Fairmont Le Montreux Palace
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Historical Traveler Reviews Fairmont Le Montreux Palace
5 Stars and worth every one
We stayed for 4 nights at the Montreux Palace as part of a business conference, and found the place utterly amazing.
We arrived at around midnight and were shown to our suite which had the usual continental-style double bed (two singles pushed together) with a separate sitting and work area. The room was very generous in size, and matched by the bathroom with separate shower and separate toilet/bidet, all spotless and relatively new. There is an absence of the usual gloomy paintings, but instead there are small cabinets with a few objets d'art. But in the morning when we opened the curtains - WOW! Our large balcony looked straight across Lake Leman to the French mountains on the other side, and we were able to watch boats and paddle steamers, as well as the inevitable water skiiers. The room service was faultless and discrete, and the food of the highest order.
The public rooms are no less stunning in appearance, with rich furnishings and ornate plaster-work. The Brasserie is part of the reception area, along with the Rose d'Or cocktail bar, but the jumping place has to be Harry's Bar, a re-creation of the New York original, and full each night we were there. The superb leisure and fitness suites are across the main road, but going via the lower floor of the reception area you would never know, as the room extends underneath the road and feels like just another part of the hotel.
The Montreux Palace is not a hotel to be done on a budget, but for sheer opulence and enjoyment of the good life, it will take some beating
Not a compelling property
I site-checked the place but decided not to stay there. I thought it looked a bit cold and boring. A mix of British and Asian fusion somewhat out of place with its French-Swiss surroundings. Bathrooms are good with separate standing showers, a nice amenity in this region with showers in bathtubs. Unless you get a junior suite, the rooms are small and no way worth the price. Spa looked pretty nice. No real grounds on the property (the promotional literature is misleading because the gardens you see are across the street from the hotel rooms and not really part of the property) and I must tell you that Montreux just seems like a sleepy town, worth lunch but not a weekend. I ultimately stayed in the Kempinski Le Mirador up the road a bit and reviewed on this site.
This hotel is absolutely magnificent, everything looks new, spotless, and the rooms are very well appointed. The service is first rate right from the reception desk to the nightly turndown service that includes a chocolate on your pillow. Many thoughtful touches were incorporated into the room, including a heated towel rack, one push button to automatically close the window blinds, and an automated awning in the balcony that provides shade. This is the most gorgeous hotel in Montreux, right across the street outside of the hotel front entrance you can take in a closeup view of the beautiful mountains and Lake Leman. In addition, it is within walking distance to the train station. An amazing and perfect place to stay. I highly recommend this as a relaxing and quiet retreat in Montreux.
Heaven on Earth
Attended a sales incentive trip at the Palace in early June 2005. I went into this trip with low expectations based on what I read here and from other travel web sites. It was a pleasant surprise to see that what a pleasure this town and hotel really were.
Rooms in the hotel do vary greatly by size and view. My wife and I stayed in room 215. It was nothing short of 700 square feet with a king size bed, sitting area with sofa, love seat and coffee table, desk and armoir with mini bar and safe. The view was direclty over the hotels lawn across the street with the lake and mountains in the background. You could actually lay in bed and enjoy the splendid lake views.
The hotel staff, from concerige team, to housekeeping to bartenders to meal servers, could not have been more accommodating. Not one time in 5 days did anyone say "No" to any reqeust that was made.
The pool and public spa area were very well maintained. The spa facilities and treatments were also above average.
Location of the hotel is walking distance to just about anything on Montreux. I am shocked that someone could not find a way to spend a week in the georgous city. Chillon castle is an afternoon and only 20 minute walk. We chartered a boat for the day and had lunch in Evian France, swam in front of Sophia Lauren's home and cruised the coast of the lake for the remainder of the day. Being in the heart of wine country you can hike or train to the vineyards and do private tastings with the wine makers. You can take an old paddlewheel boat to nearby Lausanne and Vevey for lake side shopping, dining or sightseeing. You can visit the Olympic Musuem - the only one in the world. The things to do are endless!
Montreux and this hotel are nothing short of spectacular. The accommodations and staff were outstanding and I highly reccomend this hotel to anyone considering a visit to this area. As a footnote, this hotel is not for the budget minded traveler. There is nothing inexpensive about the hotel, drinks, food or entertainment in the area.
The nicest hotel in Montreux!
I found Le Montreux Palace to be one of the nicest hotels of my 2002 trip to Europe. My room was quite large, had every facility I could want, was spotless and the staff were uniformly nice. It was a quick walk to the train station and business district, and across the street from Lake Geneva and its promenade. Food service at the lakeside BBQ was fine (not exceptional) and the cafe was likewise reasonable. Montreux, on the other hand, was rather boring. It does make a decent base for exploring the area, though, and with the train (and a rental car for a couple of days) it was easy to get to Gruyere, Broc (forget Bruges--the Nestle-Cailler factory tour with unlimited high-end chocolate tasting is not beatable), Lausanne (if people, gift shops and traffic are your thing), and, with connections, to Zurich and Geneva (for higher-end shopping). The really nice part of the experience was the cooler weather, quiet, and peace after 2 weeks of Italy in June. After a few days it's possible to hit Paris and London without wanting to collapse. For activity and scenery in Switzerland I'd hit the Alps. For a break from a hectic vacation, some down time to renew and go low-key, Montreux works beautifully, and Le Montreux Palace is the best place to stay while you're there.
Could be better
I spent 9 nights here recently, working with an American group. Views from the front/lake facing rooms and suites are lovely, but if you stay in the rear be prepared for trains passing by through the day and night; noisy construction work on the building behind and no view! Air-conditioning seems to be a problem in some areas. Although there is a garden area opposite the hotel, it has no seating area and is simply a means of hiding the Spa beneath! This is not a hotel for lounging in during the day or evening - it isn't possible to get a cup of coffee or beer without going to the Brasserie (open at 11.00) or Harry's Bar, separate entrance - unless the Terrasse happens to be open - summer only. Housekeeping is inefficient and rooms were not cleaned until, sometimes, 3.30pm in the afternoon. Concierge is fairly surprisingly weak for a Raffles hotel. Montreux has been ruined with tourist shops and cafes - get on the train or a boat on the lake!
Spent three nights here in October 2002. My first room was on the fourth or fifth floor overlooking the lake. I thought the room was somewhat dated in decor and the bathroom grungy so I asked to see what else was available. The other rooms either were less attractive or lacked my view, so I opted for my original room (bathroom grunge and all). Excellent service (in showing me other rooms, etc.) and a good experience in the restaurant "Jaan" (I had the ten course tasting menu -- over the top -- I met the chef). Overall, I agree with other posters about the limit of things Montreux has to offer -- you can, however, catch the train to Gstaad for the day.
Having spent four nights in a jr suite here in August 2003, here's the lowdown: It's grand; the rooms are luxurious and as comfortable as you'd expect. It is also biiig and institutional-feeling. It's not a place where you'll feel like spending time anywhere but in your room (definately go for the lakeview variety). Unless you like the institutional feel, that is;) The restaurants: the flagship, Kwan, or whatever it was called was a disappointment; the promised fusion-cuisine seemed more like what a beginner french chef would create if presented with a half-prepared asian meal. If you're used to fusion as in London or San Francisco, you'll be shocked. Also, the elevator music will really get on your nerves. The Brasserie downstairs offers much better ambiance and I think the food is better prepared as well. The outdoor terrace is a nice place to dine under the stars, but it's basic BBQ-fare. The Amrita spa, however, is EXCELLENT - one of the finest such facilities I've ever seen. Also, in case it matters to you, the hotel tends to have a large share of long term mideast residents who set up camp over the summer. I found this a fun angle but I could see how someone might have a problem with filpino nannies chasing unruly kids in the hallways (they seem to get tossed out when they get unruly, neighbours be d***ed). I'd consider this hotel as a place to spend a few nights recovering from jetlag en route to other places in Europe. People spending their whole vacation here may be disappointed (also Montreux is a pretty small place, you'll "do" it in half a day.
TripAdvisor Reviews Fairmont Le Montreux Palace
Travel Blogs from Montreux
We spent only 5 days in Switzerland (it ain't cheap!), and I loved it there. The country itself had overall a genuinely warm, kind vibe.
We stayed in the French-speaking region of the country, in a city called Lausanne, which is on the opposite side of the Lake from Geneva, and has apparently been called "the San Francisco of Switzerland."
The lake is called Lac Leman in Switzerland, ...
... In the picture we took in the aging cellar, you can see the robot at the far end of the rows of cheese, the little yellow light showing that it's in action.
We took a drive through the countryside to the town of Fribourg, walked around there a bit and returned to our B&B to relax before dinner, which was at a small restaurant next to a tiny chapel in a meadow. The lady who was the owner/chef went out to her garden to pick ...
We started the day with a 30 minute walk from Ouchy to Pully where Barbara and Claude live - a walking track along the shores of lake Geneva, passing the Olympic Museum and lots of beautiful gardens. A quick coffee then off we drove through the wine region of the Puidoux, a world heritage listed region famous for vineyards on the side of the mountains for as far as you can see. The small old villages make wine the old way (stipulated by law) and you can smell the fermentation as you ...
... the marmots we headed back down the steep incline (which was harder to go down than to go up). We continued our hike down faster this time. Here's the thing we've noticed about Swiss people: they're so nice! Literally everyone greets you with a "Bonjour" or "Hello" even though they're short of breath from the crazy incline. On our way up one man even encouraged me with a "2 more minutes". They don't continue their life with heads down don't notice, they're openly friendly, ...
... the Montreux shoreline and the colourful flowers and trees are beautiful. (I wish we could do more of this at home instead of forever planting natives!)
We headed along to Castle Chillon which, despite us having seen many castles & chateaus over the years was really interesting. The style of the castle being Swiss (Savoy) was quite different and they have done a brilliant job of preserving/restoring it. We spent some time there and ...