It was unusually cold and raining when we arrived in Florence, it's a straightforward and quick walk from the station to the hotel but we were somewhat bedraggled on arrival at about 8pm on a Sunday. I appreciated guidance from previous reviewers to help find the hotel on the square by the Santa Maria Novella church - put your back to the SMN church doors and it is at 10 o'clock!
We have limited Italian (learned 50 words before we went) and tried our best in Italian (think the policeman out of Allo Allo) to introduce ourselves, confirm our reservation and be friendly and polite when arriving and I asked if we could have a quiet room. They upgraded us - free - to the rooftop junior suite with a large 270 degree roof terrace (exclusive to us!!!) with views across Florence to the mountains and hills - and to the Duomo. There was an oriel window cut into the wall by the bedhead which had a view across the roof tops to the Duomo and Campanile. We were delighted with it! The bathroom - as you might expect - was amazing. The bed was absolutely gorgeous, sooo comfortable!
You would think that we would say how wonderful it was given the upgrade, but we spent time with a number of other guests who also raved about their rooms and the quality of the hotel. So whilst we were extremely lucky, others were happy too. All the rooms have good facilities.
We had to ask reception to lower the temperature of the aircon, but this was a recurring theme in Italy.
Reception are helpful and friendly - I think more so if you are friendly and polite - and very tolerant of pigeon italian, they taught us some useful words! They offer great breakfasts and are in a really good location near enough to walk into town but not so near that it was congested. There is no restaurant, (although a lovely breakfast room) but reception recommended a good trattoria (La Trattoria al Trebbio) round the back of the hotel which was reasonably priced and which we enjoyed very much - we went on each of our three nights stay. It is not a gourmet restaurant, but it was always busy, full of Italians and we thought it was very good and very friendly. They also do excellent half bottles of a variety of chianti's.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- All the rooms are furnished with air conditioning/heating, direct dial telephone, free Wi-Fi internet connection or lan cable connection, hair-dryer, minibar, bath or shower, electric safe, flat screen tv, courtesy set of "Officina Santa Maria Novella," vanity mirror, sleepers, tea pot with herb tea. Superior room with view has a splendid view over the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella, flat screen TV, mini-bar and a splendid marble bathroom ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Santa Maria Novella Florence
- Hotel Santa Maria Novella