People often picture our editorial trips as lengthy parades of luxury, and in the best of times, that’s exactly what they are. But as we all know, hotels and restaurants are not always as they appear online. Even the most carefully researched investigative itineraries can include a real dud or two, especially since we travel undercover, paying full price for hotel rooms and meals. This year yielded its fair share of disappointments. Here’s our latest list of experiences you should avoid.
The “Sea View” at Anantara Plaza Nice Hotel
This spring, a visit to the French Riviera afforded me a chance to check in on one of the region’s newest “five-star” properties, the Anantara Plaza Nice. On the hotel’s website, the Garden and Sea View room I chose looked as though it had a stunning view across the Albert I Park to the sparkling-blue Baie des Anges. Our room had a lovely view of the park but unfortunately not a drop of water. When I brought the issue to the attention of the manager, she simply shrugged and said, “Yes, this is a sea view room.” That was the final straw in an almost entirely unsatisfactory stay. Though the website has since been updated to reflect the accurate room categories, the hotel’s actively unhelpful service still prevents me from recommending it.