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Where to Stay in Rome - The Definitive Guide

By Elyssa Bernard and Alessandro Bisceglie

Wondering where to stay in Rome? 

I love this view of Saint Peter's dome from the terrace bar at the Hotel Atlante Star. This is where we had our wedding reception and spent our wedding night, so it holds a special place in our hearts!

It can be stressful trying to decide where to stay when you visit Rome.

What if you pick the wrong neighborhood and it's loud/far/icky?

What if you pick a place to stay only to find out the breakfast is horrible or the staff is less than friendly?

I not only live in Rome, I ran a B&B for nearly 18 years with my Roman husband, who worked in various hotels in Rome and other parts of Italy for several years before that.

Believe me, we know a lot about Rome accommodation from the perspective of a traveler (you!) and also from behind the scenes. And we are here to help.



Where to stay in Rome - Everything you need to know

Today, variety, quality, and the sheer quantity of places to stay in Rome have grown exponentially, resulting in a huge choice for the visitor.

We've got suggestions for where to stay in Rome for every budget, mood, and area based on our personal knowledge of the Rome hotel scene.

Our recommendations for where to stay in Rome by area:

Our recommendations for where to stay in Rome by type of lodging:

For more detailed research on where to stay in Rome:

BOOK YOUR ROME HOTEL NOW

Do you just want to book someplace to stay in Rome now?

Visit Booking.com to find places to stay in and around Rome.

Hotels in Rome's Historic Center

I think the most popular request is for where to stay in Rome that's “central”. This covers a pretty large area and set of neighborhoods.

I'd consider a neighborhood to be in "central Rome" if you can walk easily to at least two major sights

What is the Centro Storico of Rome?

Rome's Historic Center, Centro Storico refers to those 22 areas (called rioni) enclosed between the Aurelian walls and the Gianicolense walls.

The word rione derives from the Latin word regiones, which were subdivisions first defined by Roman king Servius Tullius, around the 6th century BCE. They were originally four.

They have evolved and grown since then and today there are 22.

Some neighborhoods you know today, such as the Jewish Ghetto, may included parts of various Rioni.

A map of Rome's "rioni", or neighborhoods, by Alessio Damato on Wikimedia Creative Commons.
When you walk around Rome, you will see signs for the "rione" you are in. There are 22 of them, and these make up what is known as the "centro storico", or historical center of Rome.

Rome's center itself is made up of lots of neighborhoods that vary quite a bit from each other, in a 2-block area.

On this page, we'll describe the most central Rome neighborhoods briefly, and offer some suggestions for where to stay in Rome in each of these areas.

The below neighborhood descriptions were written by Rome native Alessandro

Piazza Barberini/Via Veneto/Trevi Fountain

Piazza Barberini

Piazza Barberini is in the heart of the historic center of the capital, in the Trevi district.

Piazza Barberini is one of Rome's most famous and most beautiful piazzas. Its crowning jewel is the Triton fountain by Gian Lorenzo Bernini.

It's perfectly located at the bottom of the famed via Veneto and at the top of the well-known via del Tritonewhich leads directly to via del Corso, the nerve center of city shopping. Barberini has its own Metro stop, and the Trevi Fountain is just a few minutes' walk away.

The piazza owes its name to Palazzo Barberini, which overlooks the piazza.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near Piazza Barberini include:

  • Aleph Rome Hotel, Curio Collection by Hilton 5* luxury hotel
  • Hotel Barocco or Hotel Barberini 4* hotels
  • Hotel Cortina 3*
  • Trinity Rooms guesthouse
  • Parisii Luxury Relais Rome B&B

Via Veneto

Famous around the world as a symbol of the dolce vita, via Veneto still dominates the “Olympus of architectural pearls”, a rare example of historic buildings, today home to prestigious luxury hotels.

Via Veneto harks to an era of glamour that no longer exists, once THE place to see and be seen in Rome.

While strolling along this broad, sweeping boulevard, you may still come across a few elegant landmarks, those frequented in the 1960s by movie stars and prying paparazzi.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome on or near Via Veneto include:

  • Baglioni Hotel Regina “The Leading Hotels of the World” 5* luxury hotel
  • Hotel degli Artisti  or Grand Hotel Flora by Marriott 4* hotels
  • Hotel Modigliani or The Radical 3* hotels
  • Via Veneto Prestige Rooms guesthouse
  • Residenza Monfy B&B

Trevi Fountain

This small but iconic area of Rome's historic center is most famous for its eponymous fountain.

It also has a particular character, which tries to resist the advance of a frenetic (and inevitable) loss of the "slow-motion" rhythm of life that once was part of Romans' DNA.

The Trevi Fountain, Rome's most iconic fountain, is named after the Rione Trevi (a rione is a way to designate a Rome neighbourhood).

Marked by its narrow cobblestone streets filled with ice cream shops, trattorias, and throngs of people, the Trevi neighborhood has its own unique feel and charm, almost as if you are in a village of Rome rather than Rome City Center.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near Trevi Fountain include:

  • Harry's Bar Trevi Hotel & Restaurant 5* luxury hotel
  • The Talent Hotel or Rome Style Hotel 4* hotels
  • Trevi Beau Hotel or Charme Spagna Boutique Hotel 3*
  • FourHeads Private Suites or Terrazza Marco Antonio guesthouse
  • Cenci B&B

MORE ABOUT THE TREVI FOUNTAIN!

Click here to read more about history and architecture of the Trevi Fountain.

Click here for places to eat near the Trevi Fountain.

Spanish Steps/Piazza del Popolo

The Spanish Steps/Piazza del Popolo area is arguably one of the most central places to stay in Rome. (It also falls into the "luxury neighborhood" category.)

Both the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo have a convenient Metro stop, and can also be easily-reached by the Barberini Metro. 

Piazza di Spagna/Spanish Steps

This piazza takes its name from the Spanish Embassy.

In the center of the square, at the foot of the 135-step staircase, you can spot the famous fountain known as the Barcaccia, designed by Piero Bernini and his more famous son, Gian Lorenzo Bernini. The name of the fountain derives from the boats that used to ship wine from the port of Ripetta.

Staying in the Spanish Steps area puts you smack in the middle of Rome's top shopping district. Some of the most popular city shopping streets include Via dei Condotti, Via Frattina and Via Borgognona, well known for their exclusive boutiques and antique shops.

And there are plenty of options for places to eat nearby.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome at the Spanish Steps include:

  • Portrait Roma or Rocco Forte Hotel de la Ville 5* luxury hotels
  • Royal Suite Trinità dei Monti or Hotel Dei Borgognoni 4* hotels
  • Relais de La Poste or Hotel Scalinata Di Spagna 3* hotels
  • Vite Suites Guest House or Mood44 guesthouse
  • Piazza di Spagna 9 B&B or Elysium Suites B&B

Piazza del Popolo

Located near the northern city gate, Piazza del Popolo was once the entrance to Rome during the Roman Empire.

This piazza is the nexus of an important intersection. Three arteries branch off from the south of the piazza, forming what is known as the tridente, or trident: Via del Babuino, on the left, Via di Ripetta on the right, and in the center Via del Corso, one of the most popular shopping streets of the city.

In the middle of the piazza, stands the 24-meter tall Egyptian obelisk dedicated to Ramses II, known as the “Flaminio Obelisk”.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near Piazza del Popolo include:

  • Rocco Forte Hotel De Russie or Hotel Locarno 5* luxury hotels
  • River Palace Hotel 4* hotel
  • Boutique Hotel Anahi 3* hotel
  • Residenza Canova Tadolini Luxury Rooms & Suites guesthouse
  • Poēsis Experience Hotel guesthouse
  • Domus Piazza del Popolo B&B

Pantheon/Piazza Navona/Campo dei Fiori/Jewish Ghetto

The neighborhoods of Pantheon, Piazza Navona, Campo dei Fiori, and Jewish Ghetto are not all the same, obviously.

You can stay in any one of them and be a stone's throw from another. They are all in a small congested area right in the heart of Rome. And yet, they all have very distinctive neighborhoods and feels.

Pantheon

The Pantheon is one of the wonders of Rome's historic city center.

It was built and rebuilt between the 1st and 2nd centuries in Ancient Rome. The word pantheon derives from Greek and means "Temple of all Gods".

Take a stroll around this tortuous and intricate maze of streets and passages, where it’s easy and delectable to get lost, where the most skilled ice cream masters still make “artisanal gelato” full of taste and aroma, or where you can indulge your palate with a strong Italian espresso.

Staying in the Pantheon area guarantees an unparalleled experience, and memories you will hold dear for a lifetime.

All about the Pantheon
Best coffee near the Pantheon
Best gelato near the Pantheon
Best shopping near the Pantheon
Best restaurants near the Pantheon

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near the Pantheon include:

  • The Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel Autograph by Marriott 5* luxury hotel
  • Martius Private Suites Hotel 4* hotel
  • Albergo del Senato 3* hotel
  • BeigE et BlE' Guest House guesthouse
  • Little Queen Pantheon guesthouse
  • Lh Royal Suites Terrace B&B

Piazza Navona

When I look at a map of my city, I rediscover with amazing clarity what exactly Piazza Navona is to Rome - its core, its heart, full of energy and life.

Located in Campo Marzio, where the Roman legionaries trained, this spot was chosen as the site of Domitian’s Stadium to host races and Greek games in honor of Capitoline Jupiter. 

Later it would become the most endearing “parlor” of the Roman Baroque period, the spot where generations of Romans have gathered, strolled, listened to music, or even found the love of their life. For many, it was their first and last backyard.

Click here to read more about Piazza Navona.

Piazza Navona offers one of the best options for those seeking all the advantages of a central/iconic landmark, but with accessible services and competitive rates.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near/at Piazza Navona include:

  • Lifestyle Suites Rome 5* luxury hotel
  • Eitch Borromini Palazzo Pamphilj or Hotel Lunetta 4* hotels
  • Navona Street Hotel 3* hotel
  • Florea Palace guesthouse
  • Palazzo De Cupis - Suites and View guesthouse
  • Rome Visits B&B or Relais Rione Ponte B&B

Campo dei Fiori

History and legend, faith and heresy are intertwined in this famous piazza of Rome.

If you look carefully, you'll find evidence of a city that's changed and evolved over the centuries: once a place for business meetings, a cultural and social hub, a berth for merchants to trade a bit of everything, even a stage of social events attended by nobles and common patrons alike.

Campo de' Fiori had also a dark side, embodied in the bronze statue still standing in the center of it, in memory of the philosopher Giordano Bruno: the piazza in fact became the stage of capital executions and torture during the Inquisition.

Philosopher Giordano Bruno was burnt at the stake in 1600 in Campo fi Fiori, once the site of brutal executions. The statue of him in the center exonerates him, as he glares across the River towards the Vatican.

Today, Campo de' Fiori is a very popular spot for tourists and Romans alike: it's a daily hangout for thousands of tourists, bustling with a mix of sophisticated restaurants, casual Roman-cuisine trattorias, offhand bars, and shopping for every taste, from the extravagant to the funky to the artisinal.

Wend your way along the tiny streets leading away from the main piazza, and you will find yourself in a Rome neighborhood that feels as if it stepped back in time. Grandmas sit outside on wooden chairs, wood-working shops and antique sellers abound, and every turn of the corner brings a surprise.

When the sun goes down, Campo de Fiori comes to life - the perfect setting for those looking for fun and ambiance.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near Campo de Fiori include:

  • Hotel Indigo Rome - St. George  5* luxury hotel
  • DOM Hotel Roma - Preferred Hotels & Resorts 5* luxury Hotel
  • Hotel De Ricci 4* hotel
  • Hotel Damaso 3* hotel
  • Lh Royal Suites Terrace guesthouse
  • Giubbonari Suites guesthouse
  • Navona Queen Rooftop B&B

Jewish Ghetto

The Ghetto is a small district of Rome whose borders were marked in the 16th century by a papal decree, within which all Roman Jews were forced to live.

Over time much of this area was demolished, but there are still some remnants that can be visited with a suggestive walk through narrow streets and small piazzas of uncommon architectural beauty.

On this terrain, emperors, patrons, patricians, and nobles of Rome raised buildings of various types and functions. In the Middle Ages it hosted the most important fish market in Rome.

Today the neighborhood is important not only as the focal point of the Jewish community of Rome, but it has also become a crossroad for thousands of Romans, thanks to its distinctive shops, sophisticated vintage boutiques, wine-bars, and above all, restaurants.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome near/at Jewish Ghetto include:

  • The Rooms of Rome - Palazzo Rhinoceros 5* luxury hotel
  • HT6 Hotel Roma or Chapter Roma 4* hotels
  • Navona Essence Hotel 3* hotel
  • Argentina Style View guesthouse
  • Vittoriano Luxury Suites guesthouse
  • NEMAN Maison Experience B&B
  • Temple View B&B

Trastevere

I know I know, Trastevere is on the top of most blogs about where to stay in Rome. I love Trastevere, and I don't even mean from a touristic point of view. It's a really fascinating, historic neighborhood with a lot to see and do.

As places to stay in Rome go, Trastevere is pretty particular. I think this is a great area of Rome to stay in if you've been here before, if you prefer something a little off the beaten track, and/or, if youare looking specifically for quaint/cute/old-world-feeling.

A few ideas for where to stay in Rome in Trastevere include:

  • Villa Agrippina Gran Meliá - 5* luxury with pool
  • VOI Donna Camilla Savelli 4* hotel (this is where I'd stay!)
  • Horti 14 Borgo 4* hotel
  • Hotel la Rovere 4* hotel
  • Hotel Santa Maria - superior 3* hotel with garden
  • Tolomeo B&B
  • Trastevere Luxury Design Apartment - 6 people

Where to Stay in Rome - what kind of accommodation should you pick?

CAVEAT EMPTOR!

In Italy, accommodation category meanings may differ from what you know they mean in other parts of the world!

Besides choosing a neighborhood, the second factor in choosing where to stay in Rome is about what kind of accommodation you should book. 

The main types of accommodation in Rome include hotels (from 1-5*), B&Bs/Guesthouses, and self-catering apartments. (Hostels mostly fall into the B&B section.)

Some people already know they want to stay in a luxury hotel with a full staff, 24-hour reception, and lots of amenities. 

When you choose to stay at a 5* hotel like the Hotel Inghilterra near the Spanish Steps, you can be sure of a certain level of comfort, luxury, and amenities.

Others know they want a self-catering apartment, without any additional services.

If you are not sure yet which type of accommodation you want, here is what you can expect when you book one of these categories in Rome:

Where to stay in rome - hotels

The first thing I want to tell you about hotels in Rome is that the way stars are awarded in Rome and the rest of Italy may not be what you think

The star system is based on a check list like whether or not every room has a private en-suite bathroom, where the reception is located, how many languages the staff speaks, etc. You can read about this in more detail on my page about Rome hotel star ratings.

For the purposes of this page, and helping you decide where to stay in Rome, if you want to stay in a hotel, just know that anything in the 1-3* categories will be quite varied.

You may find more style and luxury in a 1* hotel, simply because they couldn't meet the criteria on the checklist for getting a 2nd or 3rd star, than you would at a 3* hotel that checks all the boxes but has rather tired decor and almost no charm.

Once you get into the 4* level, you get more consistency, but do not expect a lot of space or luxury necessarily.

It's only when you get into the 5* luxury category that you can count on a certain level of amenities, because the check list is very long and intensive. For a hotel to meet those requirements, they are going to be offering you the bare minimum of style and luxury in Rome.

Where to stay in Rome - B&Bs/Guest Houses/Inns/Relais

Are you wondering what are all these different accommodation terms you see when you go to book a place to stay?

It's actually a bit more complicated than you might think.

Any property offering accommodation, whether a 5* hotel or a 3-room B&B, must register with the Rome Tourist Board.

Based on many factors they can be classified as hotel, B&Baffittacamere (that is an Italian word literally meaning "room rental", but you can equate it to a B&B with a few more rooms, a guesthouse, or inn), or casa vacanze (that is another Italian phrase meaning "vacation home" and like an affittacamere this gets applied to many types of accommodation).

Factors that dictate how a particular kind of accommodation is classified include zoning, building regulations, number of rooms, etc.

Where affittacamere and casa vacanze are concerned, it's unlikely the owner would use those terms to market their property because most of their guests don't speak Italian.

So to make their properties appealing to tourists who may not understand Italian, they often use terms that have no "legal" meaning here, like inn, relais, guesthouse, townhouse, etc. Some even call themselves "hotel" even if they are not technically in the hotel category.

Why does this matter to you?

It really doesn't. But it's one reason you will find such a huge disparity across all the different places to stay in Rome with these very broad categories.

For more, visit our page all about B&Bs in Rome.

Where to stay in Rome - self-catering apartments

More and more people are opting to stay in self-catering apartments. I think this trend is true in Italy and many parts of the world. There are a lot of good reasons to choose this option like:

  • You plan to stay at least a week and want to have options for eating in.
  • You are coming with a large family/group, and it's much more comfortable and cost-effective to stay in a spacious apartment than trying to book several rooms in a hotel.
  • You like the idea of "living" someplace when you travel there.
  • You prefer not to have daily cleaning service and/or don't want or need other services like breakfast or concierge help.

One of the most reliable services you can use for finding quality apartments in Rome is VRBO (Vacation Rental by Owner).

Visit our page here to find out more about Rome apartment rentals and how to pick the best one.


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