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Hotel City 2.5

Florence, Tuscany, Italy

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Walk to the Duomo and train station in five minutes
  • Clean and simple rooms with flat-screen TVs and minibars
  • Hotel is air-conditioned (depending on the season)
  • Free and ample continental breakfast buffet with excellent coffee
  • Small Art Nouveau cocktail bar and lounge
  • Property is well-insulated from outdoor noise
  • Free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel
  • Pet-friendly (for a fee)

Cons

  • Room style is dated and TVs are small
  • Some Single Rooms lack en-suite bathrooms

Bottom Line

Hotel City is a clean and well-maintained value option that's only a five-minute walk from both Santa Maria Novella train station and the Duomo. The 20 rooms are traditional and simple, with air-conditioning, free Wi-Fi, and flat-screen TVs, though decor is a dated riff on "Tuscan." The free breakfast buffet includes a generous spread of meats, pastries, and cheeses as well as proper espresso drinks. There's also a small Art Nouveau-style cocktail bar and lounge. The nearby Universo Hotel has more modern flair, although it charges for Wi-Fi and isn't quite as spiffy and well-kept as Hotel City. 

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Scene

Simple value hotel with Florentine interiors and Art Nouveau bar 

Situated on a narrow cobblestone street not far from Florence's central train station, Hotel City occupies a three-story building painted Tuscan yellow with gray trim and stained-glass accents. It's a classic look, to be sure, and is continued inside -- the hotel's elegant lobby has vaulted ceilings and accents including Renaissance-style statuary, a wooden credenza, and gilt-framed Renaissance paintings. Wrought iron railings, stained glass windows, and marble floors complete the somewhat exuberant look. The lobby is a fine enough place to sit and plan the day, but the cocktail bar is even more interesting, as it has a lovely Art Nouveau look with an atrium ceiling and lounge seating. It has a bit more atmosphere for anyone wanting space to kick back with a glass of wine. The hotel has been helmed by the same family since 1976, and attracts price-minded couples and tourists looking for something a bit nicer than budget-basic in terms of style.

Location

In San Lorenzo, a five-minute walk to the Duomo and train station

Hotel City is in central Florence's busy San Lorenzo district, which is known for its indoor/outdoor market. There are plenty of shops, restaurants, and bars in the neighborhood, and guests will also have no trouble accessing the city's main sights on foot. The Basilica di San Lorenzo is less than a two-minute walk from the hotel. For those arriving by train, the Santa Maria Novella train station is only a five-minute walk from the hotel, while the Duomo -- one of the city's most famous sights -- is also just five minutes away on foot. As the cradle of the Renaissance, there's plenty of art to see in Florence, including Michelangelo's "David" at the Galleria dell'Accademia (a 10-minute walk) plus paintings by Da Vinci, Raphael, Botticelli, and other masters at the Uffizi Gallery (a 12-minute walk from the hotel). The Ponte Vecchio bridge -- a photogenic spot on the Arno River -- is also a 12-minute stroll, while the graves of Michelangelo and Galileo at Basilica of Santa Croce will take 15 minutes to reach on foot. It's a 15 to 20 minute drive to Florence's Airport depending on traffic.

Rooms

Clean and simple, but dated, with minibars and marble bathrooms

Hotel City offers Single, Double, Triple, and Quadruple Rooms, but despite difference in shape, size, and number of beds, there's not much to distinguish them in terms of style. Decor is homey and a bit dated, with mid-tone wood furniture such as armoires, desks, and headboards connected to nightstands. Floral-pattern bedspreads are standard, and fresco-like landscape paintings hang on the walls, adding a bit of traditional Florentine style. Brown tile floors are decorated with small area rugs, and charming wall-mounted bedside lamps lend some cozy ambience. All rooms are well soundproofed against city noise outside, though some noise from neighbors may be heard.

Each room has a writing desk, above which hangs a small flat-screen TV. Minibars and hot water kettles are provided, and rooms are air-conditioned depending on the season -- a bonus in Florence's warm summers. All rooms also include free Wi-Fi. Bathrooms are tiled in gray Carrara marble with navy blue accents -- these look mostly modern compared to the main body of the rooms, and include small walk-in showers and old-school wall-mounted hairdryers. Toiletries and towels are provided, and there's a decent amount of space around the sinks. Some Single Rooms have private external bathrooms, while all others have private en-suite bathrooms. 

Features

Free continental breakfast buffet, cocktail bar, and 24-hour reception

As a small, urban value hotel, Hotel City has few facilities. Its key amenity is the breakfast buffet, which is free and well-liked by most guests. The spread consists of cold cuts, cheese, hard-boiled eggs, pastries, breads, cereals, yogurt, fresh fruit, hot chocolate, tea, and juice. Coffee -- made with proper espresso -- is a highlight. There's also a sharp Art Nouveau bar that serves cocktails, beer, and wine in the evening. The hotel has laundry facilities and provides tourist assistance. A safe deposit box is available at the 24-hour front desk, and there's nearby parking for a fee. Hotel City is pet-friendly for a fee. Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel. The hotel can help arrange all manner of tour bookings and travel needs, including bicycle and car rentals. 

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Address

Via Sant'Antonino 18, San Lorenzo District, Florence 50123, Italy

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