Monday, April 16, 2012

iQ Hotel Roma, Rome, Italy

We stayed at the iQ Hotel Roma at Via Firenze n. 8. This is literally across the street from the Rome opera, Teatro dell'Opera. Often we would hear the orchestra. The iQ Hotel is new and very nice. While the lobby is air-conditioned the rooms are not but were comfortable when we were there in early October. There are reasonably priced vending machines available and a nice roof terrace. There is free (for guests) Wi-Fi available throughout the building.

Their web site is here and their write-up on TripAdvisor is here.

We decided to avoid the taxis at Rome's Fiumicino airport and booked a limo with Rome Shuttle Limousine for 40€. That is actually less than taxi fare and we had a driver waiting for us in the arrivals lounge and a shiny new black Mercedes to the front door of the hotel. I strongly recommend this. Rome Shuttle's web site is here. We also used Rome Shuttle Limousine on our departure from Rome to Cinque Terre as it was much cheaper to book a rental car round trip from Fiumicino than to pick it up in Rome and drop it back at Fiumicino.

We had stayed in this area of Rome on our previous trip at Welcome House at Via Nazionale, 230. It appears that they are no longer open. No great loss.

This area is very near Termini station and we again took bus #110 for an orientation ride. The write-up on TripAdvisor is here. Don't be swayed as you walk toward the train station. The sidewalks are full of booths offering bus tours. Most are actually more expensive than the 18€ per person for #110. The #110 tickets are valid for 48 hours so we actually used it instead of a taxi for 2 days. It was not always the most direct route but it was dependable and familiar. The downstairs seating section, while not a good viewpoint, is air-conditioned. From the upper section the view was more exciting.

Someone later made fun of us for buying the #110 tickets. She said that nobody pays to ride the buses. Still navigating the bus routes was too much for us. Another piece of advice she offered was to make sure that the taxi drivers don't have the meter set on zone #2. Every ride in the center city should be zone #1 which is cheaper.

One night we had dinner at nearby Ristorante del Giglio Via Torino, 137 for 60€. Their web site is here.

We often found ourselves here having gelato at the end of a long day. It is so European to sit at a sidewalk table and enjoy ice cream.

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