Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 4013: Owner, Attico Rosa
3bed/2bath apartment in Gioia Tauro, Calabria
September 2008, 3 weeks
The apartment is situated in a very rundown neighborhood. The houses are square concrete boxes and unkempt. It is very gray no green to be seen. The flat is three floors up some very steep stairs. The surrounding area is full of graffiti, rubble dumped everywhere.
You could walk to a cafe/restaurant on the sea front but you had to do your very best to step over potholes, rubbish and run the gauntlet of the local romeos. To do your shopping you had to go by car to the nearest supermarket because the local shops only had a very limited supply, which was often out of date. There was a fresh bakery about 10mins away. The nearest restaurants were on the sea front, they were nothing special the best of the lot was Pino's.
When you visit their website you are given the impression that the house in the photo is where the apartment is situated. This is very misleading; the building is not old. The flat is on the third floor, the owners' parents live on the second floor, another family lives on the ground floor. I must admit that it is the brightest house in the street, the others are just cement blocks, gray, gray and gray, which was very depressing.
If you are looking for a peaceful location, forget it. The building is in a very noisy area. It is opposite a Junior School on a crossroads with traffic coming out all directions. From about 4pm, the street under the flat turned into a racing track for the local teenage boys. They ride up and down doing wheelies on their quad bikes. There are also a few Churches in the vicinity and they begin ringing their bells at about 6am until 12 at night, they ring every half hour (the full version of Ave Maria) You have to keep the doors and windows shut but even that doesn't keep out the noise.
On the balcony is a table with six chairs, which is actually too many because it is a very small balcony. You feel closed in and trapped especially as your view is of the wall from the school opposite. If you hang over the edge and squint maybe you could catch a one inch glimpse of the sea in the distance! Anyway we had absolutely no desire to sit on the balcony. There was no pool or garden but we knew that, however when we inquired about the property and the outside space, we were assured that there was a very big and comfortable balcony where we could have breakfast and dinner or just sit and relax. THIS WAS COMPLETELY NOT TRUE.
Inside, the flat is very spacious, clean and comfortable. There is enough crockery, cutlery, sheets and towels. In the main bedroom is a very big nasty looking crack over the bed.
We have no negative comments about the inside of the apartment or the facilities.
Kitchen was well equipped.
Problems or Bonuses
On arriving we were met by the father who then summoned up two of this sons. We found this very intimidating. A big surprise was the deposit that was asked because no where in our previous correspondence had this been mentioned. Luckily we were able to negotiate a reduction and only had to deposit €300. There were no bikes. At the end of the stay we were presented with a very large electricity bill (did we pay for the parents usage as well?!) Dread to think how much it would have been if it was high summer and we had made use of the air conditioning.
I am very curious who the people on their website are, the ones who wrote such glowing reports.. if they had been honest, we would not have booked this apartment.
I hope that we are able to help someone else from making the same mistake.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
We booked directly via the owner his English was reasonable. We never saw him. His two brothers and his father were the local contacts and only one of them spoke very limited English.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
This was the worst holiday we have ever had.
It certainly made a lasting impression on us. We would never, never go there again. We would not recommend it you our enemies.
We left before our three weeks were up.
Things to do in this area
We were lucky because we went with out own car so we were able to escape the depressing situation. We went in search of green and scenery. We also took the ferry to Sicily.
The local beach is large, unfortunately it is also full of litter and next to the road.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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