Vacation rentals in Italy (villas, farms, estates, agriturismo, apartments)
Review 4777: Owner (#34237), Romantic Luxury and Local Atmosphere in Hip Trastevere
1bed/1bath apartment in Trastevere, Rome
2010, 1 week
It's in the Trastevere area of Rome. It's on the other side of the Tiber river which is not the closest but not too far from major attractions. It's an average residential area with older buildings.
You can walk to plenty of stores and restaurants.
It's historical building, in reasonable shape. There is no street noise but inside the apartment in the living room there is a constant loud noise from something like a piping system. It's one bedroom, one bathroom. When we rented it, it claimed to have a square footage of close to 1,000 sq. ft. (I no longer see this claim on their advertisement, maybe they took it out due to complaints?), but it feels much smaller due to poor layout. There is a long and narrow corridor which took out a lot of space. Only the living room is a good size, the kitchen is small and cramped, so is the bedroom, very small and cramped. The bed is against the wall and after the bed there isn't much room left. A second party has to crawl in and out of the bed.
There are other apartments in the building, I don't know whether they are rentals or not.
There is a tiny little terrace with a wall fountain which looks out to the center of the building which has less than desirable views. They try to block this view with artificial leaves and flowers.
The furniture is pretty nice and comfortable (though not the Macintosh chairs which are known for their looks but not comfort). The apartment is in a reasonably clean state, even though you can't compare it with a hotel.
The bed and bedding are comfortable. However as described earlier the bedroom is very small and cramped, and one party has to crawl into and out of the bed. There is only one bathroom, they put some strong air freshener in it which we had to unplug to breath some fresh air. The plumbing and fixtures are in a reasonable state.
We rented an apartment because we like to cook and eat in to save money and eat home-made food. But due to the state of kitchen we only prepared breakfast in there, the only cooking done was frying eggs. The panel of the kitchen hood came crashing down on the first use, and was never repaired during our stay even though we requested several times. The same goes with the kitchen cabinet doors. Some came down at first opening, never repaired though requested multiple times. We were given the reason: "They have just been broken recently and I don't see why you can't live with them."
There were plenty of utensils though.
Problems or Bonuses
Yes, we were surprised from the beginning to the end.
On arrival we were asked to call the "guardian angel" but after several calls we could never reach the "angel", we had to find the apartment ourselves.
On our first day we were almost locked out of the building when we returned because we were never told that the front door lock is broken and the keys they gave us don't work. We tried very hard and couldn't open the door. Luckily some residents came up and told us the lock is broken, to open it you just push very hard. What if we returned late? What if no residents came up? And they charge you if you are locked out of the building or the apartment.
They said if we need anything which is not their fault they would charge us. You would think that means if it's their fault they would not charge you. Wrong! There were a couple of things that didn't work and we requested them to fix, we had to call the "guardian angel" about this, she always said she would come by that day but never did. When I complained to the owner I got "She didn't come because you didn't authorize payment"! These include the broken kitchen hood, the broken kitchen cabinet doors, the remote control of air conditioning (which is high on the wall and there is no way to reach it without remote), not to mention some broken lights around the house.
For the AC remote, the "guardian angel" found the batteries dead when she was showing us how to use it, and she promised to come back with some good batteries and never did, and the owner said she couldn't pay a visit without extra charge!
When we left, they tried to sell us their transportation service of €60 which they claim is cheaper than in town. OK, we called one in town which costs only €40.
Several months after our stay they returned the deposit less $3 for local calls, even though in the contract they claim a "reasonable" amount of local calls are included in the rent. We made about average one call per day including the three calls to the "guardian angel" which we were told were free.
Agency and Representatives (and price)
We should have known better the moment we started dealing with them. You need a law degree to read their contact; it's very harsh and full of "if you do this we charge you, if you do that we charge you...". They require full payment upfront. They don't return your deposit until several months after your stay.
Do you recommend this vacation rental to others?
I'd stay there again if I had a brain transplant.
This review is the opinion of a Slow Travel member and not of slowtrav.com.
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