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mike7 Mar 28th, 2010 07:38 AM

Apartment vs hotel in rome
I am staying in Rome for 5 nights at the beginnning of Oct. with my girlfriend, I am interested in getting an apartment but have no experience with them while travelling. I would like to stay in the center of the city to be close to the major sights. Since Rome is the end of our two week trip I like the idea of being able to cook for ourselves if money is running low. I would like people opinions on apt vs hotel and any apt recommendations. Thanks!

Mimar Mar 28th, 2010 08:04 AM

If it's your first time in Rome, you might want to stay at a hotel just for the help the concierge and front desk can give you.

That said, we love the space and privacy you get in an apartment. Go to There's lots of information about renting self-catering accommodations, especially in Italy. Contributors to Slow Travel review apartments they have stayed in and the rental agencies they deal with. And if you search this forum, you will find many references to specific apartments, both prospective and retrospective.

If you want specific recommendations, you need to give us a budget.

Vttraveler Mar 28th, 2010 08:19 AM

I think you will find apartments in Rome give you much better value for the money. We had a very good experience renting through which has affordable apartments and a very helpful owner. He is a native English speaker so it is very easy to communicate via email.

We rented a 2 BR apartment in the Jewish ghetto neighborhood and really liked it, but you would probably want something smaller.

J62 Mar 28th, 2010 08:23 AM

I too love the space and privacy we get in an apartment, and stay in them whenever I can in the US or overseas. I don't need the convenience of a concierge or a front desk, and I really like the ability to self cater breakfasts, store lunch items, or pick up goodies at the local market for a few eat at home dinners.

This is especially true when we travel with the kids, but also true when I travel alone.

Mimar have given you some good tips to find agencies or apartments. For a first (or any visit) to Rome I like to stay in the central historic district around the Pantheon/Piazza Navona/Campo di Fiori area.

michele_d Mar 28th, 2010 09:19 AM

Hi Mike7,
I would also vote for an apt versus a hotel. We stayed in various apts during our three month stay in Europe last year and much preferred them to hotels. It's your own little space to come to during the day and it's a nice option to shop at the local markets and cook for yourselves. Eating is a bit cheaper this way also.

Rome is beautiful, you will love it!


charnees Mar 28th, 2010 11:58 AM

And you can eat breakfast in your "jammies"!

If you are on a budget, and you stay in inexpensive hotels, the breakfasts can be pretty bad -- stale pastry, packaged cheese and jelly, nasty coffee that's been overboiled (I think they think Americans like it that way).

By shopping at a nearby small shop, like a bakery, etc. you can get much better food. And after a day or two the shopkeepers recognize you and and nice and friendly.

For apartments, try and We have used both and have had almost 100% good experiences.

mike7 Mar 28th, 2010 11:59 AM

Thanks for the responses. I think we will go with the apartment. We would like to stay in the historic district, I would also like to keep the apt under E110-120/night. If the place is worth it we would consider going over our budget.

tedgale Mar 28th, 2010 12:50 PM

We are committed renters and have rented in Rome in each of the last 5 years.

One small glitch, for a first time renter, is the matter of rendezvous-ing with the rental agent. Some rental companies can be quite boring about this and it is better to be aware in advance.

I have read in these pages of agents who showed up quite late. It has happened to me, when I was quite pressed for time. The agent (25 minutes late) was unapologetic about having left us in the street for that time with our luggage.

That cavil aside, there is no downside to renting that I can think of, unless you get a crummy apartment.

BTW: Companies often ask you to specify your arrival time well in advance. Then they say "but call so-and-so on your mobile when you arrive in Rome, to confirm."

I have declined to do this.

I tell them "I will be there at X pm and if there is any problem, THEN I will buy a phone card, find one of those (highly elusive) public telephones and call you." They were OK with that.

The last 2 times we have stayed with Rome Capital Apartments, who have given us complete satisfaction. We rent a wonderful apartment and got a great off-season rate earlier this month -- 104 E/ night.

Unfortunately, October is high season so that rate is not available. But Rome Capital Apartments does sometime offer last minute deals; I get notices automatically because I am on some kind of mailing list. I suggest you check them out.

You can also ask them for deals; last time I asked for a small price break and got it. They are on Skype, which is great.

I have also dealt with Rental in Rome and with Sleepinitaly, both of which were fine to deal with. Of the two, Sleepinitaly has the higher level of public-satisfaction, from what I have read here.

FWIW: Here is the apt we rented; I fear that in Oct the price is around 160 E but you never know what deals may come open.

Tiber-view one bedroom apartment with 2 terraces, located at Lungotevere Marzio 10,(104 E/ night off-season rate) -

annhig Mar 28th, 2010 12:53 PM

hi mike,

we got back from a week in rome about a month ago, staying in this apartment: it advertises itself as 2 beds for 4 which it is, technically, but it is ideal for 2 or 3. it's a private let, and the french owner, catherine, is very easy to deal with. it's very convenient for most of the principle sights, being just across the bridge from castel san angelo, and near a lot of good local restaurants. AND it's quiet. for more details click on my screen-name and go to my Rome Trip -report.

we paid about €120 per night inclusive of all electricity, cleaning, etc., and she didn't charge any extra for the fact we were arriving at 10pm, like lots of the agencies do.

we had a great time, and I agree with all the advantages other posters have set out.

have a great trip,

regards, ann

tedgale Mar 28th, 2010 12:57 PM

One additional note: Imagine WHAT a joy it is, at the end of a trip, to have access to a washing machine! I have reduced the volume of my luggage by nearly 50% since we started renting.

We did 2.5 weeks in Italy this month with one 20 inch rolling suitcase each + a smallish backpack/ bag with handles each (for shoes 'n stuff). And that carried a full gamut, from bluejeans to Prada and Zegna.

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