Friday, 5 December 2014

Hotel Grande Bretagne, A Luxury Collection Hotel, Athens, Greece - August 2014

 


Hotel Bretagne is widely deemed as the hotel to stay in Athens. 

It even has its own wikipedia page at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hotel_Grande_Bretagne

It is the hotel of choice for celebrities and politicians staying in Athens.

Unfortunately, there were no VIPs during our stay. That may actually be a good thing because the security is less stringent and access to the hotel is less troublesome.

Why choose this hotel?

The history of the hotel makes this a minor attraction.

The central location just in front of Syntagma Square and Parliament House is excellent. One can watch the Changing of the Guard from the hotel.

The Syntagma Square Metro station has an exit just beside the hotel.

The King George in the previous review is next to the Grand Bretagne.

Service is very good here and the rooftop restaurant is excellent.

The Management

Starwood, the same with King George.

Getting to the Hotel

City centre hotels have a flat taxi fee of 35 Euros in the day from the airport.

Or one could take the metro.

The Hotel

The classic feel of the building greets you from afar and the details to the facade cannot be ignored.

The door-person will greet you and get you onto taxis which are almost always available at the doorstep! 

A taxi would stop for you if you stand just outside the hotel (Even if we were just waiting to cross the road...)


However, it must be hot in that uniform.

The lobby is high and grand, with golden yellow as a dominant colour.

The columns are a particularly nice touch.

There is also a restaurant extended from the lobby

A small business centre and gift shop is located at the elevators.

The hotel is rather small actually, but still opulent in the colours and decorations.

The staircases show this very well


 

The elevator seems a bit out of place, perhaps it was built later into the building.


 

A cupboard showing the history of the hotel.


The corridors are brightly lit and rather wide for the small hotel.


The Rooms

We were in a Junior Suite which is about twice as big as the basic room. Yet the room (suite) is still small!



 

 The toilet is, on the other hand, big enough to fit in a bathtub and a standing shower.



The amenities were fine but I didn't find anything great about it.


The room faces the internal side and hence there's not much view.

The Food and Drinks

The rooftop restaurant is one of must-visits in Athens.

The hotel is one of the tallest building in central Athens and offers good views of the Parliament House and Acropolis. The view is definitely superior to the Tudor Hall in King George.




A panorama shows the great view much better!


The breakfast is excellent for the quality and very good for range. It is one of the best in terms of quality for a hotel in a city.


The Pool 

There is an outdoor pool and an indoor pool.

The indoor pool is at the spa and is rather dark and noisy. It looks much better in a poster.

 

The outdoor pool is much better but is also very crowded. However, the view of Mount Lycabettus is delightful!


 

The Gym

A small gym at the spa gives basic fitness opportunity.

 The Spa

The hotel spa accommodates the fitness centre, indoor pool as well as a beautiful lounging area.


Some refreshments are available without additional charges.


The spa is a very busy one and there was no same-day availability for treatments.

The Service

Prior to arrival, I received a welcoming email and the arrangement for some amenities for my birthday.
I declined the alcohol offering and was informed that alternative amenities would be offered.

Unfortunately, that did not happen but I do think it is a privilege if the hotel went above and beyond.

The hotel provides butler service and check-in to the junior suite was done at a separate reception.


The staff were very polite and spoke good English.

The in-charge Ms Delphina (hope I got the spelling of her name correct) was very meticulous and tried her best for dinner recommendation and arrangement.

I was offered champagne during which she insisted I must have for my birthday.


Even the paper towels are printed with the hotel's logo.


Turn-down service came with a piece of chocolate. 


In Summary

This is indeed an opulent hotel to stay in, with a great location and staff.

One may even meet celebrities here!

I do think it is worthwhile to pay a little more for the KG or the GB, given the great location.

Happy Travels,
Fred