We were looking forward so much to our stay in Pisa for our thirty years anniversary. Sadly,the Relais dell'Orologio disappointed big time.
We knew the rooms were going to be on the small side but when you cannot even walk around your room and you are unable to open a wardrobe door because the bed is in the way, you begin to wonder.
No decent information about the local area or the hotel was available in the rooms save for a self-congratulatory leaflet telling us that we were privileged to be in one of the very best hotels. The bathroom also had several fixtures hanging off the wall.
Amazingly, there was no hot water until the final morning of the stay. We received no apology or notice - a shrug of the shoulder sufficing to tell us that it was Sunday and that it was difficult to get someone to fix the gas boiler.
The arrogant pricing policy of the hotel was also confirmed when one evening we shared three small glasses of Grappa. There were no prices on display.
At check-out we were presented with a bill for 45 euros for the late night Grappas. They showed us a leaflet of the bar prices and the grappa was priced at 14 euros. (They couldn't even add correctly and the very same Grappa was on sale at the airport for 33 euros a bottle!). That is an immoral mark-up by any standard.
However, when I questioned the bill and was told 'sorry but I am not responsible for the prices', I reminded them that we had not had a hot shower for three days. They quickly waived the drinks bill.
We were then asked to pay the local tax (fair enough) which came to 8 euros. They had no change from from a ten euro note and happily kept the remainder.
Breakfast was included for our booking but beware if it isn't for. It costs 25 euros per person. Again, ridiculously expensive for a breakfast that is just average.
The cost hidden on the back of the wardrobe for this hotel room is 400 a night. If you ever pay this you have more money than sense.
Dell'Orologio seems to be living in a time warp. Italy needs our money and I am usually very happy to provide a tiny amount to a country I love and visit regularly. Expedia need to have a look at this place particularly as it appears in the book of best small luxury hotels of the World. Try comparing, for example, with the Design Internacionale Hotel in Lisbon. No contest!
Oh well - here's to the next thirty!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Located really close to the leaning Tower of Pisa, the age-old Relais dell’Orologio is the ideal place to visit the City, its monuments, the University, its museums, its squares, its markets, its shops, its artisan workshops by foot and to move about its province towards Lucca and Versilia. For a romantic getaway, for a honeymoon, to experience art, culture and the humanity of the place, in other words to appreciate Tuscany. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Relais Dell Orologio
- Relais Dell Orologio Hotel