Really nice hotel. Hidden away up a narrow alley and then up a tiny old lift to the 2nd floor. Good value with very helpful staff. Well located for central Naples.
The hotel is much quieter than I expected and seems to be well insulated from outside noise. In any event Naples, despite its notorious traffic, is much quieter than parts of the UK. You only rarely hear police or ambulance sirens. You don't get many groups of drunken youths shouting in the street at 2 am. Despite the airport there is not much aircraft noise and you certainly don't get hundreds of low level helicopter flights across the urban area night and day like in London.
The offficial white taxis from the airport will get you near enough to the hotel but don't try to walk with luggage from a rail or bus stop, as the narrow streets and alleys are cobbled and very difficult to roll your suitcase along.
One reason why places are difficult to find is that brochures for anywhere in the wider Naples area don't show views of streets or building frontages (except high up above 2 or 3 meters) This is because all vertical surfaces at street level are covered in graffiti (even some churches). It is very offputting to visitors and I don't know what cultural reasons are behind it. However, it does NOT mean that the area is as prone to violent crime as would be the case in 'edgy' districts with a lot of graffiti in the UK. In particular the district around this hotel is partly a student area (uni nearby) and we never felt threatened.
Air pollution is bad in the narrow crowded alleyways. There is a constant stink of Vespa fumes combined with high strength tobacco. Neapolitans all seem to smoke. Fortunately they do usually comply with the new rule against smoking indoors in restaurants etc. The same cannot be set of any regulations Italy might have about road safety and helmets. Most of the Vespa riders are unhelmeted, even sometimes having small unhelmeted children hanging on. In the crowded streets our taxi driver narrowly avoided colliding with a speeding motorbike on which were two unhelmeted men plus a large dog, sprawled across the seat in front of the driver. It's a fascinating contrast to our ElfnSafety regime in the UK.
When you're not carrying heavy luggage, it is quite feasible to walk to the central station or a main bus stop to get cheap public transport to Pompei, Herculanuem or Vesuvius. Be warned that not many tourists manage it, because you are certain to be spotted on the way by taxi touts who will tell you that the bus or train is cancelled. In fact the buses and trains, while not always on time, are in other aspects reliable and you certainly don't need a taxi, especially not the dodgy ones the touts are peddling, to get to Pompei. Note that if you want to go on to Vesuvius, we found that when we got off the train at Pompei, the men in the official looking kiosk by the train platform assured us that the bus to Vesuvius had been cancelled for lack of custom - this was plausible as it was a cold showery day in February. But we found the real bus ticket office was a short way away, opposite a restaurant which was indeed closed for the season, but the bus and its real ticket man was working and only 10 euros return.
Also be prepared for beggars in and around the main rail station. This is just like home except that (unlike in London) you can't easily tell who is a street person out to scrounge some money and who is a respectable commuter who happens to be by the rail ticket office at the same time as you. Everyone in Naples, including the touts and beggars, dresses smartly, always fashionable casual.
Incidentally we saw no one in a business suit and no one who looked obese!.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- We are glad to give you the warmest welcome as our guests into Palazzo Sisto Riario Sforza. Here, in the heart of Naples old town within inches of Santa Chiara Church with its Cloister, the Veiled Christ and Via San Gregorio Armeno was born, in 2008, our Hotel. The Decumani Hotel de Charme was originally built during the 17th century and belonged to Sisto Riario Sforza, the last Archbishop of Naples in the Bourbon Kingdom of the Two Sicilies of which Naples was the capital. In 2008 we embarked on a major refurbishment programme for the second floor, where the Hotel is placed. The hotel has now been fully restored and equipping with all the modern conveniences our guests expect. A wide lounge, decorated with golden stuccoes and mirrors, testifies the illustrious past of this residence. All of our 22 bedrooms are fully air-conditioned and feature the following: soundproof windows, flat screen Television with international channels, safe, minibar, direct dial telephone and hairdryer. The Decumani Hotel de Charme is located in the Decumani, in the heart of the old town originally a Greek "polis" and then a Roman "urbs", an area wich represents with its squares, streets and alleys, a unique historical, cultural and artistic heritage, as it is testified by the acknowledgment of Unesco, which in 1995 declared the historic centre of Naples " the biggest open-air museum in the world". ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Decumani Hotel Naples