Earlier this year, I went on a trip with two of my girlfriends over the Easter period. The plan was to initially visit Lisbon with my friend Naidene (a fellow globe-trotter!), but I decided to add a few more days of annual leave and another country! I mean why not?! After a few days of deal hunting, Naidene and I decided to also head to Rome. Fast forward a few weeks, I found out that another friend of ours (Toni) decided to join us on the first leg of the trip.
Since Toni booked her tickets separately from us, she ended up leaving London on a different flight (which actually worked in her favour in the end). Our flight had delays which meant that she arrived before us. After meeting up, we hopped into a cab that we shared with another British guy (he was visiting his italian girlfriend) to our Airbnb apartment that we rented for our stay. We met up with the couple our Airbnb host sent to give us the keys to the apartment. The place was quite old but spacious – nothing fancy.
When we arrived, it was quite late at night and unfortunately we had not realised that there was no heating until after the couple had already left. We left the heating on with hope that it was actually on a timer and that it would miraculously work overnight. We were so wrong.
To our dismay, we woke up to an extremely cold apartment! We later found out that there was in fact an issue with the heating system (which meant no heating or hot water, I repeat NO HEATING OR HOT WATER which should be essential amenities). She was apologetic and offered to give us two nights for free since it was Sunday morning and they wouldn’t get someone to fix until Monday! We obviously needed to shower (at this point, we were seriously considering leaving and finding a hotel nearby) but the host sent her mother to pick us up and she took us to her apartment to freshen up. They were lovely hosts and we were given lunch and a tour of the city.
It was unfortunate that after our stay, our Airbnb host felt like this was sufficient enough compensation (lunch and a drive around the city. I think I will take heat and hot water, thanks) and did not want to refund us the two nights we were left without heat and hot water. The next day, we had to take it old school and we boiled hot water to have a shower! After our stay, we contacted Airbnb directly as our host refused to pay and was very rude about it. In the end, we ended up receiving some money back from Airbnb but it doesn’t change the fact that the whole experience was such an inconvience.
Later that afternoon, after our bellies were full, we were dropped off and we wandered around the city centre.
We were able to visit the Trevi Fountain. This stunning fountain is extremely busy and the tradition here is to throw a coin over your shoulder.
We then headed to the one of Trip advisors most recommended Gelato spots in the area. It surely did not disappoint…
With our gelato in hand, we headed to the famous Spanish Steps but to our disappointment we found that it was actually closed (it actually looked very underwhelming so it wasn’t really much of a disappointment to be fair). We still enjoyed the walk nevertheless and wandering around a new city is never a bad thing!
The next morning we headed out for breakfast at another place with found on Trip advisor and I decided to take a few photos of the girls along the way.
Following breakfast, we headed to the vatican city to explore one of the most famous places on Earth. There was a little bit of a queue to get in as the security was a little tight but other than that it was a breeze! I thoroughly enjoyed St Peter’s Basilica – the level of detail in the walls and ceiling was absolutely impeccable.
The next day was bright and sunny. It was a perfect day for exploring the Colosseum. We had pre-booked our tickets online a few hours before (FYI, there is a reduced ticket price for Europeans under 25) and once we arrived, we signed up for a tour that allowed us to jump the queues and also visit the Palentino and the Roman Forums.
To end the day, we visited, Comme il Latte where I had the best gelato I had ever tasted (No exaggeration!). We travelled far to visit this place but it was so worth it. If you ever visit Rome, I would recommend you to check it out. You will not be disappointed!
Address: ia Silvio Spaventa, 24 (Repubblica/Barberini)
So that was the first half of our trip! At this point we said our goodbyes to Toni who headed back to London and we continued on to the next destination. Lisbon.
Until the next post…
In the meantime, have any of you had negative Airbnb experiences? I would love to hear all about it!