Housed within an exquisite heritage palace, Sofitel Roma Villa Borghese is a superb luxury retreat overlooking the vast Villa Borghese park and gardens, a spectacular location in any metropolis like Rome. Beyond the picture-perfect resort views, the hotel is within walking distance from Piazza di Spagna, the Trevi Fountain, Villa Medici and Via Veneto.
The recent extensive renovations provided Accor with the opportunity to make a resounding statement about its commitment for the Italian market. Renowned French architect Jean-Philippe Nuel was the ideal choice to create a unique blend of elegant contemporary and French chic, the hotel equally attracting leisure and corporate travellers. The sleek marble lobby accentuated by colourful touches subtly contrasts with the breathtaking panoramic views of the botanically themed rooftop restaurant, Settimo.
Adorned with eclectic furnishings and lush green interiors, Settimo has been conceived to reflect contemporary Roman cuisine using locally-sourced ingredients, while soaking in on the spectacular panoramic views of Rome. The 7th floor also features a lounge area and a bar, ideal for a pause over a Negroni. Unfortunately, during my stay, because of the pandemic Settimo would only serve breakfast, making the return to the property a must, to fully experience it.
The French joie de vivre and the Roman carpe diem are also reflected in the interior design of the rooms and suites, which ultimately create a laid-back atmosphere, making one feel at home. Utmost attention has been paid to comfort, with the heavenly signature bed of Sofitel (Sofitel MyBed) and state-of-the-art technology – quiet individually controlled AC reaches the desired temperature in seconds, high speed wi-fi internet, Smart Tvs and an intricate lighting system. The lavish marble bathrooms are yet another strong point of the property.
Sofitel Villa Borghese also boasts some of the finest contemporary style grand suites, the most impressive being the rooftop ones which feature an expansive terrace overlooking the picturesque Villa Borghese gardens making one feel like a most serene resort. Guests can pamper themselves with a private dining experience but also just sunbathing in the warm months.
Over the years, Sofitel Roma Villa Borghese has also built a solid reputation for service standards and, with the renovation, it would only be re-enforced. At any interaction, staff would be genuinely pleased to serve, showing both confidence and care. Depending on the guest profile, staff would easily adapt to being either more friendly or more restrained and formal.
While many other luxury hotels in Rome have remained closed, Sofitel Villa Borghese has made a strategic choice to re-open, also thanks to the exceptional Covid-19 safety and hygiene measures which the property has firmly implemented, to equally protect guests and staff. Thanks to a partnership with third party expert company Bureau Veritas, Accor has developed the All-Safe program, which is probably one of the most comprehensive in the world.
Beyond the actual measures and protocols, I was pleasantly surprised by the effortless yet firm manner in which staff would convey information about the safety measures, most probably achieved through extensive training. As long as staff feel safe and show it in a most genuine way, guests would also feel the same.
Oliver Petcu in Rome (July 2020)
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