Hotel des Balances
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... and weird organ music playing. We then paid the 4 Fr. to climb up the narrow stone stairs and steep wooden platforms up the tower. From there, we could see most of Zurich, the Limmat River, and Lake Zurich. The water combined with other church steeples, blue sky and the quaint buildings was quite picturesque.
After our two giant stair climbs, we decided to get a Doner for lunch at the place recommended to us by Thorben, ...
... a restaurant situated on the side of the ski slope where people who would be skiing for the day could stop in and have a coffee or something to eat. Once again the hospitality and food was immaculate. Mushroom soup with a pastry top was probably the stand out which Tom ordered for entree, followed meat and more Rosti for me, mouth watering. I dd however have to refuse Petra's offer of a wine as my head was already spinning due to the altitude ...
... the trains that were due to arrive soon. When our train actually showed up on the board at 10:47, it didn’t say that it was going to stop at the stop we needed to go to (Basel) to transfer to Lucerne. We went up to the track anyway and got on, hoping for the best. Luckily, that went out way and we were on the right train. We went to get some breakfast at the dining car on the train, only to find out that it was full. We waited for the cart where we got coffee. ...
... restaurant kitchen was closing and they could only serve drinks. Defeated we decided to settle for just any desert and found ourselves again at the river front restaurants. This time the restaurants were closing - no after 5-6 restaurants we found one who would serve us ... We demolished it as soon as it got to the table :) What a night ... we bid farewell to our new friends as they make their way to Germany and us to ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel des Balances Lucerne
Lovely hotel in lovely place
We were only in Lucerne one night, but we loved our time there. Des Balances was one of the best hotels we have stayed in in recent years. Very friendly, knowledgeable staff. Lovely, comfortable, spacious, well decorated room. Clean hotel. Fantastic bar, and wonderful food and wine with a great view. Would recommend hotel particularly to couples and would recommend restaurant to anyone who likes their food.
I stayed at the hotel des balances in Lucerne for 3 nights, over New Year 2003/2004. The rooms were beautiful and heating perfect (major concern from us coming from summer in Australia to subzero temperatures in Switzerland). We had a room overlooking the street in front of the hotel and loved it, you could stare down and people watch for hours! Also loved the huge white umbrellas they provide for if it's snowing - some of the best photos of our European trip are of us walking though Lucerne with these. The windows in our room opened up (rare for Melbourne hotels but not sure about other countries) which was great as I was able to reach out and feel the snow when it started on new years eve.
I stayed at the des Balances because of reading the reviews on this website and wasn't disappointed. This is a really nice hotel right on the river and walking distance to everything including the train station. I had a problem with my first room in that a car alarm was going on and off all night, or something that sounded like that. It kept me awake and I asked at the reception desk if anyone had heard it. They apologized and gave me another room overlooking the river at the same price. I don't think the restaurant is open for dinner yet, but you can have sandwiches in the bar area, which is a nice place to just sit and relax . . . more like a living room than a bar. The staff were really quite nice and helpful. The rooms were actually a nice size and bathroom was large also. I would definately recommend this hotel to anyone going to Lucerne. I booked it right thru Best Western and got a really good price on top of everything else that was great about the hotel.
Trust other reviews
I felt compelled to try the Hotel Des Balances for our weekend in Lucerne after reading the gushing reviews on this site, I am happy to say we were not disappointed.
The hotel is beautifully situated in the heart of Luzern (Lucerne) old town and has excellent views of the mountains and historical sights. The standard of decor throughout the hotel was very good, with an impressive lobby, comfortably equipped rooms and intimate bar/restaurant. The staff were very friendly and the service in the restaurant was good, by Swiss standards! We were also impressed by little touches such as a welcome drink offered on check in and the advice offered on sightseeing trips by the front desk (Pilatus is a great, if expensive, day trip).
The only negatives, which prohibit me giving 5 stars, are that the room was not air conditioned and got quite hot during the night, I can imagine this would be a problem in the middle of summer also the hotel has no parking, due to its location, which leaves you at the mercy of the zealous Swiss parking wardens.
Best hotel in Europe period!
Just got back from a European honeymoon. Stayed in Lucerne during the beginning of October (perfect season...cool fall whether and low tourist count). i found the hotel des balances after researching on trip advisor for 2 weeks. Let me tell you this much: not only was Lucerne the coolest place we visited on our entire european trip (including London, Paris, Venice and Munich) but the hotel des blances was BY FAR the most amazing hotel we stayed at the whole time. We paid for the cheapest room we could get, just to get in the hotel after reading these reviews before hand. The best part is that when we got there they offered to upgrade us to a river view room for free! We ended up getting a $400 room for $200. The rooms were huge and had beautiful hard wood floors and insane bathrooms with every ammenity you could imagine. This hotel is a legit 5 star in American hotel standards. The view over the river with the bridge, church and Alps in the background was beyond breath taking....sureal. To say that the hotel was in the best possible location would be an understatment, you understand this when you get there:) The town of Lucerne was so awesome. It was nice to finally take a break from the hustle and bustle of London and Paris and just relax in a nice small local village in the mountains. The funny thing though is that the shopping just outside this hotel was literally 100x more impressive than Paris and London combined! I could go on and on about this hotel and city, but it would turn this review into a novel. I can say this much however: You will not regret staying at Hotel Des Balances.
Best hotel we stayed at on the whole trip to Switzerland!
This is a MUST stay. As earlier reviewers mentioned, get a river view room. SPECTACULAR! Look out your window to the beautiful river with white swans swimming by and walk out the back to charming winding streets full of wonderful boutiques. The breakfasts are above wonderful with quality meats, cheeses, breads, and even champagne! Don't miss out on this find.
Loved it great location
the location is great ,walking distance from the train station and centrally located . we enjoyed the breakfast ,you can sit outside by the water and watch the swans while you eat. the only drawback was that our rooms faced the street and it was quite noisy for we had to have our windows open , although they had provide a fan .it did not bother us but if someone wants quite it would be a problem.
Get a room with a river view
Great find right on the river in Luzern. We had a balcony overlooking the river and it was magnificant. Rooms are spacious and comfortable. Breakfast in the morning is very good.
Wonderful and charming hotel
We have stayed at the Hotel Des Balances twice, in August, 2000, and August, 2004. We had a wonderful room with a view of the river and a small balcony for two. The rooms are very comfortable and we were welcomed with a basket of fruit and chocolate. The staff is very helpful and eager to please. The breakfast is good and offers a variety of foods from which to choose. The hotel is conveniently located to many good restaurants and shops. We would definitely stay there a third time!!!
What a wonderful view!
This hotel is in the perfect location for exploring the city. It is located on the river with spectacular view. We had a room on the top floor with a large walk out balcony (really part of the roof). We could see the lake, the chapel bridge and the Jesuit church directly across the river with the mountains in the backround. The hotel staff was wonderful and the restaurant was terrific. Dinner was so good the first night that we wished we had eaten there the second night.