Here we go again, 49th country/hotel in the past twelve months.
I booked into this hotel for three nights as I was meeting a large group that were staying there for a couple of nights. I had no choice and after reading the reviews I feared the worse.
Arrived shortly after lunch and had to wait 20 mins for my room to be ready (no big deal). I had booked a double room simply because I wanted to ensure I had a double bed which is what I got. The advantage with a double room is it is more spacious and it has a bath, a shower and a fridge (although the fridge is more of a cooler) although most of the rooms do not have a fridge or a bath.
When I checked into the room I immediately thought I was in a different hotel from the one described in the preceding reviews. My room was clean and spacious and it was the one in the photo. Whilst it was in a poor state of decor I have been in much, much worse. As at the time of my arrival most of the rooms (across all six floors) were open (big change over) I did a quick rekey (nose around) to look at the state of the other rooms. It is fare to say that some of the single rooms were in a sorry state but again this was simply poor decor and well faded over time but again, I have seen worse.
The bites/insects: yes I got bitten until I sprayed myself with mosquito repellent after that no problem (this is old town Florence surrounded by trees and vegetation so expect the insects).
Ok, following in my time honoured tradition, questions and answers/hotels hype and reality:
In House Bar: yes but rarely open
Pets Allowed: apparently yes from all nations:
TV In Room: yes (Italian channels only).
Data Ports: No.
Air Conditioning: yes but only turned on mid afternoon and is the old fashioned style of vents with a fan control but it will keep the room cool.
Room Service: did not put it to the test.
24-hour front desk: yes.
Air-conditioned public areas: yes.
Airport transportation (surcharge): yes but also known as a taxi.
Audio-visual equipment - Banquet facilities: not seen/required.
Bar/lounge: exists but hardly ever open.
Complimentary breakfast: yes (as in, it is included in the price if you pay for it but, strictly continental).
Computer rental - Concierge services: probably but not tried for it (who rents a computer whilst away now a days).
Dry cleaning/laundry service: There is a washing machine and tumble dryer (only one of each).
Elevator/lift: there are two and they are small (this is in keeping with the style and age of the hotel (seriously though, you are not living in the lift are you?)
Fireplace in lobby: about as relevant as having a light on the ceiling or a door into your hotel room.
Complimentary internet access in public areas - high speed: yes although some may have to adjust their laptop/phone sub menus to make it work. Mail me if you need help on this one (good speed).
Multilingual staff: yes
Parking (free)/Parking (secure): yes.
Additional info (not cited): good size supermarket next to hotel. Very good Pizzeria, pharmacy, ATM, five mins walk away.
Bus service is good and cheap and if you want to go to Pisa for the day it is 50 mins away by train and will cost you around 5 Euros each way.
Summary: This is an old style hotel and the rooms could certainly do with a makeover and are very basic. I did witness some rooms (single/twin occupation) that I concur from other reviewers that are not really that good but one wonders if the previous reviewers asked for a better room as they are available/do exist.
Is it worthy of a "3 star"? No, closer to 2 stars.
Is it value for money? No. I paid 63 Euros a night (bearing in mind this was for a double room which is the price for two people) and I felt that this was expensive in relation to other hotels in the area which may cost a little extra but are certainly of a much better standard.
This particular hotel makes it's living with the big organised tours/big groups of American, Dutch etc tourists and they quite simply farm them in and farm them out. It lacks atmosphere because it does not need any for the average group tours.
Would I stay there again? If I had to yes but, I cannot foresee a time when I will have too so, thankfully, no.
One reviewer commented on the photos given a false impression and I am not sure that this is as warranted with such severity. Simply put, if you look around the hotel you will see the views that are in the picture as they do exist however, given the right angle and lighting any of us can look beautiful or handsome.
The walls are thin and if you are on floors one to five, you will hear everything from upstairs (footsteps, chairs being dragged etc) although the most annoying thing for me was two "yapping dogs" outside the hotel that never ever stopped 24/7.
Best tip for getting the best room at this hotel: request sixth floor, double bed with a bath.
As always, if I have left anything out or you need a bit more info regarding Florence in general then, drop me a line and I will try to help.
For the record, I am not an employee of the hotel; I live in England however I have spent many years living in Italy and therefore, am in a position to comment on hotel accommodation by Italian standards.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC