Lerici and Portovenere Hotel help!

Apr 7th, 2006, 06:46 PM
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Lerici and Portovenere Hotel help!

First off-Thanks Nessundorma for all your help on the itinerary. I was planning to nix the CT part of the trip and concentrate on Liguria with a base in Canogli. But since Cenobio Dei Dogi is booked - I'm revising my plans. (BTW - you have no idea how bummed I am!)
I'm researching places to stay in Lerici and Portovenre. Seems like the favorite hotels in Lerici are Hotel Florida and Doria Park and in Portovenere areGran Hotel Portovenere and Hotel Belvedere . They all look great but I was looking for something more similar to the Cenobio Dei Dogi. Am I missing a hotel? We would like to splurge a little here...
And should I consider SML as an alternative to Canogli (everything I read seems to say it is very touristy - sigh - same with Portofino)...
Jaykay06 is offline  
Apr 7th, 2006, 08:48 PM
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It's not in the same league as Cenobio Dei Dogi, but have you considered staying in La Casmona in Camogli?


It's where I stay in Camogli, and if you book a room WITH A TERRACE, I think it's a great perch. It's a 3 star, like the Doria Park (where I've never stayed). And I've never been in Portovenere. So I don't want to mislead you.

The other choice in Camogli is the Portofino Kulm, but it's not on the beach (it's in the hills), so I think it sort of kills the fun of being in Camogli.

Before I booked myself into either Santa Margherita Ligure or (yuck!) Portofino, I'd check out the four-star offerings in Sestre Levante. One is the Gran Hotel Villa Balbi


The other is Vis-a-Vis


Fair warning about Sestri Levante: I love the town but I love it because it is not like the other tony Ligurian town. It's where mainly Italians go with their families. I think it's filled with charm, but only parts of it are picturesque.

You might also take a look at the Grand Hotel Bristol in Rapallo (which has the same Beverly Hills upscale resort feel as Portofino but isn't quite as frantic in terms of shoppers and obnoxiously overpriced):


I know that people on the Slow Travel website are huge fans of the Doria Park and of Portovenere. But I think you need a car there. Were you planning to rent one?

nessundorma is offline  
Apr 7th, 2006, 08:50 PM
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Here's the right link for the Grand Hotel Bristol

nessundorma is offline  
Apr 7th, 2006, 10:13 PM
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Nessundorma, you guessed it! I have been spending many late nights and early mornings reading all the entries over at Slowtravel. It seems like I would need to rent a car. But not sure how DH would feel about driving from Como to Lerici. I was hoping to take a train without too many transfer (since we are lugging a lot of luggage). If not, then we will be forced to get a car. Funny you mentioned Sestre Levante - I actually was taking a look at the Gran Hotel Villa Balbi and Vis-a-Vis about half an hour ago and emailed them to check availability.
I hope I'm not coming off snobby - it is just that I thought Cenobio seemed well priced for what you get (esp. compared to the very $$$$ stuff in Bellagio)so I was really bummed that it was already booked up. I'll look into Rapallo. Haven't heard much about it. More research - bring on the coffee!
Jaykay06 is offline  
Apr 7th, 2006, 10:24 PM
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My friends stay at Cenocbio dei Dogi. I don't think you're snobby. I go up there to sit on their terrace and drink wine.

I happened to stumble across La Casmona on the web without knowing CaD even existed when I booked my first trip to Camogli. At Casmona, they showed us to our room, and opened the doors to the terrace, and the entire Mediterranean was before us. The private terraces (one story up) are directly above the main pedestrian promenade along the beachfront, so you can hang out and watch the constant parade of dogs, fish in wheelbarrows, Germans, nonnas, cops. It's great. If I didn't have that terrace at the Casmona, I'd be angling to stay an Cenobio.

There is an even more expensive hotel in Rapallo called the Excelsior -- but you'll need to be drinking scotch to book at those prices. There are a couple of other 4 stars there too if you look on the major hotel agency sites. I've never even stopped in Rapallo, so I can't give any guidance.

Vis-a-Vis is a little away from the center in Sestri Levante, I believe, and both of them are up above the beach on a hillside. Check to see if they have an elevator from street level. I think Balbi does. Or ask how many stairs you need to climb to get to the hotel.

Another nice feature of Sestri is a sand beach where your baby can sit and play and a very gentle, waveless cove. There's a bar there too for the grownups!
nessundorma is offline  
Apr 7th, 2006, 11:36 PM
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the hotel casmona is the best and comogli is the perfect base and and it has a charming atmosphere as well
touristblob is offline  
Apr 8th, 2006, 02:18 AM
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With regards to Grand Bristol, I got a very good rate on hotelpronto.com.
nevertooold is offline  
Apr 8th, 2006, 03:41 AM
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We have stayed at both Cenobio and the Gran Hotel Portovenere....the former, several times, and the latter, once...Cenobio would be my first choice, but since it is not available, I would happily go to Portovenere..I loved it! The hotel is not quite as nicely appointed as Cenobio, but it is a good hotel and has a wonderful location, right on the harbor, which is small but spectacular...the town is hilly, Camogli is much flatter down by the beach...at the very least I would make a day trip, if only to see and visit the tiny Church of San Pietro which sits out over the water on the ruins of a temple to Venus!

We always travel off season and remark what traffic must be like getting in and out of these little towns during high season...if you decide to get a car, be sure to factor that in when you plan your day trips...
Traviata is online now  
May 9th, 2006, 09:04 AM
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Has anyone heard of the Grand Hotel Dei Castelli Sestre Levante...is it up to par with the Cenobio Dei Dogi?
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