Our 2 day stay at this hotel was to be the highlight of our 3 1/2 week trip in Italy. The Hotel Raphael was to be a 75th birthday present for my sweetheart. Why did we choose it? It is a member of the famed Relais and Chateau chain, architecturally significant, very near the Piazza Navona, and my sweetheart stayed there some years ago.
But it was a distasteful and unpleasant experience. The concierges were unhelpful and inexperienced. When we arrived at 2pm, a concierge met us and asked if she could help us with any questions. We asked her to get us a reservation at the Borghese Gallery for the following day, where we could find a restaurant that served wild boar (chingali), and if she could find us a hotel for our 3rd night in Rome. She replied that she was new to Rome and would
need to look things up; but she would get us answers to our questions promptly.
After 24 hours, at 2pm the next day, we asked this concierge for the answers. To which she replied: "I haven't had time to work on your requests". I then asked a different concierge if he
could help us. He informed me he too had been in Rome only a short time and didn't know the answers either.
I then asked in they had any experienced concierges available. He went in the back and brought out Cinzia ... a breath of fresh air ... a real jewel ... who went out of our way to help and provided the service we expected of this hotel. If it hadn't been for Cinzia, I would have given
this hotel one star "terrible".
It was a huge waste of money ($485 per night) and a great disappointment. While travelling in
Italy we never payed more than 100 euros per night for wonderful accommodations including the 4 star Hotel Laconda die Ciocca in Grottaferrata just outside of Rome, most of the deluxe B&B's we stayed at charge 50 - 60 euros.
Hotel Raphael charged for every little thing. I went to the bar and asked for some hot water because I had a sore throat ... they charged me 8 euros for it. After my morning run, I stopped
by reception and asked for some water .. they charged me 10 euros. I asked if they had any newspapers in English (they had one the day before) and they said they could send someone out buy one for me. After paying nearly $500 a night this was an insult.
I would never stay there again.
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- Also Known As:
- Raphael Hotel Rome