Aristi Mountain Resort

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Location: Aristi – Greece
Classification: 4 star hotel
Official websitearisti.eu/en

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Aristi Mountain Resort is an upscale four star hotel in the gorgeous Aristi area! It makes part of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World. This is not your average hotel! Inside this authentic resort is another world waiting for you! The hotel invites you to cross the line into an extraordinary world where lovely design and service are top priority. I was so surprised… let me tell you why!

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The resort has several buildings. Each traditional building has a wooden roof is beautifully integrated in the nature with respect of the local environment. I loved the local grey stone tiles of the buildings.

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I loved my room here! Each room design at Aristi Mountain Resort is unique and all feature a trendy cozy mountain theme. The bed was very comfortable. The lay out is excellent. The comfy sitting area was great to relax after a hike in the area. It really reminds you of being in the mountains with all the gorgeous designer elements. I appreciate the local materials that were used to build and decorate this resort. Again, the grey stone tiles added the extra wow factor. Bathroom featured a bathtub, single sink and toilet.

Each room at Arisiti Mountain Resort has a view over the surrounding area. The balcony is the perfect place to relax and soak up all the beauty of nature.

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I recharged myself at one of the most stylish spa areas in town. This is the place to relax, unwind and refresh yourself after an active day in the mountains. The indoor pool is a treat and feels very relaxing. Other facilities I enjoyed were the steam room and sauna, both very well maintained and so relaxing after a day in the mountains!

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Speaking of activities, there is so much to do in this area. From rock and mountain climbing to rafting, canyoning, horse riding, etc. you won’t get bored here. When we think of Greece, we think of islands and history. But the mainland is gorgeous too. I was really impressed with all the beauty of nature. It is really worth to visit this area. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

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Aristi Mountain Resort has several restaurants for you to explore. Salvia Restaurant is the main restaurant offering panoramic views of the Greek mountains. Just beautiful! We had dinner here and the food and service didn’t disappoint. Actually, the varied menu will please anyone. Local ingredients were used to prepare the food and it tasted so good. The traditional Epirotic dishes were much appreciated!

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Breakfast at Aristi Mountain Resort is something to look forward to each morning! The food and service are outstanding! Having breakfast with such a view will please anyone!

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Aristi Mountain Resort is one of a kind and one of the better four star hotels in the area. Loved my stay here and I highly recommend to book a wonderful room while staying in the Aristi area.

Burj Al Arab – Dubai

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Hotelchain: Jumeirah
Location: Dubai – UAE
Classification: 5 star hotel deluxe (some say world’s only 7 star hotel)
Official websitehttp://www.jumeirah.com/en/hotels-resorts/dubai/burj-al-arab/

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Internationally renowned as world’s most luxurious hotel, I had the opportunity to experience the famous Burj Al Arab in Dubai. It is located on a man-made island, 280 meters from the Jumeirah beach. It is the flagship of the Jumeirah hotel group.  Only hotel guests (or guests with a reservation in one of the restaurants) can enter the hotel, so there is no sightseeing here.  This is a good thing, as I saw a number of people at the front gate taking pictures of the hotel.

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Location

Located at Jumeirah beach, Burj Al Arab is located between Dubai Marina and Business Bay. There’s a holiday vibe around the area.

When I approached the entrance, I was impressed with the height of the hotel… 321 meters above sea level… Trust me, it is HUGE!  As soon as you enter the Burj Al Arab, you will enter in a completely different world.  I truly was blown away… Gold everywhere.  It is reportedly the only 7 star hotel in the world and I can easily understand why.  After taking the escalator — with a huge aquarium – you can look up 200 meters. A lot of looking up!  Did you know that the Statue of Liberty would fit inside?  Also, there are dancing fountains all over the place with tons of different programs, so you’ll never get bored when watching!

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The suites

There are no rooms in the Burj al Arab, only suites. Starting at 170m² (1,829 sq. ft.), all of the rooms are duplex suites, each with the highest level of comfort one could wish for.  The Burj has 1600 staff members looking over “only” 202 suites.  So that’s… eight members for each suite? Yep! There is a private check-in and butler service for each suite. No waiting times here at the reception. They explain everything you need to know and will do anything you ask — like making reservations in one of the restaurants, booking day trips to the city, making sure you will get the dessert you want, etc.

Every suite in the Burj Al Arab is beautifully decorated. Although the hotel opened back in 1999, the suites look very up to date and brand new. From the marble entrance with large staircase to the oversized living rooms, you will feel like a king or queen while walking around. They have the world’s most expensive mattresses, which can be adapted to customer needs and preferences. These things are making this hotel truly unique; returning guests are assured they will have a wonderful night.

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The bathrooms are huge — they used Italian marble – and you will be so relaxed after spending some time in the oversized jacuzzi.  Oh, a great thing: did you know that Hermès produced a special edition of perfume for the Burj Al Arab?  That is right, full-size Hermès Burj Al Arab amenities (female + male) are offered to guests at no additional charge. Of course, you could take them home as a souvenir.

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Spa facilities

A full spa – the Talise Spa – is located on one of the top floors. I was not able to take pictures of the spa area, but there is an indoor pool, jacuzzi, fitness, etc. Several treatments are offered and after a relaxing massage you can relax in the spa resting area, accessible for guests only, of course. From there, you can look straight down (200 meters!) to the ground level. Very impressive and not recommended when afraid of heights 🙂

Spa treatments are excellent! They exactly know how to make you feel at ease and so relaxed. Just tell them which pressure you prefer and you will enjoy every single minute. The soft music all over the place made it even more relaxing.

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There is also an outdoor pool area — and the Burj has its own beach across the bridge. The recently opened Terrace is stunning! For water fun, there is complimentary access to the Wild Wadi Waterpark, which is located across the bridge.

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The famous Burj Al Arab hotel is one of Dubai’s highlights and one of world’s best hotels… The hotel’s immaculate reputation is well earned and you will be impressed with every aspect of your stay!

Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens

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Hotelchain: Four Seasons Hotels
Location: Athens – Greece
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official websitefourseasons.com/athens

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Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens is a five star luxury hotel located on the beautiful Athens Riviera. Location is excellent, the hotel is the ideal place to stay when you are looking for both relaxation near the coast and for visiting Athens. The city center of Athens can be reached in just 25 minutes.

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When I entered Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens I immediately knew that this would be a great stay. The luxurious lobby definitely is an eye-catcher with its beautiful furniture and relax atmosphere. The contemporary design is impressive and the large windows offer stunning views over the surrounding areas. Loved it!

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Let’s talk about rooms… Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens has a total of 303 rooms which are all luxuriously appointed and decorated in a very stylish way.  Rooms are spread over 2 buildings: The Nafsika and the Arion Building. The room I stayed in at the Nafsika building was absolutely stunning and the view over the sea was just incredible. The room had upscale furniture and a very comfortable living area and separate sleeping area with the most comfortable bed. At 44m² it was very spacious. The large windows offered panoramic views over the Aegean Sea and it was nice to hang out on the private furnished balcony. As usual at any Four Seasons, the bed was heavenly. It was like sleeping on a cloud.

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The large full marble bathroom was like a dream coming true. This bathroom is among the most beautiful bathroom I have ever seen. The free standing designer bathtub was top notch. The oversized excellent separate (rain)shower couldn’t be better. Oh, and I should definitely mention the Le Labo toiletries! A first time for me, but hopefully not the last. They smell a-m-a-z-i-n-g. Everything in the room was very well maintained. The room was cleaned several times a day and – of course – turndown service is provided each night.

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Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens offer a lot of facilities to their guests. The spa center is a must visit when you are staying here. The relaxing treatments and facilities of the CBE Wellness area are designed to make you feel relaxed and reborn. Each morning, I started my day with a nice swim in the indoor pool. Their marble indoor pool is very impressive. That is right, even the pools at Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens are eye catchers. The large outdoor pool located right next to the beach is THE place to hang out when you’re looking for ultimate relaxation.

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After hanging out at the pool, I went down to see the beach. Even walking on the board walk to get to the beach is truly pleasant!

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Other facilities are the separate male/female Finnish sauna, Moroccan hammam for men and Rhassoul for women. The fitness area is up to date with great furniture and Pilates studio. For total relaxation after the work-out, the Silent Duvet Room is a treat! Several body treatments and facials are offered as well as private spa suites. I loved the semi outdoor terrace with plenty of loungers. It was sunny when I was in Lausanne and it was divine to rest here and reading a good book.

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There are several dining options at Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens. We had dinner at Mercato, their stylish Italian trattoria. The restaurant is located near the beach and we were lucky enough with the good weather, having dinner outside is always a good idea. . It made our evening even more pleasant. The food was delicious and the best thing was the view. Watching the sunset from here was heavenly!

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Service throughout the entire evening was excellent. Every request has been taken care of with a smile. The service here was out of this world, very nice, easy going and certainly not snobby or anything.

The hotel offers more casual restaurants such as Taverna 37 – a beachfront bistro with a Greek cuisine and Helios – their Latin American grill restaurant.

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If you are looking for a more formal fine dining experience, make sure to book your table at Pelagos, Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens signature restaurant. It specializes in sophisticated Greek seafood. Although I didn’t eat here myself, I did had a look at the restaurant and was impressed.

Breakfast was outstanding! As you’d expect at a Four Seasons property, a  nice buffet is offered with a lot of choices to start your day healthy. My favorite drink was the smoothie with ginger and freshly squeezed orange juice. So refreshing and healthy at the same time. Loved the fact that we were able to sit outside.

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What a nice hotel to stay near Athens. This is a high class hotel with charm and a relaxed atmosphere. When you are in the area either for business or leisure, this hotel will do. I loved the overall service level and many facilities. Four seasons stands for high standard and that definitely was the case at Four Seasons Astir Palace Hotel Athens. From the moment I stepped in until we left, I enjoyed every second here and can’t wait to return!

Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas

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Hotelchain: Helios Hotels & Resorts
Location: Elounda – Greece (Crete)
Classification: 5 star hotel
Official websiteeloundabeach.gr

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Rated as one of the best beach resorts on Crete, Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas definitely deserves its good reputation. The hotel is located right on the stunning beach and offers five star facilities. As you would expect from a Leading Hotel of the World, we were greeted with a smile and the staff made us feel at home right from the first moment we stepped in. I immediately knew that this stay was going to be an amazing one … and it was … let me tell you why.

First of all, location location location… Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas is a beach resort with a prime location in Elounda. The area truly is mind blowing and is often described as the more exclusive part of Crete.

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Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas has been active in luxury hospitality for quite a time now. They definitely know how to treat their guests and service here is on a very high level. Most staff members remembered my name which made me feel like a VIP guest. Every time I met someone, they were all very warm and professional. This is Greek hospitality at its highest level!

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The lobby area at Elounda Beach is an elegant place to hang out and gives an excellent first impression of the resort. Check-in took place in one of the comfortable couches. Staff did make us feel at home right from the beginning. Everything we needed to know about the resort was explained in a very professional and kind way.

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We stayed in an Waterfront Suite and were very impressed. When we entered we couldn’t believe our eyes. The first thing we saw was the private infinity pool … it was like a dream coming true! The Waterfront Suite itself was ultra luxuriously appointed, had a great size and had all the amenities I would expect at a high level five star hotel. I appreciated the up to date design. The suite was completely renovated. The beds are among the best I have ever slept in. It was great to hang out in the suite and we didn’t need to leave the suite as we had our own pool and sea deck. The view we had was the best we could ask for, watching the ocean while enjoying the sun was a blast! We couldn’t have asked for a better suite, it was perfect and we actually felt at home.

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The suite had 2 bathrooms, each luxuriously appointed and featured an oversized walk-in shower and separate (gorgeous) bath tub! The steam shower was a bonus! Fancy Bulgari toiletries were provided. Everything was very clean. They maintain their rooms in an excellent way.

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There are a lot of fun things to do here at Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas! The pool area for example is just stunning. This is the perfect place for adults to relax and unwind. Palm trees, comfortable loungers, etc. it’s all there! Kids are welcome at Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas as well. There’s a separate kids pool and a children’s supervised animation program. By the way, tennis courts are available at no extra charge.

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A very cool thing about this resort: the sport activities. From very well maintained tennis courts, basketball and volleyball courts, a football pitch and even a minigolf course. It’s all there and we enjoyed it very much. It’s very relaxing to play a badminton game during your holidays and to relax at the pool afterwards. Even if you like watersports, you can do waterskiing, sailing or even rent a water ski. Very cool! Of course, a fitness center is available too with extensive range of cardiovascular machines, body sculpting equipment and free weights. Whether you want a serious work out or just a gentle stretch of the legs, the fitness center is the place to be. Another would be walking. Walking around the resort is like taking a walk in paradise. The surrounding areas are just gorgeous in this upscale resort!

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As a guest of Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas you are treated as royalty. I also loved the fact that they organize several themed nights. Staff is there to make each guest feel at ease. It’s not a snobby service, you are treated in a very kind way. Each staff member I encountered was a professional.

Time to relax! The Espace Vitalité Chenot Crete is one of the nicest spa areas I have experienced. The place is just beautiful … It is like entering a world of pure relaxation. Fantastic, I loved it! Decorated with high quality materials, relaxing music and the most wonderful staff … This is how every spa area should be like! I thoroughly enjoyed my treatment. The therapist was a professional. Make sure to book a treatment here. For me the experience was like returning to balance… an escape from the everyday and reinvigorate my mental and physical wellbeing while being in Elounda Beach’s tranquil and welcoming surroundings.

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Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas has several dining options. Let me start with ‘White’. This is the buffet restaurant and is definitely an eye catcher! Decoration is fantastic, the way they combined the colors with all the decoration and furniture is lovely. We were both very impressed and not only by the decoration, also the food was just delicious. Each morning, they serve a delicious breakfast. It is one of the best breakfasts I have ever experienced. All the food items were of such a good quality. The à la carte menu will please anyone. I didn’t have lunch as the food from the breakfast was so good and I just had to try everything 😊

At night, I had dinner at Argonaut restaurant, their seaside restaurant and is known for its Mediterranean snacks during lunch hours and Italian cuisine at night. Meat, salads and seafood, it is all there and prepared in an excellent way. The Head Chef is a true professional and makes sure each guest will have a great time. We did wanted to try sushi as we have heard wonderful things about their sushi. Our request was dealed with a smile! We had a table with an amazing view over the sea. It was heavenly! Staff was very attentive and professional. We loved our evening.

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As we were in Greece, we just had to book a table at Kafenion Greek Restaurant for the second night. The Cretan cuisine here is out of this world. Prepared to perfection, we tried several traditional and authentic dishes such as Greek salads, Mousakas, grilled lamb chops with thyme, virgin olive oil and lemon. Even the side dishes like a simple patato tasted heavenly! It was just delicious … The dessert – a Galaktoboureko custard filled pie – was to die for. Staff again was excellent and very knowledgeable about each dish.

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A stay at the world known Elounda Beach Hotel & Villas is top notch. Of course, it’s a Leading Hotel of the World property after all! I can not say enough good things about this resort. Location is great, food is yummie, rooms are luxurious and the service level is unseen. Highly recommended for a luxurious Crete getaway!

Leonardo Royal Hotel Den Haag Promenade

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Hotelchain: Apollo Hotels
Location: The Hague – Netherlands
Classification: 4 star hotel
Official websiteapollohotels.nl/apollo-hotel-den-haag-promenade

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Leonardo Royal Hotel Den Haag Promenade is a luxurious upscale four star hotel near the city center of The Hague. This luxurious hotel offers chic, sophisticated and elegant rooms and an impeccable service. Absolutely loved my stay here, let me tell you why!

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When I entered the hotel, I immediately fell in love with the many designer element you will find in the entire hotel. It provides just the right design touches you expect at a luxurious city hotel without it being too flashy. This is an expansive lobby area you want to hang out in. Check-in staff were very friendly and informative. Actually, I have found the entire staff at Leonardo Royal Hotel Den Haag incredibly pleasant.

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The beautiful Corner Suite I stayed in was ultra luxurious! I was just blown away… The suite was enormous, it almost felt like a small apartment. The suite had a separate sleeping and sitting area. The bedroom – again luxuriously appointed – had a great king sized bed. I loved the wooden finishing and designer furniture.

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I loved the bathroom! It was just stunning with a gorgeous separate bath tub and rain shower. Double sinks and separate toilet were lovely. I took a bath and it almost felt like I was relaxing in my private spa area. Great!

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Leonardo Royal Den Haag Promenade has a lot to offer! There’s a large indoor swimming pool for guests to enjoy. As most of you know, I love hotel pools so I was happy to find out that this hotel has a great pool. Water temperature was excellent! The adjoining fitness center is large and offers the best equipment for a good work out. After the work out, I was ready to relax. Promenade Health Club & Spa is the perfect place to unwind and forget all the stress. Guests can use several different saunas and steam rooms. The best part, guests enjoy complimentary access to the large wellness area (900 m²!).  Of course, body treatments are available as well.

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At night, I had dinner at their signature restaurant , Brut International Flavours. From the moment I entered the restaurant, I was impressed by the design and atmosphere… I was alone and didn’t have much time so I ordered a Club Sandwich and I must admit it was one the best I have ever had. Service was top notch! I was treated as royalty!

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The next morning, after a good night’s sleep, it was time for breakfast. The breakfast buffet at Brut International Flavours was of an excellent quality and offers something for everyone. On top of that, the service was very personal and efficient.

Leonardo Royal Hotel Den Haag Promenade is my favorite hotel at The Hague. From the modern rooms with an elegant design, the relaxing pool area to the excellent restaurant and top notch service, Leonardo Royal Hotel Den Haag Promenade is a great choice for your next trip to The Hague! Loved every second of my stay here!

Crowne Plaza Brugge

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Hotelchain: Crowne Plaza
Location: Bruges – Belgium
Classification: 4 star hotel
Official websiteihg.com/…s/nl/nl/brugge/ostbe/hoteldetail

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Located near the beautiful city of Bruges, Crowne Plaza Bruges is a great four star hotel with excellent amenities. This hotel opened its doors a while ago and as you can expect from a Crowne Plaza property, the hotel is luxuriously decorated and offers great facilities which I will tell you more about later. Most parts of the hotel have been renovated in 2015.

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Crowne Plaza Bruges definitely is one of the better options if you are looking for a hotel in Bruges. Whether it is for business or leisure, both travelers will be treated as royalty! The hotel is easily reachable and I loved the fact that while you are in the center of Bruges, it’s not in the busiest part. The hotel is located at the medieval Burg Square near central sights. The famous Belfry – probably the most famous building of Bruges – is only a few steps away. But also the beautiful canals are reachable in just a few minutes. This hotel probably has the best location I have experienced in Bruges. Guests can rent bikes and explore the area. A must do when you are in Bruges!

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Right upon arrival, I was welcomed with a smile and the front desk staff told me everything I needed to know about the hotel and the facilities. I was happy to find out that as soon as I entered, I felt pampered. The interior is totally up to date, cozy chic and I immediately liked the contemporary design of the hotel. The very spacious lobby area is just beautiful.

This Crowne Plaza holds a hidden history below its lobby. It shows very well the amazing remains of a historic church from Bruges ancient past. This is a unique location to host a (wedding) party, seminar, etc.

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Time to talk about rooms. Each room at Crowne Plaza Bruges is comfortably appointed with all the facilities you’d expect of a four star hotel. Our room was beautifully decorated! I appreciated the comfy sitting area and excellent bed! As usual at a Crowne Plaza property, each room here is very spacious and efficiently shaped. I was really impressed with the size of the room. By the way, we couldn’t have asked for a better view!

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Bathroom featured an oversized walk in rain shower and single sink. Crowne Plaza toiletries are provided. They smell amazing!!

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I should definitely mention the large onsite indoor pool which is located on the 8th floor. It is great to have a pool while you are in the center of Bruges! Even as a business traveler, I love to swim after a day full of meetings. Next to the pool is the wellness area where guests can enjoy the sauna or work out in the fitness center with up to date furniture.

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Their restaurant, Plaza Cafe Bruges, offers an international cuisine. I really like the contemporary and modern décor of the restaurant. Each morning, they serve breakfast here too. As I was there during the COVID19 pandemic, breakfast was served in my room which was a delight. I felt like a king 😊 The overall quality of the food was excellent and I loved the smoked salmon and fresh strawberries!

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Crowne Plaza Bruges is a top notch four star hotel. This very comfortable hotel offers a good location, lovely interiors and the most comfortable facilities. Highly recommended to stay here when you are looking for a nice getaway in one of the best spots of Bruges!