Detailed review by bluejules
Northumberland, United Kingdom
My dad booked our recent holiday to Rome, over the Internet he chose the hotel that we stayed in. We have never stayed in a Crowne Plaza before (but have stayed in a Holiday Inn, which is the same chain of hotels) and we thought it looked nice.
We got a taxi from the airport (Ciampino) which took about 30 minutes. We booked the taxi before we left England, to pick us up from the airport and it was charged to our bill.
Upon arriving at the hotel, it looked nice and clean. We walked into the reception with our luggage and joined the queue for check-in. There was only a couple of receptionists so the queue took a while to go down. About ten minutes later it was our turn. We got our key cards and made our way to the room we had been given. Despite there being Bellmen there no one helped us with our luggage. We took the lift to the 3rd floor and walked to the room. When we entered, we realised that it was much smaller than the one we had booked. We had booked an adjoining room and this was just a single room. The maid kindly let us use the telephone to phone reception. They apologised for their mistake and said they would send someone with the key cards to the correct room and to help us with our luggage immediately. Fifteen minutes later a bellman came with his trolley to show us to our room. This time it was the correct one!
As I previously mentioned, we had adjoining rooms. They both had a bathroom, bed (mine was a bed settee, and it was a queen size bed in my parents room), table, minibar, trouser press, draws, TV, wardrobe, safety deposit box (the one in my room did not work) and tea and coffee making facilities. Both of the rooms were air conditioned - pure bliss in the heat of Rome! We had a balcony each as well, which were separated by a wall.
At first glance the décor of the rooms was pleasant and the rooms looked clean and comfortable. The rooms were in desperate need of redecoration. The wallpaper was coming off in the corners and there was a hole in the material of the settee in my parent's room. There was also a hole in the cover of my parent's bed. The ceilings were badly painted and there were a couple of stains on the carpet. The door handle on the balcony of my parents room kept falling off!!
Despite all of this though the room was comfortable and cleaned daily.
Pool - the pool was clean and it was a decent size. The depth went from 1.4m to 3.8m. The use of the sun-loungers and towels were free.
Spa - we didn't use the spa but there was a Roman Bath (free use) and a fitness centre (we looked here, it looked clean and tidy and the equipment looked good). You could also get treatments (massages etc), you needed to pay for these.
Internet - there were three computers in the reception area. These were for Internet use only. You needed to purchase a card (about £7 an hour, this did not need to be used all in one sitting) to get a user name and password. I use this facility to keep in touch with my family and friends, as it was cheaper than phoning each of them individually.
Shop - this was located in the reception area. We didn't go inside, as looking in the window prices seemed expensive. There was a bracelet in the shop window, which cost over 9000 Euro (approximately £6300) and it didn't even look anything special.
Concierge - there was a concierge desk but I only once seen someone sitting there the whole 10 days we were there. Trips could be booked at this desk but as there was no one there we booked our trip to Pompeii at the reception.
Pool bar - this was located near the pool (what a surprise!) and it served food, drinks and ice-cream throughout the day. It was overpriced for the food that you got. For example, approximately £5 for three scoops of home-made ice-cream and £6 for hotdog and chips.
I ordered a plate of chips and when they came the waitress asked if I wanted a fork, I said yes please, but she didn't bother bringing it (what was the point of asking?!)
Restaurant - we did not eat in the restaurant as a set menu was £35 per person for two courses (excluding drinks) so with three of there it would cost £100 just for the food!
We had no problems during check-out. The bill was correct and we made payment quickly. The bellboy helped take our suitcases outside to the taxi.
Room prices vary depending on when you go but start from around £70 per night.
Crowne Plaza is located 3km from Rome centre, there was a courtesy bus to take guests from the hotel to Vatican City or Rome Centre, several times a day. We found this was a cheap (obviously!) convenient way to travel to the city. We did get a taxi back on a few occasions, which cost £6-£7 depending whereabouts in the city you got picked up. We did travel in the courtesy bus as much as possible but sometimes we wanted to travel different times to the bus.
This hotel is ideal for business or leisure. They have 321 bedrooms and they have conference rooms as well.
Overall, despite poor service at times and the rooms needing redecorated we did have a pleasant stay. However, if I was returning to Rome I don't think this would be a hotel I would stay in again.
Crowne Plaza St Peter's