Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 4432: Cross-Pollinate, Casa Andree and Casa Alice
2bed/2bath apartments near Pantheon, Rome
12/22/09 - 01/02/10, 11 days
Our family of seven adults and one infant rented two side-by-side apartments in an old building about a block away from the Pantheon. Every morning we would come out the door of the apartment building and step into the midst of the historic center.
Everything we wanted to visit was within walking distance of our apartments. Grocery stores, bakeries, coffee shops, butchers, delis, open air market, etc. were within a block or two. Daily visits to Campo dei Fiori to obtain provisions were no problem. Giolitti and Tazzo de Oro were around the block.
The apartments' owner said she believed the building to be two hundred years old, I think. Four flights of stairs had to be climbed to reach our apartment. There were additional apartments above us. Probably ten apartments in this building. The building itself was very quiet. We were probably the biggest noisemakers! You must have a key to enter the building itself, so it is quite secure.
There was a rooftop patio outside of Casa Andree shared with one other apartment. Casa Alice had a private balcony overlooking the street.
The furniture was reasonable and conducive to hanging out in the living room as a group. The dining table was big enough for the seven of us to eat together. The apartment was very clean. The floors were terracotta tile, so things felt clean.
The beds were comfortable enough. The bedrooms are a little dark, but with adequate storage. We did not spend much time in them. Each apartment had a queen-sized bed in one room and two singles in the other. There were also fold-out couches and a roll-away. We could probably have gotten by with one apartment, although some would be sleeping in the living room. The owner also provided a crib.
We had enough bathrooms, which were clean. The showers in Casa Andree were very tiny, but adequate. Casa Alice also had a full-size bathtub with shower.
The kitchen was a small galley-type with a marble counter separating it from the dining/living room area. We cooked full breakfasts and dinners every day and had everything we needed. We had brought one good knife with us, which is generally always a good idea. The cook-top was large and the refrigerator was large enough for our group. Casa Andree does not have an oven. Casa Alice does.
Problems or Bonuses
Although we knew approximately where our apartments were located, we were very pleasantly surprised by how wonderful and convenient the location was. This is a major plus for these rentals.
Casa Andree has been updated. Casa Alice has not. So Casa Andree is a little nicer, although not greatly. Casa Alice did have a musty odor about it, which we decided was possibly coming from the washing machine. This tended to disappear when the windows were opened. The agency suggested that it could be coming from elderly plumbing and that this was a frequent problem in old Rome during rainstorms, which we were having. We detected no odor in Casa Andree.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
The agency was superb in terms of responsiveness and information given. They arranged our airport transportation, provided information on restaurants, cooking classes, and other questions that we had. I would be very happy to work with them again.
We were met on site by the apartment owner, who made every effort to accommodate us. I was able to communicate with her via email during our stay, which was very convenient.
We paid $190 per night for Casa Andree and $170 per night for Casa Alice. The pricing is based on the number of people staying. The one-year old was free. There was no up charge for Christmas and New Year's, which I noticed many other places had. There was no extra cleaning charge, which I noticed many other places had. And we received one cleaning during our stay.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
This was a perfect rental for a group of our size, and would stay here again if we had such a large group. We have rented one other apartment in Rome -- a one bedroom -- and this was comparable in quality. I am sure there are more luxurious apartments to be had, but I believe that they come at a much higher price. I think this is a great value for the location.
Things to do in this area
We went out as a family group almost every day, and covered most of historic Rome on foot. We went as far as the Vatican, Villa Borghese, Termini and the Quirinale. Every walk was wonderful because we were surrounded by Rome. We had lovely picnics at the forum and on a lake at the Villa grounds. We particularly enjoyed our daily produce shopping at the Campo dei Fiori. We had our meat cut to order at the butcher shop nearby and stopped in at the bakery for bread and cookies and the deli for pesto and wine. We also shopped in the Spar around the block from our apartment. Our children enjoyed Giolitti in the evenings.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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