First things first, the photos of this hotel are nowhere close to reality. The front desk reminded me of a dark cold war hotel with two black and white flickering security camera televisions on the floor and a bank of boxes on the wall there room keys used to be stored. The back office was visible from the front reception area and I wish I could erase those memories from my head. When you get to the 4th or 5th floors, look up in the hallways and you will see that many of the ceiling tiles are nowhere to be found leaving holes to look up into the wiring and plumbing of the hotel. Oh, and the blue shag carpet with blue acrylic poles on the stairwells is classy - wish I had a photo.
When we checked in we were given a room with two twin beds and not the room with a king bed as requested weeks in advance of arriving. Come to think of it, all of my email communications pre-trip went unanswered. The staff was very accommodating in changing our room to a room with a king bed. One thing that did catch my eye was the fact that each electronic room key cards have a sticker on it with your room number and are reused for the same room guest after guest. So much for the point that the card system was designed so if you should lose the card no one will know which room you are in. So if you ever get room 404 – I washed my hands before using the card… can’t say that about anyone else using that card.
We got into the room and were initially hit by a heat wave. One of those heat waves that takes the moisture right out of your eyes. The type where you can feel your face shrinking. I immediately found the thermostat, selected AC, and turned it to 5 C (was preset to 22 C). Nothing happened. No noise of a fan kicking on. It was at this stage that my fiancée called me into the bathroom to inspect a pubic hair stuck on the backside of the door. Awesome. I opened the window and we decided to go into town to get some dinner as it had been a long day traveling from the US.
Location – this place is far away from anything you might want to see if you are a tourist. I highly recommend staying somewhere else if location means anything to you. There are two tram (19 and 3) lines that can take you to a Metro stop (Policlinico – Blue line) and one bus (53) that can take you to either a Metro stop (Barberini – Red line) or close to the Spanish Steps. Note that bus line #53 does not run on public holidays or on Sundays – found that out the hard way. We took the bus to the Spanish Steps the first night and it took at least 30 minutes to get there. There is a great story about a bus driver shattering the glass partition with his elbow while arguing with a customer, but that is not related to the hotel.
So we get back to the hotel (it is December and cold outside) and get to our room with the window open… and it is still pretty warm. I figure it only feels warm because we came in from the cold. Wrong. We spent the night with basically no sheets covering us with the window open sweating on the rock hard bed. I cannot underplay how much I was sweating all night long.
I went to the front desk the next morning and made comments regarding how hot the room was and the front desk said they would send someone up to look into the problem. When we returned that evening the room was still blazing hot so I went back down to the front desk where I was told to turn off the heat…. Ok. I withheld comments and calmly expressed that the heat was off and set to 5C but the room felt closer to 30C (Which is 86F and a bit of an exaggeration, but I was trying to make a point). The front desk guy said, “That is impossible”. I still laugh at that exchange.
So the guy came up to the room and looked at the thermostat and concluded it was off. And then he was off, leaving pretty quickly before I asked him how to raise the shutters to get more air in the room. He looked at me like I was an idiot and pressed a small button no larger than a square inch just to the right of the electrical outlet and the shutter started to open. Out went the helper. Nothing like having your window wide open all night long just to try and get the room bearable – “hello person across the alley, how are you tonight?” Even with the window open and it being close to 5C outside, the sheet was more than enough… almost too much some nights as it was very hot in the room. When I asked the front desk if I could turn the AC on to cool them room I was told no, the AC does not work.
Down at the bar one night I overheard another table talking about how hot his room was. I hope he found the switch to open the shutters.
One more thing - there are a lot of tour groups that pass through here. The reception area can get very busy and the line for one of the two elevators can get very very long.
Some positives – the bar was not overpriced compared to the rest of Rome. A bottle of decent red wine was only 20 Euros. The front desk did recommend a nice pizzeria for dinner and they also helped arrange a driver to take us to the airport. The driver turned out to be very nice and took us on a tour of the Roman highlights on the way to the airport (it was a fixed rate ride, so no extra distance fees).
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel Borromini, rampant of the seventies, is located in the elegant, green and calm Parioli area of Rome, at the edges of Villa Ada and Villa Borghese and close to Via Veneto. The Borromini is reachable by car in few minutes from the A1 highway Autostrada del Sole, exit Salaria.After many years, the owners of the building from 1st July 2012 will resume the management to ensure a high quality service and maximum comfort for the Guests.The Hotel has 84 rooms, including Junior Suites and it is provided with 3 function rooms, with a total capacity of 170 seats to suit any meeting need or social event. The spacious private garage will assure safe car parking.Recently Hotel Borromini has been wisely renewed and technologically updated, becoming the ideal place for any type of individual or business stay.The Cafè Borromini is the soul of the Hotel Borromini where you can appreciate an innovative, genuine and appetizing menu. A patio is equipped during summer –time. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- b4 Roma Borromini Hotel Rome
- Boscolo Hotel Rome
- Boscolo Borromini Hotel