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Good location in Rome, for a group with a 2-year old.

Good location in Rome, for a group with a 2-year old.

Mar 25th, 2012, 03:26 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 344
Good location in Rome, for a group with a 2-year old.

I've been doing my homework, and have decided to rent an apartment in central Rome for 8 days over Thanksgiving ... with my husband; my son, his wife, and the Princess Grand Baby, who will be 2 years plus change. Based on what we individually want to see, I figure we'll be tag-teaming the PGB and heading back to the apartment during the day for naps, some down-time, and if it's raining hard! I've got several apartments bookmarked in Trastevere (on the river, across from Tiber Island), Campo de Fiori, and Navona-Pantheon. Hard to tell from maps if areas are hilly but, having pushed strollers around San Francisco, I'd prefer a home base on flat ground. Would appreciate any suggestions or recommendations, other than pointing out that November is not a great month to be in Rome, apartments on the 9th floor don't necessarily have elevators, and that travelling with a 2-year old is madness ...
just27 is offline  
Mar 25th, 2012, 04:16 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 19,186
PGB! I love it!

I'd go for either the Campo di Fiori or Navona/Pantheon. Trastevere is nice enough but would seem very far in the rain.

I wouldn't mind going in November at all. I'd rather be there when it's cooler and crowds are much thinner. As long as you know the PGB will have an impact on some level (but maybe less than you think and maybe not all negative), you'll have a great time. FYI, Italians love babies, so the PGB may be your introduction to some wonderful interactions with locals.

Have a great trip!
Jean is offline  
Mar 25th, 2012, 04:25 PM
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I think cobblestones are more of a problem than hills. Unless the stroller is quite sturdy it may not stand up to the bumpiness of the cobbblestones (and she's awfully big to carry all the time.)

Other parents who took strollers to Rome may make suggestions on what will work.
nytraveler is offline  
Mar 26th, 2012, 10:42 AM
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Thanks, Jean. I eliminated the Trastevere apartments, which makes decision-making much easier. We're fine with the impact a 2-year old will have on our trip. It's our 40th anniversary, and I wanted "memorable." Having the PGB in tow will definitely punch that ticket. I'm looking forward to the interactions that she might elicit from locals!

Aargh, NY ... I hadn't even thought about cobblestones. Thanks for the heads-up. A stroller would rattle her teeth right out of her head.(But, she'll get another set, later, right!?) I'm thinking that the designated baby-herder for the morning or afternoon will simply take little walks to interesting fountains or green spaces. With intermittant stops for gelato.
just27 is offline  
Mar 26th, 2012, 12:20 PM
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Look at Palazzo Olivia for location.
bobthenavigator is offline  
Mar 28th, 2012, 11:31 AM
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Thanks, bob. I'd looked at the Palazzo Olivia apartments, but they weren't big enough. As soon as I get my detailed street maps (ordered from Amazon last week), I'll focus on that area: Via dei Leutari, in the heart of Rione Parione.

The apartment is going to be more important this trip, than our usual rentals. I feel that we'll in in it more than usual, so am working up to significant angsting.
just27 is offline  
Mar 28th, 2012, 12:53 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
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What you will want most of all, I think, is an elevator and good heat, and presumably a washing machine. An elevator and good heat is much harder to find in the most antique quarters of Rome where you are looking.

Were it me, I would head over to the Rome where they have sidewalks, which would make things so much easier when it comes to going back and forth but where you would still be convenient to all the sights. I would go more for the area around the via Babuino, via del Corso, via Margutta and via Ripetta, or any of the little streets in there.
zeppole is offline  
Mar 28th, 2012, 01:27 PM
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Zeppole is right, Piazza di Spagna area is perfect area to walk with a stroller.

Also the beautiful Villa Borghese is near by..

A great place to stroll and to spend some time outdoors with a two year old.

I used to take my kids there when they were small.
kismetchimera is offline  
Mar 28th, 2012, 01:54 PM
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 9,422
Here's a nice apartment in a great location:


I had good experience renting from that agency just this past January.

If you feel like you want something with less furniture, there are other simpler apartments in the Spanish Steps area. But I would "cheat" in the direction of the river, and toward the piazza del Popolo, because the terrain slopes up toward the steps and the Borghese Gardens, and -- as you head in the opposite direction, toward the piazza Navona, you begin the lose the advantage of the smoother streets.
zeppole is offline  
Mar 28th, 2012, 02:03 PM
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This is also a great location, simpler toddler-friendly furniture, although I'm looking at those glass doors...


Anyway, if you do searches for "Spanish Steps sleeps 6 elevator" you'll come up with a lot of choices.
zeppole is offline  
Mar 29th, 2012, 04:53 PM
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All very helpful, many thanks! My street maps arrived today, and I've been checking out the various recommended areas. The Spanish Steps, and up to Piazza del Popolo, will give me more options; but I still find myself favoring the Navona - Campo dei Fiori locations. I've found options with washing machines and elevators, and I can't imagine that something with any sort of heat would be colder than my son's house in the Oakland Hills, during winter!

One challenge seems to be finding an apartment without lethal stairs between the bedrooms and living area. There are some with lovely terraces and views ... but with wide open staircases and no rails. I've been looking around EUR300 p/night, which seems to be possible in the low season.

Our group plans to split up during the day, and each take turns with the PGB, planning little outings, close to the apartment. This would allow the others to visit whatever is on their lists.

zeppole: those apartments look great, and toddler-friendly. Thanks. Good to know that you had a positive experience with romeloft. I've also been looking at lodjee, rentalinrome, sleepinitaly, romanreference, and italy-accom.
just27 is offline  
Mar 29th, 2012, 10:58 PM
Join Date: Mar 2012
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Pizza Novana is quite favorable as its city square as well. You can look at http://www.lodjee.com/bernini-2-bedr...rome-apartment with 2 bedrooms and I find that your family would be easily adjustable. However its on first floor but elevator is an additional solution for it. Also its a walking distance to Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Campo de Fiori, Piazza di Spagna, the Trevi Fountain, the Vatican. Moreover its also easily accessible. I found it quite in accordance with your requirements.
lizypatrick32 is offline  
Apr 6th, 2012, 03:59 AM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 364
We just returned from an extended weekend in Rome, staying at the Palazzo Olivia - 3rd floor, double bedroom, double bath apartment. (American 4th floor). We were 2 couples who had a 12 month old in tow with Freddie Bauer Stroller--it was a life saver, as was the elevator! We had a most enjoyable stay and I have no problem recommending it to families with small children.
Back room is quieter. Front room gets some noise, i.e. church bells, but was big enough to hold the portable baby bed we brought with us, and still leave room to walk around for parents.

Pros: Centrally located, very helpful and accommodating staff fluent in English, arranged our shuttle pickup/return for us (extrememly safe driver, very professional demeanor) Two bedrooms & their bathrooms located at opposite ends of appartment (kitchen, salon between them) which allow for more privacy. Allowed late checkout for fee since no one else was checking in that day after us. Piazza Navonna and Campo de'Fiori are only 10 minutes on foot, Vatican is 15-20 but there is taxi stand and public bus just around the corner as well. High ceilings and windows increase light and add to impression of space. Big refrigerator. They even had a kids shower kit with frog sponge and gentle soap as well as foot slippers in the bathrooms. Staff is accessible by phone at any time and responded to our call immediately. No problem using WIFI. Big plasma screen tv with several languages to choose from. Adequate storage space available. Security not an issue.

Con: Kitchen is utilitarian, which suited us fine as we used it for breakfast and snacking only. Not for a Gourmet chef planning on doing lavish meals. Salon area is small with eating table w/chairs and two living room cloth covered chairs with coffee table between them. Beds are very firm, much firmer than we like, but both my husband and I commented on how we actually woke up with less aches and pains than usual...so maybe that's a good thing? No washer, but has drying rack and ironing board/iron.

We didn't spend much time in the apartment so it was perfect for us. The street it is on is quite narrow, more like an alley, mainly just a place for motorcycles to park. Street is definitely not pretty, but the surrounding architecture and area make up for it. (pronounced lay-oo-tar-ee)

Our stroller was big, so wouldn't fit it the elevator unless we collapsed it. Baby loved the jostling and actually sang to himself as we jostled over the cobblestones. Many restaurants made room for the stroller in the restaurant or we ate outside on their terrasse. A few (Da Baffetto, for one, wouldn't take us because of the little one; Baffetto #2 near Campo de'Fiori had no problem accepting us)

Stroller was great except for the Vatican Museums--too many stairs/small areas. We had a kangaroo pouch-style pack that mom carried baby in instead. Worked great for that half-day. Relied on taxis but established approx. price in advance. Twice we were told 18-20 euros for a return trip that we knew from the previous trip had cost us under 7 euros. They held firm, so we just went to the next taxi who took us instead...for under the 7 euros on the meter.

Hope this helps in your planning.
klondiketoo is offline  
Apr 7th, 2012, 11:10 AM
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Thanks for the great post, klondiketoo. I also gleaned a lot of information from a couple of your other topics, including some gems from Sally30. (Lots of cutting/pasting to my desktop.) I keep going back and looking at the Palazzo Olivia apartments, but they feel too small for 8 nights. (And, I don't want to be out looking for a laundromat!) While I don't plan on fixing any complex meals, we do enjoy shopping at markets and charcuteries, and having the occasional lunch or dinner in the apartment. I've looked at a few rentals with terraces for outdoor dining, but it's probably going to be too cold in late November. Plus, the terrace apartments don't look toddler safe. It's good to note that your stroller worked fine on the cobblestones. I noticed that a couple of apartments offered loaner strollers, in addition to a baby bed.

Lizy - thanks for the link. Looks nice, but we need two bathrooms. I'd also worry about the open stairs, with the bambina; she's quite the climber already, and needs watching like a hawk.

Great recommendation, from Sally30's trip report (I think):
Don’t major on the minors.
just27 is offline  
Apr 7th, 2012, 12:13 PM
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 2,184
I have no more advice to add except to say you aren't crazy! We took our (then) two year old to Rome in November and it was great. He ate pizza and gelato nonstop. The Italians went nuts for him. At the time we were sure that was just for our amazing and adorable son but my friend just returned (with her two year old) and said the same thing. She even had waitstaff carrying him around the restaurant and into the kitchen!

We stayed in an apt but the dimensions were smaller and it wouldn't suit your needs.

We used our peg perego stroller and it was fine. The vibrations from the cobblestones (or a tummy full of pizza and gelato) put him right to sleep!

Have fun!
BKP is offline  
Apr 7th, 2012, 10:46 PM
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BKP: No, seriously, I'm quite certain it was your amazing and adorable son that charmed the Romans! I'm really looking forward to being in Rome with the PGB. Not so much the air travel to get there.
just27 is offline  

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