a traveler from Travelocity.com
on July 13, 2009
Wonderful location, 5 minutes from Hermitage (which I went to see). The rooms were clean, the service was excellent. Breakfast was extra, but I found the continental breakfast fine. The concierge found me a wonderful restaurant for an evening meal. I'm sorry now I did not take the opportunity to take in Swan Lake. Some non-hotel items: don't drink or even brush you teeth with St. Pete water. Bottled water for everything. If you want to visit the Hermitage (and I suspect Peterhof), buy your voucher on the internet. Otherwise the line to get in is hours long. A long two days (10:30-6) will allow a visit to all the rooms of the Hermitage. The collection is not to be believed. Rooms and rooms of the finest paintings in the world. Probably the finest silver collection anywhere. But lots of unexpected treats, like grave goods from permafrost Mongolia, including a first century AD child's coat you swear was made yesterday. My ticket also got me into a next-door exhibit of Peter's Winter Palace, through an unmarked door. The hotel arranged for a taxi back to the airport, added to the hotel bill, and I would definitely recommend this service. On the morning of my afternoon departure, I had a delightful three-hour walk around the harbor, including the fort across from the Hermitage. I went for the Hermitage, but greatly enjoyed St. Petersburg as well.
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