Hotel Excelsior Dubrovnik – Croatia
We love this hotel for its incredible location and stunning views of the historic city
When you walk into the lobby of the Excelsior, you’re met by walls of photographs of previous guests. Queen Elizabeth and Elizabeth Taylor being just two of them. And you very soon understand the attraction of this grand hotel. We were captivated by its hillside position looking out over the sea towards the islet of Lokrum and proximity to the city walls of Dubrovnik – a mere five minute walk. And we succumbed very quickly to the effortless and slick service. The original early 20th century Villa Odak was given a contemporary addition of the Tower nearly a hundred years later, and the juxtaposing architecture is remarkably striking. Minimalist interiors are a mix of chic modern and retro design, but you can’t help being lured outside onto the wide terraces to soak up the view (and a drink). And nothing prepares you for the setting of Prora restaurant – one for romantics! We love the wide terraces for soaking up the sun and sipping on their cocktails whilst the rocky beach below is perfect for swimming.
Spread across Villa Odak and the Tower, the rooms and suites are all exquisitely furnished with sumptuous pillows and duvets, sophisticated grey stone bathrooms and apart from the Classic and Superior Rooms, they all have balconies or terraces overlooking the sea. The Villa rooms and suites have painted wood panelling and beautiful fabrics, whilst those in the Tower are sleek with splashes of bright colours. The Villa and Tower Classic Rooms are very spacious and can be made into twins, whilst the similar sized Villa and Tower Superior Rooms only have a partial view of the sea and no balcony. The Tower Deluxe Rooms come with a balcony and their sister Villa Deluxe Rooms feature a terrace – we are fans of these rooms where you can see the sea from your bed. The Villa Odak Suites are quite possibly our favourite, with all the glamour and style of times gone by. They have a huge master bedroom, marble bathrooms and large balconies. All the remaining suites are found in the Tower. The Junior Suites, with their separate living area are beautifully spacious. You can see the Old Town from your bath in the Excelsior Signature Suite, and these can be connected to a room next door to make a two-bedroom suite. And the same applies for the slightly larger Executive Suites. Original artwork adorns the Deluxe Suite and floor to ceiling windows make this light filled space a stunning escape from it all haven (and it has two bathrooms). We dream of the Presidential Suite – with its top floor position. The views from here don’t get much better, and with two bedrooms and bathrooms, an enormous living area, we think you will too.
Dining at the Excelsior is a heady mix of romance and incredible flavours. The hotel’s native born chef gives traditional Croatian and Mediterranean dishes a modern touch in the hotel’s signature restaurants. Sensus is a sophisticated floor to ceiling windowed room looking out over Dubrovnik, where tasting menus using fresh and local produce from the sea and the chef’s garden are paired with regional wines. Prora beach restaurant sits under cool sandstone arches looking out across the Adriatic and tempts you for long lingering lunches and dinners listening to the waves. Head for breakfast at Salin, once again with a sea view terrace, where the buffet selection is exceptional.
The Excelsior is perfect for a romantic trip for two as well as a family break. The beach is ideal for children and there are plenty of interconnecting room options.
A treatment that looks too good to miss is the “After Plane Spa Comfort” – we can think of nothing better. The Spa at the Excelsior is vast and very relaxing, with a huge indoor pool, several whirlpools, Turkish and Roman baths and a Finnish sauna – truly international! Here you’ll find a team of therapists and beauticians with a huge repetoire of treatments at their fingertips. There is also a hair salon.
Hotel Type: Lavish and atmospheric 5* hotel.
Location: Prestigious location overlooking Dubrovnik Old Town and the Adriatic. Dubrovnik airport is a half-hour drive away.
Style: Revamped historic 1913 royal villa combined with an impeccably designed modern tower.
Rooms: 158 sophisticatedly furnished, spacious, rooms and suites.
Ideal For: Those wanting a slice of luxury whilst exploring the famous UNESCO Old City of Dubrovnik.
Swimming: Indoor swimming pool and direct access to the hotels rocky beach with beach terrace.
Dining: Three elegant restaurants.
Activities: Explore Dubrovnik, take a day trip to the neighbouring islands, swim in the sea, relax in the spa.
Spa: Elegant spa, 2 Jacuzzis, Steam bath, Roman Bath, Finish Sauna, Fitness studio, and plenty of treatments on offer.
Price From: €166 for a classic double room B&B.
F&P Must Do: Go for a sunset drink in the hotels Abakus Piano Bar and admire the gorgeous sea view.