Hotel San Anselmo Rome

Nov 9th, 2007, 10:43 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 94
Hotel San Anselmo Rome

I have been looking for a week now for a hotel in Rome and have emailed many hotels. Hotel San Anselmo seems stunning and they offered me a great rate (149 E a night). However, I am worried that this hotel may be too far away/off the beaten path. Can I walk to the main tourist places from this hotel (without freezing, in January)? We are only in Rome for 3 days. Should I stay in the Piazza Navona area? I have been looking but can't find anything nearly as nice for that price. Any advice would be much appreciated. Thank you.
rr229 is offline  
Nov 9th, 2007, 11:09 AM
Join Date: Oct 2007
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Hi rr, I know what you mean. I've looked at Hotel San Anselmo several times for previous trips to Rome because it does look lovely; it gets great reviews and the rates (for all that) seem really reasonable.

But in the end, I've never stayed there because I think it would be just a bit too far from most of the main sites for a comfortable walk. Especially in January! If you don't mind using transit a lot, it might not be so difficult. But I really don't like to have to rely on public transit to get around; I much prefer staying in neighborhoods where I can walk to pretty much anything. That includes being in a reasonable walking distance of lots of good restaurants for dinner at night.

Mind you, I'm a single woman often travelling alone. So staying close in the historic centre -- the Piazza Navona/Pantheon/Campo de'Fiori area -- means I can stroll around after dinner and feel safe because there are many people out. And there's the convenience factor. During the day, if I'm sight-seeing or shopping and my shoes are uncomfortable or I'm wearing too heavy or too light a coat; or, if I just want to dash back to my room to drop something off, it's very easy to do.

The Anselmo isn't terribly far out. But if the weather is chilly or wet and you have to stand around waiting for buses, it might hold you back from doing some things. And because your time in Rome is limited, I think you'd enjoy your stay more if you find a hotel (or an apartment) smack in the middle of things!

BTW, I'm not sure exactly when in January you're in Rome, but I'll be there for two weeks and I've noticed a lot of places are offering good discounts. Mind you, that's after the Jan. 6 holiday....

Best of luck!
sacc is offline  
Nov 11th, 2007, 06:12 AM
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Thanks. I am still not sure what to do...I am looking at more centrally located hotels.
rr229 is offline  
Nov 11th, 2007, 07:15 AM
Join Date: Mar 2007
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I've stayed at the San Anselmo, and a friend just came back from a stay there. So here are some comments!

In good weather you could hardly find a nice vantage point: I had windows overlooking trees and villa rooftops, and woke to the sound of birds and the occasional neighbor's dog, rather than buses and other traffic; and at night, quiet unbroken by loud people - tourists or otherwise - on the street.

The Aventine is upscale, beautiful, a little like going home to a villa in the hills around Florence ... a million miles from the bustle of the center of Rome. But not a million miles away at all. The San Anselmo is a closer walk to the Colosseum or Campidoglio and Forum than would be a hotel up behind the Steps. And very close to Testaccio's good "local" restaurants, Trastevere's sights and restaurants etc. The Porta Portese flea market is very close on Sunday morning if that interests you!

Some mornings we'd like to start out by having a cab pick us up at the hotel (using the concierge for this is a great little luxury - cabs are not particularly expensive in Rome, and we could start our day at a distant location, working our way back through the day. It was a great plan, for instance, to take a cab to the Vatican Museums first thing in the AM, then make the day's other stops follow a loose line back to the Aventine.)

A pleasant shortcut by foot from the S Anselmo takes you by Santa Sabina and through lovely Parco di S. Allessio = there's a charming footpath above and parallel to Lungotavere Aventino, that deposits you basically down at S. Maria in Cosmedin (Bocca di Verita site).

Nutshell, if you like the idea of an elegant neighborhood off the beaten path (though every Roman path has been beaten, almost by definition!) it won't feel too far away.

BUT - in very cold or wet weather it could be less charming. Needing to find a taxi in various areas of Rome my turn into a problem to get back quickly, etc.

My friend reports it's still beautifully operated, with excellent service, and absolutely beautiful new bathrooms. To my taste (and his) the new room decor is over the top: it's dark and heavy and "boutique-y" in a rather oppressive way, contrary to the pleasant lightness of 5 or 6 years ago. I hope their next re-do will roll back the color scheme. It's bizarre to have the light and air and beautiful views of the Aventine outside your window and the over-decorated "richness" within. But the same group owns the neighboring Hotel Aventino, with much calmer decor and slightly lower prices. (More taxi money leftover?)

Bottom line, rr229, with just 3 days and in Jan, I might suggest someplace else.

Look at The Forum, across the street from ... the Forum. Many people like staying near the Pantheon - that certainly is the center. Don't have a recommendation, but I'm sure you'll find some good ones here. Fact is, in January the comfort of the room is important, since you may be retreating from an uncomfortable environment outside! But if a place has sound-resistant windows, noise is less an issue since you'll have them shut. And there will likely be less street noise in the form of outdoor crowds at cafes, etc.
tomassocroccante is offline  
Nov 11th, 2007, 02:28 PM
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