Leading Hotels of the World: Conundrum

The good news: We got a room at our first choice, the Grand Hotel Miramare in Santa Margherita Ligure. It’s a deluxe sea view double with balcony. Yes please!

The bad news: It’s only for one night (out of a maximum of two nights).

The good news: It’s near Portofino!  And the Cinque Terre!  Surely we can find a room for a couple more nights to fill out our trip.

The bad news: I can’t find a hotel I like. Like, at all. Like, not even close to something I would consider staying in. But before you dismiss me as a hotel snob, and that it’s the Italian Riviera, and for goodness sake get over yourself, let me explain.

  1. This is a hotel trip, not a sightseeing trip.
  2. If we were going in warmer weather, we’d be outside all the live long day and I couldn’t care less where we stayed. But we’re going in December, which means there will be a lot of sitting on a balcony wrapped in blankets and staring at the sea, or lolling around in bed wrapped in blankets looking at the sea.
  3. We need to have a view of the sea for the above mentioned lolling/staring.

These two factors, combined with my hotel snobbery and needing to get over myself, clearly mean my standards are different for this trip.  So, with this in mind, let’s take a look at my first foray into everyone’s favorite Italian getaway region.

From my own preliminary searches and from Twitterpals helping me, I found a few general accommodation sites. Italy Traveller is pretty slick looking, and once I drilled down to the area I wanted I really appreciated the option to go directly to the hotel website, which is something I always, always do.  Welcome to Italy is hilariously outdated-looking, but has a pretty comprehensive list of area hotels. Cinqueterre.com is a good one, too. But I ditched Venere when I compared this hotel’s room picture to the ones on its website.

This made me decide to start looking at direct hotel websites. But their websites aren’t exactly instilling confidence in me, either – and those are three star and above. There seem to be only hotels left to rot since the 1970s faux-walnut-veneer interior design boom, many for well less than $100 a night; or I can stay in a room someone has paid attention to this millennium, and pay well over $300 a night.

More and more, it looks as though the Leading Hotels of the World might be getting more than $19.28 out of us, as their rates aren’t actually insane and we’ll already be there. However, I’ll be booking directly through the hotel website for those nights, as LHW’s rates are well above the listed ones on their site.

7 thoughts on “Leading Hotels of the World: Conundrum

  1. Pingback: Trip Planning Frustrations « Miss Expatria

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