Breakfast in European Hotels — My Favorites

posted by Sharon July 20, 2019 33 Comments
Innsbruck Austria

One difference between our travels in Europe and in the U.S. is that often breakfast is included with the stay in Europe. When we travel locally, if the room does come with breakfast, the food is likely bagels and toast and yogurt, with a bit of fruit (maybe). We’ve been known to pass up the “free” meal and go to a restaurant due to the mediocre quality of the hotel food. When we’ve journeyed to places like France, Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands, breakfast is notable. Cheeses, meats, a variety of egg dishes, salads, veggies, guacamole, and even chocolate pudding (yum!) are ours for the eating. Thinking back on standout hotel breakfasts, some favorites come to mind. Here they are, along with the reasons these are memorable for me.

Innsbruck, Austria

The Golden Adler Hotel in Innsbruck first opened its doors in the 1300s. The original stone can still be seen in places. Imagine starting your day with the echoes of 600 years of people coming and going here all around you. Innsbruck

Innsbruck AustriaInnsbruck AustriaInnsbruck AustriaInnsbruck Austria

Paris, France

Other times it’s not only the hotel itself, but what’s right outside the doors of the hotel. One of my favorite places I’ve stayed (ever!) is the Hotel des Grand Hommes in the Latin District of Paris. The hotel itself is elegant and comfortable, but here’s what amazed me. The Paris Pantheon was right outside our window. Paris Pantheon, Hotel des Grand Hommes

The hotel itself dates back to 1919 and is named for the inscription across the front of the Pantheon that translates: “To the great men, from a grateful nation.”Paris Pantheon, Hotel des Grand Hommes

Breakfast is served in the stone cellar. You proceed from the lobby down the winding stone steps to an elegant setting. You leave by the winding iron stairs. The bowls of fresh fruit and flaky croissants arrive at your table via a cheerful server, and you’re ready to enjoy the feast. Paris Pantheon, Hotel des Grand HommesParis Pantheon, Hotel des Grand Hommes

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Sometimes the hotel is small and is in what once was a residence. Breakfast is served in what was obviously the front room or dining room. Here’s where we stayed in Amsterdam, the Hotel Brouwer, with the year of its founding clearly noted — 1632. The front room was on the street, across from one of the canals. Amsterdam Hotel Brouwer

Amsterdam Hotel BrouwerAmsterdam Hotel Brouwer

Our food was kind of plunked down in front of us and no options or menu were given, but blue and white tiles hundreds of years old decorated the room. And a winding wooden staircase traversed through centuries led up to the rooms. So I was one happy traveler. Amsterdam Hotel Brouwer

Luxembourg City, Luxembourg

Then there is the hotel breakfast that is first class and offers so many delightful foods that you wish you could eat a week’s worth of meals in one sitting. We generally don’t stay in modern, upscale hotels during our trips to Europe. But we were heading to Bastogne to tour battlefields and couldn’t get a reservation at the few hotels in that small town. We “settled” for staying in Luxembourg City, a destination not on the radar of many of my traveling friends in the U.S. I was actually asked, “Why would you go to Luxembourg?” It turned out to offer fascinating casemates to tour, and I found a good rate on Le Royal Hotel. The breakfast offered cooked-to-order dishes and anything else you could imagine at the various stations. The breads filled one entire room. Take a look. Luxembourg City

Luxembourg CityLuxembourg CityLuxembourg CityLuxembourg City

They even had smoothies of the day. And service at this hotel gets an A+. Luxembourg CityLuxembourg City

Nuremberg, Germany

Of course, some hotels excel at breakfast for several reasons. We booked a return stay at the Hotel Elch in Nuremberg last year. The yummy breakfast is set out on lovely dishes and bowls and comes complete with fancy signage in German and English. And a big factor in our coming back here is that every staff person is so friendly and helpful. History? Yes — this building opened as an inn in 1342 and was one of the rare survivors of the bombing of World War II in this city. The medieval wall is a short block from here. Sometimes travel is so rewarding!Nuremberg Germany, Hotel Elch

Nuremberg Germany, Hotel Elch

 

How about you? What’s most important to you when you think about choosing a hotel (or returning to one)? The food, the service, the setting, or variety of choice? Breakfast European Hotels

Linking up with Image-in-ing, The Good, the Random, the Fun, Through My Lens, Seasons, Our World Tuesday, Weekend Wanderlust, Faraway Files, Wanderful Wednesday, Feet Do Travel, My Corner of the World, Monday Escapes, and Weekend Travel Inspiration.

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33 Comments

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Carol July 21, 2019 at 9:05 am

Oh yummy breakfasts and lovely settings – I’m ready to eat!

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Tamar A Strauss-Benjamin July 22, 2019 at 1:59 am

Now I am hungry!!

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Molly July 22, 2019 at 5:52 am

Fresh fruit and pastries is the way to go in my opinion

Mollyx

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// Heidrun July 22, 2019 at 6:01 am

It looks delicious. Have a good time there.
Heidrun xxx

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Junieper/Jesh July 22, 2019 at 8:54 am

Great post for All Seasons, Sharon! True, we do the same thing and forego the free breakfast here:) Ah, the croissants is what I am missing – and the German brothchen! – they are defintely made differently in Europe. In the Netherlands, sorry for the poor service – try next time one of the “van der Valk” Hotels – they used to have a Swedish smargesbord for breakfast. Enjoy your summer week!

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Eileen Wise July 22, 2019 at 10:35 am

Hello, I remember a wonderful breakfast at our B&B in Engelberg Switzerland. I think our latest stays at various Hilton hotels, they all included a nice breakfast. Your photos are lovely, the food looks delicious. Enjoy your day, wishing you a great new week!

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Mother of 3 July 22, 2019 at 11:08 am

Those do look so good! I remember having some very tasty breakfast items at our hotels in France. We just stayed in a hotel over the weekend and did indeed pass up their “free” breakfast to go find one of our own.

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Photo Cache July 22, 2019 at 11:36 am Reply
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Jade @ Captured by Jade July 23, 2019 at 1:09 am

Some tasty looking photos here… I am definitely more swayed by a hotel if they cater breakfast.

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Jackie July 23, 2019 at 3:01 am

We spent a month in Europe in May and really enjoyed our included breakfasts. In Canada and the US the free breakfasts are mediocre at best. So we will often skip them as well unless we are on a road trip and in some remote highway hotel. We do take advantage of our gold Hilton status and take their good hot breakfast, but wouldn’t pay their crazy prices of $15-25 per person for it.
So yes, definitely they are worth it in Europe.
You reminded me though, that the best included breakfast buffets we had were in Asia!!!

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riitta k July 23, 2019 at 5:51 am

I enjoyed your post and it was interesting to see the different styles of the breakfast rooms – so cosy in Amsterdam and ultra modern in Luxemburg. I don’t eat croissants at home, but traveling they are a treat. Mostly I book a hotel according to location, and the proice also matters.

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Su-sieee! Mac July 23, 2019 at 12:54 pm

D-r-o-o-o-o-l. I want to go to every hotel you described in your post!

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Mandy July 24, 2019 at 2:20 am

I think the best breakfast I’ve ever had was in Strasbourg. They served a combination of German and French foods. Yum!

As for US breakfasts? The Waldorf Astoria in Maui offers a huge breakfast (potentially just for elites, I don’t remember). We had lots of fruit and bread options. They even put together a to-go breakfast for my husband and me! It was a fantastic experience!

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Katherine July 24, 2019 at 7:44 am

I love a good European hotel breakfast! Even when it’s just bread and cheese, it’s fantastic bread and delicious cheese! I stayed at a little B&B in Bruges that had the best breakfast. Even though it was a tiny place they had the whole array of deli meat, eggs, bread, fruit and cereal. You’re right about US hotel breakfasts as well, after being spoiled in Europe I was definitely surprised by the US offerings.

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Allison July 24, 2019 at 5:27 pm

I loved the breakfasts we had in Ireland. Though I’m a fan of free breakfasts anywhere. Even in the States. I always opt for the make-it-yourself waffle. #wanderfulwednesday

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Cristina - Memories of the Pacific July 25, 2019 at 10:58 am

They are all the perfect breakfast settings! Breakfast is my favorite meal and it’s the part I enjoy the most when I stay at a hotel. Let me recommend breakfast in Spanish hotels. It’s an amazing experience 😉

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William Kendall July 25, 2019 at 11:24 am

And now I’m famished!

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Rhonda Albom July 25, 2019 at 6:53 pm

I found the quality of hotel breakfasts in South America (at least Argentina and Chile) to be outstanding and similar in calibre to those in Europe. The cheeses and meats were nice but the pastries were a step up.

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Anna July 27, 2019 at 7:40 am

I love this German breakfast in Nuremberg inside a building opened in 1342. I´d say the service is the key factor for me when choosing a hotel, while a good breakfast is definitely a bonus – it´s so important to start the day right!

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image-in-ing: weekly photo linkup July 27, 2019 at 11:16 am

Gorgeous photos – what a wonderful breakfast tour!
Thanks for sharing at https://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2019/07/save-gato.html

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Usha Sitaaraam July 27, 2019 at 1:45 pm

What a great list. I enjoy the breakfast spread when on vacation. Your post made me think, where I enjoyed the breakfast most. I love the croissants in Paris. #feetsotravel

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Lorita | Ting and Things July 27, 2019 at 7:41 pm

These breakfast and environment are so lovely!

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Linda (LD Holland) July 27, 2019 at 9:47 pm

I do love the fact that breakfast is often included in Europe. And love tasting the variety of the local foods. Flakey pastries in Paris are always a treat. Smoothies for breakfast is a great option. But I must admit that I get a bit tired of ham and cheese. Since this is often the staple protein selection at most European breakfasts we have done.

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Katie July 28, 2019 at 4:27 am

I have to admit I find it difficult to avoid the hotel buffets – especially when there are so many good options available! It’s my treat when on holiday though!

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Amy July 28, 2019 at 6:29 am

Breakfast is my favorite meal, but I often skip it when I’m home. I look forward to wonderful places to eat when traveling. Looks like you found some gems!

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Rob+Ann @TravelLatte(.net) July 28, 2019 at 1:39 pm

European breakfasts are SO much better! We were spoiled rotten during our stay in Killarney, enjoying a “Full Irish” with a view of the National Park every single morning! It’s a wonder we didn’t come back at twice our normal size. 😉

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bye:myself July 29, 2019 at 4:28 am

I totally get you! I love hotel breakfast in Europe, too. When I was treated to what they call ‘continental’ breakfast on my first US-trips, I was a bit shocked. Also, in Europe, we mostly have healthier breakfasts, that’s good, too.

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Kalyan Panja July 29, 2019 at 6:50 am

I would love to plan a week long trip to Western Europe soon. Your photos and recommendations are making me want to visit this place now only and stay in these lovely looking hotels with such nice facilities.

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Lisa | Handmade in Israel July 29, 2019 at 9:35 pm

Love this post! Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day and some of the ones you have eaten look amazing! You need to come to Israel though – Israeli breakfasts are the very best! #FeetDoTravel

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Andrei Salokhin August 1, 2019 at 12:26 am

Cool photos!!! Thanks for sharing your experience

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Sage August 3, 2019 at 7:53 pm

I love Europe, and I love breakfast. If you need someone to help you conduct any further research into the best European hotel breakfasts, I’m your girl! But seriously, your post got me thinking about my favorite hotel breakfasts in Europe. After living there for seven years and going back many time since, both for work and fun, my hotel breakfast in Istanbul (which was on the European side of the city) probably stands out above the rest.

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Bree August 3, 2019 at 8:34 pm

Oh the breakfasts in Europe are amazing. For me double amazing lol not really the right words as they always have delicious gluten free bread, croissants, muffins etc. Here in Australia they often refer to a “continental breakfast” but you get so much more in Europe. A continental breakfast is toast cereal juice….give me the European Breakfast any day.

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Sarah Wilson October 2, 2019 at 6:31 am

Seems you find far better hotel breakfasts than I do. I guess I need to up my budget a little 🙂

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