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“Lovely hotel with the best staff” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Stella Mare

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Hotel Stella Mare
Ranked #8 of 10 Hotels in Algajola
Cardiff
Level Contributor
28 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Lovely hotel with the best staff”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 25, 2012

What really makes this hotel is it's staff, they are among the most friendly and helpful I've ever come across and genuinely care about their customers, they also speak perfect English. They drew us maps when we couldn't find things, they gave us details of pharmacies and doctors when I got an ear infection and then asked after my health every day after that. They also gave us a complimentary drink when they found out we were on Honeymoon (the only hotel to do this of the 5 we stayed in).

The breakfast was very good and eating it on the shady terrace overlooking the sea was a lovely experience. The room was cool, clean and comfortable, and had a big shuttered window with a fab view.

They don't provide a laundry service, but they do have a huge washing line and there is a little laundrette in Algajola (with a very helpful lady in it) where you can do a wash for just over 6 euros. Algajola itself was really lovely and I would thoroughly recommend it as a base for visiting the North West coast of Corsica if you don't fancy the hustle of Calvi. We would come back.

Room Tip: The sea views are really lovely.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank noodle4hd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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78 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (7)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Naples, FL
Level Contributor
35 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 29, 2012

Another warm and sunny morning, another lovely drive to Algajola, midway between Calvi and L’Ile Rousse. I struggled with where to stay in this area...Calvi seemed too congested and I couldn’t find a charming, reasonably priced place to stay. Ile Rousse had gotten some mixed reviews. And, we planned to travel around the area a lot, so thought Algajola would be a good central location and the Stella Mare had received good reviews. In hindsight after being there, I might have picked the “Best Western Santa Maria” (yes, I know...Best Western?) in Ile Rousse simply for it’s outstanding location on the water looking across to La Pietra headland and lighthouse. The views were incredible with a short walk into town.

We arrived too early to check in, so spent an hour on the village beach which was unremarkable. The Stella Mare looks charming enough, a three story villa sited up a hill with some Moroccan type cushioned booths outside. The reception people were very nice, the common areas had lovely natural artistic touches, but our room was tiny. It was on the first floor (we would say 2nd floor) so the standard size window looked out to a partial view of the sea just over a terracotta roof. If we could’ve been on the second floor, they had a full French door with a better view. The bathroom had colorful turquoise tile framing the mirror, a single pedestal sink, and the standard small, triangular shower module we encountered everywhere...large people beware! The furnishings were simple and natural colors. They had a mini bar, but a sign on it said if you put anything in it, they’d remove it! Bizarre. The hotel is located on the mountain side of the tracks of the tiny train that runs between the towns, but you don’t hear it. Breakfast featured a more lavish buffet than usual including scrambled eggs, local jams, honeys, muesli, nuts, juices and fresh yogurt. Turquoise mosaic tables lined a lovely open terrace, with more of a garden rather than sea view.

Later in the afternoon, we set off to explore a few nearby artisan mountain towns. The first was Sant Antonino, the oldest and highest perched on top of a mountain. It was fun to wander around their narrow stone alleys looking down to distant views of the Mediterranean but there were really no artisan shops. Then, we went to Pigna, which I liked much better. It was prettier and offered more shops. Bought another “modern” polyphonic CD, which I later threw out. Enjoyed our dinner on Casa Musicale’s terrace looking down to the sea. We had a friendly, cute waitress who spoke English well....very rare. Tonight we tried a citron and a muscat Patrimonio aperitif...both delicious. I had read that Corsica had outstanding veal, but I was disappointed in my veal roast, which was a little tough. My husband’s langoustines (crayfish) were very sweet but you don’t get much meat from them.

We came to Pigna tonight to attend a polyphonic concert at their Auditorium. When we got there, the group that had been scheduled had been replaced by a single woman singer, Battista Aquaviva, who apparently was famous because the crowd of locals went wild for her and they filled the seats and lined the aisles. She was very thin with massive black curly hair wearing black jersey knit slacks, top and heels. Standing with a slight tilt with one hand covering her ear, she had a most amazing voice, but frankly, the concert was torture. It was too hot , it was too long (9:40-11pm)...and it was boring. I think the whole point of polyphonic is to have a multitude of voices that cover the spectrum. A few songs, she sang with one other person, which was better, and at the end, about 20 people came up and sang with her which was outstanding. But, for the most part, a single singer was just monotonous. It reminded us of the Fado, from Portugal....more of a lament, a wail. Unfortunately, I had to listen to my husband’s (who can’t sing a note) interpretation of this for the rest of the trip.

Note: Be sure to have plenty of 1 and 2 Euro coins for parking. Often,you can’t even enter a parking lot without depositing them. And, the vendors seem to hoard coins. When you buy something, they do not want to give you a lot of coins in change insisting that you give them some coin so they can give you a bill back.



The next morning we headed to Calvi, about 15 minutes away, for our delayed boat trip to Scandola. First, we hiked up into the Citadel and admired the views of the marina and surrounding mountains, had a good lunch at La Scola tea room, ducked into the Cathedral and headed back down to the Quai Landry where we admired all the yachts and colorful buildings. At 3p, we boarded the Colombo Line boat to Scandola, which was larger and held about 100 people. It was full, but we snagged the upper deck back facing seat, so had an unobstructed view and it felt like our private little boat, as long as we didn’t turn around. It was another sunny, low 80’s day, so getting a breeze from cruising felt great. It took about an hour to get to Scandola, and then the ship weaved in and out among the massive and intriguing red rock formations for another hour before we headed back and returned by 6pm. It was a very beautiful, calm and relaxing ride.

Shopped a bit in the cute boutiques and my husband got a white linen shirt and flax clamdiggers. Then, a quick drive out to the Chapelle Notre Dame de la Serra for a sunset view of Calvi, where we quick changed in the car for our dinner at U Fanale. We sat on a lovely terrace shaded by a huge tree and tried vin d’peche aperitif...delicious. The food was good but not outstanding (except for my braised lamb) and it was quite a wait between courses. Did enjoy a local red wine from Lumio, Clos Colombo.

Today is 9/11 and we are so glad we’re not in the States knowing that all the broadcasts will be replaying the events of the 10th anniversary of this tragedy.

Drove to Ile Rousse and first visited their market, housed in a historic covered building, and bought a few items. Then, we walked along the waterfront and up to the top of La Pietra, the hilly area after the ‘umbilical’ cord isthmus to the lighthouse on top. Amazing views of aquamarine water, the town and mountains. It was pretty hot already and I envied the people who had ridden up on the cute little historic train that we found in many towns.

We skipped lunch and I tried to find some glace before we headed for the beach, but we couldn’t find any that were open yet. For some reason, ice cream shops often don’t open until late afternoon. We drove to Ostriconi beach just to look at it, because it’s a very steep climb down....beautiful. Then backtracked to Lozari beach, which was almost as beautiful but is much more accessible. The color of the water is incredible...not blue, not turquoise, something in between and very clear. It was very refreshing, but took a little while to get used to it. While in the water, you look back at and see the waves of giant mountains and realize again that Corsica is like one great Rock...full of differing shapes, textures and colors.
Back in Algajola, we tried again to find artisanal glace, but had to settle for a packaged Magnum bar, which was actually quite good. There’s not much in Algajola, except for it’s central location. That night, under a full moon, we enjoyed another picnic sitting outside on the Morrocan style low cushions, enjoying our favorite red, Domaine Gentile, and eating our bounty from the morning market. (I had packed a small, collapsible cooler and ice pack so the cheeses, etc. we’d bought earlier would stay good).

Room Tip: Get the top floor for best views/
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank barefootbeach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MEL
Level Contributor
46 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 31, 2011

Fantastic location and pleasant, simple rooms with large bathroom (in our case). Warm staff. We stayed one night and knew within minutes that we should have chosen to stay in the area for longer.

Wifi signal is a bit weak to some rooms.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank aspro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stockholm, Sweden
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 28, 2011

We picked a hotel randomly. Didn't want to stay in a typical touristic location so we picked this small village. We couldn't have made a better choice! The hotel is petite, like a larger villa. The terrace provides a beautiful view to the Mediterranean. In the mornings we had breakfast overlooking the ocean. Staff is charming and very helpful. The beach is located less than a 5 min walk from the hotel and stretches more than a km, with crystal clear water. The train station connecting to Calvi and other villages is located just in front of the hotel, so it's very convenient.

The rooms are lovely. Only negative thing is that they didn't have air-con, but we didn't suffer so much from this.

We would absolutely recommend this to couples and families who prefer intimate, charming hotels as opposed to the tourist complexes we imagine you find in Calvi or on the south coast of Corsica.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank em_caro
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
montreal
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed June 22, 2010

Stayed at this hotel with my brother while backpacking through Europe. First of all Corsica will amaze anyone with beautiful landscape and views, great food and drinks and lively atmosphere.
This hotel is located in Algajola, a small town that fits perfectly into the Corsican landscape with its long beach and clear water as well as the backdrop of mountains. There are about five- six restos with typical Corsican cuisine and a couple of beach bars.

The hotel itself offers great views on both sides (sea and mountain). The hotel gardens are well taken care of and there is a small lounge area (mediteranean style ) right next to the entrance. The rooms are very clean and nicely decorated with a spacious bathroom.

Breakfast was well varied, and fresh every morning. The staff were kind and helped us plan a couple of our day trips. Sandrine is very friendly and knows the place well so I would not hesitate to ask her any questions.

All in all this was one of the best hotels I stayed at given its location, views, decor and staff. And when adding that in May a room goes for 75-85 euro there is nothing more that I can add to embelish the picture.

All I would add is that for people who want to have TV there is none in the rooms. Only one flat screen in the lobby that is closed at 10PM. Anyway if youre in Corsica, Calvi and Ile Rousse have enough to offer so you can waste your nights.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank adi23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
106 reviews
64 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 30, 2010

We stayed in room 11 here: nice room, very clean, bright, great views of the sea & the town - even from lieing in bed! Excellent shower, comfortable bed. Room was slightly small but that didn't detract from our enjoyment. (And had safe in room). Hotel has nice verranda, sun loungers and very comfortable chairs.

Very helpful owners, spoke good English.

Nice breakfast (continental buffet) on lovely verranda overlooking garden.

For any noise freaks: My partner is a noise freak and she had no problems at all! You can't hear the nearby N road at all (even though it looks like it is on top of it on maps) and although there is a railway track close by, it is a "2 carriage chugging train" that only goes by once or twice an hour.

Location is good: just (literally) outside the main part of town and nice to be slightly out of the way therefore, but only a 3-5 minute walk to restaurants.

We went in May and it was very good value.

Algajola itself is a good base for touring round this part of Corsica or for just lieing on the beach. Lots of restaurants and beach was good.

  • Stayed May 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank 2FK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Welsh Marches
Level Contributor
27 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 27, 2009

Stayed for three nights. We were revisiting Algagola for the first time since 1986 - wish we had found this hotel then. Dynamic young owner - all staff friendly. Rooms very clean although ours was a little spartan - but had a great sea view. Situation is perfect.
Easy walk into the village but near station for further expidtions to Calvi or Ile Rousse.
Good breakfasts and breakfast/terrace area very nice with some clever 'designer' decor.
Would have no hesitation recommending.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank CroftWelshMarches
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Stella Mare

Property: Hotel Stella Mare
Address: Chemin Santa Lucia, 20220 Algajola, Corsica, France
Location: France > Corsica > Haute-Corse > Algajola
Hotel Style:
#4 Romantic Hotel in Algajola
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Stella Mare 3*
Number of rooms: 16
Also Known As:
Hotel Stella Mare Algajola, Corsica

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