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Category Archives: Western Europe Accommodation Reviews

  • 11

Blue Lagoon Clinic

Blue Lagoon Clinic

240 Grindavík, Iceland

WEBSITE

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There a very few places that are more quintessentially Iceland than the Blue Lagoon. What a way for us to end our time in Iceland, but definitely wish we had longer.  From the moment we checked in it really felt like we were at an exclusive luxurious hotel.

If you want the crowds you can move to the main Blue Lagoon after 5 pm using your complimentary free pass, but we opted for the peacefulness and exclusiveness of this pool. They provide you with flip flops, bathrobes and floating rings.  It was a truly magical and unique experience, where else can you treat yourself to a white silica mud mask?  The only word we could use to describe this experience – surreal.

Whilst this hotel may seem isolated, it is the perfect way to end your vacation in Iceland given its amenities and proximity to the airport.

ROOM: 

All rooms offer a glazed wall and with an external door for you to take in the views.  The shower room was amazing, from all of the hotels we have stayed in, this room was by far the largest and best designed.  Every bit of furnishing used in the room was a perfect fit and with only 35 rooms on offer, this really was the exclusive stay we wanted.

STAFF:

The staff were friendly and accommodating.  The entire place has a very peaceful spa feel and the calmness of the staff reflects that also.

FOOD and DRINK:

The Clinic offers a beautiful surrounding of moss covered rocks with its own private geothermal pool for guests only.  While there is no bar at the pool, they do have people on standby ready to take your drinks order. Unfortunately, there is no restaurant here so you will need to make your way to the Lava restaurant (reservations only) down the path at the main Blue Lagoon.  Breakfast (continental only) was traditional and lovely, with plenty of cold cuts of meat, cheese, skyr yoghurt, salmon, wholegrain bread, fruit salad and unlimited flavoured water, tea and coffee.

Our review is based on our stay March 2016.

STAR RATING: 

Accommodation Star FullAccommodation Star FullAccommodation Star FullAccommodation Star Full Accommodation Star Full

FRIENDLY GLOBES REVIEW RATING:

Accommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe Full Accommodation Globe Full

 

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  • 15

ION Luxury Adventure Hotel

Read our Travel Diary for more adventures

ION Luxury Adventure Hotel

Nesjavellir vid Thingvallavatn
801 Selfoss
Iceland

WEBSITE

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ION Luxury Adventure Hotel is a member of the Design Hotels group and fits well with the rest of their portfolio. It is undoubtedly fashionable and trendy. The largest draw card being the remoteness and viewing of the northern lights. Unfortunately the weather was not favourable and and the stunning vistas promised eluded us.

Hotel is a 40min drive from Reykjavík, it sits on the side of a small valley encircled by nature.  It is a real gem waiting to be discovered.

Walking in, the reception is big and the styling is in keeping with the amazing exterior with an abundant use of recycled and repurposed materials.  The property offers unrestricted and spectacular views and has won awards for the Scandinavian design.  The room is not the largest, but everything about it speaks quality. 

The Geothermal pool was amazing, sitting neatly amongst the angled building columns, again offering great views and incredibly relaxing.  It is not the biggest, but the hotel is boutique after all and, let’s be honest, small means less people which means more Lux.  
We could not recommend this hotel more highly, add it to your list!  The Ion Hotel really is an experience in itself, coupled with a level of service that was brilliant, providing just what you want from a hotel.

ROOM: 

The bed was king size, very comfortable and as an added bonus there was a Coffee machine in the room, they even provided a Mini iPad.  There was no bath, which was fine with us, and it was not a large bathroom but plenty of room to do what you need to do.  Toiletries provided were Organic.. The ever present smell of sulphur permeates everything, but it is Iceland after all. The view from the rooms fits very well with the Iceland aesthetic. Rolling boulders covered in moss and lichen almost seems otherworldly and had us looking for the mythical Icelandic gnomes and trolls. But honestly WiFi was the last thing on our mind we were much happier to lose ourselves in the natural landscape.

STAFF:

Unfortunately there are mixed reviews online regarding the friendliness of the staff. We are happy to say we found them very accommodating and friendly.

FOOD and DRINK:

With a dramatic view of Lake Thingvallavatn (Þingvallavatn) and the surrounding mountains the Northern Lights Bar is the perfect start to an evening.  The design is quite modern with a chic twist.  Books are on offer for those that like to read and guitars for those talented enough to strum and impress.  Cocktails were lovely and the Northern Lights Bar offered the perfect ambience and it really just set our night up.

Silfra has a reputation for good cuisine and good service. It certainly lived up to it for us. The Chef specializes in the slow food movement. Meaning all the recipes on the menu are designed around locally sourced produce and flavour profiles. The dinner we had there did not disappoint any of us, yes it was on the expensive side, but when you are literally in the middle of nowhere and in Iceland, you have to expect it. We had the 4 course menu and not one complaint from any of us whatsoever. The service was spot on with efficient and polite staff who had great knowledge of the menu and wine list.

A beautiful large breakfast buffet which satisfied us, even though there are no cooked options.

Our review is based on our stay March 2016.

STAR RATING: 

Accommodation Star FullAccommodation Star FullAccommodation Star FullAccommodation Star Full Accommodation Star Full

FRIENDLY GLOBES REVIEW RATING:

Accommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe Full Accommodation Globe Full

Read our Travel Diary for more adventures


  • 0

Grand Hótel Reykjavík 

Read more about Iceland in our travel diary

Grand Hótel Reykjavík 

SIGTÚN 38, 105 REYKJAVÍK, ICELAND

WEBSITE

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We spent two nights at this hotel and having arrived around midnight, after a long international transit, it was delightful to see the hotel staff were helpful and our rooms were clean. The beds were extra comfy and the buffet breakfast was extensive with options for organic. As you walk into the hotel you are greeted by a vast and beautiful atrium, complete with a bar and lounge area with comfortable seating. Free Wi-Fi through the hotel.

It is only approx. a 20-minute walk to downtown Reykjavík, so take a walk along the waters edge for a scenic route and this will take you past the Sun Voyager.  For those that choose not to walk the hotel does offer a one-way shuttle 3 times a day to downtown.

We would be confident in recommending this hotel to anyone and we would happily stay here again when we revisit Iceland.

ROOM:  

The rooms are large and well appointed fitting with its four star rating.  We really liked the hardwood flooring and leather sofas. The rooms where clean and even passed the hidden dust spots test. It did get a little warm in the room overnight, but we opened the windows and the fresh Arctic air solved that problem. With options for atrium or “a view” our choices made little difference in the quality. We suggest the real “view” is achieved by walking out the front door and seeing Reykjavik.

STAFF:  

The staff were very friendly and very fluent in english.

FOOD and DRINK: 

Aside from a few drinks at the bar and buffet breakfast we did not partake in much of the hotels food and beverage services.

The bar had a good standard selection with some local brew options and of course Brennivin.

The Breakfast Buffet had a great selection of hot and cold standard options. Including the customary Icelandic Skyr. For the meat incline the blood sausage nuggets were very tasty.

Our review is based on our stay March 2016.

STAR RATING (tourism industry score):

Accommodation Star FullAccommodation Star FullAccommodation Star FullAccommodation Star Full

FRIENDLY GLOBES REVIEW RATING (our score):

Accommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe FullAccommodation Globe Full

Read more about Iceland in our travel diary


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