You can enjoy a break at a 5* hotel in Bratislava for a fraction of the price of a similar stay in many other European cities.
The Slovakian capital of Bratislava is a city which offers excellent value at any time of year but there are some particularly attractive hotel deals during the quieter months from November to March. If you’re looking for a bit of a treat which won’t stretch the finances too far then look no further than the 5* Marrol’s Boutique Hotel.
The hotel was named after Lady Mary Ann Marrol, a daughter of a wealthy Scottish merchant who visited Bratislava at the turn of the 20th century. The hotel is superbly located in the historical heart of the city just a few minutes’ walk from the River Danube. Marrol’s oozes old world charm with its stylish rooms and comfortable furnishings. The breakfast buffet receives rave reviews and the Messina restaurant offers a range of international cuisine but specializes in Slovak and Central European menus.
Bratislava is one of Europe’s lesser known capital cities but, perhaps for that very reason, can offer plenty of interest for the city-break traveller. The centre is charming but compact which means that visitors can enjoy a short break in delightful surroundings without feeling the need to race around ticking off all of the famous sights, as in some cities. The River Danube is, of course, one of the city’s main assets. There are several cafés along its banks, within easy walking distance of the centre.
One sight not to be missed is Bratislava Castle. Situated on a hill above the old town, the castle dominates the city. Visitors can walk or take a short bus ride up to the castle, which hosts temporary historical exhibitions and from whose ramparts you can see nearby Hungary, Austria and the Danube valley. If you have an hour or two to spare, it’s also well worth spending time wandering around the streets of the old town with their charming buildings which display a range of styles, most of which have been carefully restored in recent years. What could be more enjoyable than pausing to drink a coffee and watch the world go by from a street café in one of the attractive pedestrianised streets? Hlavné Námestie is the city’s main square with the Roland Fountain at its heart. The fountain is thought to have been built in 1572 as a public water supply. On the north-east side of the square is the 14th-century Old Town Hall, home to the Municipal Museum.
Eating out in Bratislava offers the opportunity to try new dishes. Traditional Slovak food with its Czech and Hungarian influences is hearty and heavy on meat (especially pork), potatoes and dumplings. Cabbage is the most popular vegetable, often found in the form of sauerkraut. There are plenty of restaurants which provide great value food, but as in any city it’s often worth looking at restaurants in quieter side streets rather than in the main streets of the old town.