48 Hours at Duparc Contemporary Suites, Torino
When it comes to city getaways in Italy, Torino might not be on top of your list, however there‘s the issue. For me it‘s one of the favourite cities in Italy after Florence and Milan of course. While it is recently known for the air pollution, it has actually so many historical things to see AND is not just the capital of the most amazing Italian region when it comes to food and wine, but also a heaven for gourmets. For example, did you know that Eataly opened it‘s first shop here? Or that Fiat once produced its cars in Torino? Well you also might not be aware of the fact that it‘s home to Nutella-inventer Fererro. Actually Torino is a perfect base to explore the Langhe area for truffle season, since it a) can be quite of a challenge to get a hotel room in and around Alba during the International White Alba Truffle fair and b) hotel rates reach sky with an average 4-star property on the countryside charging as much as the Adlon in Berlin.
While I managed to get a room at an amazing property in Monforte d‘Alba - around a 25-minute drive to Alba and the truffle fair, I wanted go go back to Torino to fully enjoy the city, its culture, restaurants and many cool shops. So it was Satuday when we checked in at the Duparc Contemporary Suites Hotel that is located in one of the more upscale residential districts of the city. While it is not really conveniently located with the need to take a taxi to the pesestrian area, it is extremely calm at night and the area is very safe to park your car too. In case you prefer to be sure, the hotel has a private garage so that is definitely no issue. And yes you need a car when going to the Piedmont also to discover the several restaurants that are located on the most remote spots you can imagine. Our room was an entry-level Junior Deluxe Suite, recently refurbished and totally in accordance to my expectations with lots of dark wood, elegant furniture and colorful details. I was totally surprised to see the rates around 90 euros per night for two for such a huge and elegant room. If you think of what you would get in Switzerland, you would probably consider moving into this spacious suite for a year. Anyways the beds were comfortable too, while a bit hard however there was a choice of pillows which is a nice add-on. The main highlight was the bathroom with full window front, a bath tub, walk-in shower, single vanity and Clarins toiletries. Well, toiletries are always a USP and seller for me so I would definitely stay at the Duparc Suites over the Grand Hotel Sitea.
What I appreciated most was that there is a separate toilet with bidet and another single vanity. Plenty of wardrobe space lets you dream more about relocating. The sofa area was a nice add-on and the television was also state-of-the-art. Generally the room was flawless and the housekeeping service did a good job even providing me with another set of toiletries. Just in time after a little power-nap, we made our way to the hotel‘s own restaurant because I failed to make any restaurant reservations and being tired too. While I expected an empty usual italian hotel restaurant, I was totally surprised when EVERY table was occupied and the atmosphere was totally lively. I have to admit I have never seen a full hotel restaurant in Italy, I mean that‘s the one place you go out for dinner of course. Anyways it seems there concept is well done and for the adequately priced meals, it was actually a great steal. We had typical dishes from Torino such as tartare with a local sauce followed by pasta dishes and veal. All in all the food was very good, the price totally alright and the service gave it‘s best despite being understaffed and having a full restaurant.
On the next day we went for a little shopping around the town... well it was rather large having spent nearly 10 hours on the pedestrian streets and restaurants of the city. We found a very pretty, excellent chocolate producer with a café, Eataly‘s latest dining concept in the right heart of the pedestrian area as well as some cool new shops just like Zagangel - my new favorite menswear store. Totally exhausted we arrived back at the hotel were we were always genuinely welcomed by the guys at the reception, we changed and went for a spa session at the Oriental Spa. Everything looked quite new, just as the suites did, and was in best condition. There was a beautiful wet zone with a quite big jacuzzi, a sauna and a steam bath plus some treatment rooms. While it wasn‘t huge, it‘s a great place to pop up for an hour to recharge your batteries and getting ready for dinner which we had in the Eataly food hall this time. Of course I choose the truffel risotto along with a glass of Barolo that came before another one...
I would say even tough I never expected this hotel to be so cool, I knew what to expect from Torino so it was like coming back to a familiar place just in an unfamiliar environment. However I totally liked the hotel and for these amazing room rates, there is no doubt I am going to stay at Duparc Contemporary Suites again.
Let me thank Duparc Contemporary Suites for the generous invitation to stay at the property during my trip. As usual all above written expresses my opinion and has not been influenced.