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Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Atlanta
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Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

We got up to another beautiful day Monday. We were thrilled, as weather reports called for rain but not a drop fell from the blue sky. As part of our hotel package, we had the breakfast buffet included. It was a very nice buffet, eggs, meat, cheeses, pastries, tea, all kinds of juices, champagne etc. We ate our fill in the lovely courtyard and off we went.

We had a 12:30 meet at the obliesk in St. Peter's Sqare with Clarie from Angel Tours. FYI, the Intercontinental concierge called Sean at Angel Tours when I asked him if Angels was a good company. He looked in his black book, said he had their number and would be happy to call. I felt good about booking them as the hotel had them in their listing.

We decided to walk/shop/stroll to the Vatican from the hotel. So glad we did, because first view of St. Peter's Cupola (sp) was mag from the bridge over the river. Traversed the numerous stalls set up along the sidewalks along the river-was charmed when an older gentleman gave me a beautiful gold medallion for free from his stand, patted me on the cheeks, and spoke in broken English as he smiled. Quite a 'Rome' moment.

We found our guide with no problem and as the tour was over twenty people, they called in Elizabeth to split the group. Our group ended up being ten people while Elizabeth to 13 or 14. What I found interesting was the sheer number of different color umbrellas and tour companies holding them up in the square-but no problem finding Angels.

We thoroughly enjoyed the tour, had to wait on line for the Vatican entrance about 30 minutes but it went quickly as the guide gets everyone talking and involved. Tour was supposed to be 3 1/2 hours, it extended to 4 1/2 which, of course, no one minded. The Hallway of Maps, the big birdbath of red marble, the aviary, Michaelangelo's Pietra, the facts and anecdotes regarding the Basicillica and of course the Sistene Chapel were fantastic. Yes, to answer an earlier question, the Sistine was crowded, as was the entire museum, but I didn't mind. It kept moving, I didn't feel hurried and everyone was polite.

When the tour was over, Claire, our guide, took the time to recommend restaurants to everyone in the group.The price for the tour was 25 Euro, plus the 11 Euro you pay inside the museum entrance.

We sat in the square about a half hour, debating if we were too tired to climb to the to of the cupola--it closed at 5:30 and we'd have to hurry-- before deciding to find the restaurant Claire recommended a few blocks west of Piazza Navona.

Went and had a lovely dinner (no luch as we were on the tour)and then at 7PM went back to the Pantheon for the free tour given by Angels of the church. This time Louisa--she is VERY good- led it and we enjoyed the brief history and education. Tours are the way to go, for me, as I really enjoy all the little anecdotes the guide books don't cover. Had no idea the Pantheon was an acitve church and holds mass three times a week.

Decided to go over to the Trevi again to see it lit at night and while waiting for nightfall, indulged in yet another gelatto, this time strawberry.

Walked back to the hotel, around 9ish, and we never felt unsafe as we did so, and came into the crowded Piazza Spagna and picked our way around the couples and groups who dotted the Steps. Another great, full day in Rome!!!

coxs creek, kentucky
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1. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Glad to hear that day two was as good as day one for you !! Don't you just love the Pantheon !!!! One of my favorite memories of Rome is walking down a narrow side street and emerging onto a beautiful piazza and BAM!!!! there was the Pantheon looking so " SOLID " !!! Will be waiting for day three !!!!!!! Ciao !

Omaha, NE
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2. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Awesome!

The Hotel IC is our top hotel choice. You liked it, yes? We loved the Paris IC (now the Westin Paris), and are looking forward to a similar experience. Any further thoughts on the hotel?

Thanks for the excellent reports. I am very much enjoying reading them.

katie

Atlanta
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3. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Katie,

The IC was a really great hotel. I stayed a few nights in the IC Paris last July, (There are two in Paris, referred to as the 'little' and the 'big') The one we stayed at is the 'big' and it is over by the Opera House and the famous Cafe le Prix is attached to it. If you've been there, the IC Rome is not as overall luxurious as the one in Paris, so at first I was surprised but then the charm of the De la Ville came through. You will not be disappointed in the location, the service or the rooms. Our room was well-appointed with a great view, marble counters in the bathroom and tile floors. The breakfast was delicious and a great way to start the day. If you are sensitive to noise, don't get a room overlooking the courtyard, as a lounge singer is on nightly in the bar and the sound carries. My SIL and I liked it, found the singing charming, but I can see how it might keep early to bed folks awake at night! KateATL

Omaha, NE
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4. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

HI Kate,

Thanks for the excellent details! In Paris, we stayed at the "little" IC (the one on Rue De Castiglione, across the street from the Tuileries). We had a view of the Eiffel Tower and the Gardens, right over the Rue De Rivoli. What an experience!

Anyway, back to Rome. So, did you book the IC through the IC's Web site? And what kind of room did you book?

And this is such a lame question, but how were the toiletries? We had Moulton Brown in Paris, very chi-chi. ;) I love little details like that.

Katie

Atlanta
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5. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Katie,

I booked the IC through their website. We got a double room with two beds. Room had an armoir with drawers, luggage rack, table and chairs by the window. I cannot remember the product name for bathroom toiletries! I'm so sorry! I hate when I forget stuff like that--they were good though. I didn't break out my own shampoo or conditioner and I am picky about that. KateATL

Omaha, NE
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410 posts
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6. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Kate, excellent information. Thank you!

I get offers every so often from IC hotels and I know that one of their rooms was available for 260E not too long ago. I think it's gone up substantially since then, though, darnit. I'll keep checking.

Thanks again!

Katie

coxs creek, kentucky
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7. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Katie,

I checked today on IC and I believe the price was around 325.00 without having any membership. That is supposed to be the lowest price , gauranteed. Afraid that is a little steep for me. Did you know that they had been bought out by Holiday Inn ?? That was news to me. Good luck on that too. BTW, that was for my time frame in November.

Donna

Omaha, NE
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8. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Hi Donna,

I know, 325E! Like I said, they do have special offers every so often, though.

No, I didn't know that about the Holiday Inn. When did that happen?

Katie.

coxs creek, kentucky
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9. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

Katie,

I believe it was in December of 05. I actually found that by reading a trip report on this site. Seems like they get very mixed reviews--but I think there are more good ones than bad ones . I just don't spend enough time in the room to make it worth the extra money. We never return to the hotel before 11:00 or later ; and then up at the ctack of dawn to get started again. That's why I mostly just care about the cleanliness and the service--oh, and breakfast !! Funny, I don't even eat breakfast here, but in Italy it justs tastes so wonderful !!

rome
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10. Re: Trip Report/ Angel Tours/Intercontinental Hotel DAY TWO

kATE, sorry but... champagne for breakfast? WOW. Your reports are lively ty.