We found a great last minute deal, staying at the Hilton Molino Stucky Hotel in Venice. The iconic city in northeastern Italy has a brief off-season in between Carnival (February) and the Easter period. We took full advantage of this and booked a 5 night stay towards the end of March. This cost us €567.20 (including the room rate and city taxes of €10 per night), plus 40,000 Hilton Honours points.
Thanks to Damon’s Diamond Hilton status, even though we only booked a King Guest Room, we managed to get an upgrade to a King Tower Suite (Room 218). In this review, we’ll be looking in detail at this room, plus the hotel’s amenities, executive lounge and breakfast dining experience.
Brief History of The Hotel
The Molino Stucky was built in the late 1800s, initially as a flour mill. After a series of extensions, the building was eventually closed in 1955, before being bought by the Acqua Pia Antica Marcia company. In the mid-2000s, a partnership was created with Hilton Hotels to turn the building into a hotel and conference centre.
The hotel now offers 379 rooms and suites, conference facilities, a spa, a collection of bars and restaurants, plus a seasonal rooftop pool.
The hotel is situated on the western end of Giudecca island, just south of the central Venetian islands, separated from them by the Giudecca Canal.
Initially, we thought this location would make it difficult (or expensive) to reach central Venice on a daily basis. However, the hotel has a great accommodation for its southern location in the form of a shuttle boat.
Hilton Shuttle Boat
Use of the shuttle boat was not free but only cost €7 per person, for the entire length of your stay. So, even though we stayed at the hotel for 5 nights and used the shuttle boat frequently every day, we only paid €14 in total for the whole trip.
Low season and high season shuttle boat times may be subject to change. Our stay was during low season with boats leaving every 40 mins from the pier right outside the Hotel’s front entrance.
The boat would take you to a pier just east of the Doge’s Palace. There was another stop (Zattere), just across the water from the hotel. The boat would stop here later on in the day (from around 7pm onwards) but we rarely used this stop.
From the San Marco shuttle boat stop, there were a tonne of activities, shops and restaurants within walking distance:
Getting There From Venice Marco Polo Airport
I would describe the transfer options to this hotel from Venice Marco Polo Airport as either easy, short and expensive or cheap, long and convoluted. There is really no middle ground. I have outlined some options below but if you want further info, this page on Hilton’s website offers a good amount of detailed information.
By Public Transport
The cheapest option is to get on the public Alilaguna Blue Line (Red Line in Summer) boat from the airport direct to the hotel. This will cost around €15 per passenger, will take you directly to the hotel but the transfer can take around 1 hour and 40 minutes, having multiple stops along the way.
A second option is to take a private taxi (approx. €35) or public bus (€8 per passenger) from the airport to Piazzale Roma.
From there you can walk to the Zattere Hilton shuttle boat stop (check if the shuttle boat stops here at your arrival time). Or you can take the Actv public water bus (lines 2 or 4.1) from Piazzale Roma to Giudecca (€8 per person).
By Private Water Taxi
The easy but expensive option is to take a private water taxi from the airport. Prices range from €130 all the way up to €450 (for up to 4 passengers) if you want the hotels luxury boat transfer with champagne, hostess and porter service.
We arrived at the Hilton Stucky late, around 11pm, on the Sunday. Official check-in time was 3pm so we informed the hotel in advance that we would be arriving late.
The reception staff were very polite and offered us an upgrade. You get a space available upgrade if you have Hilton Diamond status. We were offered the option of a suite towards the back of the hotel or an executive room on a higher floor with a view.
Having looked at the available rooms in advance of our arrival, we knew a King Tower Suite was available. After a bit of back and forth, she eventually offered us one of these rooms. Specifically, room 218, on the corner of the 2nd floor of the hotel.
King Tower Suite
At around 70 sq. metres, the King Tower Suite offered magnificent panoramic views over Venice. Bearing in mind there were only 2 of us staying in this room, it had a separate bedroom, a large bathroom, another smaller bathroom, a few hallway areas and a living/dining room.
Throughout our stay, we loved sitting in the living area. This had 5 large windows, letting in a lot of natural light.
The design of the room felt traditionally Venetian, which only added to the whole exeperience.
On the second night, we did have a problem with the windows. Whilst the weather was dry and sunny for most of our stay, it was stormy one night. Water started leaking through the seals in the centre of the windows.
We informed reception about this who offered to move us to another room but we declined as it wasn’t bothering us too much. We were more concerned about being blamed by the hotel for water damage, so we informed them of the problem in order to avoid this.
We spent most of our time (whilst we were in the room) lying on the comfortable couch in the living area. Two chairs, which weren’t as comfortable, sat on the other side of the coffee table.
A large table, which we didn’t really use, had an abundance of seating at the other end of the room. There were also plenty of lights and tables in this area if you needed to put anything down.
The bedroom had a large, comfortable (soft but not too soft) King bed with two bedside tables, a desk, a luggage rack, another small table and an armchair.
As is the case with rooms like this, you won’t run out of storage space. If you do, I’m impressed. A hallway area had a large wardrobe with 3 in-built drawers, a safe, some hangers and a top shelf.
In the bedroom, there was drawer space in both bedside tables and in the desk. A small cupboard under the TV also offered more space. You could find another cupboard, and a side table with more drawers in the living area.
For the size of room, there was a lack of available power outlets. There was a USB port on the left side of the bed, in the clock. But if you wanted to plug anything else in next to the bed, you had to unplug the lamps on either side.
There was a plug at the desk, one in the front hallway (which we never used) and a couple under the side table in the living area.
If we wanted to use one of our devices whilst they were charging, we would either sit on the bed, at the desk or stretch the cable to use it at the table in the living area. They could definitely use a couple more plug points next to the couch.
In-room amenities included 2 Samsung HDTVs with a good selection of international channels. One TV was positioned in the living area. When we came back from a long day out, I would tend to lie on the couch and try to avoid falling asleep. Another sat centrally, on top of the cupboard in the bedroom.
Inside the wardrobe you could find all the standard Hilton amenities. An ironing board, iron, hairdryer and safe. This room did come with 2 dressing gowns and slippers too.
The room came with the standard tea/coffee facilities but since we had executive lounge access (more on that below), we got all of our snacks/drinks from there.
We did get a nice surprise on day 2 when we returned from a day in central Venice. There was a bottle of Valdobbiadene Prosecco sitting on the coffee table with a nice card. We think we got this bottle because we informed the hotel that we were staying to celebrate our 3rd anniversary.
Top tip: If you’re celebrating anything, let the hotel know. You never know, you might get a nice treat.
As Diamond Hilton Honours Members, we were also entitled to 2 hour access of the Eforea Spa (the sauna, jacuzzi and steam room). However, we had to book this 6 hours in advance. We ended up skipping out on this as we never found the time.
We did have access to Hilton’s premium WiFi at this hotel. The speed was good, averaging 14.2 Mbps download and 9.41 Mbps upload. Neither me nor Damon had any issues with our internet connection, throughout our stay.
There were no issues, housekeeping-wise. The room was cleaned and tidied to a high standard on a daily basis.
There was a turndown service in this hotel. This consisted of a freshly made bed, slippers put next to the bed and two complimentary Carmelina biscuits every night.
Bed linen is changed for arrival, every 3 days and again after you check-out. You can opt to get your bed linen changed sooner by placing a card on top of your pillow in the morning.
The suite had two bathrooms. The larger of the two had a large walk-in shower, an in-built bath, two sinks, a toilet and a bidet. There were also 2 stools that you could pull out from under the sink. The shower pressure was nice and high and the water came to temperature quickly.
The smaller bathroom had a separate toilet and sink area.
In the larger bathroom there were 2 large bath towels, 2 hand towels, 2 face towels and a floor towel. There was a shaving plug point and a regular plug point on the right hand side of the sink.
For the type of room, Hilton usually provides larger toiletries of a different brand. But in this room, the standard-sized Crabtree & Evelyn toiletries were provided. These included body wash, body lotion, shampoo, conditioner, a shower cap and face soap.
A card next to the sink informed us of the hotel’s towel/linen policy, as well as laundry. Towels are replaced if they’re left on the floor. Bathrobes, slippers and additional amenities are available upon request from reception.
Pool, Gym and Spa
The hotel has a rooftop pool, a spa and a fitness area. The spa/fitness areas were open from 9am to 8pm.
The rooftop pool, which has views over Venice, is only open seasonally, from mid-May to September, weather-dependent. Since our stay occurred in late March, we didn’t have access to the rooftop pool.
Breakfast at Il Molino
Breakfast was served at the Il Molino Restaurant from 7am to 10:30am weekdays (7am to 11am weekends). Breakfast was included for free due to the diamond status. The Stucky would have charged us €30pp per day if this wasn’t the case.
This was quite possibly the largest hotel breakfast selection I had ever seen.
I’ll start from the right hand side and work our way around. First off, you’d come to a selection of breakfast cereals, with toppings (dried fruit/nuts) and milk. Next, you could choose from a number of different fresh fruit juices (there was a fresh orange-juicing machine too).
In the middle, you could find a salad bar next to a selection of fresh Italian meats. There were jams/condiments next to that (eg. honey, strawberry jam, peanut butter). It was also here that you would find the gluten free corner.
Also at the central bar, you could pick up some fresh whole or sliced fruit, plus yoghurts of various flavours.
On the outside wall, starting from the right, there was a range of different cheeses, followed by a ‘traditional Chinese breakfast’ section. You could find the hot food buffet next to that, offering eggs, sausages, bacon, pancakes, waffles and more.
The final, continental, section (yes, I’m nearly done) had breads, cakes and pastries.
I think it’s safe to say, you’ll find something to eat.
In terms of hot drinks, you could order teas and coffees (decaf included) from the staff member who showed you to your table.
The executive lounge was on the ground floor, next to the Rialto Lobby Bar and Lounge at reception. To get access to the lounge, you had to either be a Diamond Hilton Honours member, or be staying in one of the executive rooms or above.
The lounge was a long, narrow room with a glass wall on one side and window tables overlooking Venice on the other.
The lounge was open from 7am to 9pm and served food at different times throughout the day.
7am to 9pm - Hot/Cold Drinks and Dry Snacks
7am to 10am - Breakfast
12pm to 3pm - Sandwiches
3pm to 5pm - Dessert
5pm to 7pm - Canapés/Drinks (Wine & Beer)
We mostly used the lounge to top up on complimentary hot/cold drinks and snacks. Great if we’d just come back from a long day in Venice.
We wouldn’t really recommend breakfast in the lounge as the options were very limited. Breakfast in the main restaurant (Il Molino) offered a much larger selection. We also assumed, before we arrived, that we might have been able to eat a small dinner in the lounge instead of venturing back into Venice every night.
In reality, the canapés on offer around dinner time weren’t substantial enough. Overall, great for snacks, but don’t expect to leave the lounge feeling full.
Conclusion and Scoring
This hotel, for us, taking into account the benefits that come with Diamond Hilton Status and a good last minute deal, represented great value for money. The King Tower Suite is probably one of the best hotel rooms you can get in Venice.
We used the convenient shuttle boat frequently throughout our stay, we enjoyed use of the executive lounge but think the food on offer could be improved. Breakfast at Il Molino had a vast array of options making it the clear choice for breakfast, over the lounge.
The service we received was to a high standard and if we returned to Venice, we’d definitely look at booking this hotel again.
What are your thoughts on the Hilton Stucky Venice? If you’ve stayed there, how did you find your experience? Let us know in the comments below.