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“A very good hotel - close to the gondola station”
Review of Vihren Palace

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Vihren Palace
Ranked #14 of 95 Hotels in Bansko
Southampton, United Kingdom
2 reviews
“A very good hotel - close to the gondola station”
Reviewed October 26, 2010

I had a brilliant holiday staying in this hotel. The receptionist was very helpful and phoned up or ski hire place for us to help us sort out our ski hire as we couldn't find the shop we were renting our ski's from. She gave us directions and the staff of the ski hire were waiting for us when we got there. the bell boy was very helpful carrying our ski's to the locker room which was a huge help when yo have three children. We got the complimentary minibus up to the gondola station which was stress free. The spa was wonderful especially after a day skiing.
I would definitely recommend this hotel.

  • Stayed March 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank PeteNB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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149 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
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  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (19)
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kent
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed June 17, 2010

I have travelled a fair amount both in Europe and USA, one thing I have learned is that different countries have different standards for the same star rating, my review reflects this.
The Vihren Palace is a modern and comfortable hotel with the ameneties you would expect of a spa hotel.
I found my room to be clean with a good bathroom, but not as good as a uk or Western European 4 star room.
The food was the usual bulgarian buffet style, perfectly edible and with reasonable choice, "do not expect western standards, this is after all eastern europe", however on 3 nights the meal was in the mehana under the hotel, on these occasions the food was better and on two of the nights was cooked to order, breakfast is a buffet and included hot and cold choices with a good variety with something for all tastes.
I found the staff to be polite and helpful, the belboys in particular were always able to give directions.
The morning minibus to the top of the gondola station was a very usefull service that prevented waiting in a queue for the gondola up the mountain in the mornings, and returning from the mountain the hotel is only a 5 minute walk from the end of the ski road.
There is a ski storage room in the basement with heated bootracks.
I have stayed in other hotels in Bansko but chose to try the Vihren Palace mainly due to its location, I was not disapointed, but then again neither was I suprised how good it was.
In conclusion this is a good quality hotel by bulgarian standards, in the Uk it would probably get 3 stars, however, I found it was comfortable with good facilities, it provides all that is needed for a 1-2 week stay.
There have been a few reports/reviews on here that say otherwise, but bad experiences may have been due to high expectations or individual attitudes, i always speak to staff how i would wish to be spoken to and have found that generally the staff in the Vihren Palace to be friendly and helpfull.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank donlKent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Athens, Greece
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed May 10, 2010

We had visited this hotel as a group for 3 overnights in March 2010. Trip was for skiing purposes mainly. If a hotel is a 4 star hotel, certain things should be done.
For example changing sheets day by day, an not every three days as they told us when we asked, and I don't even know if this occurs indeed as we didn't have the chance to sleep on neat sheets till the day we checked-out from the hotel.

Also one other important thing is that all room-service deliveries had an extra charge of 2.50 Euro, as we all know some standards exist in order to be a 4* hotel, and changing sheets and not charging extra the room service are some of them.

The meals we had arranged in the hotel (buffet) were unexpectable, the food was terrible and we always had to make complaints in order to refill some of the empty dishes. One day, someone from our group asked for a glass of water during our dinner and they brought him a tiny glass from a machine that they had there and this was charged at the rate of 1 Euro, and when he asked why is this charged, they replied to him that this machine is used only for breakfast time. Imagine that in Bansko tap water is drinkable and whole village is crossed by a river.

On our departure day, the time we were arranging the check-out , the staff was checking mini-bar of each room and then we were informed by the reception if something was missing or not, (always in front of each guest who was staying in the mentioned room), the reception always had something extra to add in each room's list of mini-bar that was not spent by the guests, all people were complaining, but they didn't want to make such a fuss for a bar of chocolate or a bottle of water etc. The most important thing of all, at the last room checked, the guests had paid everything spent from the mini-bar, but the last minute the groom came down and informed the reception that all alcoholic drinks were missing from the mini-bar in the certain room. In that room, a grandmother with her grandchild were staying and everything was checked before they left the room, even the mini-bar and not only by them, but also from a person from hotel's staff that knocked the door to check mini-bar earlier their departure and nothing was missing. Guests had all the intention even to open their luggages and look through if there was something taken.

The point is that for an amount of 25 Euro, after such a large group staying in their hotel, they didn't have to make such a big noise for this. We were about to call the police, but people from the group were waiting in the bus about 1 hour, and was very tiring for them, so we gave them the 25 Euro and we left. How things got so complicated, even after all this checking before and after guests' departure from the room, I don't know!?!

The last but not least is that the same problem occured also last year, with a large group of 40-50 people staying in this hotel. Some things have to be overlooked, in order to help tourism development in your place.

  • Stayed March 2010
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mara_K18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Bansko hotels

Hampshire
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 14, 2010

A brilliant hotel, the staff were friendly and keen to help. The spa was excellent and very clean. The pool was nice and warm and the spa facilities were excellent. Very surprised to read the other comments about this hotel because our experience was quite the opposite. I would feel 100% recommending this hotel to friends and family.

  • Liked — Space in the rooms was great
  • Stayed February 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank LorryHampshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
bucharest
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed February 1, 2010

it is an excellent location, very close to the ski gondola, the staff is very kind and helpful, there is also a clean, well maintained spa center where you can relax whenever you want.

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank danaspataru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hampshire
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed January 28, 2010

I am at present staying in the Vihren Palace hotel & feel i should put this review on here asap to make you aware of our awful experiences of this hotel,
1,staff too busy using face book at reception to even aknowledge you,
2,rooms not even made up, we had a room for 3 & our friends had a room for 6, the maid had attitude when we said we needed the other room made up for 6,they where aware prior our arrival. we requested some cups & coat hangers , told maybe tomorrow or next day(what is the point of having a kettle & no cups?)been traveling since 8am arrived in hotel after 9pm a cup of tea was too much to ask for!
3,Pool is freezing cold.
4, Spa was out of use for nearly 3 days , supposedly due to cleaning , very disappointing after a days skiing,then when we did finally get to go in there , firstly it was just myself & husband in there,the whole time there was a lady with 2 small children hovering right next to the spa making us feel very awkward,as if she would not join us , then the rest of our friends joined us ,the lady then went to get her abusive husband who told us to get out our time was up,we said we weren't ready to get out so they went off to get the spa receptionist who said we should get out so the others use it ,there are no time limits displayed,if the pool was warmer we could have used the pool spa,nothing was stopping the women getting in when just the 2 of us were in there.All staff were so rude!!!!!
5,on floor 2 as you step out the lift the carpet is all ripped up , i tripped & twisted my shoulder , i went to reception to ask if i could buy some painkillers also to report the incident i was welcomed with a very rude & sarcastic receptionist called Sascha , they said no 1st aid is on site until 9am when the spa opens , they may have something , i also needed some plasters for my husband for blisters , but they do not have any to give or purchase , I then asked where the nearest pharmacy is ? All 4 staff at reception did Not know,so we went out for a walk there is a mall right opposite the hotel , in there is a pharmacy. Staff were ignorant to what is around them & very rude.At this point i asked again to see the manager but told maybe in the next few days but if she had to speak to every guest its not possible, so maybe not! I asked for a pen & paper & wrote a letter requesting to see her , I found out 2 days later through Milan our Rep that no letter had even been given & that the manager had not been informed that i wanted to see her! staff could not be bothered to pass on letter,
6,on day 2 a little girl that was with us (one of the 6,10 years old ) broke her leg so as a treat we said we would book her in for a little facial as she could not ski,or use pool ect an adult facial is 20lev , a child facial & body scrub was 45lev we said she could only have the facial but the staff in the spa said yes fine ,when we took her down the staff insisted as it was a child treatment it had to be 45lev ,WHY???? we asked they said because she was a child it got into a very heated arguement at which point i asked to see the manager again they told me maybe 5 mins , we waited 35 minutes still no sign i asked again ,some lad behind reception kept saying cant see what your problem is & laughing ??? it was an esculation of bad experiences & rude staff. the manager of the spa only eventually turned up like a bull in china shop totally ignored me blocked the door shouting at staff to call police & security as refusing to pay full price for treatment (the little girl hadnt even had treatment ) we broke through blocked door & ran to hotel room & waited for our rep,whilst police in reception ,it was the most awful experience of my life!!!!!The rep spoke to the hotel & police went! The next day now & I am still waiting to see the general manager!!!
7,floor in apartment was not cleaned for 3 days
8,luckily we bought our own toilet rolls as they havent bothered replacing them!
after 6 days we got told there was a drying room in the hotel & a shuttle up the mountain , would have been nice to have been told this sooner for the little girl that has broken her leg!!! they have not even aknowledged her & ask if there is anything she needs.
I can honestly say i have never met any staff so rude in all my life ,
I would not want any of you to experience what we have been through!!
also the breakfast was absolutely unedible shame because good location to the cable cars up the mountain.
DONT STAY HERE!!!!!

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank TOCHampshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nicosia, Cyprus
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2009

Visited this hotel during the Xmas holidays and I must say that if you are visiting Bansko for skiing/snowboarding, the hotel is situated within walking distance from the Gondola lift. It is also in the vicinity of some other restaurants and the Bankso mall. But that's about all the positives I can say for this hotel.

As far as the service, food and facilities are concerned I can describe them in three words: Lack of Quality. Firstly, not all the services adverised are open (e.g. the nightclub advertised was closed most of the days).
The breakfast is quite poor both in variety and quality (e.g. the fruit were rotten on one day and the scrambled eggs looked disgusting).
The staff has an 'ok' attitude, they will attend to your service when pushed a bit but they will not go out of their way for it. Cleaning of the rooms is also poor - we stayed in a studio and the daily cleaning consisted of: putting the quilts on top of the sheets, changing the bathroom towels and emptying the bins. NOTHING ELSE. We had to ask for additional shower gel/shampoo when it was over and they never bothered to take used glasses/bottles out of the room.
Quality of food at the bar, poor again. The club sandwich was basically a sandwich (2 parts) with some not-so-fresh fillings and a disgusting mayo-ketchup mixed dip.
The bathroom is not built well, water dripping everywhere and looks as if it is old, although the hotel is relatively new. This again is a consequence of the lack of quality of material used when building the hotel.

I would recommend this hotel only if location is the only thing that matters.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank a0lin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Vihren Palace

Property: Vihren Palace
Address: Str. Pere Toshev 2, Bansko 2700, Bulgaria
Location: Bulgaria > Blagoevgrad Province > Bansko
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in Bansko
#9 Luxury Hotel in Bansko
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:4 star — Vihren Palace 4*
Number of rooms: 29
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Vihren Palace Ski And Spa Resort
Vihren Palace Ski Hotel Bansko

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