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My husband and I went here for our honeymoon in August 2004. Our first impressions were that it was too grand for us! The entrance was lovely, all marble, with a light, airy bar, and the terrace outside the front of the hotel was large and well set out. Not one part of the entrance looked cheap.
I wouldn't say this was a family hotel at all, more a hotel for couples.
Our room was upgraded to a Honeymoon Suite without us knowing by the owners as we were on honeymoon (we hadn't requested a honeymoon suite with the travel agent as it was out of our price range and we were not charged extra for this privilage) and we were given a bowl of fresh fruit and a bottle of sparkling wine on arrival, which was lovely. The suite was on the top floor with a small terrace at the front. The views were just beautiful - right outside our room was a small mountain range, if you could call it that, and we could see the sea in both directions looking left and right. It didn't catch the sun though, which was a shame, but you can't have it all. The room was nice and light and the floor was tiled. The bed was made of two singles pushed together though, but I understand this is normal in Europe.
The pool and poolside bar/snack bar was brilliant. There were plenty of sun loungers, all free, with toilets/changing rooms nearby which were clean. The food was great, the pizzas and salads served there were the best we've ever eaten.
The main restaurant was lovely and the food was also top class, as was the wine. The waiters were a bit off sometimes, most of them were obviously students. However, Agata, who seemed to work everywhere, was very friendly, helpful, cheeky and entertaining. Toni, who mainly worked in the bar in Reception, tried to teach us Italian and was also entertaining. He made cocktails to order whilst joking around most of the time. There were delays at this bar though as Toni sometimes wasn't there.
There was a buffet night while we were there which 'showcased' 'real' Italian food. I found some of the food was quite average compared to the food served in the restaurant normally, but it was still much better quality than you would find in Britain.
The hotel is on a hill and you need to take a bus into Sorrento itself. A minibus is provided by the hotel and Mario, the driver, is also very entertaining and cheeky. You need to check the times but generally you need to book the bus for a particular time and they pick you up from the hotel and take you into Sorrento to a drop-off point. You book the bus before you leave the hotel for what time you want to come back and they pick you up from the same drop-off point. It takes between 20 minutes and half an hour to get to Sorrento town centre.
You can walk to a tiny village from the hotel which sells cigarettes and dodgy clothes but that's it.
The hotel entertainment was a bit dodgy but that made it more fun. While we were there there was a female singer who covered songs being played from a tape recorder, basically professional karaoke, and tried to make you dance with her, but you just avoid her, smile sweetly and say no thanks if she approaches you. Some people did participate and we found it hilarious to watch!
All in all, we had a great time at this hotel. We were on our honeymoon, which was magical anyway, but we felt looked after and felt like we had special treatment most of the time we were there. I'm not sure what it'd be like for non-honeymooners but we certainly had a good time and so did most of the guests we spoke to. We felt it was money well spent.