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“Swiss hospitality in unique setting”
Review of Chasa De Capol

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Chasa De Capol
Perth, Australia
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Swiss hospitality in unique setting”
Reviewed July 21, 2010

Found out about this place from a local guidebook while touring Bavaria and Switzerland, intrigued, decided on a detour, arrived quite late, almost 10pm, but had called ahead and owner said "We will not let you go to bed hungry". Good sign we thought. Full 3-course dinner included in room rate (320 Swiss Francs for a double, included brekkie), wine extra, fair dinkum. Schnapps dazu, some local resiny stuff, strong but kind of grows on you. Friendly, smiling, efficient service in spite of late hour and being last guests.
Room a discovery, was called Lukretia Planta. Owners, from family claiming connection with Venice and its Polo dynasty, apparently don't believe in numbers. Double doors muting all sounds, thick walls, facing garden, very quiet sleep. Entire place goes back to 12th century noble family, built on 8th century foundation and wine cellar, related to the St John monastery nearby they say. Our bathroom tiny by Ozzie standards but very clean, had sunken transparent tub with brass fittings, thing to be seen to be believed.
In the morning the owner pointed us to some unique hidden gem on the Reschenpass nearby, a fortress down from the pass road guarding the bridge where the Roman Via Claudia used to cross the Inn 2000 years ago.
In short old-fashioned Swiss hoteliers' family hospitality as the cliché goes. We planned to return if an opportunity gives.

  • Stayed July 2010, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank toddoz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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28 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Bad Voeslau, Austria
Level 6 Contributor
90 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
Reviewed July 9, 2010

we had booked elsewhere in Italy that night but,on the way learned about the unique Benedictine nuns convent Sankt Johann in Müstair, with its links with Charlemagne (whose "saintly" statue by the way stands in the church's nave impressively facing the congregation...), and as we also didn't want to miss the Stelvio Pass by daylight, we were very happy to find the Chasa de Capól in Santa Maria village in Val Müstair. The entrance breathes welcome as well as history and good taste. A few items such as the antiques and oldtimers collection around the bar, and the historically correct setup of the "Propstei" room also piqued our interest. The hotel is part of the Swiss Historic Hotels, see www.historichotelsofeurope.com/en/hotel_261_chasa-de-capol.html

Reception that evening was operated, we learned, by owner and pater familias Ernst Schweizer himself, a crusty no-nonsense but utterly cultured Swiss hotelier whom we felt would not take kindly to snotty attitudes (not that we have one, but it may explain some of the grossly unfair other reviews found on Trip Advisor about this place, and of which we fortunately were completely unaware at the time).
Herr Schweizer Sr. (his son Ramun is the chef running the kitchen) assigned us the charming and large "Stanza de Filer" room on the second floor including full 3-course dinner (excl. wine) and breakfast for two, for 320 CHF. Part of its charm was that no two lines, floors or walls appeared to be parallel :-) but then what do you expect in a 800+ year old building, even if it has been lovingly restored since the mid-1950s. Bathroom while small was impeccably Swiss-squeaky clean. All furniture is antique (but the bed's frame appeared 21st century). The entire historical building would definitely be worth a visit by itself but this predictably is only open to guests.
About the dinner we can be curt: it was quite good but not three- (or even two-) star excellent (in this respect we are a spoiled couple, though). The wine however *was* unusually good, a Lagrein Dunkel '06 that came from their family plot somewhere in northern Italy and bottled under the Schweizer's label. Worth asking for as long as some is left. Ramun offered us a special brandy on the house after dinner, called Arvengeist distilled (40°) with the help of a local pine (Arven) resin-- also worth asking for (in fact afterwards we bought a bottle of the stuff from them).

Next morning hearty buffet breakfast, and checkout: note, Chasa de Capól did not (as of July 09) accept credit cards! Then, the visit to the nearby Sankt Johann convent (a must) followed by the magnificent, soul-lifting drive via the spectacular hidden Umbrail Pass, over the higher but more tourist-trodden Stelvio...

  • Stayed July 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Griffoen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cologne
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed November 2, 2009

We met with friends at St Maria and wanted to lunch together at Chasa de Capol. Well dressed, we two couples with a Porsche and a BMW were obviously not good enough for the waiter, who turned out to be the owner as well. Horribly unpleasant, and unpolite even to the swiss couple, he stated the restaurant was fully booked...; one table was taken, but he just seemed not to be in the mood to host us.
Absolutely not to be recommended to anyone. A Host who does not cherrish his guests is not worth our money. He should put his money where his mouth is in his web advert first.
In a short sentence: Just avoid it!

  • Stayed October 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Roger_2911
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers are raving about these Santa Maria Val Mustair hotels

Gstaad
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed August 2, 2008

We stopped on our bike trip in Sils Maria and the only hotel that had a room was the Chasa de Capol.

The house looks neat and when entering has it has a bit of the flair of Dracula's Castle in Transylvania, very old, the cellar being from the 7th! century and with a lot of furniture and old decoration all over the place. It has a spooky feeling to it. The owner seems to be a descendant of Frankenstein.

After a good dinner we went out to the village and did not see that doors are closed at 11.30. We returned 45 minutes late.

Hell started the next day. I saw a 25 CHF charge on the bill and enquired. Mr. Franstein immediately insulted me, saying that we are rude not to notify him that we left for the village, saying that he only caters to the upper 2000, that he doesn't need people like etc and that is going to call the police if I start arguing. I was really shocked. My travel companion talked to him, said that we are really sorry for having missed the sign that the house closes etc. The total bill was CHF 401 and he insisted for the 1 franc that we did not have in change. Anyways, the best part is coming: We leave the house and I rode my bike to Zernez. After a 30 minute ride I get stopped by the Police, who he called saying that we are riding the bike under the influence of alcohol. I took a breath test at 11.00 am, which was of course negative!

As said if you like horror try that one out. But my advise, if you are tempted to stay, is do not pay for any stupid charges he invents. But the best advice I can give about Chasa de Chapol is to avoid it.

Stayed August 2008
Helpful?
12 Thank Fidipaldi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bonn, Germany
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed August 5, 2006

The happiest aspect of our stay at Chasa de Capol was when we drove away from the place one day earlier than planned. But for the 50% deposit we'd already paid, we would have left after the first night.

We (two couples, each with a child) booked Chasa de Capol on the recommendation of a friend. This might suggest, as PDQ Bach used to say, that we need to find a new group of friends. Our rooms were adjacent, on the top floor, under the rafters. At first sight the room struck us as rustically cute. At second site -- i.e., as soon as we started to unpack -- they struck us as tiny. (Henceforth I report only for the experience of my own family and our room.) The left half of the wardrobe in our room contained one shelf. What the right half contained we don't know, since the door would not open. We ended up putting our hanging clothes on the hooks in the entry passage, where you'd normally hang caps. The bathroom -- well, I've been more comfortable in the bathrooms on trains, if not on planes. Allowing for the sweep of the door, there was perhaps 2 square feet of floor space (see photo). The jury-rigged shower curtain rod was rusted. There was no meaningful counter space. We had to hang the towels to dry on the chairs in the room.

By the way, we paid 375 Swiss Franc per room -- that's 238 Euro and 306 USD according to the currency exchange site I use. I note with interest that tripadvisor list an average rate at the Kempinski Grand Hotel des Bains St. Moritz -- the top rated 5 star hotel in St. Moritz -- at 357 Swiss Franc. True, we also had breakfast and dinner (more about the food later), but I presume the room in St. Moritz is infinitely more pleasant. (It would have to be, since our room at Chasa de Capol was not pleasant in the least.)

The day ends, time to sleep. Or not. We had a double bed of sorts (two separate mattresses and springs in one frame) for the adults and another bed for the child. The "pillow," which looked so nice on the bed from a distance, turned out to be a more like a cushion -- at least 6 inches thick and very firm (see photo). In short, impossible to use as a resting place for one's head. I searched the room for real pillows (perhaps they are locked behind the right hand door of the wardrobe?) and came up only with some scratchy wool blankets. These, covered with towels, were our only pillows for the entire stay. After the first night, I demonstratively left the blanket and the towel on the bed. The room service left it there as well. Why didn't we just ask for pillows? Well, more about the hospitality of the staff later. Worse -- one side of our double bed was ridiculously soft -- I assume it was the springs, which were also curiously covered by a scratchy wool blanket. We had to remove the matress and put it on the floor in order to be at all comfortable. My wife ended up sleeping in the child's bed, which was reasonably firm, for the remaining nights.

Besides the rooms? There is the hotel garden and pool. The pool is not heated -- which is to say that it is really, really cold. The water seemed fine, but the pool was clearly not cleaned regularly, and there was something like algee growing on the side of the pool in one corner (see photo). Many of the garden chairs, tables and lounges were rusty. I sent my son to ask whether we might have cushions for the metal lounges. He reported that the proprietor did not look up from his books and simply said, "They come in the afternoon." (We did get some shortly thereafter.) There is a bocce court. When I asked for the bocce balls, the female staff member said, "I don't know where they are. And I think the bocce court is not yet open." As this was early August, one wonders when it might possibly be open. The paving stones around the pool and elsewhere in the garden were loose and irregular -- we regularly tripped over them or stubbed toes on the edges. (See photo for a particulary egregious example at the edge of the pool.)

In the basement of the hotel there is a table tennis platform. When not freezing in the pool, this was a particular attraction for the children. The table is however surrounded by the proprietor's collection of antique (or at least old) cars, sledges, and wagons. Naturally, the balls often go missing among the wheels and accoutrements of these devices. When the ball once disappeared, my son asked the proprietor for another ball. No, he could not have another ball. Ok, said my son, can we have a flashlight to help us find the ball under the cars and wagons? No, came the reply, there is enough light (there was not, I assure you). And the proprietor added: "Jetzt ab!" -- i.e., "Now scram!" No stars for family friendliness.

Finally, about the food. As noted, our 375 Swiss Francs (per night , per room) included breakfast and dinner. Dinner was generally very good to excellent. Drinks (even water) were not included and might have costs another 60 Francs or so per night, but much more if you care to order from the proprietor's reportedly excellent wine cellar. Breakfast was a disappointment. It consisted of a basket of various nice breads, butter, two small pots of jam, and a communal cheese platter. No meats, no cereal, no eggs. One glass of orange juice. Coffe, tea and very nice cocao on request. On the first day, the jams offered were orange and cherry. The children wanted something different. Sorry -- no other jams available. Which i believe meant , we're not offering any other jams today, rather than that there were no other jams available in the house.

Bottom line: If you're in Santa Maria, this is probably a nice place for dinner. If you're a fan of opera and/or Venice, it's also worth a visit to the upper floors (see photo). But the theater aspect has its downside. One has the feeling that Chasa de Capol is not so much a hotel (with the implications of hospitality and customer friendliness) but rather a theatrical staging of sets and props, which visitors are meant to admire. As a roadshow stop on the way through the Munstertal, that makes sense. But for accomodation and hospitality you can, I think, do far better for far less.

Helpful?
16 Thank WDF2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Chasa De Capol

Property: Chasa De Capol
Address: Santa Maria Val Mustair, Switzerland
Location: Switzerland > Swiss Alps > Canton of Graubunden > Santa Maria Val Mustair
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 Hotels in Santa Maria Val Mustair
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 105
Also Known As:
Chasa De Capol Switzerland/Santa Maria Val Mustair

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