UNA Hotel Vittoria
What We Love
- Striking over-the-top postmodern design
- Located in a great neighborhood just south of the Arno
- Una Restaurant’s S-shaped communal table
- WiFi is free
What To Know
- Not for traditionalists in search of an authentic Tuscan sleep
- The neighborhood is usually devoid of tourists but has a few busy streets
- Around a 15- to 20-minute walk to the city center
- Guestrooms can be dark
- Free WiFi
- Handicap Accessible
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
Among the winding, Renaissance-era streets of Florence’s San Frediano neighborhood is a hotel that’s decidedly more up to date. Hidden behind a typical Tuscan façade, this postmodern pad was dreamed up by Italian architect and designer Fabio Novembre. The 84-room hotel is on the far western side of the city, graciously removed from the crowds that fan out from the Duomo, but only a 15- to 20-minute walk from the city center. The patriarchs and matriarchs of Florentine history would never have imagined a property like this in their midst. But at the Vittoria, they’re part of it: The front door of each guestroom has a life-size silk-screen portrait from the Renaissance era. Inside, things get a bit wild. Walls are paneled in black leather and fuchsia felt, with twinkling fiber optic lights. Black-and-white tile bathrooms and lilac sinks round out the trippy aesthetic. The restaurant is centered on a cool S-shaped communal table under a backlit stained glass ceiling and serves traditional Tuscan fare. The design is clever and considered, and less at odds with its surroundings than it seems at first. Outside the hotel, which is steps from the 19th-century gates to the Old City, the streets of San Frediano hum; on some of the side streets, brick walls hide ornate palaces.
In the Area
Una Hotel Vittoria might be removed from the city center, but that doesn’t mean the area lacks great restaurants. Indulge in the seafood specialties at Trattoria Vittoria, just down the street from the hotel. Near the Duomo, Angels is the type of swank bar/restaurant that Leonardo’s cherubs might not have approved of. Pick up luxuriously soft leather goods and hatboxes at ART Pell Coke. Don’t miss a visit to Santa Maria Novella, a lovely church just north of the Arno, if for no other reason than to shop at its ancient pharmacy, founded by Dominican monks in 1612.
How to Get There
My wife and I visited this property 18 to 20 May. Set back from the road the hotel had a large reception area. Staff very welcoming and allowed us to leave our luggage in the foyer while we went into the restaurant for a meal. The room was manageable although there was not much room between the right hand side of the bed and the wall mounted television. The room was clean with ample bathroom and shower supplies. There was a shortage of plug sockets to charge phones and camcorders- we could only find two in the room. The restaurant offered a good selection menu at dinner time with plenty of Tuscan varieties and was not too expensive. Breakfast was buffet style with a good selection of meats cakes cereal and drinks. We also used the snack bar one afternoon and the sandwiches were nicely present and delicious. Although a little way from the centre of Florence there are bus services which pass the hotel. My wife went to breakfast on her own on the first day and the staff were very good at helping her to have food since she was on crutches. Overall satisfied with this hotel despite comments made by other contributors.
Don't be fooled by the cool pictures!
The hotel is not functional at all, making out stay super annoying!
Here's a few relevant points:
• Turning on the million different lights is a mission... There's a bunch of unnamed switches and you have to basically turn them all on untill you find what you need... Veeery annoying.
• The AC DOESN'T WORK. Our rooms felt like saunas - we warned the staff the first night and they just said that "the AC isn't on this time of the year".
• The bathroom is not very good. The flushing system sucks. Turning on the shower light is another mission. The mirror light didn't work in our room.
There's a step to go into the bed area and another one to get into the bathroom. This was another annoying feature as stepping on and off isn't always easy due to the lack of space in the room. Also, we asked the staff to have a shower instead of a bath because my mom has Mobility issues, and while the staff was nice to accommodate that request, we didn't even realize my mom bad to climb steps to move inside the bedroom!!!
• Getting from the door to the other end of the room is terrible... The tv sticks our from the wall and makes walking in that area super hard! I had to walk kinda crooked to be able to get to my side of the room.
• We contacted the staff because we wanted a double bed instead of twin beds, and all they did was squish the single beds together a but double bed sheets on it - that was annoying.
My mom and dad didn't have the reading lights working - they contacted the staff and when they got back to the bedroom, instead of fixing the reading lights, they turned on the floor lights (yes there's floor lights... Of no use).
• The breakfast sucks. It's bland, uninteresting and always the same everyday. The cakes and cookies are store bought. The fruit selection is sparse. The yogurts are stored on top of a slightly cold dish, wish means that the yogurt consistency is pretty much liquid and room temperature.
The hotel is away from anything of interest, aside from a few good restaurants.
I don't recommend this hotel!
My wife and I stayed here awhile back and had a great visit. The concierge was super helpful and spent a lot of time explaining the city to us. The rooms were very nice and a bit interesting. They had excellent gluten free options for breakfast that really made our stay. Highly recommend. If you would like to read more or see pictures, check out our blog at randrwander.
Good location and large building. Rooms are reasonable for size, but the decor is terrible and the purple fabric and led lights very off putting on the walls and ceiling. Carpets and led lights are either worn or discoloured as they are getting old now. Bathrooms are cramped and dark.
But it is quiet and the wifi is good, so they get average rating.
Main public areas are poorly equipped with bad tables and chairs. Breakfast was okay. No pool or other areas/gym etc.
I think the main selling point would be if you had a car as it has underground parking.
Stayed here recently and was impressed with the whole experience. The staff were very friendly and when we walked into out room we definantly got the wow factor!! Red tile walls with led lights and lots of mirrors. Not what I expected!! Would stay there again. The breakfast was good too lots if choice.