When it comes to grande bellezza views, the best address in the house goes to the Hassler. It’s no surprise that generations of fans, many rich and famous (Tom Cruise, Jennifer Lopez, Sharon Stone, and the Beckhams among them) are willing to pay top dollar to stay at this exclusive hotel. First opened in the late 1800s and run by a fifth-generation hotelier—making it one of Rome's very few luxury properties to remain in private hands—the Hassler hits you with old-world elegance the moment you enter. From top dining to an intimate spa, the Hassler pulls out all the stops in its prime central Rome location atop the Spanish Steps.
YOU SHOULD KNOW When entering the Hassler, be prepared to dress the part. The discerning staff pride themselves on exclusivity.
Guest rooms are whimsically decorated, each room unique in decor and artwork. Rooms are spacious in accordance with the high price tags. Penthouses can easily climb into the 5-digit range per night, but small standard rooms at the back, while still costly, will spare you the VIP prices. All rooms feature a minibar, international newspapers, Wi-Fi and a safe. Many also have a walk-in closet. High-end textiles and furnishings throughout are all Italian made, commissioned in a mixture of soothing colors like taupe, green and gold.
The Hassler Penthouse, one of Rome's most luxurious booking options, features two master bedrooms, each with a panoramic terrace, a living room with a grand piano, a fully-equipped kitchen and a private elevator with direct access to the suite.
Bathrooms throughout are exquisitely designed in marble and tiles. A full range of products from the Amorvero SPA range are included as well as bathrobes and slippers. Bathtubs are huge and some rooms also have walk-in showers.
The lobby is bright and shiny in head to toe golden marble. There are a variety of displays from nearby designer shops. And tons of staff are on hand to make sure you don't lift a finger when checking in.
The Amorvero Spa is a quiet haven away from the crowds with specialty facials and massages using their signature line of products. There's also a small sauna and steam bath available.
A small fitness room has cardio machines and weights, and they also have a personal trainer available to book.
The Michelin-starred rooftop restaurant, Imago, combines a stunning view of the ancient city with a contemporary menu of Mediterranean classics. You can't go wrong with the Mediterranean Sea tasting menu, which blends top fish and crustacean dishes with various types of seaweed. They also offer a vegetarian tasting menu. Try to book a corner table for the best sunset view.
A taxi stand out front will take you wherever you need to go. But being right in the center of Rome, you'll be able to walk to most hotspots. The Spagna metro stop is a one-minute walk away. And the hotel's free electric shuttle will escort you to nearby shopping destinations.
Due Ladroni (12-minute walk) is an upscale Neapolitan restaurant with perfect seafood dishes. You can sit outside and enjoy the view overlooking Piazza Nicosia. Il Falchetto (13-minute walk) stays true to classic Roman recipes in a beautifully designed open space. End your meal with the pistachio tiramisu.
Baccano (10-minute walk) has a gorgeous wood-paneled bar inside. While they draw in a crowd for their oysters, their drinks are the real draw. Try the espresso martini, a new Italian classic. Salotto42 (13-minute walk) is an intimate lounge with huge velvet sofas and infused drinks, perfect for date night.
WHY WE LIKE IT
The Hotel Hassler is grand on every level from its luxurious Michelin-starred restaurant to the carefully chosen antiques and art throughout the hotel and its individually-designed rooms. While their service carries with it a certain degree of pretension, they have the right degree of exclusivity to attract the most discerning patrons, which makes it popular with visiting celebrities as well as travelers with cash to burn. The location at the top of the Spanish Steps can't be beat, especially if shopping your way through Rome is top on your agenda.