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Giudecca: Hilton Molino Stucky

www.molinostuckyhilton.com

Reviewed by: Wendy Ash from UK, review #1979

When: 2007

Comfort, peace and convenience on the Giudecca.

We picked up the complimentary shuttle boat at San Marco for a 20 minute ride out to the Giudecca to the very new conversion of the old mill into a Hilton Hotel.

We had not stayed at a Hilton before but at a price of 166 GBP per room per night including breakfast we could not resist as the rack rate is around 600 euros. This was a very special opening offer and as we were booked in at the adjoining Residence at a higher price it made sense to move over to the hotel. The Residence is not associated with the Hilton but it will appeal to Slow Travellers as it is self catering. It is called Grandi Vedute.

The Molino Stucky building is large and brooding but inside it is quite beautifully appointed. The public rooms are all light,spacious and airy and the rooftop bar and pool are an absolute bonus.

Our air conditioned room was on the top floor so we had great views from both our room and the rather larger bathroom.

Both were beautifully appointed with good storage,excellent lighting and lovely soft furnishings and linens in the bedroom. Our rather firm bed was comfortable and at least 6 feet wide and our room was very quiet.

The bathroom had a freestanding shower,a large tub, plenty of hot water, good lighting, plentiful toiletries although I would have preferred Italian ones to English, and very nice soft towels and bath robes.

Breakfast was quite incredible,I have never seen such a selection with 6 special diets being catered for and indicated along with all the other more "normal" selections. I will try and describe it, fresh fruits of every kind and top quality, mangoes, peaches, raspberries,blackberries, stawberries, pineapple, pears,blueberries, oranges, kumquats, figs, dates, plums, prunes, grapes, papaya,bananas mmm think I will have to stop there or you will fall asleep but I am sure you get the idea!

Then there were yoghurts, cereals, fruit juices ,compote, cheeses,cold meats, fish, eggs, bacon, sausages, tomatoes, mushrooms,beautiful breads at least 9 kinds and jams as many as the bread including pear yummee,superb cakes like banana my favourite, croissants, pastries, toast, crackers etc. I am not doing this well as it really is impossible to list it all but we certainly didn't need lunch. It was all beautifully presented with much attention to detail in evidence.

Coffee was not good but the staff were happy to make it to our taste - i.e., strong. We enjoyed a glass of good local Prosecco from the buffet.

Unfortunately, there are no facilities for taking breakfast outside. The breakfast room itself is rather dull which is a shame as the room the buffet was laid out in is lovely - but that is the penalty of staying in a "listed building".

We found the shuttle boat to be very reliable and efficient taking only 5 minutes over to the Zattere, 15-20 mins to San Marco.

We really enjoyed being away from the hubbub of Venice and came back each day to swim in the small rooftop pool. It is advisable to reserve your sunbed in advance and ask for a shady one if you are like me and can't sit in direct sunshine. You get superb views from the rooftop but remember the Giudecca is a former industrial site so you will also see ruined factory buildings, a Women's prison, a drug unit and out to Marghera!

We ate in the hotel's restaurant called "Aromi" and were exceedingly well looked after with a "Bellini" as an aperitivo being the best we'd ever tried. Perhaps that is thanks to being a few yards away from "Harry's Dolci"? We sat on the waterside terrace and had a wonderful meal with my tricky diet presenting no problems to Chef. Staff were charming and helpful throughout and we did not feel we were staying in a large anonymous hotel.

All in all a lovely stay with inexpensive restaurants plentiful a short hop over on the Zattere.

We found Venice delightful in summer as previous visits had been in the Spring and I wanted to experience the long summer nights. They were absolutely gorgeous with a big moon almost close enough to touch and no mosquitoes or pungent canals even though the weather was hot and sunny. Highly recommended.

This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.

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