We had booked this hotel after reading previous reviews: primarliy for the location. We arrived at Florence SMN Station from Rome by train. Upon exiting the station, on the right side, you can see the towering Basilica di Santa Maria Novella (church). Cross the road, walk till the basilica (there is a tourist information office there as well) and just take the road along the church with the church wall on your right. The hotel is on the left, and among the first few buildings. The location saves time, money and a lot of effort especially if one has heavy bags to carry!
Staff (Tony) was helpful and upon check-in provided us with useful & practical tips on Florence sightseeing. Appeared very honest & did not try to "sell" any local sightseeing tours; instead advised us to walk around to absorb the sights. Our room was on the fourth floor, reachable through a tiny lift, and the 4th floor corridors appeared dark. The room itself was spacious and walls were painted in bold colors !
All the sights inside Florence are within a few minutes walk, e.g. Cathedral (Duomo) is maximum five minutes walk from Universo. The hotel is located in the Piazza Santa Maria Novella which is vast open and has a few restaurants with outside & indoor seating. We had our dinner at one such restaurant, barely a few meters from the hotel entrance, which was a nice experience, We found the breakfast room quite small and was crowded when we visited; breakfast spread was minimal and much lesser than many comparable hotels in Italy & Europe - only cereals,breads and fruits. An area of improvement, since the tariff is not low as such.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.