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Venice Hotel on RS Tour

In 2012 we did the My Way Italy tour. Our first city was Venice and the first hotel was Hotel Serenissima. It took us over an hour to find the hotel from the boat stop and fortunately we ran into another couple with the same page of directions looking for the hotel too. Once we got there we were on the 3rd floor which is of course on the 4th level. No elevator. Very small room, shower smaller than a phone booth, no AC. Room was somewhat dirty.

Fast forward to September of 2022 and we just completed the Best of Europe in 21 Days tour. This included Venice and...you guessed it, we returned to Hotel Serenissima. On the 2nd floor which is the 3rd level. They apparently had done some renovations as the bathroom had newer fixtures and the floor appeared to be new tile. Shower still small but better than last time. However, only 1 outlet which was for the TV and clear across the room from the bed. We both use CPAP machines and both need to plug them in. Fortunately I brought two extension cords for just such a situation. Room was not clean and smelled musty.

The location of this hotel is perfect for seeing Venice. I would not recommend it for comfort, cleanliness, or modern furniture such as the bed. The hotel staff were exceptionally friendly and helpful however.

Posted by
11087 posts

I just stayed here in October on a Best of Italy tour. I agree with all your points. The staff are awesome and the breakfast buffet was astonishing. I'm not sure I've ever encountered the array of sandwiches for breakfast, lol!! I thought it was just my single room that smelled musty so interesting that yours did too. I was on the 1st floor so not much of a hike upstairs. My bathroom was fine but also had outlets across the room.

BTW, I'm pretty sure I was the oldest participant on my tour as all my rooms were on the ground or first floors for my particular tour.

Also interesting that long ago when I did the 21 day tour we stayed at Hotel Mercurio just right down the street from the La Fenice in Venice.

Posted by
5416 posts

We've stayed at the Serenissima twice, both on RS tours. I don't remember any problems; our room was rather large both times. Some people were worried about mosquitoes, but we kept our windows wide open and didn't have a problem. The location is good, once you figure out all the twists and turns. In fact, I was able to walk right to it from San Marco this time, even though we hadn't been there in four years!

Posted by
5156 posts

We also stayed at Hotel Serenissima during our Best of Italy tour back in 2003. We must have been the “young kids” on that tour, Pam, because most of our rooms were on the top floors, which was fine with us. I remember that our room space around the bed was very tight. We’re both very good with directions, but during the two days, if we were heading to our hotel, we gave up and headed to San Marco as our starting point - LOL!

During some independent trips back to Venice, we have stayed at Hotel Ala. In 2016, we ran into our former tour guide at that hotel coming up the stairs! He had a RS tour group staying there. This one seems pretty popular now and in better condition (I stayed there twice this year) so maybe they can make more money not being a tour hotel.

Posted by
11087 posts

Jane! You reminded me about mosquitoes...yes, in October I did have to keep the windows closed in Venice (and in fact everywhere but Varenna and Kastelruth) due to those pesky critters.

Posted by
84 posts

Thanks for sharing your experience at this hotel. On BOI of June this year we stayed in Hotel Mercurio, near the La Fenice theater. It was a bit hard to find at night bc the signage is not lit and I actually walked right past it twice on my way home one night! There were plenty of stairs and twists and turns but the ac worked pretty well, even in my tiny attic room. My outlet was conveniently next to the bed. The staff were very kind.

When I traveled to Venice on my own, I stay in Casa Caburlotto, lodging in a former convent still operated by nuns (plus some lay people). Very clean, with cool terrazzo floors and basic furnishings. The outlets are where you want them, one by the desk and one on the headboard shelf/night table The price is right if that’s a priority for you, and it’s an easy walk from the Piazza Roma bus terminal or train station.

Ciao :)

Posted by
2627 posts

Musty, not clean? RSE needs to up their game and not continue to stay at places like this.

Posted by
11087 posts

Alan...I use the word musty more as a slightly moldy/mildew smell from dampness, not as related to not being cleaned properly. I did not SEE any mold/mildew but I have a nose that is sensitive to it and I can detect it as soon as I open a door. The room and bathroom appeared to be clean, sheets/towels were definitely clean and fresh.

Posted by
586 posts

4 years ago we stayed at Hotel Mercurio the first week of October at the start of our VFR tour. We added a few extra days at the hotel prior to the start.

We used the AC when our room was being invaded by mosquitos and the window had no screen. It was also warm enough several times to justify use. I had to visit a pharmacy to find something to relieve the itching from the bites. They gave me something unavailable in the US that really helped. We also had mosquito issues the prior week in Padua and the subsequent days in Florence but not in Rome.

Our bathroom was really tiny but otherwise the room was acceptable aside from mosquitos. We made friends with another couple who also stayed extra days at Mercurio. It was interesting that the wife had an art history degree like me and we paired together in the buddy system. Their Mercurio room was next to ours but unfortunately was the one that had the sloping floor. She told me that she felt like she had to hold on to bed for fear of rolling off!

We found the staff at Mercurio to be really friendly and helpful.

My buddy and her husband also had bad luck in Florence when Hotel Loggiato dei Serviti did not have enough rooms for all of the RS travelers. They had to go down the block to a room which they didn't find very nice. I felt guilty because we obtained a super nice room at Hotel Loggiato dei Serviti which had a huge bathroom complete with a giant bathtub on a pedestal AND a shower! The toilet was in a separate little room. It was far from the normal RS hotel room.

Posted by
2207 posts

I stayed in the Hotel Serenissima while on the BOI tour in October 2016. I slightly twisted my ankle in the hotel in the Dolomites so the guide put me in rooms on the first or second floor after that. My room in Serenissima was a single and very narrow, but clean. I laughed about the wardrobe where the hangers had to be at an angle! There was only one outlet near the desk with the TV. I charged my iPhone in the bathroom. My bed was fairly comfortable but narrow. I agree with the others the breakfast spread was phenomenal and the staff were lovely. I don’t mind the quirky RS hotels, that’s one of the reasons I like Europe and I like supporting entrepreneurs or Mom and Pop businesses.

Posted by
3517 posts

You may find it helpful to know that toothpaste can be applied to mosquito bites to stop the itching.