November 14, 2005
Arriving in Lugano by train, I found that the Continental is very close to the station - turn right out the front of the station and walk about 200m south. The hotel is on the hillside across the street and the train tracks, with the entrance marked with an ornate painted iron gate. When the windows are shut, I didn't really notice the trains going by (and they were frequent during the day and continued into the night), but if you are a sensitive sleeper, you may want to request a park-view room.
The room was clean and tidy, with two double beds pushed together to form a queen-size bed - this is common in Switzerland. If TV is important to you (it's not for me), the TV is small. The bathroom had a nice big bathtub, but the side of the tub was high, so if you're motion-challenged, you'll want to ask for a room with a shower instead.
The staff was very warm and welcoming, spoke good English, and was very knowledgeable when asked about the area.
Breakfast is included in the room price; it is served downstairs in a dining room that commands lovely views of the lake and includes cereals, yogurt, fruit, breads, juices, coffee, and more. If you are hungry later in the day, the hotel also has a bar outside by the swimming pool in warmer weather that serves light fare and drinks and a bar, and from May to September you can enjoy a prix-fixe menu at the Ticino-style grotto Ronco dei Bianchi (http://www.roncodeibianchi.com/), which serves the bianco merlot created right on the hotel grounds.
Live entertainment is offered weekly. Guests are welcome to explore the gardens behind the hotel, and there is a lovely pool to cool off in warm weather.
I would readily stay at the Continental Parkhotel again.________________Note: A lot of the taxi drivers at the train station will not make the short drive to the hotel if the weather is good, so if your luggage is heavy or you have a lot of it, you may need to ask a few drivers before you find one willing to take the short fare.
From journal Lugano - Gem of Southern Switzerland