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This page describes my opinion of the hotels I visit from time to time. It is not intended to be an objective criticism of the hotels, but it may address issues that conventional reviews don't.

Hilton Sorrento Palace, Sorrento

I stayed at the Sorrento Palace from 12 to 21 March 2006 for a developer conference with MySQL.

Overall

Even by Hilton standards, the Sorrento Palace is luxurious. I certainly had one of the best imaginable views from the hotel room:

Click on the picture to see a medium-size version in the index

That was taken the day I arrived; Vesuvius still had snow on the cap.

Heating

I like to sleep cool. At this time of year, you'd think that that's not a problem; but it is. Like many Mediterranean hotels, the Sorrento Palace is primarily laid out for the summer months, and they have air conditioning. In the winter they reverse the system and heat instead. And it's not possible to turn the heating off in this hotel. I had to sleep with the door to the balcony open to get the correct temperature. Apart from the noise, that lowers the security, since all the balconies are joined together.

Plumbing

The showers are in the bath, and the temperature control must rank as some of the worst I have ever had. The temperature changes every 20 seconds by about 5, so I was continually adjusting the temperature. It's been decades since I have had such problems even in cheap hotels.

Housekeeping

Housekeeping is not good. I carry a small cushion with me when I travel, and they managed to lose it (well, send it off to the cleaners in Naples). That could have been an accident, but talking loudly in the corridors before 8 am is not, and they also repeatedly didn't wipe surfaces. The following photo was taken a day after they had cleaned away a tray of ice. They had obviously not bothered to wipe the surface dry, and whatever was left behind was not only water, which would have evaporated in that time:

Click on the picture to see a medium-size version in the index

Value for money

The conditions for the conference were very good, but others were not—€ 8 for a beer, and € 22 per day for network connection. It's high time that hotels realize that they shouldn't charge for network connectivity. This one point would certainly be enough for me to choose another hotel.

Staff attentiveness

On the positive side, the front desk staff were very friendly and helpful.


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