Porta Felice Hotel
What We Love
- A Sicilian stay in a former palace in the center of charming Palermo, with breakfastTreating yourself to refreshing cocktails on the hotel’s panoramic terrace
- Taking a sauna, steam and Jacuzzi bath in the hotel’s wellness center
- Strolling among the beautiful buildings of Palermo’s historic center
What To Know
- Breakfast – an assortment of Sicilian pastries, meats, and cheeses – is served on the top floor where you can catch the best views
- There's an onsite wellness center and fitness center
- WiFi is hit or miss
A modern gem in the heart of Palermo’s historic center, the boutique, four-star Porta Felice Hotel is fabulously located in a refurbished former palace. The hotel is a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence winner and the perfect base from which to explore Palermo’s incredible attractions. Rich in history, architecture, culture and gastronomy, the city can confidently lay claim to having it all, including a pretty spectacular tradition of gelato-making.
The elegant Porta Felice Hotel pairs its historic setting with modern design, blending warm sunset-hued walls with sleek furnishings and eco-friendly features for a stylish but welcoming atmosphere. Its facilities include a wellness club, with a selection of pampering spa treatments, and a picturesque terrace with panoramic views that you can enjoy over a hearty breakfast, a slice of fresh Sicilian cake or a mulled wine under the starlight.
How to Get There
We were on a two week trip to Sicily with a group of 15 people, and stayed here for our first three nights. The hotel is very nice, with well-appointed rooms, and really good breakfasts. What we didn’t like was the noise, both day and night, because of building construction, and also noise at night by passersby and partygoers. There were lots of pluses — a great rooftop terrace, where we had Aperol Spritzes, at night, the really good location, the balconies, the good Wi-Fi, and the fitness center.
I want to start by saying that I seldom complain about my hotel stays because I check tripadvisor & other sites' reviews before I book. This is rare so please take this review seriously. We stayed here for 5 nights during very hot weather (hitting the 80s) and there was NO air conditioning. We were told that their air system was off to switch over from heat. I found this astounding for a 4 star hotel and especially because their Expedia page specifies AIR CON as a room amenity. Similar to other guest reviews about noise (which lasted well into the night and started very early in the morning), we had the same issue. It made it impossible to open the window to sleep thus we were subjected to an airless room during our entire stay. All we got was a fan and attitude from the hotel staff. The front desk clerks including the manager were very dismissive and suggested we move to another hotel but would not be able to give us a refund. Definitely not 4 star customer service. Doubtlessly, our opinion of this hotel was downgraded before we even consider other services. Location isn't bad, about a 15 walk to Quattro Canti. There is a free shuttle a couple of minutes walk from the hotel that stops at city center and the Palermo central train station for day trips to Cefalu (train), Monreale (AST bus) and Agrigento (Cuffaro bus). Also a Carrefour supermarket about 5 minutes away. Our room was nicely sized but had peeling wall paint, bed was comfortable, small fridge, nothing spectacular. Bathroom was fine. No iron or water boiler (we requested one). Breakfast was good with eggs, bacon, ham, salami, wieners, cereals, yogurts and yummy local desserts. There is a coffee machine and a tea selection. Ask the server and the kitchen can make you a really good cappuccino. If not for the AC issue and the staff's rudeness because of it and the foresight to request a quieter room, maybe we would've liked this place more but a 4 star hotel rating it doesn't deserve.
Great location from which to admire the numerous attractions of Palermo, especially since the free circular shuttle that leaves every 15 minutes and stops at or near most worthwhile sights stops a few steps from this property. The spotless rooms are adequate if not exactly large, the bathrooms well appointed. Excellent breakfast served at penthouse level. Good WiFi. The most quiet rooms face the rear of the building. Very accommodating staff. Street side rooms can be noisy due to nearby construction and traffic.
Set off the beaten track so nice and quiet but close to attractions. Friendly staff and well laid out rooms. Food was good. Roof top terrace and restaurant a nice place to enjoy a nightcap with views of hillsides. Barman was good guy even at the end of a long day. Not much of view from our window but would probably be nice and cool in warm weather
We stayed here for a weekend break. Our double room was very big and clean. The bed was also massive, but two single beds combined rather than one double bed which was a little uncomfortable. The pillows were absolutely awful and they had no extra pillows in the room - when we asked for these at reception we were told they'd run out of extra pillows as apparently a lot of people ask for them. They eventually managed to find some.
We stayed on the 1st floor in a room facing the street and had a massive noise problem. Living on a busy road in central London we are used to noise but this was on another level! We couldn't get any sleep during our stay as we had traffic noise from the street and also noise from other guests in the corridor.
Breakfast was nice with a good variety of homemade desserts. Surprisingly for Italy they only had a Nescafé machine rather than a proper coffee machine. However they did make us proper espresso when asked.
A couple of other negatives: Reception staff were rude and not particularly helpful. There was no hair conditioner in the room and use of the spa facilities was an additional 31 euros per person per day for hotel guests, and that's not including any treatments or massages.
I'm very surprised that this hotel has a 4-star rating. In my opinion it was more in line with 3-star hotels as everything had only been done to a bare minimum. We wouldn't stay here again as the noise levels at night were intolerable.