Everything else pointed out in other reviews is true. No cleaning, noisy, ridiculous 'self-catering breakfast', deceiving pictures on their website, bad wi-fi (which you pay for). And the location is not that great either.
But I'd like to focus on the rudeness and attitude of service there, especially a Russian-sounding receptionist called Irina who seems to run an elaborate money-grabbing scheme called 'late check-in service'.
Having arrived at 7.30pm on a Sunday, there was a note on the entrance of the hotel saying that check in after 7pm carries a fee of 40 euro, which I foolishly paid the day after. When I checked the hotel website though it said nothing about this, and my travel agency also told me nothing about a late check-in fee. Actually check-in times were advertised as '9-9 every day'.
When I challenged Irina about this, she said that the 7pm check-in fee applies only for Sundays. She then pointed out to the rules and regulations of the hotel in a frame on the wall of the reception. But then when I told her that the note I had seen posted on the door made no reference about 'Sunday only late check-in fee', she said there was no note and indeed it had been removed since I last saw it the day I moved in! When I told her that the website says nothing about this and challenged her to see this for herself online, she said she 'couldn't find this information on the website'.
It became obvious to me that this late check-in fee is completely arbitrary, never communicated to customers and probably a scheme the receptionist (or even the ownership) of this god-forsaken hotel runs for personal benefit.
The day after I let her know I'd be coming in with the police. This must have shaken her and she then gave me an email sent to her by the 'mediatore' of my reservation (not my travel agency) which confirmed the rules of check-in that had never been given to me. But on the email printout was also her original email, on which Irina wrote in Italian: 'Can you please do something about this as the client said he'll go to the police and even though I'm sure they'll send him to hell, he's very annoying'!!! Such nerve to give me a printout where she was calling one of her clients names!!! And of course who the mediatore is and how truthful their answer is, remains doubtful.
In addition to the above, Irina gave me no receipt for the 40 euro she took from me, just a self-written piece of paper with her signature. I have now left Florence but a friend of mine lives there permanently and intends to pursue this money-grabbing scheme by involving the Polizia Finanziaria. On top of this, it's obvious this hotel runs a very dodgy business advertising things it does not offer. The touristic police of Florence will have to look into this and my friend intends to let them know as well.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Suite Apartments Palazzo dei Ciompi formerly "Palazzo Pascolutti- Giani" is a 19th Century building composed of 21 completely renovated suite apartments. The Palazzo Dei Ciompi suite apartments was previously home to the "Accademia dei Risoluti", which gave birth to the Florence theatre named "Alfieri". On the main gate there is an engraving of the "Cavallo Sfrenato" ( the galloping horse) symbol of the "Accademia dei Risoluti" whose motto was "valoroso destrier passa e non cura", (brave horse passing without fear). ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Msnsuite Apartments Palazzo Dei Ciompi Hotel Florence
- Palazzo Dei Ciompi