My heart sank as we neared the hotel and saw the host of sprawling anonymous concrete buildings surrounding the area. My heart sank even further as we drove up the short ramp to the hotel entrance and saw the cramped parking space. Finally, my heart went into nose-dive as I entered the lobby and saw its vast impersonal emptyness.
OK, I also happen to be in the Hilton group’s loyalty scheme and one of the reasons I stay there (among others) is that, in my experience across a number of different continents, their hotels are functional, they provide comfy kingsize beds and their hotels tend to be efficiently run. However, this is one of the bleaker Hilton hotels I've stayed at – it has little charm or atmosphere – and is simply a purpose built modern concrete block designed as a convention centre and resort hotel. Perhaps it was because I visited out of season that there seemed to be no joie de vivre about the place. However, that said, it’s the bedroom that’s important, and that was just fine. Pleasant room with a great king bed and a great sea view.
Now, a word about the sea view. For a “full-on” sea view you need to book the so-called “plus” rooms – they are about 30 Euros more expensive than ordinary rooms which only have partial sea views. The extra cash is well worth it to get the full sea view – we kept the door of our small private balcony open so we could relax to the restful sound of waves hitting the shore. Incidentally, the beach is not golden sands, but a rather dirty-coloured shale, but then remember, we’re in the shadow of Etna here.
I thought the price of the room was a very fair 110 Euros per night – a discounted price because I paid in advance. I felt that was good value for money although breakfast was a further 20 Euros per person.
A couple of irritants - car parking was difficult on site and the internet connection was charged unless you were in the higher echelons of Hilton Honours membership. That said, I had a great nights sleep in a well appointed and comfortable room with the sounds of the sea pounding the shore.
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- Also Known As:
- Hilton Giardini Naxos Hotel Giardini Naxos
- Hilton Giardini Naxos Sicily, Italy