After spending four nights in a smaller boutique hotel in Venice, the Hotel della Signoria (HDS) in Florence was a big shift.
For one, HDS has an elevator, a convenience that our knees greatly appreciated. Though it’s a small elevator, and the sign says that it can accommodate six people, we joked just how they would accomplish that without the effect of a clown car. Nevertheless, it was wonderful to have an elevator.
The room, itself, was clean and neat. We got a ‘superior’ room.. Though it appears to be in an ancient building, HDS has obviously been extensively renovated at some point, so the rooms are very modern….no terrazzo floors here. The beds are covered with European-style comforters, one for each person. Overall, the bed was quite comfortable, and we slept quite well.
One great feature is the balcony and since we’re in a corner room it overlooks two streets. We can sit out and watch folks walk below. The downside to this is a bit more noise than we might otherwise hear.
The shower is actually located off the hall leading into the room from the hall, not in the bathroom. We thought that that was a bit unusual when we first saw it, but it has turned out to not be much of an issue. The ‘rainfall’ shower head doesn’t really work, so we’ve just used the hand-held shower.
One of the nicest things about this hotel was the bartender, Gabriel, who mans the 7th floor bar from 5 to 11 each evening, and then magically reappears to work the breakfast room each morning. If you stay here, make sure to go visit him; he’s a wealth of information on restaurants that locals prefer (lower prices and better quality food), cooking classes, etc.
The breakfast was pretty much the same as our hotel in Venice – selection of cheeses, European meats, eggs, yogurt, fruit juices, and espresso/capuccino made to order. The breakfast room view over Florence is spectacular, though it can get a bit crowded at times.
Bottom Line for the Hotel della Signoria:
Pluses – great bed, nice-to-have balcony, elevator, fridge in the room. Incredible location if you’re visiting the Gallery dell’Accademia, or the Uffizi Gallery. Great little bar on the 7th floor with attentive bartender. Good breakfast.
Minuses – shower not the greatest, no special ‘ambiance’ that you might find at a smaller, boutique hotel. A bit noisy from time to time. Blow dryer doesn’t have a lot of power; took me twice as much time to blow my hair dry each morning as it does at home. Somewhat frustrating.