Sometimes the thing you want most in the world is to be given only one option, so you don’t have to bother with making a choice. But sometimes options are the best thing. And with the Alessandro hostels in Rome you get choice – Alessandro (yes, there really is an Alessandro) has two properties, one on either side of the main train station. Today, I’m going to cover the original – Alessandro Palace in Rome.
Alessandro Palace, open since 1990, is on the northeast side of Termini Station in Rome, a short walk from the station itself. The reception desk is down a short hall from the main door at the street, and the hostel’s computer stations are just off the reception area. In addition, there’s a very cool bar at the end of the hallway that serves as the breakfast room in the morning, a common room during the day, and a great place to meet and hang out at night (it’s open from 18:00 until 02:00). The ceiling is even painted like the Sistine Chapel, just in case you forget where you are. The bar isn’t restricted to hostel guests only, so bring your new Roman friends along as well!
This is the kind of place you come to meet up with other travelers, to socialize and to have a good time. There are a few double rooms, but the vast majority of the beds are in dorms. There are no male-only dorms, but there are female-only dorms and also mixed dorms. All rooms have lockers available where you can store your stuff during the day.
>>Check out my reviews of other hostels in Rome, too!
L-R: Alessandro Palace’s front desk, and an example of a dorm room
When I visited, it was midday on a gorgeous day in Rome, so most everyone was out doing what you’re supposed to be doing in Rome – seeing the sights! There were a few stragglers just heading out as I was heading in, and I heard several different languages coming down the stairs, so it’s likely that you’ll meet travelers from all over the place – in fact, all three people I met working at the front desk were of different nationalities. Takashi, the hostel’s manager, is a transplant from Japan who’s been in Italy for years, and who’s a wealth of information on the city.
L-R: An example of a double room, and the hostel’s new bar in the back of the building
I actually met Alessandro himself during my last visit to Rome, and he told me how when he originally wanted to open his first business it was more like a hotel – and the name he gave it legally, as a business, was “P. Alessandro.” So when the time came to open his hostel, legally he had to keep the same initials or he’d have to register a whole new company. That’s why today you don’t just check into a hostel, you check into a palace.
Location: Via Vicenza 42 00185 Rome
Contact Information: tel: +39 06 446 1958; fax: +39 06 493 80 534
Common Areas: computer room, breakfast room/bar
Dorms: mixed and female-only, all rooms have bathrooms
Private Rooms: some double rooms, all rooms have bathrooms
Curfew/Lockout: No curfew, no lockout (cleaning takes place between 10:00 and 15:00, and the hostel asks that you try to stay out of the cleaning crew’s way, even if there isn’t an official lockout period)
Check-in/Check-out: Check-in is generally after 14:00, check-out is 11:00. You can check in or out at any time; you can store your luggage with the hostel if you check in before your room is ready or if you still want to explore Rome before your train leaves.
Transportation Options: The hostel is within walking distance of Termini, so getting out of town is easy, and Termini also has a Metro station and a big bus terminal, which makes getting around town easy, too.
Safety: This side of the station is quite safe, as is the hostel itself. With 24-hour reception, there’s always someone at the front desk, too.
Fun Factor: When I visited it was daytime when the people staying at the hostel were out; but I hear the bar in the back gets some serious use, especially during the high season. The hostel also hosts regular free pizza parties in the bar; depending on the season, they may be weekly or every single night.
Freebies: bed linens, breakfast, pizza parties
Extras You’ve Got to Pay For: internet access, lock for luggage lockers (if you don’t have your own), towels available for rent or purchase (if you don’t have your own)
Good to Know: There’s no elevator at Alessandro Palace, though the staircase is really wide (so at least you’re not hauling your bags up a narrow passage). I’m told they want to install an elevator – there’s enough room in the center of the stairwell, but there’s no evidence that those plans are any more than a wish.
The hostel provides airport pickup if you arrange it in advance (for a fee). Just email the hostel after you’ve completed your booking to arrange it.
As far as I can tell, there’s no guest kitchen at the hostel.
Payment Accepted: major credit cards, cash
Booking: Alessandro Palace booking