Some travel books say that the Region of Lazio gets little attention — other than having the capital city of the country, Roma. Yes, Rome is the centre of activity and attention for this Region but there are many other sights to see. Some can be done as a day trip from Rome. But, do yourself a favour and travel around the Region as a travel plan in itself. The Region Includes the cities of Bolsena, Frosinone, Latina, Rieti, Roma, Sperlonga, Tivoli, Viterbo
Places to Stay
Accommodations (Lazio Region)
Restaurants (Lazio Region)
via del Viminale, 15
2009 - In 2009 we had the pleasure of once again staying at the Hotel Columbia. Sitting on the roof-top patio, we enjoyed our visit with hotel owner, Patrizia Diletti, who continues to take a discreet hands-on approach to operating this very stylish boutique hotel. This was our second visit to the hotel, and we will be sure to return.
We found the hotel’s access to two metro lines to be very helpful on this visit. After a full day of walking. it was nice to be able to hop on the metro from the Coliseum and within minutes arrive at the the Termini station stop. It just emphasized the ease of getting from the train station to the hotel if someone wanted to walk rather than taking a taxi. It is that close!!
On our 2008 trip to Rome we stayed at the Hotel Columbia. What a treat!! Owner, Patrizia Diletto has gone to great lengths to make a stay here very comfortable.
We stayed in one of the Double/ Triple Superior rooms and had a king size bed with a chaise that could accommodate a third person. It was a very large room with luxurious and tasteful upholstery and trims. In each room hangs a beautiful Venetian chandelier.
Our friends stayed in a Double Superior room and they were also delighted with the accommodations.
We had the chance to inspect some of the standard rooms which varied in size and shape. The difference is mainly the decor... the standard room being more classic and not having the brocade draperies, etc. Otherwise, the amenities and comfort level is the same.
Patrizia did mention that they have standard rooms smaller than what she was able to show me. Later, we saw a smaller room which may have been of the size that she was referring to and it looked not unlike many that would be offered in Rome. Saying that, we recommend either the Superior or the Standard without hesitation. If room size for the Standard room is a concern, you should address this at the time of booking or book a Superior.
The management has thought of everything from a lint brush in the closet to a scale in the bathroom. Not that we wanted to step on a scale at that point in our trip, but some might want to! It is these thoughtful things that make the Hotel Columbia special.
From the insignia on all the linens, including the carpet, to the "a la carte" pillow service which allows you to order the type of pillow you like... it all has the makings of a "boutique hotel" at half the price.
Just as the rooms are tastefully furnished, the common areas such as the breakfast room and lounge are furnished with the same care and attention. Since it was cool while we were there in September, breakfast was served in the lovely bright breakfast room. In warmer weather, breakfast may be had on the roof top garden terrace... one of the main features that drew us to the Hotel Columbia. The terrazzo, with it's good quality outdoor tables and chairs, is even more beautiful than seen on the web site. What a bonus for a hotel in a bustling city...an oasis in the sky! A beautiful place to enjoy a glass of wine or coffee. After dropping off our bags, we made our way to the 5th floor terrazzo and enjoyed a bottle of prosecco. It couldn't have been a nicer way to greet Rome! The bar is open well into the evening so a nightcap is possible after dinner. We were pleasantly surprised to see that their bar prices were very reasonable.
Breakfast consisted of a nice assortment of cakes, breads, croissants, meats, cheese's and even eggs. We enjoyed the very pleasant surroundings, the staff were helpful and we are always happy to have our juice in a glass & not plastic! The roof top terrazzo and lounge are just off the breakfast room and create a very inviting experience. A computer is available in the lounge & time can be purchased at the front desk. Along with the guest computer comes a printer so don't forget to ask for a piece of paper if you plan to book your "boarding pass" for home.
We found the hotel staff to be most accommodating in helping with our requests. We tried a couple of their recommended restaurants and even went back to one of them a second time. Both were excellent. The overall appearance of the hotel interior is bright, clean and updated. They have installed a beautiful chrome and glass elevator which is a nice change from the ones that you have to send your luggage up on it's own!
The Columbia is located a few blocks from the Piazza del Repubblica and the Metro stop at that location. It is also a short distance from the Termini Station which is convenient for train travelers. Since Termini is the Metro interchange for the two lines, it is easy to get to different areas quickly.
We used the hotel's taxi service to the airport and found it to be more reasonable than some hotels. We had a very early Saturday morning departure; the taxi got us there in 30 minutes.
2008 was our first visit to the Hotel Columbia and it will undoubtedly not be our last!
Via Rasella, 29.
Tel. +39 06 4881637 Fax +39 06 4817044
It has been a number of years since we last stayed here in 2002.. We found the staff are very friendly and made every effort to look after us. The location of the hotel is great. Our only word of caution is that if you are told you are getting a small room, it is very small. We moved to a larger room as the small room was too confining. The rooms are nicely decorated.
Located in the heart of Rome it is very close to the Trevi Fountain, Spanish Square, Barberini Square and the famous Via Veneto. The hotel, with 33 rooms. Breakfast is included.
In the last few years we have planned longer stays in Rome, and used Rental in Rome to find an apartment to rent. They have provided good service and indeed, the apartments we have stayed in have been very nice.
via M. Dionigi, 16
The doorway leads to either the stairs or the elevator that takes you to the 1st floor of this old building in Rome. We used the Hotel Sant' Angelo as our base in Rome for the meeting of the Amalfi Group. The staff went out of their way to assist with the various arrangements. The staff are friendly, Claudio, Mauro and Antonio are just great and lots of fun. Tell them you are a referral from Marcus!
The hotel has a great location. It is located near the Vatican and with a short walk across the Ponte Cavour you are on your way to the Spanish Steps (15-20 minutes), the Piazza Navona and the other sites.
There are both Standard and Superior Rooms. We recommend booking the Superior Class rooms as they are larger and more comfortable.
Unfortunately, a few years ago the owners renovated the hotel and in our view took a move in the wrong direction. Gone was the classic lobby and the breakfast room now sits right off the lobby. Who wants to see a cereal machine a few feet away from the front desk?
The rooms on the 1st and 2nd floor still have a warmth, with wood floors, however, those on the 3rd have a modern tile and are cold in appearance.
Located near the Vatican and a short walk to other sites the location is the redeeming factor with this hotel.
Via Carlo Cavina 00123 Rome (Located just outside of Rome)
(2010) When we drove up to the Castello della Castellucia in our convertible it was quite exciting to see this hotel which is not just a castello in name. It is actually dates back to the 12th century. They have 24 rooms and suites, with all the modern conveniences, and our room was stunning and very large.. They have been decorated with their history in mind including some with new fresco ceilings. We ate in two of their dining rooms and the meal was so good that we returned the next night. Their main dining room is beautiful but is often booked for weddings. Speaking of weddings, there were three large ones going on one of the evenings and one the next day. They have a chappel and it is a beautiful venue for a wedding. That being said, you must be prepared that they tend to dominate the hotel.
The beautiful terrace with the ceramic tables overlooks the olive grove. The terrace is very large and may also be used for weddings. It would be nice to have a drink up there although there did not appear to have an open bar. There is a very small bar on the main floor of the hotel and we decided not to have a drink there as it did not seem that inviting.
They have a huge pool, with lots of chaises. that is down the hill. It is quite far from the hotel and unfortunately the walk down is not very scenic. They will send a golf cart down to pick you up. The day we were there the man that was to be there attending the pool was not there and therefore no access to a phone. The walk up , even with quite a few stairs, was not overstrenuous as they are broken up by different terraces.
The hotel is situated on the ring road of Rome and is very convenient for those who want to be close to the airport for a morning car drop-off. The hotel is in what would be considered metropolitan Rome. There Is a train that connects to the metro that takes you into the centre but we did not take it so cannot address it. We dropped our rental car near the Spanish Steps and thank goodness for our GPS!! The Google Map made it seem easier than it was. This may be due to the fact that we dropped bags off at our nearby hotel but driving in Rome is nerve-wracking at best!! We also found that we were tied up in rush hour traffic as soon as we left the hotel so be sure to take this into account.
The location is also very convenient being so near the GRA to go to Tivoli (Villa Este and Hadrian’s Villa), the wine region just south of Rome and the towns north of the city.
The management and staff were very friendly and even though this review may sound a litlle mixed we would definitely stay here again.
via Germanico, 58;
Roma; Tel: (06) 39725717 | web site
This is a very good restaurant located ear the Vatican just off via Octtaviano. Check a map for the Piazza del Risorgimento and you are almost there. There are tables outside along the sidewalk or in the stylish room. The restaurant is on a residential street so sitting outside is going to be a pleasant experience.
On our September 2001 visit to Rome we had a great meal here. the Bruscetta is good. They make killer Angenotti and dishes like Saltimbocco a Romano rank right up there.
Year after year we refer people to this restaurant and we always hear back that it was one of the best restaurants they ate at while in Rome.
via Dell'Arancio, 50/52
We found this restaurant on our 2005 visit to Rome as we were walking from our hotel, Hotel Sant’ Angelo, towards the Piazza Navona and decided to cut through some of the smaller streets to get a good feel for the area. We walked by this restaurant, which is on the very small and quiet via Dell'Arancio. It was morning and the staff was sitting at the outside tables cleaning mushrooms and peeling oranges. We made a note of the address and planned to return that evening for dinner.
We did and were most impressed. It is now one of our regular eating spots when in Roma. Since eating there we found it noted in many books of great places to eat in Roma so it was more a case of us finding the restaurant as opposed to a great restaurant being found.
This is not a tourist hang-out. This is a place where the people of Roma eat. On our first visit, there was an evening reception of about 50 good friends and they mingled on the small street drinking wine before moving to their tables.
We were lucky to get an outside table and enjoyed the very good food and wine. The prices fall in the mid-range.. We started with an antipasto of Zucchini flowers and then we both had their specialty of ravioli in an orange sauce.. They were both was so good!! The steak with balsamic vinegar and topped with a heap of roasted potatoes hit the spot. We have not yet tried it, but the restaurant is known for its mixed grilled meat served on a grill at the table. For us it seems a little dangerous but it didn’t seem to bother the people having it. We have since been to this restaurant several times and the meals have been consistent. If it is a cool evening outdoors you can ask for a pad for the chairs and it is welcome as the chairs are metal. . Make a reservation if you can
Via Torino, 124 - 00187 Rome - near Piazza della Repubblica
Web Site: www.cottoroma.it
Trendy ristorante, recommended by the Hotel Columbia, just blocks away from the hotel. We ate here 2 nights in 2008 and thoroughly enjoyed the grilled meals listed under the 2nd platti.(courses). The service/bar staff were lots of fun which added to our enjoyment of the restaurant. In 2009, we again ate here twice but on these occasions found the service to be inconsistent and the food as well.
On the first evening, we had pizza and it was very watery and the topping just slid off the crust…not recommended!! . After a tiring day of wandering the city and an evening out at a operetta/concerto close by, we decided to give the Cotto another try.
We had their pasta which was good but not exceptional. Should there be a return visit, and there probably will, we will stick to the grilled meats which had been a hit on our previous visit. It is a very busy ristorante and on a hot day the outdoor patio is pleasant. The indoor ristorante is very sleek and stylish. It is worth making a trip to the washroom just to see how far the trendiness goes!!
2008 - Recommended by the Hotel Columbia and just blocks from the hotel. Busy, untrendy place filled with Italian businessman where we enjoyed a very delicious, home-style lunch. We had an antipasta misti, prosciutto and melone, 2 spaghetti carbonaras and a bottle of wine for a very reasonable 40 euro.
Ristorante In Roma (2009)
Via dei Fienili, 56 - Roma
We were walking near the Campidoglio, the piazza designed by Michelangelo, and found this trendy ristorante/winebar behind the Forum. There was a beautiful outdoor terrace with upscale outdoor furniture and umbrellas. They have a very limited lunch menu and what we had was delicious!! We enjoyed two homemade pasta dishes, salads, two dolce, water and a bottle of wine for about 66 euro. It was an extremely hot day so it was nice to relax and enjoy a wonderful meal in this out-of-the-way place.
via del Gesu, 88 - 00186 Roma
Our friends, Chris and Carmen Grant make a lunch in this restaurant a regular feature of a trip to Rome. We tried last year, but the restaurant was closed on Saturday, so on our 2010 time in Rome we made sure we visited the restaurant. Great meal. Gream ambiance.
This was no secret find. The restaurant is written up in all the reguarly visited web resources: Rick Steves, Fodors, Trip Advisor to name just a few. Rightly so. Eating here is a great experience and the kind that you want to take home to remember Rome.
There are a couple of rooms. We ate in the front room which is all bookshelves just lined with bottles of wine.
They took a reservation for us when we dropped by a little before noon and said we would be back at 1 pm. (Don't go too early, the place starts to take shape after 1:30! But, go for lunch as they are not open for dinner. This is a family run business. After lunch, they come out into the restaurant and eat, friends drop by, and then they close up and go home.
There is a set menu each day, the walls of one of the rooms is nothing but bookshelves with filled with wine. You can order a bottle or a half or full litre of the house wine.
We had a roast pork plate, it was like what you would expect if you were visiting someone home in Rome. No fuss. Just a good piece or pork, with sauce and some vegetables. Great.
Via Gesu is just a couple blocks in from Via Del Corso, and a couple of blocks down from the Pantheon so it is very centrally located.
via della Carrozze, 85B - Roma
We had just left the Spanish Steps and thought we should stop for lunch. I was worried that we would not be able to find anything we would like in this area. But, just a few blocks over, on via della Carozze was Dolci & Doni. It is a "funky" little restaurant. There is a small area with tables outside, but we sat inside as non outside were available. I have read one bad review on Trip Advisor but contrary to that person's view we had a very good meal. Karen had the lasagne and it was very good. I had a salad that had all very fresh ingredients and they did a nice job. We would would certain return here next time we are in Rome.
via del Viminale, 44 - Rome
Web Site: www.lamatriciana.it
When we were at the Hotel Columbia in 2012 we asked for a restaurant recommendation. La Matriciana was recommended as very authentic Roman food. The restaurant is just across the street, and down one block, oposit the Opera House. My kind of walk after a long day of walking about Rome.
They have tables inside and about eight tables outside. We ate here twice, once on the recommendation, and then the next night because we enjoyed it so much. Good food, all reasonably price. Lorenzo was fabulous in looking after us.
La Matriciana started in 1870. Today the restaurant is owned by the Crisciotti family and run by the brothers Fabio and Mauro.
Strada Orvieto (km 3) - Bolsena
We originally planned to stay here as a resting spot, we would fly into Rome, drive a couple of hours to the Montebello and rest up. We found out that it took more than a few more hours to find. Not because it is that far from Rome, but like many ariturismo locations, they are on small roads. Plan how to get there before you leave! Not in the car as you are driving.
That being said, after a couple of tries, we did find it, it was not that hard afterall. Once we arrived we really enjoyed ourselves. This is an excellent location to tour the area with short drives to locations such as Viterbo and Orvieto.
There are two "houses" each with apartments that have their own patios on the ground level as well as rooms on the second floor.
We stayed in the upper house. That has the advantage of a great view, and away from the activity of the restaurant, but is was a steep hill. We found we drove down for dinner most evenings! Not to fear, there is a second pool at the top just for the guests at that location.
Our meals were very good and we would be back here in a moment.
If you are into walking, it is about a 45 to 50 minute walk down the hill to the town of Bolsena, located on Lago di Bolsena.
via A. Gramsci, 4
If you can travel 25 km outside of Rome, in Castel Gandolfo, south east of Roma, on the Appian Way, right next to the Pope's Summer Residence is this great restaurant. The restaurant has been owned by the family from the 1800's.
We ate here in 2005 and had a lunch that we will remember for some time. The dining room is large and airy, overlooking Lago di Albano. Tables are available on the outside patio. Service is top notch.
The wine list is solid, the menu provides a good selection and there are specific dishes of the day. We ate until we literally could not move! We ate our way through antipasto, pasta and fishes dishes. The gelato made with figs, if available, is something not to be missed. We certainly enjoyed the ambiance of the building with its chestnut wooden ceilings, terra cotta floors and large patio doors that provide views of the lake in the volcanic crater. The restaurant is closed on Tuesdays. The restaurant deserves each of its Michelin Two-Fork rating.
via C. Colombo, 156 -
In 2008 we had the opportunity to return to the town of Sperlonga. It is on the coast, about and hour and a half south of Rome. The country side in this area may not be the most scenic, but it all changes at Sperlonga.
The historic centre of the town is on a rock cliff that meets the ocean. The town is a maze of small and connecting walkways.
The Hotel Aurora is in the sea-side lower town and is just a short walk from the steps to the 15th Century Port that enters the old city. We saw this hotel on a previous visit to Sperlonga and we had made a note to stay here the next time we came to the town. We did, and we were very pleased.
We had seen the lounge area on a previous trip. It was one of the aspects of the hotel that drew up to make a reservation on the return trip.
In all of the public rooms, this is a hotel with a grand feel to it. The reception, dining area, lounge and outdoor patios are all of significant size. They all help to give the hotel a great feel.
Sitting in the lounge, or on one of the outdoor patio tables, it is pleasing to be right on the sea side. The morning breakfast was quite the spread with lots of options that include eggs etc.
Rooms were comfortable, clean and what one would expect at a sea-side hotel. The staff were very helpful.
We were most pleased that there was no additional beach charge for the of a beach chair or lounge. You will want to spend some time on the beach as it is one of the best in Italy. Very clean, fine white sand and the beach is of considerable length so you won't run out of sand on any of your beach walks!
On our 2008 visit to this restaurant we were returning with the expectation for a great meal. What we received, however, was abrupt, poor service, and staff that attempted to take advantage of any aspect of Italian that we did not understand. We saw people who spoke fluent Italian being offered options on the menu, we were not. We were charged a hefty price for dishes that were perhaps not so. As we left we vowed, never again would be visit this restaurant. Because we had listed it before as a Great Place, we thought it would be appropriate to say it is no more.
via Quintillio Varo -
Tel: 0774-33-25-33 | Fax: 0774-33-25-33
On our 2000 trip through Italy we were driving up from Sicily, hoping to reach Tuscany. It was too far and we stopped in Tivoli, just outside of Rome.
The Torre Sant' Angelo was a great find. They were listed in the Michelin Red Book, that was a good sign, and it looked like we could afford to stay here. Our stay has memories for sure. No complaints about the rooms, the pool or the grounds. It may have been bad timing. Us there and a wedding going on and becoming the primo event for the hotel.
Dedication to their hotel guests is something the hotel could work work on in terms of improvements. We arrived and there were not one, but two weddings taking place. The wedding parties took over the hotel and most of the staff's attention was on the catering end of their business as opposed to their clients. At times the pool was closed for photo shoots. The restaurant was clearly catering the weddings and getting good service at the meal was difficult.
Nevertheless, this is a beautiful hotel. Great grounds around the hotels. The rooms are beautifully furnished. A pool to die for. Too bad on our visit it was taken over with wedding guests.
Tivoli is well positioned to see the sights of the area or take a train into Rome.
© Glenn & Karen Marcus
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