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“The worst bed I've ever 'slept' on” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Sampaoli

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Hotel Sampaoli
1.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Via San Gallo 14, 50129 Florence, Italy   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #148 of 460 Hotels in Florence
Walnut Creek
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“The worst bed I've ever 'slept' on”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2011

Truly, truly, truly the most uncomfortable hotel stay I have ever had in my entire life. The bed was not a bed as much as a thin sheet over a torture chamber of springs. It is difficult to enjoy Florence if you are so cranky and miserable from not sleeping that you can't think straight (although Florence is so wonderful somehow you still manage).

For what they charge at the very least they should have decent beds. But a terrible TERRIBLE bed, no breakfast, a strange setting (in an apartment building), and a fair distance from the city centre all adds up to mean that your dollars would be better spent elsewhere.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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218 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
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English first
Three Rivers, California
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 8, 2011

We found the staff friendly and enjoyed being a couple extra blocks from the hustle and bustle. Some good cafes surround that seem to be less touristy and more frequented by locals, probably due to the location next to the university. A do-able walk from the train station. Our bed was pretty terrible, but that was our only complaint.

  • Stayed May 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2011

My wife and I stayed here for two nights in mid-May. Riccardo helped us pre-book an Accademia visit about a month earlier, which was much appreciated. I've read a number of complaints regarding his response time over email - I have only praise for it. The staff onsite was also helpful in providing a map and pointing out some different restaurants.

We stayed here for location, proximity to sites, and price...all ranked high on our scorecard. Walk from the train station to the hotel wasn't bad. Major sites were then just another short walk away.

Minus one star for the quality of the mattresses. We brought a sound machine so not sure how to respond to some of the other complaints about the noise.

Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2011

Hotel Sampaoli was a 15 min walk from the station (with luggage) and about 10 min otherwise. There are no lifts and two floors of very narrow stairs that we had to climb with our heavy luggage to reach the place. We were greeted by Riccardo who along with his brother (Leonardo) runs this place. He was a pleasant and helpful person, who after setting up in our room (double bed with attached bathroom) gave us a map of Florence and marked out places for us to eat and visit. They also helped us with bus timings for visiting The Mall, which is in Reggio.
The rooms and bathroom were ordinary. The bathroom had very funny accordion style door which you had to pull around yourself. Mattress on the beds were not too great. Our room was next to a shared bathroom and it was a little noisy because of that in the night, which disturbed my sleep as I am a light sleeper.
The location is good for sight seeing.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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11 reviews 11 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2011

Unfortunately, I did not read the previous review posted on 26 Apr. There is obviously a ploy that have been trying on many customers. Avoid this place at all cost.
I had booked the Sampaoli more than 2 months ago via booking.com based on decent reviews and the relatively central location. Two weeks before my arrival, I emailed the hotel direct to confirm my booking and requested for a response but they never replied. On the day of arrival, after climbing 2-3 flights of stairs, I was told the place was overbooked (it was written on their daily stay records) as they forgot my booking which they claimed was made too long ago. The young lady feigned ignorance about my email, saying she did not know about it. And said arrangements were made at their sister hotel Hotel Benvenuti (112 Via Cavour ) which was only 10mins walk away and is even better as it is a 2* hotel. They indirectly forced us to take the room as it is impossible for tourists like us to lug our luggage and knock on door of other hotels to find a replacement. It took us close to 20mins to reach there from Sampaoli as it was located at the extreme end of Via Cavour. And from Benvenuti it was 40mins walk from train station, unlike Sampaoli which should be within 15-20mins walk. Hotel Benvenuti is much like a dump like what reviewers have wrote for them. We paid the same rate as for Sampoli but still think we were overcharged for the quality.

  • Stayed May 2011
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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Manchester, United Kingdom
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2011

Me and my girlfriend were due to stay here a few days ago but after trying to contact Sampaoli a few times before arriving we were met with an apology. The Hotel/Hostel is a bit of an effort to get to from the station with suitcases and the stairs are actually a pain to climb, thankfully, we only had to do this once....(I should say location wise for attractions this place is really good).

AFTER climbing the stairs, as I said we were met with an apology, this apology consisted of the following:

"Yeah, there was a mixup with emails and errr, well, it was our fault". Owner
"Fair enough", I thought.
"Yeah errr, because of the mixup you don't have a room to stay here..." Owner
"????", I began to shudder as my girlfriends eyes burnt into the side of my head after having left me responsible with booking...

Long story short, we were moved to the Hotel Benvenuti further away from the attractions but quite a nice walk in. We were given a huge room to apologise and a moderate breakfast. I just thought that people should know about this before considering booking here as for a short period it very nearly RUINED our holiday. Fortunately it appeared the owner of Sampaoli was part-owner of the 2 star hotel, which I would recommend actually, we paid about 50euros a night each and I felt that was nice. On the other hand this review is about Sampaoli, who lost our booking effectively after making no effort to contact us about doing so even though they had more than enough emails from me prior to the visit I can assure you!

As I didn't actually stay here, I feel I can't comment on anything else further than location, which I would have to say is excellent, Florence isn't very big and this place is close to the station and close to the attractions, whilst being in what seemed to be a quiet neighbourhood!

Hope this helps you choose your stay! Don't hesitate to contact me over any more details!

Top restaurant to visit in Florence - Quattro Leoni (4Leoni), just over the PonteVecchio with nice staff and a good menu! Be prepared to ask about the menu though, it's all in Italian, not a word of English on there! REALLY nice food though :)

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2011

I travel extensively for work and leisure and I can tell you without hesitation that Hotel Sampaoli is the worst hotel I have ever stayed at. Period. I seriously cannot believe that I paid money to have to 2 sleepless nights, poor customer service, and a billing dispute upon my return home. In short: completely uninhabitable rooms, terrible service, deceptive marketing.

Once my mother and I climbed the 2 flights of stairs to the hotel, where the reception area was littered with snarky notes about how guests should/not act, we were led to our room, which was just off of the reception area, which meant we heard everything, all night long (phone ringing, people coming and going). Our room was the green room displayed in the pictures. Nothing about that picture conveyed the actual condition of the room, which was cramped, old, and completely inadequate. The beds were actually lumpy mattresses on cots; the room was freezing cold; the TV was a 11" clunker from circa 1980 with the turn dial; no hairdryer; no refrigerator; no wash cloth; not even a bath mat -- just weird accordion doors that you pulled around yourself as you showered and then stepped out on the wet, slippery floor. Never mind the room details and the complete lack of amenities -- we just could not sleep. The lumpy cot mattress + the freezing temperatures + the continuous noise from reception area = sleepless night #1.

The next morning we mentioned our concerns about the room to Riccardo, who is apparently the general manager (and who refuses to answer my emails). Riccardo tried to find us a room in another hotel and ultimately switched us to another room at his hotel. This new room was also off of reception -- and had windows to the street, which meant that the noise was doubly loud since we heard everything inside the hotel and from the bar across the street. The new room had a refrigerator and a hairdryer (that died literally 3 seconds after being turned on). The bathroom shower was disgusting and still no washcloth or bath mat. The room was, of course, still freezing cold. But most important of all -- the beds. The beds. I don't know how anyone sleeps on these beds. I can sleep pretty much anywhere, but not here. The double bed was so old and saggy that there were deep indentations on both sides and my butt was literally inches below my hands and feet. I felt like I was drowning in an old mattress. Opting to sleep in the middle of the bed, I felt every spring in my back all night long. The other options were lumpy, saggy mattress on a cot or a fold out futon that was equally uncomfortable. Ridiculously bad mattresses + loud noise from the bar and noise from the reception + freezing cold temperatures = sleepless night #2.

The following morning, we checked out. We opted to spend additional money to buy a new train ticket and leave for Milan a day early because there was no way we could bear another night at this hell-hole. You might think I am exaggerating, but I assure you that I am not. We paid for our 2 nights in cash and left.

Upon my return to the US, I discovered that Hotel Sampaoli had charged the 3rd night to my credit card. WTF?? I have emailed the hotel and Riccardo several times to no avail -- they simply will not answer. No one at reception mentioned an additional charge when we checked out and, more importantly, there should be not additional charge since we paid for the nights we stayed and left only because of the sleepless nights and terrible accommodations. I have disputed the charge with my credit card company but the complete lack of response from the hotel is inexcusable.

I have re-read the reviews for this hotel and I simply cannot match them to my experience. I don't understand why so many people had comfortable rooms, but I can assure that there are at least 2 rooms (#5 and #3) that are absolutely terrible. Beyond that, the deceptive marketing and unprofessional service with respect to the unauthorized charge simply should not be tolerated.

Avoid this place.

  • Stayed April 2011
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Sampaoli

Address: Via San Gallo 14, 50129 Florence, Italy
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Florence > Florence
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #148 of 460 Hotels in Florence
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:1 star — Hotel Sampaoli 1*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Sampaoli is a small inn located in the historical center of Florence. We offer our hospitality in a simple, charming, clean Hotel. No tolerance for noisy people. WI-fI available like guide books to discover Florence. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sampaoli Hotel Florence

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