tasty. On the final morning we had to leave at 6am and although we had paid for that morning's breakfast, no one offered to pack a breakfast bag for us. At check out we did not recive a single apology for being shifted from room to room nearly every night. So as one may apparecite our satisfaction with service at the Alvear Palace is far from where it should be given the hotels rating and nightly rate.

All in all next time we are in BA we will try Faena or Hyatt. Despite the beauty of the hotel, I would not risk experiencing the same uncaring service again.

  • Stayed February 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Luxlover27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
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brazil
Level Contributor
1 review
Reviewed June 13, 2010

We recently stayed in the Alvear , celebrating anniversary. Our stay was fantastic ! Even having stayed in other 5 star hotels in may cities, what was very impressing in tha Alvear was the quality of its service.
The hotel offered us an upgrade when we arrived.All employers were courteous and tried to do their best to make our stay remarkable . The concierge staff was very kind helping us to choose a show or restaurant every night, and even asking us how did everything had go, if we had any complaints, the following day .
The butler that attended our room (24 hs , stayng by the door) was great too , asking if we need help to pack or unpack, if we needed to press clothes, connect internet , prepare a bath, etc.
The breakfast was delicious served by white gloved waiters , in the winter garden.
The room quality was beyond what I expected. The mattress , towels, sheets, pillows curtains and carpets were impressively clean (I frequently find many problems with this in other hotels , even 5 star ones) .
Fresh roses (different color each day) , water, and fruits complimentary in the room every day . Champagne , strawberris and a cake was sent to our room too as a gift. Very kind !
The locationis the best in Buenos Aires, in a upscale neighborhood (Recoleta), but at the same time quiet. We could walk to many restaurants , bars and shops and . Bullrich Mall is just 3 blocks away.
I definetly will go back because having stayed in the alvear made our trip more special.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank mptravel89
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami
Level Contributor
75 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed June 8, 2010

Perfection ! That's the word to define the Alvear Palace Hotel. Astonishing experience !
The Ritz in Paris or the Plaza in New York are comparable with the Alvear ! At a portion of the price...
Try the experience !

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank xaviercap
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Malta
Level Contributor
47 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
Reviewed May 23, 2010

This Hotel in Buenos Aires was great. Staff are extremly helpful, food is excellent. We really enjoyed it.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SunnyRock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beverly Hills, CA
Level Contributor
59 reviews
48 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 187 helpful votes
Reviewed May 21, 2010

I was afraid The Alvear would be stuffy and perhaps a little dated. I knew the Four Seasons and the Park Hyatt would be a little more stylish and modern, but I really wanted to stay at the Grande Dame of Buenos Aires. The Alvear Palace far exceeded my expectations!

I have stayed in several great five star hotels in Europe and Asia; the Alvear Palace is on par with any of them. I was upgraded from a "Premier Room" to a full one bedroom deluxe suite, which was huge and beautiful. The bed was great as well. From the floor butler service to the 24 hr. concierge desk, the hotel's service was impeccable. The room facilities and the public facilities were all excellent. The hotel , though classic, was not stuffy at all.

This is a world class five star hotel and a great option in Buenos Aires.

I have only one complaint about the hotel, they perfume the public areas with a scent I couldn't stand; it was like a spicy Patchouli kind of thing. I am not a fan of most perfumes, and I am allergic to many of them; I really did not like this aspect of the hotel.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank fishskis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Catanduva, SP
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed May 9, 2010

My husband and I Stayed at the hotel for 3 nights. The hotel is very beautifull, elegant, staff helpfull: PERFECT! They gave us an upgrade to a suite, a room with a living room area and a big bathroom. At the first day they asked me the color of flowers I would like and every day they changed the fresh flowers at the living area and bathroom. Fresh fruits basket every day and a special attention: they noticed that we liked more one fruit than the others so they put two of it on the next day. Bathroom amenities by Hermès wonderfull... It is a luxury hotel but the price is very reasonable for all it offers you.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank flanar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
Reviewed March 29, 2010

This hotel is simply amazing. I was reluctant to book here because of the price, the ratings on trip advisor and one other petty reason- the pictures of the beds look like they have some sort of motel bedspread on them. I am SO glad I decided to stay here! Checking in, the front desk upgraded us just to be nice. Then, we told him that we were going back to Atlanta the next night and he gave us a really late check out- 6PM! That was a huge help. The lobby bar looks like a movie scene, complete with friendly bartender and gorgeous decor. Everyone speaks perfect English, and your personal butler irons your clothes for you when you arrive. The bed and room are pure luxury- a fluffy duvet and super comfortable bed with great pillows and sheets (all princess and no motel). Hermes toiletries, beautiful bathroom and fancy tub with a flat screen. The breakfast room in the morning is stunning and the brunch was huge and delicious. It was literally worth every penny. They were no surprise charges and no one had their hand out for the tip. I like really nice hotels and hate to be ripped off and I felt that this hotel was one of the best. I am shocked to see that it is so far down on Trip Advisor but I think that some people's idea of a nice hotel is one that is $50 a night and without roaches. Stay here and you won't regret it.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank srqchic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Alvear Palace Hotel

Property: Alvear Palace Hotel
Address: 1891 Alvear Avenue, Buenos Aires 1129AAA, Argentina
Phone Number:
Location: Argentina > Capital Federal District > Buenos Aires > Recoleta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Buenos Aires
#1 Family Hotel in Buenos Aires
#2 Business Hotel in Buenos Aires
#4 Spa Hotel in Buenos Aires
#7 Luxury Hotel in Buenos Aires
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Alvear Palace Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 206
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Alvear Palace Hotel is situated in the most elegant neighbourhood of Buenos Aires, La Recoleta. It is an area of extensive parks, wide avenues, and luxurious architecture in a classical style, where the best restaurants, cafes, antique shops and boutiques of Buenos Aires, are to be found. Some of the main museums and cultural centres are close by, and the financial area is only five minutes away.A symbol of elegance is bornOriginally built as a luxury hotel to accommodate the increasing amount of European visitors arriving in Buenos Aires at the time, the Alvear Palace was transformed in 1932 into a model of the highest expression of refinement. The majestic rooms and suites, as well as the lobby and public areas, are reminiscent of the Louis XV and Louis XVI styles, which are evident in the furniture, the crystal chandeliers, walls decorated with gold leaf and works of art of famous artists.The eleven-floor luxurious building with five basement levels stands as an undisputed symbol of the city, on the corner of Alvear Avenue and Ayacucho Street.The second foundationContinuous work and dedication, guided by the maximum standards of international excellence, led to the designation of the Alvear Palace Hotel as a member of the Leading Hotels of the World in 1993, an organization that recognizes the best hotels in the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Alvear Palace Buenos Aires
Hotel Alvear Palace

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