In the chic and understated neighbourhood of Salario, with the beautiful Villa Borghese gardens a short stroll away. Any local will tell you that Rome is not famed for its efficient transport system so taxis and Uber will be your friend. The hotel also has bicycles that guests can borrow. Give yourself an hour to get to the hotel from either airport.
It’s the tried and tested design formula Hoxton hotels are known for. Rooms come with statement headboards, parquet floors and Seventies touches like incredible Murano glass chandeliers recovered from the original 1970s building during the renovation.
The lobby, reception, bars and restaurant seamlessly blend into one and are a cosy riot of colourful velvet sofas, muted cushions, a jungle of house plants and sublimely flattering lighting.
The Hoxton – as it does in all its hotels – has collaborated with local designers and creatives and it proudly shows and sells their wares in the lobby. The handmade Hoxton mug welcome gift is a lovely touch.
Don’t miss the photobooth on the LG floor.
The hotel feels boutique but has a surprising 192 rooms. As with all Hoxtons, they range from Shoebox, Cosy, Roomy (some come with a balcony or terrace) and Biggy. Go for a Roomy or Biggy if you can. We stayed in a Biggy and though we didn’t have a balcony the panoramic window gave excellent views of the city – especially joyful at sunset.
All rooms come with Roberts radios, handy neighbourhood guides and — my favourite hotel amenity — black out blinds (essential on any city break).
The hotel recommended local family-owned trattoria La Balestra, just round the corner from the hotel. Filled with the local nonnas and nonnos, we were by far the youngest diners. The simple menu is scrawled on a black board and the wine is cheap and moreish. One of the best meals we had in Rome. Other than that, all the Roman must-sees (Colosseum, Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, Vatican Museums) are 50 minutes walk away or a 20 minute taxi.
Food & drink
You’ll find two restaurants in opposite corners of the cosy lobby, which come aperitivo hour is filled with local creatives downing laptops and sipping on campari alongside visitors recovering from the sensory overload of the city.
Cugino is the casual all-day dining spot with a pretty outside terrace for summer evenings. Its pastries come from hot local bakery Marigold and Simon De Luca (previously at Soho House and The London EDITION) has curated the cocktail menu. Sit up at the gleaming marble bar and watch the bartenders in action. I barely tested their skills by ordering a negroni (when in Rome, right?), but my husband had them flexing their mixologist muscles with the Ananavardier, a smoky concoction served in a hip flask made with 12 Woodford Reserve Bourbon, liquore all’ananas, Martini bitter, Carpano Antica Formula, Fernet Branca and Elemakule tiki bitters. Theatric and delicious.
Beverly provides respite from Rome’s pasta and the pizza (should you be mad enough to need one) with its California-inspired menu with an Italian twist. Expect cacio e pepe tater tots with anchovy sauce; mezze maniche pasta, garlic, extra virgin olive oil and mantis shrimp sauce; and grilled Golden Grey mullet with al pastor sauce.
Couples on a relaxed city break, solo travellers (the Shoebox rooms are perfect for one) and we saw an extremely chic family there with some very well behaved children in tow.
Rooms from £130; The Hoxton Rome, Largo Benedetto Marcello 220, 00198 Rome, Italy; thehoxton.com/romeInternet Explorer Channel Network