I had read some very negative reports about this hotel on this forum that I almost cancelled my reservations. I am so glad I did not cancel!! We have stayed at the Grand Flora several times in the past, but it was not available for all three nights that we wanted in May. We could not adjust the days as we were staying in Rome for three night pre-mediterranean cruise.
We used points to stay at the the Rome Marriott Park and had a wonderful experience. Everyone of the employees that we had contact with went out of their way to help. The manager on duty even came over to greet us upon check-in. It was a very quiet respite from our wonderful, hectic days in Rome. The buffet breakfast in the lobby restaurant was very good- we did not have any need for lunch! We made use of the executive lounge in the evenings and it was very nice- not the best view like many other Marriott's executive lounges- as it was on the bottom floor.
The only drawback that this hotel has is the location is between the airport and downtown. We did some research ahead of time and found a good solution for us. We took the train from the airport to Muratella station and then the city bus 128 directly to the front of the hotel. We also used bus 128 to go directly into town in the morning and return in the evening. It is much less expensive than the hotel shuttle and has many more departures. We never waited more than 5 minutes for a bus. The bus drops off at the end of the line at St.Paul's Outside the Walls and there is a metro stop there that gets you to the sights like the Colliseum. We bought a Roma Pass that gave us 3 days of unlimited train and bus and admission to any two of most major attractions. We even used the train when we left to get to the port of Civitavecchia for our cruise and saved $175 over taking the ship transfer.
Since we have been to Rome many times, we did not mind coming back in the evening to a quite respite instead of staying in town. The hotel was so beyond what we had read from other posters that I wanted to give another side to the story.
That is very interesting and valuable information!
Many of us do not mind a commute to a nice place at the end of a long day. Especially when you consider the savings. Likwise, a lot of times we are not in a great hurry to see things we have already seen. It is just fun being there!
Thanks for your post. Can you tell me more about the train to Civitavecchia, please. We'll be cruising as well after our stay at the Grand Hotel Flora. You must have had considerable luggage for a cruise -- did you take a cab to the train station (which one)? Any other hassles?
Thanks so much for the update! I have found in the past that hotels that are recently branded Marriotts or Courtyards in Europe don't tend to measure up in the first year or so, but then get much better. It sounds like this was the case at the Park Marriott. Bravo, since we need more Marriotts in Europe.