We stayed here for 8 days and were located on the 5th floor overlooking the parking lot away from the potential noise of the street. Our apartment had not been upgraded as shown in the photos on www.venere.com but were comfortable enough. On the table when we arrived was a little basket of helpful goods to set us on our way, packages of toast, jams and instant coffee. The refrigerator was stocked with shelf milk and some tabs of butter.
The bathroom was lovely and modern, in all of our 3 week vacation it was the first and only vacation rental to have a tub to soak away the day. There was also no wifi available at all during our stay and so we used the single main computer available to all in the main lobby. Not certain of the security settings we only used it to write emails to friends. Laundry facilities are available in the basement using tokens purchased from the front desk at at 1 euro each (1 for washing, 1 for drying), and detergents are freely available beside the washer.
When we checked in we were given a sheet informing us that we were responsible for all missing items when we left. I probably would not have glanced at it except that there were only two wine glasses (celebrating our arrival) in the cupboard which tipped me off to revisit the list. We were short on knives, coffee spoons, water glasses, tea cups and had only a partial steel milk boiler. There were no salt and pepper shakers. We also had to exchange our moka pot as it leaked. I believe it was exchanged with an empty apartment. The kitchen had a dishwasher and I was thankful for it. The only catch with the kitchen was that you could not open the cutlery drawers or pot cupboard unless you closed the kitchen door shut.
I did like living in Florence here. There is a Conad's market on Porta al Prato that is strangely open on Sundays. The Funicular is a great pizza place just across the street from the grocery. Also, there is a vino sfuso, street number 49 (Cantina Toscana) on that same street just farther up, where you can go with your own containers to buy bulk wine. For instance one evening we picked up 3 litres of wine [not just for that night :)] for 6.80 euros. We cooked with relative comfort in our little apartment, and sat on the balcony drinking coffee and looking out at the hills.
We walked around Florence quite a bit from this location. When tired you can catch the T1 from the Santa Maria Novella train station for 1.30 euros. Tickets are available from the electronic machines.
Cleaning staff seem to come everyday unless you hang a sign on the doorknob. We really didn't want a hotel experience so we only had them come in once during our stay to take care of the garbage. The walls are paper thin which was unfortunate as on the last 2 days of our stay a family with two children under the age of two arrived with kids screaming into the night and up early in the day. There was no escape from the noise and no recourse. If it had been earlier in our stay I would have requested a room change but as we were leaving in a day it just wasn't worth it. But what can you really do about noisy neighbours?
I enjoyed being away from the tourist section and yet close enough to walk to it and would definitely come here again.
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- Also Known As:
- Residence Porta Al Prato Hotel Florence