Hotel La Gioconda
Travel Blogs from Florence
... in shop doorways as we scuttled back to the hotel for umbrellas.
As the weather remained threatening, entered the Basilica and Museo di Santa Croce.This is credited with being the largest Franciscan church in the world. There are 16 chapels, many with frescoes by Giotto and his pupils. Apart from magnificent interiors, among the 200 tombs are those of Michelangelo, Galileo, Michavelli ...
... years and through Renaissance. It showcases some original instrumentation developed and used by famous scientists which have uncovered and proven some of the most important laws of nature that we are all too familiar with today. From the astrolobes of yonder, to Galileo's telescope, to the first microscopes developed, this museum is a must visit for anyone with an appreciation for science. After completing our foray through the centre, ...
... we had a plan and we had to achieve it. We had just 24 hours to pack chic coffee, renaissance art, beautiful basilicas, regional tastings, leather, and of course gelato into our day in the Tuscan capital.
At 6.15am the alarm sounded and by 8am we were out of the apartment and headed for the markets. It was quiet on the street and chilly too, it seemed Florence was slow to awaken on a Sunday Morn.
9am - ...
... of course and had to buy fabulous pair of red ankle boots! Wine tasting plus in Chianti. So great day. Had to shift room for tonight. Stuff not properly packed as just chucked in but with todays purchases think I'll have problem in morning getting down to suitcase & tote bag. Probably time to sort out another parcel to post back ...
... tickets which was good advise as the line up for going in was huge. Even with our pre-booked tickets we had to line up for over 40 minutes in the sun, we were so glad it was not the middle of summer other wise this could have been torturous.
To really appreciate Florence as a historical town you had to have some basic knowledge of the area. Florence was where renaissance started, the end of the middle ages and the start of the modern era. ...
How has this hotel rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Hotel La Gioconda Florence
Do not stay here!
The staff was rude, the shower wall was very moldy, it smelled, no elevator and a winding staircase. Small and cramped - horrible hotel. Location was decent, but that was all.
Although not the most luxurious hotels we've stayed in The Hotel La Gioconda is not the worse either. The hotel was a mere 5 minute stroll from the main train station and about 30 seconds from the heart of Florence's shopping district. Yes, we had to carry our bags up to our rooms but on the other hand we didn't have anyone to carry them from the station so another few steps didn't seem to bad. The hotel itself was admittedly Spartan but it served the purpose that we required, i.e. somewhere to sleep, shower and leave our bags while we explored the beautiful city of Florence. We only had a couple of nights in Florence so convenience was top of our list of priorities. The rooms were decorated in a rather retro fashion (which we suspect was completely original) but in some ways that just added to the charm of the hotel. The on-suite shower room/toilet was a tad small but again it served the purpose. The staff were polite, courteous, friendly and very helpful. Our only complaint would be the lack of a decent breakfast (a bread roll and a croissant is not my idea of a I wouldn't recommend this hotel if you're planning any longer than a couple of days in Florence but if like us you're trying to cram in as much of Italy in a small amount of time and you can deal with carrying your own rucksacks to your room then this is the place to stay.
Horrible, dirty, one-star hotel !!!
If I knew the previous reviewers comments, I would not book this hotel.
It's true that no elevator without carring luggage, horrable smell all over the hotel, poor breakfast, awful bed, old and dirty room and unkind staff service. Not reasonable price at all! The location is near the central station and along busy street. Early in the morning it was very noisy because of a sewage pump...
Poor - needs extensive rennovation.
A good example of the farce that the star system can sometimes be. Three stars?? The room stank of damp and smoke. The decor was faded early 70s, the matresses awful. The breakfast room like an air-raid shelter. No real breakfast. Health-hazard carpet. Above all, the ambience was strange and incomfortable, generally a kind of sense of "rotting". I have stayed in some real pits in my time but this was like a bad one-star not a three.
The location is great though and an extensive refurbishment could make the place OK. That would cost a lot, I know.
Avoid until this happens. Sorry, but the price is not justified. We moved to a two-star round the corner which was ten times better and 25% cheaper.
Would Rather Sleep on a Park Bench
Stayed here through Wright Travel, Gainsville Florida and have nothing good to say. Upon entry there was an odor that appeared to us to be a sewer odor and it permeated the entire place. Bathrooms had mold in them and part of our group was sick by the morning, no help to get luggage up 2 and 3 flights of stairs, rooms did not appear clean, and everything was old and shabby. Checked out the second day but they would only refund half our money.
Not that nice...
I would not stay in this hotel if I go to Florence again... although the staff is nice to us and the hotel room is big, there is no elevator (luckily our room is on 1/F), and the unpleasant bathroom - the shower is right next to the toilet seat with only a shower curtain as a divider.
The main problem is it is on a busy street and close to train station, there are just too many people/tourists on the street (I feel like there are even more people than in Rome)... I would pick somewhere far from train station, or on a quiet street...
Beware the staircase!
My girlfriend and I stayed here for three nights in June. Frankly, we wanted to stay elsewhere but the annual medieval soccer festival began June 24, which was the day after our third night, and ALL the hotels in Florence were booked the night of the 23rd. Be warned, should you visit Florence in June! This place was the only one with open rooms (bookable online, that is) and it charged $250 for that third night - ridiculous!
As for the place itself, it's quiet. And the staff is friendly enough. But that's about all that's good about it. I don't know how it got its three stars. This is a two-star place at best. It reminded me of a dorm room: Crummy, sub-IKEA particle board furniture in the room, which as somebody else mentioned looked like it hadn't been updated (or painted, or wallpapered) since the 1970's. Just a plastic curtain separating the shower from the rest of the bathroom. AC unit was completely broken and useless.
The BIGGEST caveat is the staircase. There is no elevator here, and our room was on the top floor - a 4-story climb up an unwieldly spiral staircase! Unless you're packing light, forget it! In fact, forget this place. We saw a ton of great-looking genuine three star hotels all around us and felt ripped off.
Close to everthing, but a bit run down
We stayed for two nights in June and were excited after reading a trip advisor review. The lobby was ok, and the staff was nice, but this three star hotel was run down. The breakfast was also nice but there was no late night bar to mention. Our room had a dirty carpet and peeling wallpaper and looked like a dirty highway hotel. The bathroom was small and had not been updated since the 1970s. -- It was tiny even by Italian standards. We looked at other rooms and these were dumps. We did have a room over the rear "garden" but it was just a collection of plants in a dirty courtyard. I can say that these back rooms were very quiet and we slept well with the AC on. I must say that the location was within easy walking distance of the train station. Since it was close to the main attractions it was well worth the 80 euros we paid considering that other three star hotels were going for 120-170 euros, but next time I would stay in small town Tuscany or nearby Siena (all on the train line or SENA bus line) where nice rooms can be had for 60-70 euros a night and just day trip into Florence.
Superb Central Inn
If true Italian hospitality mixed with mid-city proximity to everything is your desire, you can't go wrong here. Ask for one of the upstairs rooms in back over the small garden. And don't miss the breakfasts and late night grappa at the small bar.