If you want an outdoor pool in Venice, there are only a few choices, and I can recommend this hotel.
- generous sized rooms and nice bathrooms
- pretty island, big, lovely old buildings
- attentive service
- prompt and frequent boat shuttle.
- rip-off prices knowing you are isolated on the island, see later on for examples
- smoking permitted at outdoor breakfast in the confined courtyard. I expect this in public in Italy and I don’t mind it at the hotel bars, but a luxury hotel with focus on its spa and island should take the lead and prioritise the health and comfort of other guests in my opinion. A third of guests at any one time are smoking, it really ruined the outdoor breakfast experience (passive smoking, smell, taste, coughing)
- food at breakfast is ok but not great, especially for the price (chewy scrambled egg, too fatty bacon, two types of butter but no healthier spread, no live stations, nothing novel)
- facilities do not make use of the island and waterside view, e.g. outdoor breakfast is in an enclosed courtyard, pool not waterside
- no coffee or tea making facilities in room
- expensive fixed room service charge prevents small orders
- there is a bar right by the pool, but nobody comes around to ask for orders
Some aspects are not worthy of a 5 star hotel. This is my first stay at a Kempinski so I don't know if it is typical of the group:
1) A free room upgrade if available on check-in was part of my deal. I was denied the upgrade because, I was told, no rooms were available. But they were available as I checked before and after on the official website.
2) We were not warned at the time of booking of potential disruption during our stay due to a private event. There was noisy rigging of a marquee and audiovisual equipment over some days, which especially spoiled our outdoor time e.g. by the pool.
3) They charge rip-off prices knowing you are isolated on the island. Not premium prices, not luxury hotel prices, not Venice prices, but rip-off prices. Take one example: 8 Euros for 250ml of Coke - this is FOUR TIMES the price of St Marks Square and cannot be justified.
4) My repeated emails prior to arriving asking about menus and prices were ignored (now I know why as they are probably embarrassed), but my other emails were answered promptly
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- San Clemente Palace Kempinski is set on a private island in the Venetian lagoon, approximately 10 minutes away from Piazza San Marco. San Clemente Island may not be reached by public transportation: only the hotel's own boats and water taxi services may access this private Venetian retreat. This luxury hotel is recognisable for outstanding service, finest accommodation, exceptional cuisine and its leisure facilities. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- San Clemente Palace Hotel Venice
- San Clemente Palace Hotel And Resort