Monday, March 21, 2011

Hotels; Venice, Corvara and Courchevel

A Word About the 2011 Trip Hotels:

Hotel Bonvecchiati, in Venice and the Posta Zirm Hotel in Corvara are four star in every way. But unlike modern hotels in the U.S. you won’t find long corridors lined with look-alike rooms.
The Bonecchiati hotel is well located about equal distance from the Piazza San Marco and the Rialto Bridge, two of the must see and most photographed sites in Venice.

The Bonecchiati is tucked in an old building if indeterminate age. It may even be part of several buildings. The two cozy elevators take you to floors that wander off in different directions to rooms of various shapes and sizes. With canals on two sides and ancient roof tops surrounding in other directions the view from each room is different.
The rooms themselves are comfortable and fitted with all the features you would expect from a four star hotel. My only complaint concerned the scale in the bathroom. Why put a visitor in a city where there is a restaurant or bar every 100 meters to tempt you and then put a scale in the bathroom….most inconsiderate.

Corvara’s Posta Zirm Hotel is now run by fourth generation management. A blend of Austrian and Italian tastes (It is not far from the border) it has both a new and old wing that dates back to 1808. Within each there are a variety of room styles and most seem quite large by any standard. Ours is like two rooms were combined resulting in a sleeping room and separate sitting/eating area complete with refrig and table. The ski room is a mere 50 meters from a gondola.

The staff in both hotels have been four star.

Our Courchevel hotel, Les Ducs de Savoie, is a three star with a ski in-ski out location. The rooms are generally a bit smaller than Corvara, which takes some adjustment. The staff, particularly in the hotel ski shop, has been most friendly. The statuesque bartender would be the one exception. She has what could be described as “an attitude.”

The French hotel beds are always a surprise/disappointment. In a country acclaimed for its lovers you would expect lusty, inviting beds. In Italy we had lovely beds with deliciously fluffy down comforters. Here, and in other French hotels we have visited, we have drab colored heavy wool blankets. They simply do not inspire “le passion.”

The quality and variety found in European hotels is one of the attractions that contribute the sense of adventure you can enjoy skiing abroad.

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