On balance we liked this little hotel. It had a charming courtyard and a wonderful little patio area for having an end-of-day drink in a pleasant, relaxed environment. There are two Apple computers in the lobby that can be used for free to access the Internet. The location is convenient to a number of good restaurants and was but a short walk away from some major attractions. Hotel employees were friendly and polite. And, of course, Florence itself is wonderful
The drawbacks, slight though they may be, were in the areas of staff sophistication and room atmosphere. The staff, with but one exception, was very young and it showed. When you asked a question, they seemed somewhat timid, perhaps because they weren't really sure of the answer. The young woman who checked us in was clearly shy and rarely smiled, perhaps again because of uncertainty and inexperience. She was, however, efficient and professional. Generally speaking, the young staff was nice enough and tried to be helpful. The more important drawback was in the way our room was designed and decorated. It was spacious and well furnished but the design was modern and minimalist, giving it a rather cold feel that was oddly out of character with the rest of the hotel and with Florence itself. The floor was natural hardwood and there was almost no color anywhere except for black and white. It was if the designer had designed the room for other designers rather than for weary travelers look for warmth and comfort. The good news is our bed was king-size and comfortable and our bathroom was modern and clean. And the room was air conditioned. There were no "glasses" as such in the room, only "plastics." Then again, this is not five-star hotel so I suppose such skimping is to be expected.
The hotel's public areas are direct opposites of its rooms, meaning they are warm, charming and inviting. In addition to the patio bar area, there is a very nice breakfast area that serves a nice and varied continental buffet spread each morning, complete with good coffee and an assortment of juices. I can't help but wonder if the rooms and the rest of the hotel were designed and decorated by different people with different views.
Be advised that our room may not have been typical for the hotel. It was on the ground floor and had obviously been renovated in the recent past. I was told that other rooms, on other levels, are more traditional and old school.
Don't take this review as a recommendation that you not stay at the Orto De Medici. It really is a nice little hotel with its own brand of Italian charm and the staff is very friendly despite being a bit shy, reserved and tentative at times. It is in many ways a very Italian place, the modern room decorations notwithstanding. Best of all, there is nothing "snooty" about the place.
The hotel was easy to use. Although there was no taxi stand out front, at checkout time a desk clerk quickly called a cab to take us to the train station. The cabbie arrived promptly. The desk was also quick to extend our checkout time upon request. The normal time is 11 a.m., which is a bit early.
Incidentally, the train station is about a 20-minute walk from the hotel for those inclined toward foot power. But be advised that the narrow, busy streets and sidewalks in Florence make carrying or pulling luggage more than a little inconvenient. The cab fare was only 11 euros which to us seemed like a good deal.
We very much enjoyed the Hotel Orto De Medici and would recommend it to anyone looking for a comfortable, charming, smaller hotel in a convenient location. Just as long as you don't crave a lot of rich colors in your room.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Florence Hotel Orto de' Medici’s location is ideal because while located in the “historic center” of Florence it is just outside the noisy hustle and bustle…which is only a short walk away. When walking through our hotel in Florence, you really do feel like you are in a classic and upscale historic building. The front desk staff is very helpful and friendly, and from the moment you arrive you are made to feel very welcome. Each room is uniquely and elegantly appointed, a restful oasis for the busy traveler. The bathroom is very spacious and the shower is wonderful after a long day of sightseeing. Breakfast, with plenty to select from, is served in a cozy room that spills out into a welcoming patio and a beautiful little garden. The hotel lobby and reading rooms are a nice place to relax after a full day of sightseeing (plus free internet - either wifi or with brand new Apple computers). ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Orto De Medici Hotel
- Orto De Medici Florence
- Hotel Orto De Medici Florence Italy