I stayed in NilHotel for 6 (Six) whole weeks while on business trip to Florence, Italy. During my stay I was able to observe and assess the advantages of the place:
- Privacy: The hotel provides a higher level of privacy compared to other Hotels in the City because it has levels of security that is spaced in between. I.e. The Main Gate is a heavy 12 foots high rolling gate that only allows cars in/out after security has inspected them. People can not just get in or out without getting observed and granted access. This provides some level of safety that is not so common in Italy in my opinion. There are also numerous CCTV cameras everywhere.
- Restaurant: This Hotel has it own private restaurant! As common as that might sound, its not a very common thing in Florence. I like the fact that I can sit down and eat a peaceful Italian meal without worrying about non-customers wondering in and out of the place. This gives a level of comfort in my opinion. The staff are very kind and they can bill my room directly or bring the food into my room! Very convenient for those long trips and when you are just too tired to walk down to your own private restaurant downstairs.
- Clean! Goodness this place is super clean with a very good sense of modern building that I like...rather than some old building that was "converted" into a makeshift hotel.
- Roomy: My room was very spacious and roomy. loved that I can put away my luggage and not feel like I'm in a shoe box :-).
- Breakfast: FREE! Good buffet style breakfast served every morning. There's lots of variety as well to their free breakfast.
- Receptionist: They sell tour tickets, local Bus Tickets and exchange currency! Can't beat that... plus there's someone there 24/7 ...Always even at 2-3 AM in the morning, there's at least two people at the reception's desk!
- WiFi is FREE!!!! Enough said about this great perk :-)
- Tourist Central! This Hotel is a MAGNET for numerous touring companies that constantly bus their customers constantly into the place! At any given moment you can expect to find 30 people from different parts of Europe or Asia dropping off their luggage and storming through the doors. I guess this comes with the territory being that the Hotel is Massive and can easily take large amounts of guests at any given moment.
- TV Sucks: I understand that this is Italy but being that the Hotel is touting itself as an International Hotel ...there's only two English channels and they are NEWS Channels that constantly repeat themselves every hour on the hour! No On-demand videos to watch movies!!! Hotel needs to recognize that they need more variety in their room entertainment packages but what they have now is a JOKE.
- Views of town Sucks! There's almost ZERO views of the City of Florence! Only Views you can get is on the top (6th Floor?) and only on one small side of the hotel. For such a big hotel, its rooms with a view are very limited. The other views are of an Apartment building and the back of a industrial Plant that is nothing to look at. There's a view of the mountains but even that is not so impressive. Looks more like large hills than Mountains!
- Security can be lapse! Though they have cameras and different levels of security... One still have to be vigilant in the place... just because they is a sense of high security does not mean criminal elements can't still make their way into the place. This was evident once when a guest backpack was taken but was fortunately recovered by police and use of CCTV Camera!. Tip: If you are going to take breakfast, keep everything in your room, go get breakfast then afterwards go back to your room to get your back-bags etc.
- Location... apart from the bad views, the location is on the outskirts of Florence closer to the Florence Airport. There are bus services going to downtown Florence (where most of all the attractions are) for about 2.40 Euros (Which is sold at the receptionist desk).
- Shower is too "Italian" for my taste. I like a shower curtain but their tomb style showers has a small glass door that barely holds the water from getting on the floor!.
- Gym (though this is a luxury) does not have any windows nor TV! No radio neither!
- NO POOL! I think a 4 star hotel should have a pool. Indoor and heated!
In all I think the hotel does deserve the 4 star rating as it does have the amenities that makes a trip worth going but a few things that other might consider luxury are missing.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- NILHOTEL was built in January 2009. It’s a modern 4 stars hotel with all facilities: meeting rooms, restaurant, American bar, garage and a private parking, high speed internet access, an internet point and the WI-FI connection in all the common areas. ... more less
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