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Hotel near rail station in Lugano or Locarno?


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CabinJon
CabinJon
175 posts
active member
Aug 29, 2021 - 12:44 PM

Any recommendations from recent travelers regarding hotels in either Lugano or Locarno? We are planning to spend a day or two in the Ticino region during our upcoming two-week trip in October. We will be using the STP, so we'd prefer something fairly close to the train station. I looked at the hotel list on this site, but would like some first hand information from folks who have been there recently. Any hotel you really liked or didn't like? Preference for one town over the other?

Annika
Annika
6678 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 29, 2021 - 1:30 PM in reply to CabinJon

Hi CabinJon!

That's a tough question. Frankly I like both towns a lot :-). Both are located along beautiful lakes, have a mediterranean atmosphere and they're only half an hour apart by train. So you can't go wrong with either. Having said that:

  • Locarno is a bit smaller and has access to some beautiful side valleys such as the Verzasca valley and the Maggio valley. The lake, with gems like Ascona, Brissago and the Brissago Islands, is lovely. I stayed in Locarno myself and I loved this apartment, very close to the rail station and with magnificent lake views: Residenza Vivian. If you prefer a hotel, consider the Hotel Garni Muralto, only minutes on foot from the railway station.
  • Lugano is a bit larger and I feel it's more upper-class and mundane. You'll have direct access to several mountain tops with great views. For their very central locations I'd recommend the Contintental Parkhotel (overlooking the lake) or Hotel Federale.
Last modified on Aug 29, 2021 - 5:16 PM by Annika
CabinJon
CabinJon
175 posts
active member
Aug 29, 2021 - 5:23 PM

Thanks, Annika! I especially like your "more upper-class and mundane" comment; that made me laugh. I assume the Residenza Vivian is a weekly only rental, and we are only going to be in Lugano/Locarno for one or two nights, so I think a hotel is best.

I'll do a bit more research, and look forward to any other opinions on preferences.

Xpresso
Xpresso
91 posts
active member
Aug 29, 2021 - 6:42 PM

We were in Locarno last month and stayed at Ibis Locarno. It’s a short walk from the train station and is also just a block or so from the lake and promenade. It was a nice basic hotel (so much cheaper than anywhere else in fact) but very clean with a delicious cappuccino if you have them make it for you (you can pay for the buffet or just get a croissant and coffee/cappuccino which is what we did). The hotel is also a short walk from Piazza Grande and near the bus stop to Ascona. We loved Ascona and was a short bus ride away. There were a few markets when we arrived and the shops in the alleyways were so fun. Next time we might stay in Ascona but Ibis was a convenient place to drop our backpacks before going over to Ascona. And a boat trip to Brissago Island gardens from Ascona can’t be missed. It’s cool for adults and also for kids with all the built in hideouts in the tropical gardens. And a day trip by bus to Valle Verzasca (to the town of Lavertezzo) was fantastic too. Hope that helps!

CabinJon
CabinJon
175 posts
active member
Aug 29, 2021 - 9:46 PM

Thank you Xpresso! That's why I love this site, first hand information and tips. Planning research can be boring at times but part of the fun.

Rels
Rels
138 posts
active member
Aug 29, 2021 - 10:52 PM in reply to CabinJon

Hi there,

The link to the trip report of the Lugano and Locarno part of our travels in 2019 has where we stayed. Both were lovely.

www.myswissalps.com/forum/topic/trip-report-day-8-14-poschiavo-lugano-in-may

Happy planning,

Narelle

CabinJon
CabinJon
175 posts
active member
Aug 30, 2021 - 12:49 AM

Thanks, Narelle. I appreciate the information and the trip report was nice too.

Rels
Rels
138 posts
active member
Aug 30, 2021 - 1:52 AM in reply to CabinJon

No worries, hope it helped. Looking forward to when our borders open up here in fortress Australia and we can travel again! Back in lockdown again at the moment 😔 and can’t even enter some states in our own country! Anyway, best wishes for a great trip, and do some yodelling for me 😄

spaulus69
spaulus69
111 posts
active member
Aug 30, 2021 - 2:10 PM

CabinJon,

In Lugano, I agree with Annika on Contintental Parkhotel is the winner.

Lugano basically has 2 levels, the train station is on the upper level and you can take the funicular (or stairs) down to the lower level where most of the shops and restaurants are located.

It is very convenient when you are pulling a suitcase. Follow the signs at the train station to platform 4, turn left (south) and walk to the end of the platform. You should see the Contintental Parkhotel across the parking lot from the end of the platform.

It is a very nice hotel that has been taken care of over the years.

I have also stayed at the Hotel Splendide Royal Lugano, it too is very nice but pretty much need a taxi to get to and from the train station.

Hope this helps.

Steve

CabinJon
CabinJon
175 posts
active member
Aug 30, 2021 - 2:39 PM in reply to spaulus69

Thanks, Steve. We've never been to Lugano, so every bit of first hand information is helpful.

spaulus69
spaulus69
111 posts
active member
Aug 30, 2021 - 2:50 PM in reply to CabinJon

You are very welcome.

During the beginning of this pandemic I went thru my photos and video clips and put together videos of my different trips thru Europe.

I think I made about 6 trips in the last 4 or 5 years, probably most of my time was spent in Switzerland but did manage to get some other countries in also.

I enjoy riding the trains throughout the region, I put most of my videos on rumble.

Here is a link to my channel, maybe you will find something useful in there.

rumble.com/c/European_Travels

Steve

spaulus69
spaulus69
111 posts
active member
Aug 30, 2021 - 2:54 PM in reply to spaulus69

CabinJon

Here is a video I did showing the Continental Parkhotel and you can see the train station in some of the pictures.

rumble.com/vcw4kp-switzerland-day-6.html

Steve

Janice3401
Janice3401
14 posts
new member
Aug 30, 2021 - 4:59 PM in reply to CabinJon

I stayed at the Continental Parkhotel in early August for 3 nights. As others have noted, this is a very nice, "old-world"-type hotel with great views of the lake; It also has a very good, open-air restaurant that you reach after a short walk through a beautiful, overgrown garden. I had a room on the top floor, facing the lake (and the train station), offering a splendid view of the lake. (I also love the walk from the train station to the city center, on multiple flights of stairs through beautiful streets and passing a lovely church which you'll have the option to do if you stay near the train station.) The major downside to this hotel is that you can hear the trains if you have a lake-view room, even from a high floor. My room was in the main building; there is a second building, perpendicular to the main one that is even closer to the tracks--I would not recommend a room in this building if you are sensitive to noise.

Another option for a hotel that is very convenient to the train station (maybe even more convenient than the Continental Parkhotel) is the Luganodante which is in the city center (no lake views). You take the funicular (located at the city end of the train station) to the city center--this hotel is right at the exit of the funicular, so there is no walk at all to this hotel from the train station. The funicular runs very frequently and takes about a minute or two to reach the city center. I stayed at this hotel 4 years ago and it has been renovated since then. Although it is in the city center, it was not noisy at all (I wanted to stay there this year but it was completely booked).

Janice

Danielsan
Danielsan
209 posts
active member
Aug 31, 2021 - 4:16 AM in reply to CabinJon

Hi CabinJon,

I haven't been to Locarno, but I did spend a night in Lugano at the aforementioned Continental Parkhotel and echo the opinions of everyone above. Very professional, old style European building set on magnificent grounds. Phenomenal restaurant for dinner and breakfast. (One of the best caesar salads I have ever had was there). And the best part is that its at the foot of the rail station at the end of the parking lot (south). I looked into several hotels while planning and was very happy with this based at first, on the locale, and just the overall experience of staying there. My room was on the north end of the building in the rear, so my view was of the rail station and half of Lugano. Great stay. Enjoy your trip.

Danielsan

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