Hilton Imperial Dubrovnik, Dubrovnik
Tel: 385 20 320 320
Fax: 385 20 320 220
Concierge.com's insider take:
It was a red-letter day in May 2005 when the early-19th-century Hotel Imperial was reopened, no matter who was responsible for its renovation. And thankfully, the friendly folks at Hilton have not erased the charms of this majestic landmark. The 147 rooms (of which eight are suites), done in a predominantly orange color scheme, with orangey wood everywhere and marble bathrooms, overlook the tropical gardens or Dubrovnik's rooftops, with a sea view from the best. Only suites and executive rooms have balconies or terraces. There's a restaurant and a lobby bar, a fitness center with sauna and steam bath and an indoor pool, plus a VIP lounge for guests staying in executive-level rooms.
From the editors of Condé Nast Traveler:They don't make hotels like this one anymore, but they can renovate them. Built in 1895 just outside the old city walls, the Imperial entertained visiting royalty, plutocrats, and celebrities for nearly a hundred years. Then, following the Serbian shelling of Dubrovnik in 1991, it abruptly became a refugee shelter, remaining so for a decade. Hilton reopened it last May after refinishing and modernizing every square inch, but it's impossible to fake those royal proportions, from the semicircular terraces to the deep balconieswhich, while big, don't overwhelm. The service is unobtrusive and magnificent. For instance, since you can't get a same-day edition of a British or French newspaper in Dalmatia, the Imperial will supply guests with a full-size computer printout. 2006 Hot List
When to go: Late spring and early fall, when the weather is at its best.
Which room to book: Nos. 132 and 134 are blessed with balconies and a view taking in the whole sweep of the old city and the Adriatic Sea beyond (doubles, $250–$380).
Amenities: 24-hour Room Service, Bar/lounge, Gym, Pool