Italian in Italy


A hotel counter

Italy offers many four and five star hotels, both in the cities and on the coast. A four star hotel includes a restaurant and bar, often a ballroom where there are shows, a gym, sauna and a swimming pool. The less extravagant hotels generally offer a simple restaurant and bar, as well as the usual amenities of room service, laundry, and private bath. Parking may or may not be included.

In addition to hotels, a traveler can choose to stay at pensioni , youth hostels, and a newly developed kind of lodging called agriturismo . The current trend is to restore old houses, villas and monasteries in the countryside and then rent out rooms while offering structured activities that are related to the house. A guest has the option of watching birds, riding horses, swimming in an in-ground pool and other activities related in some way to nature. The rates for lodging depend on the level of luxury of the situation.

Youth hostels generally offer one room where 8 or more travelers can sleep, either using their own sleeping bags or in some situations, rented sheets. Sometimes it is possible to rent a room for two or three travelers; however, one will always share a bathroom. In some situations, a kitchen is available for common use, and some hostels serve breakfast. One does not need to be a student to use the hostels, but one must have a membership card. Hostels are usually located outside of the city and are easily accessible by bus.

For those looking for a long term rooming situation, it is best to consult student bulletin boards at the University or to get one of the weekly newspapers that is specifically devoted to jobs, buying and selling objects, and housing. These magazines can be found for free at newsstands and in cafes. Pensioni are generally private homes where a traveler can rent a room and be served breakfast and dinner. There are not usually many rooms rented, and the rates are fairly inexpensive. One can find advertisements for pensioni in the yellow pages of the telephone book - these lodgings are not advertised by travel agents.