Best 'hidden gem' in Europe?

Old Feb 10, 20, 10:38 am
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Best 'hidden gem' in Europe?

Bit of a weird question, but wondering if anyone here has stayed in a property in Europe that isn't a traditional tourist destination, yet would recommend visiting to spend a few days?

For example, obviously Paris and Rome are well-known and great cities to visit, but is there somewhere with a very good Hilton-owned property that is also great to visit but less-known and somewhere I wouldn't normally think of? Thanks
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Old Feb 10, 20, 11:36 am
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If your criteria for "non-traditional" is a step below Paris and Rome, then that opens up the options quite a bit. I've always enjoyed traveling in Central and Eastern Europe and have almost universally had good experiences at Hilton properties in the region. Cities where I've visited solid Hilton properties include (west to east, roughly): Prague, Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, Krakow, Belgrade, Kosice, Bucharest, Sibiu, Sofia, Moscow. Not all luxury properties, but enjoyable stays with generally good amenities and service.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 11:41 am
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Originally Posted by arlflyer View Post
If your criteria for "non-traditional" is a step below Paris and Rome, then that opens up the options quite a bit. I've always enjoyed traveling in Central and Eastern Europe and have almost universally had good experiences at Hilton properties in the region. Cities where I've visited solid Hilton properties include (west to east, roughly): Prague, Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, Krakow, Belgrade, Kosice, Bucharest, Sibiu, Sofia, Moscow. Not all luxury properties, but enjoyable stays with generally good amenities and service.
A good list, i will add Cypress, Malta, Dubrovnik. Reykjavik.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 11:52 am
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Originally Posted by arlflyer View Post
If your criteria for "non-traditional" is a step below Paris and Rome, then that opens up the options quite a bit. I've always enjoyed traveling in Central and Eastern Europe and have almost universally had good experiences at Hilton properties in the region. Cities where I've visited solid Hilton properties include (west to east, roughly): Prague, Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, Krakow, Belgrade, Kosice, Bucharest, Sibiu, Sofia, Moscow. Not all luxury properties, but enjoyable stays with generally good amenities and service.
Sorry, maybe I should've been more specific.

Places like Budapest, Vienna, Prague and Krakow are all very popular tourist destinations.

However will definitely have a look at Belgrade, Kosice, Sibiu and Sofia which I haven't ever considered as a destination
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Old Feb 10, 20, 12:38 pm
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if you are going to Frankfurt, take the s-bahn from the airport in the opposite direction to Mainz. Hilton mainz. on the rhine river. nice little old town. the cathedral is nice. you can buy a day ticket and ride the rails up the rhine. it is the prettiest part. also take rhine cruises in season. to me, not much in Frankfurt.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 1:04 pm
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Originally Posted by bearkatt View Post
if you are going to Frankfurt, take the s-bahn from the airport in the opposite direction to Mainz. Hilton mainz. on the rhine river. nice little old town. the cathedral is nice. you can buy a day ticket and ride the rails up the rhine. it is the prettiest part. also take rhine cruises in season. to me, not much in Frankfurt.
But how upscale is the Mainz Hilton?

Last edited by HookEm; Feb 10, 20 at 1:05 pm Reason: Clarity
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Old Feb 10, 20, 1:51 pm
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Originally Posted by mjbdiamond View Post
Bit of a weird question, but wondering if anyone here has stayed in a property in Europe that isn't a traditional tourist destination, yet would recommend visiting to spend a few days?

For example, obviously Paris and Rome are well-known and great cities to visit, but is there somewhere with a very good Hilton-owned property that is also great to visit but less-known and somewhere I wouldn't normally think of? Thanks
I will throw this one in - GREENWICH, LONDON .

Iím not as well traveled as some on here but this is my favourite place ever.
Book yourself a river view room with balcony at the Doubletree docklands riverside and take the ferry across to Canary Wharf pier then get a clipper to Greenwich ( takes about 10 mins and is fun ) .
Greenwich is simply a lovely little old untouched part of the outskirts of London with loads of history, great restaurants and food markets........ there is also some great old English pubs along the river path with great views across the river ....... to be honest to be on the outside terrace of the cutty sark tavern with a glass of wine in the summertime, at sunset overlooking the river Thames is possibly my most favourite place in the uk.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 2:08 pm
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I tend to look at the hotels that cost relatively few points, then take a look at the city / surrounding area to see whether I can make a five-night trip out of it.

Some people might have larger budgets, but ultimately "off the beaten path" is not supposed to be expensive. (when it is...it ain't a Hilton!)

The list is potentially long, but I'll simply add the two Doubletrees in Girona / Costa Brava, Spain.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 3:03 pm
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One place that is a little off the beaten path, but hardly unknown, is Carcassonne, France. Absolutely stunning medieval walled city. Decent Doubletree roughly midway between the train station and the old city. Booked a standard room with points and as a diamond was upgraded to a junior suite with a view of the old city. We were there for 2 days last year and that was about right.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 3:10 pm
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Greenwich is a great idea but I am not sure that you could describe it as in the outskirts of London. Geographically itís very central.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 3:27 pm
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I found the Hilton Brussels Grand Place to be a very hospitable property. Brussels itself, IMHO, is underappreciated. And the property is adjacent to Brussels Central Train Station, making day trips to Bruges, Ghent, Leuven, and even Amsterdam very convenient. There are also direct TGV trains daily between Brussels and CDG.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 4:18 pm
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Originally Posted by Close2KADS View Post
I found the Hilton Brussels Grand Place to be a very hospitable property. Brussels itself, IMHO, is underappreciated. And the property is adjacent to Brussels Central Train Station, making day trips to Bruges, Ghent, Leuven, and even Amsterdam very convenient. There are also direct TGV trains daily between Brussels and CDG.
That looks a very nice property and I've heard good things about Brussels. did you get treated well in terms of upgrades? Also thoughts on the lounge?

Originally Posted by wizla View Post
I will throw this one in - GREENWICH, LONDON .

Iím not as well traveled as some on here but this is my favourite place ever.
Book yourself a river view room with balcony at the Doubletree docklands riverside and take the ferry across to Canary Wharf pier then get a clipper to Greenwich ( takes about 10 mins and is fun ) .
Greenwich is simply a lovely little old untouched part of the outskirts of London with loads of history, great restaurants and food markets........ there is also some great old English pubs along the river path with great views across the river ....... to be honest to be on the outside terrace of the cutty sark tavern with a glass of wine in the summertime, at sunset overlooking the river Thames is possibly my most favourite place in the uk.
Will agree with you regarding the DT docklands, great views from the room and the ferry is always enjoyable, sadly I'm local so not as appealing for a 5 day break!

Originally Posted by LostInAmerica View Post
One place that is a little off the beaten path, but hardly unknown, is Carcassonne, France. Absolutely stunning medieval walled city. Decent Doubletree roughly midway between the train station and the old city. Booked a standard room with points and as a diamond was upgraded to a junior suite with a view of the old city. We were there for 2 days last year and that was about right.
Can honestly say i've never heard of there, but that is one of the most incredible looking places I've ever seen. I will definitely look into staying at the DT there, can I ask how you got to Carcassonne? As it seems close to Toulose and Montpellier so wondering if there are any good transport links in?
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Last edited by Canarsie; Feb 12, 20 at 8:14 pm Reason: Consolidation.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 4:32 pm
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Originally Posted by mjbdiamond View Post
Can honestly say i've never heard of there, but that is one of the most incredible looking places I've ever seen. I will definitely look into staying at the DT there, can I ask how you got to Carcassonne? As it seems close to Toulose and Montpellier so wondering if there are any good transport links in?
Ryanair flies direct from Stansted to Carcassonne.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 5:14 pm
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Originally Posted by mjbdiamond View Post
That looks a very nice property and I've heard good things about Brussels. did you get treated well in terms of upgrades? Also thoughts on the lounge?
We received an upgrade to a much larger room on the top floor. My guess would be that it was to a Junior Suite. The lounge was practical (decent appetizers/ breakfast) and always open for sodas/ water. But, most importantly it was never overcrowded. That said, the key to upgrades and a comfortable lounge experience in Brussels is not visiting when the European Parliament is in session.
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Old Feb 10, 20, 5:58 pm
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Originally Posted by Close2KADS View Post
We received an upgrade to a much larger room on the top floor. My guess would be that it was to a Junior Suite. The lounge was practical (decent appetizers/ breakfast) and always open for sodas/ water. But, most importantly it was never overcrowded. That said, the key to upgrades and a comfortable lounge experience in Brussels is not visiting when the European Parliament is in session.
Stayed here for a few nights last month (over New Year) and had a great time. As described upthread, super convenient with the Central Station in front and the Grand Place directly behind the hotel. Room was large, clean and quiet. Lounge would get busy mid-day for evening snacks (but the stew was delicious) and service was gracious. Wouldn't hesitate to stay here again.
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