My wife and I stayed at Deko Rome for 4 nights in late September, 2011. It was our favorite hotel during our Italian vacation. We would stay there again without considering any other place if we are so fortunate to return to Rome in the future. It is clear from past reviews that whether you are as happy with your experience as we were depends on what you want and expect out of your hotel experience while visiting Rome. Deko Rome is NOT a full service, luxury hotel with 24 hour room service and staff, a pool or workout facility, and an on-site restaurant or bar open late in the evening or early in the morning. If those services and resources are important to you and what you are expecting, you may want to consider booking at such a hotel. However, for the reasons below, our stay at Deko Rome will be a treasured memory that we wouldn’t trade for any of the luxuries or services offered at the 5 star, full service hotels.
The owners, Marco and Serena, and their assistant Monica, set Deko Rome apart, and made our stay at the hotel a unique and memorable experience. It is clear they sincerely want to get to know their guests, and eagerly take the time to do whatever they can to ensure that their guests have the best experience possible while exploring Rome. Other reviewers hit it on the head when they described a stay at Deko as staying with friends in a well appointed apartment. Marco, Serena, and Monica are not formal, do not address you by your last name, and do not dress in the uniform’s you find in a luxury hotel chain. Instead, they are informal, dressed in clothes befitting their young age, and interact with their guests much as they would with their friends. Even though I booked the room through Agoda (see edited version of review on Agoda), Marco emailed me a couple weeks before our arrival, offering to arrange to have a private car pick us up from the airport. When we arrived, Marco was upset that we had not buzzed him in advance so he could have helped us carry our luggage up the stairs. Despite one reviewer’s opinion, we liked the old-fashioned lift, and had no complaints using it. It definitely is an old fashioned, quaint, lift. However, we found it charming, with sufficient room for our two huge, over-stuffed duffel bags. If someone is so tired they don’t want to take the 3 flights of stairs to Deko’s floor, the lift works perfectly, even if it moves slower than the modern elevators. Again, it all depends on a traveler’s expectations and standards.
I would also take a different view of comments that there is no reception or concierge at Deko. I travel a fair amount for business, and we are fortunate enough to be able to vacation a couple times a year, occassionally splurging at luxury hotels. We felt that Marco and Serena were more helpful, and spot-on with their restaurant recommendations, and places to see, than any other hotel in which I’ve stayed. We also did not have any problem with the fact we were on our own after Marco and Serena left late in the evening. We made sure that if we wanted extra towels or supplies, we asked for them before they left. But we knew before arriving that we were not staying at a hotel with a staff on site 24 hours a day. I rarely, if ever, order room service or have a need to contact the hotel staff once I’m in for the evening. If you value that level of service, you may want to consider booking at a different hotel.
The service and advice that Marco and Serena willingly offer is more sincere and personalized than I’ve received at well known 5 star hotels. As the other reviewers have noted, when we checked in, Marco shared a complimentary drink of our choice while he showed us on a map his favorite tourist attractions and sites, and his favorite restaurants. I highly recommend following Marco’s restaurant recommendations. We dined at 4 of the 5 recommended restaurants, and each meal was fantastic, reasonably priced, and busy with many more locals than tourists. Marco and Serena recommend restaurants that they go to when they get a chance to eat out. At the end of the day, when we returned to Deko, Marco and Serena wanted to hear about our experiences as we shared a drink at the little bar in the breakfast area off the lobby.
The hotel is not in the middle of the crowded tourist sites, or within throwing distance of the Colosseum, Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, etc. For us, however, Deko is perfectly situated because it was an easy 7 to 10 minute walk from the Spanish Steps and a Metro and bus stop to take you to any spot in Rome. Yet the neighborhood is quiet, peaceful and secure. The hotel is located in a safe area, a block from the U.S. Embassy and the police station. You need a key to enter the historic building in which Deko Rome is located, and you need a second key to get into Deko’s reception and rooms. The hotel is only 3 blocks from the Villa Borghese, the equivalent of New York’s Central Park. If you are in Rome on a Sunday and have time, we highly recommend strolling through the park to mingle with the locals and their families taking boat rides on the ponds, picnicking, and riding bicycles.
The hotel is new and the rooms are decorated in a modern style, with the newest conveniences, such as fog-free bathroom mirrors, electronically controlled flat screen T.V’s and AC. The pictures on the hotel's website and from the TA reviewers accurately show the condition and decor of the lobby, breakfast area, and rooms. The rooms are quiet, with heavy curtains shutting out any noise from the outside. We booked the junior suite (the room with a picture of an elephant as seen on the hotel’s website), which had a large living area with a large couch, in addition to the good sized bedroom and king sized bed (as oppposed to the more typical arrangement of pushing together two twin beds). The bathrooms were relatively large, with great water pressure and shower doors to keep the floors from getting soaked. The room and bathroom were spotless and sanitized each day. Because we paid for an all-inclusive rate, the water, juice and prosecco in the mini-fridge was included in our rate.
Monica, who is as sweet as Marco and Serena, helped prepare at least one of our breakfasts, and should be applauded for keeping the rooms so clean. The breakfasts are typical of many other Italian hotels, and varied little each morning. But there was more than enough food, including cereal, yogurt, croissants, cheese, ham and bread (to make a sandwich), toast and jam. You can order a variety of juices and coffee made to your likeing. The cappiccinos were great.
If I was going to nit-pick, and try and find areas for improvement, I’d suggest that Marco and Serena add a dresser or armoire to increase the storage space in each room. Our room had a standing closet with room to hang a few items of clothing, but there was nothing to store our clothes if we wanted to unpack for our stay. Also, when you book your room, you may want to call Marco or Serena and ask if the room is adjacent to the breakfast area. When breakfast was being served, you could hear the voices and meals being prepared through the walls. It didn’t bother us, because we were getting up by around 8 or 8:30 to get started on our day. But if you plan on sleeping in, it may be worth asking for a room set away from the breakfast area.
In conclusion, we knew the sort of hotel we were looking for, and found it. We could not have known, however, that we’d meet hotel owners and staff that clearly enjoy getting to know their guests and doing all they can to ensure their guests have a wonderful experience while visiting Rome.
Thank you Marco, Serena, and Monica, for making us feel welcome in your wonderful city. Daryl and Lynne
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- Also Known As:
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