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Venice/Barcelona Hotels

M

mooreke

Guest
#1
We will be on the Millennium Venice to Barcelona cruise next year and wanted to stay a couple of nights before and after. Any suggestions on hotels? We are looking for 4-5 star quality.....thanks
 
B

BruinSteve

Guest
#2
When we did it back in August, we booked the hotels directly with Celebrity, largely due to wanting to keep everything in a neat package and take advantage of the air bargain we got without need for deviation...It was $359 per person for a two-night pre-cruise stay in Venice and $319 per person for a two-night post cruise stay in Barcelona...

We may have saved a few bucks doing it on our own, but I am very glad we did it the way we did...

It can be very expensive and complicated getting you and your luggage from the airport to a hotel to the ship...The previous time we were in Venice was on a "land" trip by rental car...we were able to drive in, park in the structure and leave most of our luggage in the car, taking only what we needed for Venice, put it into carry-ons and walked to our hotel...Not easy to do when you arrive by air with no car...With the pre-cruise package, a Celebrity representative (actually an employee of "Medov", their contractor) met the plane at the gate, led us to the luggage carousel, gathered us and our bags--along with many other passengers on the pre-cruise and led us to a bus waiting directly outside the terminal...and drove us to Piazza Roma where porters unloaded our luggage and took it directly to the hotel while a Medov rep led us by foot (the hotel was only a short walk from Piazza Roma, but I would not like to have done it dragging four pieces of luggage...if you know Venice, you know what I mean...Service to the ship from the hotel was similar--we never had to deal with the bags, we were led to a waiting bus right to the ship...

The Hotel they used in Venice was the Carlton Executive...which was amply nice...good breakfasts, pleasant rooms, nicely located...

A note on "location": Wherever you stay in Venice, you will need to travel everywhere by one of three methods...foot, Vaporetti (the public boat/buses) or water taxi...okay, four--Gondola...Taxis are expensive, gondolas are prohibitively expensive...

There are only three footbridges that cross the Grand Canal: The one by the Railroad Station in the north, the Rialto Bridge in mid-town and the Academia Bridge in the South...

The Carlton is located right across the Grand Canal from the RR station. so access to either side of the canal is easy...and you are fairly near Piazza Roma (where the cars and buses must turn around) and the port...Piazza San Marco is clear across Venice, but distances are small...we walked it both ways, but you can also take a Vaporetti...The Ghetto is across the bridge past the RR Station...so is Tintoretto's church and many other sites...Most sites are spread throughout Venice, as are wonderful restaurants...So, it is not important where in Venice you stay--except for getting your luggage to and from there--the Vaporettis don't like taking you with luggage and will charge you extra...

In Barcelona, Celebrity had a choice of hotels..."convenience and location" mean everything in Barcelona...Many folks choose to be at a hotel along Las Ramblas which is the main walking and shopping promenade...Others find it a bit noisy and crowded and prefer to be off it a bit...We chose the Gran Hotel Havana which is on Corts de Catalan, the wide promenade of the Eixample District, a "newer" area of Barcelona--it is in a nice, quiet, largely residential area but still only a few short blocks from Placa Catalunya, the northern terminus of Las Ramblas...If you don't like to walk, don't stay here...if you don't mind a short stroll, then the location is fantastic--like I said, a few blocks to the top of Las Ramblas, the Corte Ingles (absolutely wonderful and extremely large department store--hint: Buy bottled water here, downstairs in the market section--35 Euro cents ans opposed to 2.5 to 3 Euros most places...)...If you walk north from Placa Catalunya, in just a few blocks you will fing Gaudi's Casa Batllo and Casa Mila...and there is a bus that goes from Placa Catalunya to Park Guell--a MUST SEE...

The hotel itself was VERY nice, room was very comfortable, air conditioning worked exceedingly well (something you don't typically get in Barcelona)...And, again, breakfast buffet was well done and ample...

As in Venice, the port agents were great...our van was at the hotel promptly as promised to take us and one other couple to the airport...

Another nice part of doing this through Celebrity was that in the process of gathering at the airport in Venice, we met several of our fellow passengers...the Hotel put us all in adjoining rooms on the same wing of the hotel and we enjoyed great cameraderie with some of them throughout the pre-cruise AND the cruise...
 
P

Petert

Guest
#4
Hi Mooreke,
We are leaving for Barcelona on the 24 th of October to board the Millennium for the repositioning cruise to Ft Lauderdale on the 26 th. We are arriving a day early to ease the jet lag and see a little of Barcelona before the cruise. I have been to Barcelona a number of times over the years and we are only interested in spending a little time visiting the Ramblas and getting some Tapas. There are several hotels on the Ramblas and the Plaza Canalunya but from what I have read they are rather expensive and somewhat dated. We will be staying at the Hesperia Del Mar which is located on the beach, about a mile from the Ramblas and also a mile from the cruise port. The distance to the airport is about 10 miles, and the taxi fare is about 20 or 25 euros. I found the hotel on the internet, but it seems ideal for our needs. It is a newer hotel, and we are paying 136 euros for a double room with upgrades and breakfast.

Since I haven't stayed there as yet, I can't recommend it personally. I will be returning in mid November so if you would like I can let you know what it is like at that time. Barcelona is a great city with much to see and enjoy.

Peter
 
P

pmatch

Guest
#5
Which cruise are you taking? We are going Venice to Barcelona on the Millie on Sept 18/04.
Regards
The Forsters
 
J

JudyA.

Guest
#6
We are booked on the Millie 6/2/04 sailing...it is EXTREMELY easy to get from the Barcelona airport to your hotel in Barcelona, do not pay for the ship tranfser here. However, in Venice, it is more complicated beacause (depending on where the ship is docked) you might need a water taxi. We are going to go with the ship transfer from ship to airport in Venice.

A good reference for hotels is www.tripadvisor.com . We are reserved at the Hotel Continental in Barcelona. I resource I always use in Europe is the Rick Steves guide books. His advice is excellent, and we've never gone wrong staying at a hotel recommended in his books.