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“Not as represented.”

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Villa Ulivi Dimora Storica
Ranked #599 of 657 Florence B&B and Inns
Reviewed June 19, 2013

I rarely write a bad review. I generally give the benefit of the doubt to hotels and restaurants. But this case is quite an exception. Tis was one of the worst represented establishments I have ever visited. Far from being close to the city, far from being welcoming or comfortable, this place is in poor condition, quite distant from the city, and under poor management. We stayed all of 45 minutes before having the owner call and cab and leaving for a new place. We refused to stay the night.

We had asked our travel agent call ahead and tell the owner that we would be arriving somewhat late that evening which she had done. However, when we got there, the front door was locked, the lights were out and the place looked absolutely abandoned. Even my cab driver asked us if we wanted to go somewhere else. That should have been a clue. If it were not for encountering a nice couple outside taking a stroll outside, we would have been forced to leave - and should have. We rang the bell a number of times and finally the owner came to the door. I will make no characterization about his demeanor or lack of conviviality as others have done that in previous posts, but suffice it to say we did not feel welcome what so ever. Our arrival felt like a deep imposition. He did not even know how much to charge us for the room as this had been negotiated by our travel agent but was apparently a mystery to him. We should have left at that point but it was around 10 PM and we were ending a very full day of travel back from the Cinque Terre.

After completing the required paperwork under the dimmest lights imaginable, we were eventually ushered back outside to a wing of the building (where we would not have had evening access to the main house and lobby) and up several flights of stairs to a hotter and hotter floor. The air conditioner did not appear to be working, and we quickly refused that room and asked for another. Back down with luggage in tow we went to another room that was equally unacceptable. Florence was as hot as blazes that evening and it defies logic to think why they would not have conditioned the room for guests they KNEW were arriving let alone leaving a light on or the door unlocked. Opening the screen-less windows was simply not an option.

There were a few more elements to the story but I will leave it at that.

Other reviewers have suggested that this Villa could be good place in Florence under different circumstances. I might agree but certainly not under the current management. They have no sense of accommodation or hospitality, they are operating on a shoestring in a place that requires considerable work and attention. I felt for the couple that remained as they clearly indicated a great discomfort with the accommodations and I sensed their desire to hop in our cab and flee too as our conversation with them while we waited for our cab revealed.

We are faithful users of Trip Advisor but in this case neither my wife nor I looked at the reviews for this property and that, I will freely agree, was entirely our fault. Despite that shortcoming, this property is not as represented and I have never felt so unwelcome in a place in ALL of my travels.

I urge travelers to be very careful of booking this property and do your homework before hand. I have only refused accommodation once or twice before - so it generally takes a lot to get me to that point - but I did it quickly and gladly in this case for the sake of my family's comfort and our peace of mind.

Stayed: June 2013, traveled with family
7  Thank Jonwal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4 - 10 of 140 reviews

Reviewed June 13, 2013

The villa is very nice, the lounge is decorated with lots of antique furniture. The rooms are spacious and the bathroom was fully covered in travertine. The terrace and the garden are very nice to sit in the evening.
The breakfast in the morning was good (bread, ham, cheese, yoghurt, toast and cornflakes. )
The city can be reached by bus (10 minutes down the road near a tabacci with very nice coffee and authentic Italian food.
I had no musquito or heat problems, but I visited in may.
Overall a very nice building with spacious rooms, atmosphere and friendly staff.

Room Tip: Aks for a suite in the main building.
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled on business
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Thank Mariska K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 7, 2012

Is not near anything....so we walked a lot. Rooms were poorly appointed. Attendant Lee was very helpful yet could see that she was stressed with responsibility to take care of everything. The owner was rude and her son useless. We were lucky that they had overbooked so we were transferred to a hotel in Florence which turned out to be a God send. We wanted to eat our lunch outside on the grounds but were told that the owner did want people to see visitors eating outside?!!!! what is with that!.....stay away from this jewel.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Robert d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 12, 2012

If you are looking for a relaxed, step back in time place to stay, you might like to try the Villa Ulivi in Via Bolognese Florence. The beautiful grounds, the sweeping staircase and friendly and helpful stay made our stay a wonderful experience.

  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank GayeB4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 11, 2012

Villa Ulivi is a pretty good option for the price. Not close to downtown, but the bus runs pretty regularly during the day and is fast (at night we took cabs, a bit expensive but more convenient). Our room was huge and it was nice to stay in a place with huge grounds, a quiet escape from the city. I'd stay again.

  • Stayed: June 2012, traveled with friends
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Thank Lisa K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2012

We stayed at this bed and breakfast for two days and we did not have the problems that other guests had. Our room had air conditioning, very few Mosquitos and some what hot water. The hotel is not very close to the city center. The bus stop is about a 15 minute walk and to get a taxi one must call to get one. It will cost about 10 Euros to get into the city center. The Villa seems to be run by one person, a lovely filipina lady called Lee. Poor thing is over worked as she seems to do everything. I never once saw the owners. The villa is a bit runned down but we did not spend too much time at the Villa that it didn't bother us too much.

Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
Thank Lygra28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 19, 2012

We stayed at the Villa Ulivi from 13th to 16th July 2012 whilst visiting the Mugello MotoGP. The villa is beautiful and very quiet. The air con in our room was totally ineffective which was a bind in 33 degree heat. There was no hot water for showers after 9pm. The young lady we dealt with was very pleasent and helpful, but only gave us a simple pedestal fan in light of the awful aircon. The villa is very close to Florence and ideal as a base to visit this city. I cannot comment on the food as we left too early each day for breakfast. It was extremely hot at night and i was bitten extensively by mosquitos i assume. In summary, a very lovely old, classical and charismatic setting with the obvious drawbacks of an old house. i would probably recommend that you look elsewhere first for better facilities, but its not the end of the world.

Room Tip: Try to choose a room in a different hotel.
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank ReeceSamJess
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Villa Ulivi Dimora Storica

Address: Via Bolognese 163, 50139, Florence, Italy
Location: Italy > Tuscany > Province of Florence > Florence
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #599 of 657 B&Bs / Inns in Florence
Price Range: $94 - $236 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Villa Ulivi Dimora Storica 3*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Villa Ulivi is a beautiful and luxurious fifteenth century Florentine Villa located very close to the gistoric centre of Florence. Access to the downtown is attainable via a comfortable walk or a short bus ride down the famous Via Bolognese. With vineyards and olive orchards that beautify the grounds, Villa Ulivi allows for a relaxing retreat from the hustle-and-bustle of the nearby city centre. Rooms and apartments at Villa Ulivi are large, comfortable, furnished with antiques and illuminated by the Tuscan sun. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Villa Ulivi Dimora Storica Hotel Florence

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