St. Regis Grand, Rome
No less than the famous César Ritz opened this luxury hotel in Rom in 1894. After a 35 million dollar renovation in the beginning of the 21st century, the hotel reopened in January 2000. The hotel has 161 rooms, including one Designer and one Royal Suite, 15 Junior and 6 Ambassador Suites and 41 Imperial, 64 Deluxe and 33 Superior Rooms.
The hotel is situated in walking distance to Rome’s Main Station “Statione Temini”, the next subway is “Piazza della Repubblica”. Villa Borghese, Via Veneto, Spanish Steps and “Fontana die Trevi” are also in walking distance. The hotel itself is a five floor building in Palazzo Style with the entrance to “Via Vittorio Emanuel Orlando”.
After you entered the hotel you are in the lobby, right hand side is the reception / concierge desk, left hand side the staircase and two elevators and the entry to the “Vivendo” Retaurant.
In the lobby hall is “Le Grand Bar”, one of the World best bars (“Newsweek” magazine). In the rear part of the hotel is the old elevator, carefully restored and still in function. By the way, the only elevator, which reaches the fifth floor, were the small fitness facilities and the two saunas (one for each gender !) is located. The facilities are modern, but this part is small. A pool etc. is missing, a contribute the old hotel building.
The interior of the hotel is imperial style with nice paintings at the wall and on the ceiling. The staircases also offer some nice ornaments and it is worth to take the stairs instead of the elevator.
Stays: 30 July 2005
Arrival Date: 30th July 2005
Departure Date: 31st July 2005
Room type booked: Superior
Rate Plan: Special Rate
Room Number: 416 (?)
Room Rate: 260.00 EUR / night
Status of Guest Program: Gold
Sometimes hotels offer very good rate for special dates. If this happened the same time Lufthansa has a “Ready to fly” offer to this destination it is very tempting to book a night in this hotel. This happened in July for the last weekend of July and therefore a friend and I decided to give the St Regis Grand in Rome a try.
We arrived at the hotel round about 13.00. Check in took more time than usual and we were not told about the possible problems. At least to me, this first impression was not the best at all. It is annoying when the staff disappears several times and did not inform you why it took such a long time. After check in was ready, we were accompanied to our room, my friend asked and was answered they were fully booked. I personally doubt this was the case, because they would not offer this special rate if they were fully
booked. This means, we did not get a better room than the booked category, one of the benefits of SPG Gold.
The air conditioned room was nice. Every room has another interior decoration, so no two rooms are equal.
Beside the entrance was a cupboard to store your personal belongings. The rooms consists of a small working desk with chair right hand side and a sofa with table beside. TV and minibar were placed in a large board. The small bed with two small bedside tables was okay. Nice paintings above the bed and the sofa gave the room a nice impression. The furniture was old styled, LAN connections are hidden and visible only on the second view if you sit at the working desk.
The bathroom consists of a bathtub with separate shower, two bash basins, toilet and bidet. The bathroom mirror was heated, but a hairdryer was missing. The bathroom amenities were by Hermès and partly refilled by turndown service. Towels for two persons and two bathrobes are placed in the bathroom.
The negative side, housekeeping entered the room two times, though the “Do not disturb” sign were turned on and late check out requested during check in was confirmed by a telephone call some seventy minutes prior to check out time. It seems, between housekeeping and the staff at the reception desk was a lack of communication. This should not happen in a hotel which such a reputation.
Check out was fast, but one had to request a copy of the bill. We were also not asked about our satisfaction with our stay in this hotel.
The hotel is nice and you enter another world if you stay in this hotel. No uniformed rooms and features, the St Regis offer some individual old fashioned style (honestly, on the second view St Regis is still a hotel chain at all). But to me housekeeping ignoring the wishes of hotel guests not to be disturbed is the worst what could happen, especially by a hotel in the top luxury segment. I will give the hotel a second try – alone or accompanied by a friend – if I am able to get a good rate.