| Arrival for the first time the city of Rome can be overwhelming, yet the unique charm of each of the neighborhoods in the historical center can give visitors a sense of “living like a local” when lodging is selected carefully. For families, holiday apartments offer the most value and convenience in the city, however, it is essential that this type of lodging be chosen with care in terms of location, quality, safety, amenities, and customer service.We have partnered with Housetrip to review select Rome family friendly holiday apartments from their collection that meet the Italiakids.com editors’ stamp of approval. We do have distinct preferred neighborhoods in the city, in fact we even have favorite streets, as the first most essential criterion is location. We select our locations based on centrality and convenience, noise, safety, and atmosphere. This includes proximity to taxi stands and other transportation, nearby supermarkets, and open spaces for kids to run around a bit. Next we consider value, ranging from simple elegance to kid-friendly luxury. In evaluating the apartment itself, we take a look at the configuration of the rooms, evaluate how recently the apartment has been refurbished, especially the bathrooms and the kitchen, take stock of amenities (we like to confirm that there is a sufficient number of tableware for a large family and to serve one or two guests in the event that you are traveling with friends), safety issues related to terraces, windows, stairs, and furnishing (too many antiques won’t do when traveling with little ones, and other amenities such as a/c, which in Italy is often autonomous a/c units in the bedrooms, so if a listing notes that it has a/c, it is important to inquire as to where exactly the units are located). We also look for apartments that have views, bedrooms positioned on a quiet street, and plenty of light and windows.One important safety note: antique doors in apartments in Italy often have very idiosyncratic and difficult to manage, yet hip-looking, keys. Our family has had its share of kids-getting-locked-in-bathroom trauma due to these keys, which must be positioned perfectly within the ancient grooves to unlock the door. For this reason, when we check in, I go around the apartment and remove all such keys from doors and wardrobes, placing them on a high shelf where only the adults can reach them. There is also a key concern with the front interior doors to holiday apartments in Italy as they typically lock automatically when they are shut, so we have had many experiences and reports of locking the keys inside the apartment as families hurriedly exit the apartment for their adventure in the city, shutting the door without confirming that someone has brought along the keys! It is my personal policy to always return the keys to the same location in my purse every time I enter the apartment (rather than, for example, hanging them on a key ring in the foyer).Campo de’ Fiori I have a handful of favorite streets in Rome and Via Giulia is among my top 3. It’s an absolutely preferred location for a family stay. Running along the Tiber River from near the Bridge of Angels to Ponte Sisto, Via Giulia is an elegant oasis of Renaissance palazzos. The next piazza over is Piazza Farnese, where in the evening children will kick around a soccer ball, or play freely while eating gelato. From here it is 5 minutes to Camp de’ Fiori, a favorite stop for our family in the morning to visit the market or enjoy cioccolato caldo and pastries from the famous forno. There is also a nice, sizeable supermarket at the beginning of Via Giulia. We selected this 1 bedroom, 1 bath, with a sofa bed for its value on a street that is otherwise luxurious, beginning at a nightly rate of $150.
Romans call this neighborhood just across the Ponte Sisto “the real Rome” for its local vibe, which also translates into value in pricing for holiday apartments, as well as dining. Some of our favorite family-friendly dining options are in this area. This apartment is suitable for families with older children, and offers more space for less cost as a 3 bedroom, 2 bath. Rates begin at $300 per night.
The Spanish Steps neighborhood is an iconic upscale neighborhood where you’ll get a sense of La Dolce Vita, with more chic dining and top designer fashion houses to browse as you stroll through the streets extending off of Piazza di Spagna and Via Condotti. This 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom apartment is light and airy and an excellent value for this generally more expensive location. Rates begin at $166 per night.
The medieval streets around Piazza Navona are classic Rome, adorned with red-checked café tables andpostcard streetcorner views of motorinos and picturesque windows and doors. Piazza Navona itself hosts two wonderful toy stores and is the location of the seasonal Christmas La Befana market. This area is also very centrally located for exploring Rome in general, with easy access to major bus routes, taxi stands, or even walking distance to many sites. This luxurious apartment has a terrace overlooking the piazza, and is located on the third floor of a historical building accessible by elevator. The tasteful furnishings are simple yet stylish, perfect for kids, with a family-friendly living area with three cozy couches and a floor plan open to the kitchen and dining area. With three full bedrooms and 3 full bathrooms, there is enough privacy for inviting Grandma and Grandpa to come along and join, or for traveling with friends or a caregiver. Rates from $436 per night.
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