Hotel Balanea4.0 out of 5.0
Recent guest reviews
After a few days staying with local friends near Ajaccio, we looked for a couple of nights in a more "touristy" scene, with a dog. Balanea, right on the harbour front in Calvi fitted the bill! Things didn't start too well; having been told that we could drive up to the hotel to drop our bags before parking in a reserved space in a public car park nearby, the hotel had omitted to mention that access to the hotel became a pedestrian only area after midday! After about 20 minutes failing to get access, we abandoned the car and searched for the hotel on foot. After all that was eventually sorted out, and the car was safe in its allocated space, within view of the hotel, all went well. The room on the first floor was spacious, minimally furnished in a rather cheap modern style but had a super balcony with great views right overlooking the water. The bed and the bathroom were fine. There was a "cafeteria" in the hotel for breakfast, but it didn't look too good so we found cafés in the town which were better. Prices were reasonable, so all-in-all the hotel was fine and exactly fulfilled what we wanted.
Stayed here 3 awesome nights! Only 5min walk from train station and you walk to Tourist Info Bureau en route! Upgraded to a great port view gorgeous room upon arrival! Beautiful views of the port and only 10min walk up to Citadelle! Awesome! Very clean and huge room with mini fridge! Bought some wine and snacks and supermarket 2min next door. CAN get very noisy until 1:30am being on top of a central town circle but if you shut the huge french doors, sound isn't too bad. LOVED it here for convenience, pricing, friendly receptionists, and location! Would definitely stay here again!!! :0)
A room at the back of the hotel is noisy due to the cobbled street below and pigeons on the opposite roof - go for a sea view at the front. Rooms are basic but functional with bright colours and odd artistic splashes. Bed was comfy , good linen, hot water not much else to comment on. I was only here one night and it worked for me.
Location is perfect. The room provides the necessary for a night or 2... I recommend asking for the breakfast at the reception level, on the balcony! It was lovely! Had also a 30mn massage "Jambes légères": wonderful
You are paying for the location. The reception & bar area are beautifully decorated if only this continued into the rooms. The 1st room we were in on the 2nd floor had a magnificent view & the bathroom was good however the decor of the bedroom was very tired & dated. We thought that there had been a mix up with our booking & following a discussion we moved to a more expensive room on the 5th floor which is advertised as having a bigger balcony & panoramic views. The balcony was indeed bigger & we could enjoy the sunshine for longer however the view could only be enjoyed whilst standing up & looking over the edge of the VERY dirty balcony. The roller shutter was broken & rattled in the wind. The room was smaller & had the same tired decor. This hotel could so easily be outstanding. We found the staff on the whole to be very friendly & good.
Let me give you a bullet point rating so you can quickly scan for what you are looking for... • Overall Personal Rating: 9 out of 10. Let me qualify that rating by saying that I was not looking for an all-inclusive "American-style" resort but just a clean, well-located hotel for my kids and me as we were out every day. This is more a basic, boutique & European-style hotel. I booked two rooms for myself and children. • Stay duration: July 27-August 3, 2016 • Location: Very good - our first time in Corsica and we decided upon Calvi (which is a great town with excellent beaches and activities). We were in the heart of the old town and right on the port. We rented a car. - The hotel is right on one of the main, quaint streets with plenty of shops and a plethora of restaurants in the old part of the city (population 10,000+ in summer). Great bakery right next door. - The hotel is in a pedestrian area where the street does not permit vehicles to go through after 11:00am. By late afternoon and evening the street is full of tourists. - You are 10 minutes walking from the Citadelle with beautiful sights of the town and 10 minutes or less from all sorts of water activities or the beaches. - There is a little supermarket 30 meters down the street (nearly 100 feet) from the hotel and 15 minutes walking distance to a Super-U hypermarket. • Hotel Allure: The hotel is simple, yet modern, clean with unique with basic room decor and one of the best located hotels if you do NOT want to be right on the beach or in the country-side, but more in the center of what the town has to offer. • Room Appeal: - We stayed in two rooms facing the back (street-side and not port-side), as we booked last minute, plus I wanted to stay within budget. - Room cleanliness: Rooms were very clean from the moment we walked in and every day thereafter. - Decor: The rooms showed no signs of wear, were in good condition and painted with light colors and one or two unique motifs. - Room view: Our room had a view of an old, empty abandoned building across from us overlooking an antique, charming and main street below. The windows in the building across from us were boarded up, but that did not bother us, and actually added a bit of charm. The building across looked at least 200 years old. - Outside noise: The noise from the street was negligent, even at night. When the windows were closed, we heard nothing. I thought the resonance from all the people below at night would be much worse. - Bed comfort: Beds I found were very comfortable as did my kids. Clean, new sheets and pillows. - Room amenities: Almost nothing. Just a small refrigerator, TV, ample outlets, good room lighting, simple closet, coffee table and chair and desk. No luggage racks or chest of drawers. - Bathroom evaluation: Simple bathroom with walk-in shower, one sink, two shelves and one bar-rack. Bathrooms were very clean, well-maintained and bright. No issues with mildew or grime. Only shower drain was slow, but I believe that was due to constant sand from guests running off into drain. Bathrooms could use a cabinet for toiletries. - Room ventilation: A lot of places in Europe do not have air conditioning, but our two rooms had great, effective A/C. We kept our windows at night open as temperatures were cool. No problems with humidity or stuffiness in the room. • Hotel Activities & Amenities: Almost none, except 3rd party spa treatments, outside terrace (small) with drinks offered by front desk with great views of the port and 180 panoramic views of the bay. Staff provided plenty of tips of what to or have outside the hotel. Again, we were NOT looking for 'in-house' activities but wanted to be out most of the day. • Hotel Dining, room service & Inclusive Meals: The hotel only has a small dining area on the 1st floor where only breakfast is served from 7:30 until 10:30 am. It costs 15.00 Euros per day. Up to you if you want that. It is a very basic continental breakfast. Breads, jams, one type of cheese and ham, fruit, yogurts, plus good coffee machine and orange juice/apple juice machine. I will try to post pics. Breakfast room is bright, clean and well-served by one staff member. - I cannot recall if there is room service, but I don't think so. • Staff Service & Amenability: Here is the where the hotel really stood out for me! - Every morning and evening we were greeted by friendly staff. All my questions were thoughtfully and pleasantly answered. Granted, I speak French, in addition to English, but staff spoke both languages well, in addition to other European languages. - A special thanks to Tatiana and Vladimir. They remembered my last name and greeted me such as of the first day, which impressed me. They gave me excellent recommendations of places to visit, eat, etc. with great directions and accurate travel times. They had a great sense of humor, were pleasant and direct, plus they always inquired daily if we needed anything and how are day was. My kids were impressed as well! • Extras & Amenities: Really not many, but that is not what we were looking for. • Final Notes: - Travelling by car? You cannot park in the streets by the hotel, but the hotel does have customer parking 8 minutes away by foot in a secured parking lot in between the port and beaches. They will give you a parking entry badge, and the cost is 12 Euros by day (try to negotiate). Just get very good directions on how to get there. Great little, local diesel train nearby or easy taxi/shuttle service for journeys along the coast or to the airport. - Note that entrance hotel is off the little street in the back, and not portside, even though municipal signage indicates otherwise. - There are plenty of companies along the portside by the hotel that offer boat excursions, scuba diving and other water activities. We went scuba diving with one company that was just in front of the hotel. So you don't have to walk far at all to access these places. - Great hotel if you are just looking for a place to sleep while you enjoy touring, going to the beach, taking advantage of water activities, etc. during the day and fun dining and nightlife afterwards. If you are looking to enjoy a resort-experience, this is NOT the place for you. Anyway, Calvi has so much to offer and take-in, you don't want to stay in a hotel. - Bottom line: Would I stay here again? Absolutely! No real complaints, just a few recommendations I mentioned above.
Years ago when I first visited Calvi I promised myself I'd one day stay at the Balanea. Eventually I made it ... but I left a little underwhelmed. The huge plus is of course the great location. We 'splashed out' on a room with a balcony overlooking the harbour and it was wonderful to sit out and admire the view (although there was no privacy from the neighbouring balcony, which was a shame). Communal areas are clean and serviceable and in fairness the staff were friendly enough, though rarely exceptional. Wifi was a pain, requiring repeated log-ins when left unused for even a few minutes, and inevitably we paid for the central location of the hotel with accompanying street noise til the early hours. The rooms themselves were quite bizarre, however - strange, brightly coloured walls and flying angels stencilled on the ceiling! We wondered why someone hadn't just taken a pot of chalk emulsion to the whole lot and tidied it all up. We didn't have breakfast at the hotel as it sits opposite the most wonderful delicatessen, so we can't substantiate previous reviews in that regard. All in all, a slightly disappointing experience having waited in anticipation for years - we were left thinking that it could be so much more, given it's prime location in the heart of the action.
The rooms are simple qnd small, but very comfortable, even when the ocean winds are blustery and most of the tourists have fled with the approach of winter. The decor is bright and hip, and the breakfasts satisfying. The staff are warm and welcoming? giving not only restaurant tips but also hiking guidance.
Great large room but, as with so many French hotels, hardly any lighting! Do they think guests don't like to read? This hotel parades as a four star but I'd give it two. Breakfast is terrible with inedible croissants, industrial cheese and meat whereas Corsica has amazing goat and ewe cheese and charcuterie to die for. The service is zilch. We had rain come into the bathroom from a storm and the reception could not have cared less. I asked for a pot of hot water for tea as there is no kettle in the room and the receptionist was so shocked that he returned 20 minutes later clearly not having found how to boil water and with a pot of tepid tap water. This is all facade and no management. The bathroom has an enlarging mirror- great- til you realise that there is no light nearby so it is useless. There are lots of features like this. Promise and no satisfaction.
Travelling with picky teenagers and a dog is never a picnic (well, strike out "and a dog") - it is not easy to please everyone - but we managed to do so at Balanea. Excellent location, very central, with magnificent views from our sea-suite terrace. In fact, it has the best views in the whole town: from sunrise to moonrise the views are stunning. We reserved the parking, which is a mere 5 min walk from the hotel; however, if you're worried about tagging your luggage, hotel has a little "golf cart", which will take you and your bags across the pedestrian area to the entrance of the hotel. The staff is very accommodating and helpful. The rooms were clean and comfortable. Wonderful restaurants and cafes are only steps away. The beach is only 10 min walk away. Scuba diving and boat hire can be easily arranged. Both check in and check out were effortless. The internet is slow-ish, but I could say the same about the whole country! And anyway, you don't come to Calvi for your internet experience...
- Free WiFi in rooms and public areas
- 24-hour front desk
Hotel Balanea places you next to Ste-Marie-Majeure Church and within a 10-minute walk of Citadelle de Calvi. This 38-room, 4-star hotel welcomes guests with conveniences like free in-room WiFi and a 24-hour front desk. Calvi Harbor and Calvi Cathedral are a short walk away.
For your convenience, a buffet breakfast is served for a fee each morning from 7:30 AM to 10:30 AM.
All 38 soundproofed rooms provide phones. Guests can enjoy TVs and stay connected with free WiFi. Hair dryers are also available.
Guests of Hotel Balanea enjoy features like free WiFi in public areas. The front desk is staffed 24 hours a day to help with tours/tickets and securing valuables.
Reviews from Trip Advisor
38% of guests recommend this hotelTotal of 108 reviews