The Hassler offered a combination of excellent business and tourism location with outstanding views of the Eternal City, a see-and-be-seen reputation, in-room Internet access, a well appointed, if small, room, and choice of rooftop restaurant or cozy indoor gourmet dining at the Palazzetto, a hotel owned property across the street.

Overall Impression Arriving at the Hotel Hassler after a transatlantic flight and dizzying taxi drive from the airport, I was relieved to discover my room was ready. Inside, the charming and comfortable black and white themed room with a delightful view of the city and welcome fruit basket, helped reenergize me. In spite of the lack of sleep and jet lag, I was eager to revisit Rome after a long absence. From the small balcony I could see the Spanish steps and beyond them, in the distance, the Vatican. And what a location! The Hassler is in the heart of Rome, at the top of the famous Spanish Steps, an excellent point of departure for tourist oriented visitors. The wholly independent and small family run hotel, which has been temporary home to many celebrities over the years, had a historic character.

Looking out at the wondrous view of Rome from the rooftop restaurant while at breakfast, it was hard to imagine that at one time the Hotel was the headquarters of the U.S. Air Force after World War II. The Hassler offered a combination of excellent business and tourism location with outstanding views of the Eternal City, a see-and-be-seen reputation, in-room Internet access, a well appointed, if small, room, and choice of rooftop restaurant or cozy indoor gourmet dining at the Palazzetto, a hotel owned property across the street.

Class Of Accommodation Small luxury hotel

Concierge Nino Maffezzoni

Handicapped Access Although two of the rooms had handicapped bathrooms, there were steps in various places. The hotel suggested handicapped guests contact them prior to booking for details.

Internet Connectivity The hotel offered high speed Internet cable access for 20 euros per day from guest rooms and business center.

Length Of Stay Two nights

Location At the top of the Spanish Steps and within walking distance of the famous Via Condotti in the heart of Rome

Owned And Managed Roberto E. Wirth, a fifth generation hotelier, who was winner of the “Independent Hotelier of the World 2005” award by Hotels magazine.

Pets Allowed No

Size There were 86 rooms, 10 deluxe suites, three presidential suites and 140 employees working in the eight story building.

Year Opened-Renovated Opened as a hotel in 1895 by Alberto Hassler and designed by German architect Karsh. In 1939, it was demolished almost entirely by Oscar Wirth and rebuilt. The most recent renovation was in April 2005; the renovation of the seventh floor of the hotel (changed the paintings, fabrics, and added wood floors to the rooms).

Lobby And Common Areas In the lobby, numerous details evoked a Belle Époque atmosphere. These included double height ceiling, waterfall sheers, silver chandeliers, velvet and silk furnishings, antique fabric wall hangings, Murano glass lamps, 18 century mirrors, alabaster vases, gold carvings, and cornices finished with distress paint. New burgundy carpeting was installed after our visit. There were two sculptures, one of a she-wolf by Leonardo Lucchi and a bronze ballerina by L’Alatalena to welcome guests.

At the other end there was a red carpeted stairway, flanked by typical Roman mosaic walls. These were decorated with antique fabric panels. The adjacent Palm Court Garden was veiled by high, creeper-covered walls. Antique marble statues and relics uncovered at the hotel site in 1800s adorned the recesses. The theatre-like drapes and gurgling sound of fountains enhanced the ambiance of the indoor garden.

Bathroom The marble bathroom was comfortable and beautiful at the same time. The most striking feature was the black and white marble tiles that covered the walls and vanity. In front of the entrance there were twin sinks lined with Amorvero toiletries, a large mirror, a make-up mirror, a blow dryer and lots of plush towels. To the left of the entrance there was a water closet and bidet behind a glass door; to the right a large mosaic tiled half open bathtub and shower.

Room My 247-square foot Deluxe room (#506), located on the fifth floor, was decorated in a black and white Art Deco style with beige walls and lots of mirrors. It had a marble floor in the hallway near the entrance. One side of the hallway had mirrors and the other side had glass doors leading to the bathroom. Beyond the hallway, the floor was covered with a plush black and white carpet that reached the edge of the small balcony. From the balcony, which had two chairs and a table, there was a great view of the area near the Spanish steps in the foreground and Rome including the Vatican in the background. Sound proof doors and thick double curtains kept the city sounds and bright Roman light out, making it possible to sleep late.

The center of the room was occupied by two single beds covered with a luxurious feather duvet and black, white and red cushions leaning against a black velvet headboard. There were night tables on either side of the bed. One table had a black and white crystal lamp, vanity table and stool and the other had a Tenovis phone and mirror above it. There was also a small grey table next to the balcony entrance and a mirrored closet where the minibar refrigerator and TV were located. Cotton bath robes and an electronic safe were in the large closet with lacquered and mirrored doors that was next to the bed. A small chandelier with crystal tear drops adorned the ceiling.

Food And Restaurants I enjoyed my first breakfast served on German Schonwald dinnerware and silver cutlery, at the suggestions of the front desk staff person, in my room facing the balcony and looking out on the city. It was a fun and relaxing way to start the day. Breakfast at the Hassler restaurant was buffet style. Although the beautiful view of Rome from almost every table was a draw in itself, the buffet options were attractive and varied. I had a delicious traditional Italian dinner at the Palazzetto, a step away from the Hassler and also owned by Robert Wirth.

Amenities There were complimentary Amorvero toiletries including shampoo, shower gel, body lotion, and soap. There were also cotton balls, tissue, bathrobes, slippers, a blow dryer, and an electronic safe. A minibar offered bottled water, snacks and drinks for purchase. Three bicycles were available for guest use at the hotel. A small sample of Amorvero cologne was quite agreeable.

Facilities The facilities available for guest use included an exercise room, restaurant, beauty salon, meeting rooms, sun terrace on the seventh floor and bar.

Fitness Center There was a 100-square meter fitness center available for guest use.

Conference Facilities Meeting rooms could accommodate from 15 to 150 guests. There were two main public rooms, the Salone Medici and the Sala Capre on the ground floor of the Hotel which faced the Palm Court and outdoor gardens. They could accommodate between 100 and 150 guests depending on the set-up style. Another meeting room capable of holding up to 70 guests, the Sala Sistina, was outfitted with audiovisual equipment, picture screens, overhead and slide-projectors.

Other The Hotel, a member of The Leading Small Hotels of the World and Swiss International Hotels, was mentioned in the August 2005 issue of Esquire magazine as number two among “The Esquire 10” and “The View from the Hotel Hassler.” The Hassler was also listed in the Travel and Leisure 2005 “Top 50 Romantic Places in the World.”

Smoking was not allowed in the common areas. The business center, located on the second floor, had two computers, a fax, printer and high speed Internet connectivity.

Because the Hassler’s restaurant was full the night I wanted to dine there, I was able to visit and dine at the neighbouring Palazzetto, a charming 16 century Roman palazzo which was completely renovated in 2002. In addition to four luxurious rooms, it housed a gourmet restaurant situated in the indoor eno-gastronomical library, an outdoor garden (where I dined) available as restaurant space or for private functions, a wine bar and lounge, and an inviting terrace with a view of the famous Piazza di Spagna. The ground floor hosted the headquarters of the International Wine Academy of Rome which offered wine tasting courses and events.

Cleanliness Excellent

Date Of Review September 2005

ReviewersArticle and photos by Elena del Valle

Would You Stay There Again? Yes

Contact Information

  • Address:
    • Trinità dei Monti 6
    • 00187 Roma – Italia
  • Phone:
    • +39 06 699 34 428
  • Fax:
    • +39 06 678 41 607
  • Website:
  • Email: