Dear Kristin & all;
We wanted to send a few comments about our recent trip to Italy. The accommodations were wonderful and perfectly located for all the sites and day trips. It is difficult to pick favorites since each one was special. We couldn't have imagined a better experience while staying at Casa Firenze in Florence, located in a special neighborhood within walking distance of historic downtown and restaurants. The hospitality was 5-star. We picked up our car in downtown Florence and drove to Lucca next, driving through the narrow streets inside the city walls was easier than expected. We found our room at Palazzo Alexander comfortable. They offer a wonderful breakfast and free Internet which was greatly appreciated. We parked our car for our entire stay and walked this very special walled treasure. We took a short train ride to Pisa one morning, very convenient, worry free and inexpensive.
Thanks In Italy. We had a wonderful trip.
My trip to Italy was fantastic!! I couldn't have asked for nicer hotels or hosts! The cities I visited were amazing ( Florence, Lucca, Cinque Terre, & Siena). My hosts at Casa Firenze, Max & Beatrice, were just outstanding! They were the kindest sweetest folks especially since they were my first stop.
My stay in Lucca at Palazzo Alexander was great as well!! There were two gentlemen at the reception desk; John & Max that totally took care of me - gave me great suggestions on what to see, where to go, places to eat (Da Giulio, Via delle Conce, 45 (P.zza S. Donato) only 13.50 euros for dinner!!), the best place to stop in Cinque Terra - Monteroso (since there are 5 boroughs) and when it took me 4 1/2 hrs to get back from Cinque Terre because of wrong directions, they got me a glass of wine (on the house) and sent me to Da Francesco (Corte Portici, 13 - 55100) for dinner - WOW!!! My dinner was amazing, the service was outstanding, and it wasn't expensive (18 euros for an appetizer, pasta, & wine).
The Hotel Santa Caterina was outstanding as well!! The place was beautiful and had a picturesque view from the fabulous garden where we could also eat our breakfast.
I would highly recommend each place I stayed!! No complaints! Thank you so very much for all your assistance and recommendations - GREAT JOB!!
We just returned from Italy last week and of course had a wonderful time. With initaly.com we booked the Palazzo Alexander in Lucca. Our room was on the first floor; it was "old," but was very comfy and clean. The hotel staff was courteous, friendly, and (most important) helpful. The breakfasts were sumptuous, with quite a spread. There were even umbrellas available for the one rainy day we had in Lucca. All-in-all, it was our best lodging experience in Italy.
The town itself had an old, quaint, comfortable feel about it. There were a few cars, but they were mindful of us pedestrians as they navigated the narrow streets (we didn't have to think constantly about avoiding motor vehicles as we did in Rome and Florence). We were just in the area inside the wall, but could walk everywhere there within 20 to 30 minutes, so it was a great place for people on foot. We spent time in some other towns in Tuscany (as well as Rome), but Lucca was the most laid-back and friendly. Two days there were just about right for us, and we felt safe walking to restaurants at night (our best restaurant experience was also in Lucca).
Rod and Jeanne H.
We had a marvelous time in Lucca and at the Palazzo Alexander. I would highly recommend it to anyone. It is a lovely, small, hotel with wonderful touches. Our room was on the top floor and had marvelous views of the town. The innkeeper was wonderful: welcoming, helpful and very warm.
Kristin et al,
Thank you so much for helping us enjoy a wonderful Italian adventure. Everything you arranged went quite well and we followed your suggestions most of the time. Restaurant advice was heeded and never failed to produce hidden wonders. Airport shuttle was excellent. Car rental and cell phone also wonderful.
Back to Lucca: definitely worth the extra for a junior suite and Boheme was the best of all with windows on three sides and gorgeous views. Turned off the air conditioning with lovely breezes all day.
Oh, and the Garfagnana by car! I could go on and on but won't. Our weather was spectacular and we enjoyed hiking around the botanical garden.
Thanks to all your crew,
Sid and Deborah G.
Our trip was fantastic and the weather could not have been better. A little cool in the mornings and 70's in the afternoon. Our accommodations were great.... Clean, friendly, locations to all were perfect. We did have a hard time finding the hotel in Lucca but called and they gave us directions then waited in the street until we arrived. Tucked away but a very... nice hotel and the managers were so very nice. Thank you again for all your help with the accommodations. We would use your services again.
Craig R. K.
Palazzo Alexander was great once again. Quite charming and suited us in all aspects. Thanks for everything. Would definitely use your services again.
Mary Ann K.
All of the accommodations were fantastic. Lucca: we loved the city. Pay close attention the instructions getting to this one. We felt lucky so just headed in. Big mistake. These streets are extraordinarily small. We finally exited and started over. We stayed in one of the special rooms (Boheme). Great for the end of the trip. Really big with cherubs on the ceiling. Sitting area and again - a cool view.
All the directions were absolutely accurate. The reservations were all exact. I was always fumbling for the confirmation paperwork when the staff handed me the key and a fistful of helpful information. Sometimes they knew our name as we walked in the front door.
The car was great. I thought the driving was easy but I grew up in Detroit. Even I would not drive in Rome, though. The article on driving in Italy on your website was VERY helpful. I strongly recommend it. The only small criticism of this process was that the information said "Auto Europe". NO ONE had ever heard of that entity. Europcar is the proper name and everyone knows that. It took some time wandering around the Milan train station to find the place. Once there, the reservation was set and off we went. As the information says- NO grace time is allowed on the 24 hour rental times.
Plan on using more cash. We were told everyplace took credit cards. Not so true. We found several restaurants that did not and NONE of the museums take them. ATM's are everywhere. Make sure your checking account has some extra. Withdraw large amounts- $6 service fee on most.
Restaurants - Go to the ones with good prices and full tables. It was a no-brainer. Always great food.
Thanks a ton. I talked up your site to everyone with even the slightest interest in going to Italy.
We had an incredible vacation in Tuscany this last twelve days and the accommodations found through your website were essential to a great experience. At Palazzo Alexander we were upgraded at no cost to a beautiful suite on the top floor with painted ceilings and lovely furniture. The staff was warm and helpful and the breakfast wonderful. Lucca is a charming historic gem, with fabulous views from two different towers, pretty churches and many fun street markets. The hotel set us up at two great restaurants, where we were greeted warmly and given champagne aperitifs. We also ventured out of town to Villa Reale, with its notable gardens and the beautiful Villa di Camigliano gia Torrigiani, especially worthwhile because they provide an English language tour of the interior of the villa.
As mentioned, your website was invaluable to the success of our trip and I will definitely use it again when we return to Italy. Thank you so much!
We had a wonderful trip! So much so, that we are already talking about a return visit.
I have to say that, overall, we were very pleased with the ways things were handled by everyone at "In Italy Online". All hotel and car reservations were confirmed and rooms were waiting for us when we arrived at each location. It was great not having someone tell us "sorry, we don't have a room for you", or "sorry, that rate is not available." Everything was pretty much as confirmed in our reservations.
Regarding the pluses and minuses...let me get the only minus out of the way first. The Palazzo Alexander was not up to expectations. The two rooms we reserved were supposed to be the same, yet one room was far inferior. For example, the private bath required one to be sitting in the tub holding a shower wand over head in order to shower. Not what we expected. The toilet seat would not stay on the toilet. It literally came off the toilet anytime it was touched. The sparse lighting was complicated by the fact that two bulbs were burned out and this made the room very dark. The hotel's location was great, but it was not a very good value. Even the better room had a shower door which literally fell off its hinges when you tried to open or close the door. In Italy Online should reconsider recommending this place as I don't think it reflects the caliber of accommodations you want to represent.
Even the staff at Hertz rental car were great. We made some changes to our reservation and they worked with us to get us what we needed.
I would absolutely use your services again and have already recommended your web site to several friends.
My husband and I had the most wonderful trip of our lives and you helped in making that happen. Everything went absolutely PERFECT! We were even upgraded by the car rental to a Mercedes sedan which was very comfortable.
The Palazzo Alexander and staff are the most gracious group of people I have ever met. They even knew some local Italian people from our hometown whose ancestry traced back to Lucca! The hotel itself is a beautiful little secret. I am so glad I decided on it. The decor and service were impeccable. It was very convenient to everything in town. We had very nice shopping, restaurants and markets within walking distance. The Italians are very accommodating and almost everyone speaks English. I would highly recommend to anyone planning their stay at this beautiful hotel. Breakfast every morning was a delight with fresh croissants, fruits, cereals, local cheeses and meats, pastries, rolls, cream, juice and coffee and tea served in sterling silver pots by our hosts. My husband and I are missing it so very much now. Lucca is a very conveniently located northern town between Pisa and Florence (which we drove to and enjoyed tremendously, especially Pisa). We also went to San Gimingano, south, but on a mountaintop that overlooks the olive trees and vineyards. Breathtaking views and worth the drive. We also drove to Venice and did a lot of shopping there, took a gondola ride and visited the churches which are incredible.
When I tell people that I did all this myself through your website, they are very amazed, but the next trip we plan will certainly go through you at In Italy Online!
Thank you so very much for helping us make this the most memorable trip we have EVER taken!
P.S. Our luggage was detained on the outbound trip from Philadelphia and we did not have our luggage for 2 days, but that was covered by the trip insurance. It was delivered right to our hotel by the delivery service. We had all of our necessities packed in our carry on so we made do.
We will stay in touch!
Home again after a wonderful trip! All went like clockwork and we have you and your site to thank for that, so thanks to you all.
I know that you are an American company with most of your clients originating from the other side of the pond. Our friends were quite surprised when they heard I was using a.com and not a.co.uk but we couldn't be happier with the results as Scotland now has, for the first time, direct flights to Pisa, Milan and Rome. We hope that our satisfaction will increase your client base.
We loved the laid back atmosphere and the incredibly friendly people in Lucca. This was our first time without our own transport so it was a great novelty and experience to use local buses and trains to get around.........and without a problem. We hopped on the blue Lazzo bus outside Pisa Airport and were dropped off within an easy 5min trundle of the luggage to the Palazzo Alexander.
The suite, Boheme, was fine but it would have been even better if the ceiling painting was completed, the whirlpool tub worked and the terry bathrobes/slippers had been there. However, all the staff were very helpful. I would point out that the sleep sofa was very uncomfortable and we had to 'doctor' it with cushions etc from the other sofa. Not the best comfort but as our daughter is used to a Tempur mattress, equally not surprising!! We visited Carrera and Pisa by train/bus so who needs a car in this area?
Fiona, Rod and M.
It was a great trip and thanks very much for helping us plan it! We were a little nervous since we'd never relied quite so much on a web service to plan a vacation but everything went incredibly well. I would not hesitate to recommend your services to someone planning a trip to Italy. A few specifics -
Palazzo Alexander - Almost as good as Hotel Abbazia in terms of staff helpfulness and perfect for exploring the surrounding area as per your website.
Car rental - Driving was great, glad I went with at least an Alfa Romeo.
Cinqueterre - A must see and maybe the best day of our trip.
Artworks - We returned with 5 paintings, several prints, 2 venetian masks, and a few items from the Murano glassworks. I don't know if you mention it anywhere on your website, but Italy is an absolutely fantastic place to get very nice art at reasonable prices.
The trip was superb. Palazzo Alexander was great! Very clean and newly decorated. Antiques and flower arrangements at every turn. Its location is superb for strolling through Lucca or walking along the stunning rampart wall. Small staff was very attentive - no detail overlooked. Coffee served in silver service - china from Villaroy & Boch. The secure parking lot nearby made it extremely convenient for those day trips in the surrounding area. We honestly couldn't have asked for anything more from this treasure of a hotel.
I hope this is helpful.
We're still savoring the enjoyment of our trip -- a very successful one, in no small part due to the help of In Italy. Thank you so much!
The Palazzo Alexander was fine, though our room was quite small and noisy. But we spent very little time there, so it worked out fine.
The car booking worked fine, as well. We would recommend In Italy heartily -- and have -- to anyone we come in contact with!!!
Thanks again...until next time,
The Palazzo Alexander was wonderful. The Madame Butterfly Suite was ideal for us. The view over the tiled rooftops was lovely. The staff was quite helpful and even fixed us high tea in the lounge area, and we ate some of delicious biscotti/cookies that we bought in Siva's bake shop in the heart of Lucca. Walking the ancient streets was a delight, we will never forget our trip to Lucca and the Palazzo Alexander. Thanks for all your help.
Sara and Ed N.
Everything was wonderful, I cant say enough about the service that your company provided...AAA+++.
The Palazzo Alexander was great, super service and a fantastic staff. Lucca was amazing to visit, and the hotel made us feel very welcome. I will forward some photos of special places and unique finds next week.
We had a very enjoyable time in Italy. The Palazzo Alexander certainly met our expectations, great room and very helpful staff. The only negative I could possibly draw was the quality of the beds, the metal action beds are not the most comfortable.
On our way to Cinque Terre, we stayed one night at Palazzo Alexander in Lucca. It is truly a great hotel; the staff very accommodating and it reminded us of the Plaza in New York! The rooms were beautifully decorated, the location great and the breakfast was terrific. Lastly, we recommend that everyone visit a Coop in Italy....the super market! We saw signs throughout our travelers and just had to see were the locals shopped. You can buy anything from appliances to clothes, food and cars! What an experience......we also had lunch and found it to be one of the best.....we recommend the spaghetti with mussels. So once again we must thank you all. This was a memorable trip. Our accommodations were great and we look forward to next year.
Buona Sera Julie!
We have returned from a two-week visit to the Tuscany region of Italy. We stayed 5 nights at the Palazzo Alexander in Lucca. It was a tremendously enjoyable experience. The staff was friendly, helpful and always made us welcome after a long day of sightseeing. Our room was both comfortable and elegant. We will recommend the Palazzo Alexander to anyone planning a stay in Lucca.
Audrey and John W.
We can't stop thinking about the wonderful time we had in Italy, and highly commend your service for helping in planning our trip. We certainly will recommend Initaly.com to our friends. You made the planning so easy and everything went exactly as planned. We were overwhelmed by the beauty and antiquity of the Palazzo Alexander. The building is over 2000 years old and very well maintained. We suggest that tourists plan on spending some time in the walled city of Lucca. The charm overtakes you and the locals are so very friendly. Mario and Francesco, our hosts made our stay not only pleasant, but advised us of many of the museums and churches that we should visit. Puccini's home (museum) was worthwhile and a visit to St. Martino's was outstanding. There is a wooden cross and figure of Christ which was carved by Nicodemus, a follower who helped take Christ from the cross.
We thank all of you at In Italy for helping to make our trip to Italy so perfect and so memorable. Every aspect of our plans and all of your recommendations were met with the highest level of satisfaction.
Margaret & Edward S.
Thanks so much for your assistance in planning our trip. We loved Palazzo Alexander and Lucca! Palazzo was beautiful and comfortable, lovely breakfast each morning and very supportive staff. As for local treasures, our son has just spent 6 weeks in Lucca, so we were treated to some of his discoveries. Favorite place for excellent pizza: Drogheria on Santa Croce near San Michaeletto (hope I've spelled it right). Apparently there are other drogherias in Lucca, but this was the favorite hang-out for the musicians from the Opera Theater Music Festival of Lucca because the food is so good. We only ate there once, but I'm still dreaming of that pizza and the bread! We also had an outstanding meal at Buca di San Antonio -- I know that one is on every list for fine dining in Lucca.
An unexpected plus for the timing of our trip was that we were in Italy during the sale season prior to the August vacations. Everything was discounted as the store owners prepared for their holidays. While we expect things to be on sale regularly in the States, this is not the case during most of the year in Italy. I was also unaware that Lucca is something of a shopping mecca for the region, so in addition to the beauty of the city and the interesting sites, it was great fun for a confirmed shopper like me!
We had also booked a rental car through you and had no difficulty at all with this (other than a brand new clerk at the airport counter who needed lots of guidance from everyone -- she originally gave us the wrong car and didn't give us the free upgrade). Driving was easy and our concerns about driving into Rome to return the car were unfounded. We were staying in Rome near the Via Veneto, above the Spanish Steps, and driving in that part of the city was no worse than in any other city we've experienced. On the other hand, I wouldn't have chosen to use the car to tour around Rome -- we stuck with the feet and taxis.
We just returned from our two week trip to Italy that was booked almost exclusively through your website. I thought that I would send you feedback immediately while all the memories are fresh, and thank you once again for all of your assistance. You were instrumental in helping us create a wonderful and memorable vacation, and I would definitely use your website again and recommend it to others.
As on any trip there were some wonderful accommodations and some disappointments.... mostly wonderful.
At Palazzo Alexander in Lucca we were not disappointed. The accommodations were lovely. We had a beautiful junior suite on the top floor with a deck. The building has been wonderfully restored and was comfortable and inviting. The hotel recommended excellent restaurants for our two nights there. I would highly recommend this hotel.
All in all, we had a great trip that went very smoothly due in large part to your excellent recommendations and assistance. I will be back in touch when I plan my next trip to Italy!!!
We did have a great trip to Italy and especially enjoyed our stay at Palazzo Alexander in Lucca. We were able to afford this hotel only because they offered a special rate - during this low tourist season - of 3 nights for the cost of 2. We were very happy with the friendly and helpful service; the lovely interior; the breakfast (larger than those offered by 2-star accommodations); the location within Lucca; and the parking area for our car. Lucca itself was delightful and I would recommend it to future travelers.
Thanks for all your help. Your website is REALLY good, and I will refer it to other travelers to Italy.
After a long drive to Lucca, we arrived at the Palazzo Alexander and experienced the quiet elegance of this wonderful old hotel. Piero, in particular, was our welcoming committee, and he was incredibly helpful. Along with the other members of the staff, he recommended not only specific things to do and see in Lucca, but each night a new and even more enjoyable place to eat, all near the hotel. It was especially nice, too, to have an internet connection right in the lobby of the hotel. While in Lucca, and with the advice and counsel of the hotel staff, we hit the high spots in and near that part of Tuscany: Lucca itself, the incredible Firenze (great bus connection from Lucca), the Cinque Terre, Pisa, Siena, Volterra, and the amazing San Gimignano. It was hard to imagine a better "base" for our exploring these various places.
Back home we are still glowing with fond memories and the acquaintance of new friends. We are in your debt!
Continued blessings to you all in your work--
Bill and Rosemary S.
It has been over six months since our trip to Tuscany. Yet the memories are still as fresh and vivid as the day we returned. Our trip to Tuscany was fun, relaxing, and even more magical than we expected! And that was due in large part to all the excellent resources and help from In Italy. In fact, we had such a marvelous time for our annual Christmas Eve dinner we had a Tuscan theme. All food and wine from the regions we visited.
This was our first vacation using only Internet resources to make all our arrangements. Every time I visited the In Italy web site I found something new and interesting. From finding great places to stay, ordering museum tickets, even reserving a rental car, it was all so easy. What an outstanding travel resource! I have told all my travel friends about your site.
Palazzo Alexander in Lucca was absolutely charming! What a thrill to drive and stay within the original walled city. The Assistant Manager there was just wonderful to us! He seemed to so enjoy making sure the guests of Palazzo Alexander were content, like remembering our morning coffee choice. Lucca contained many surprises including the Roman and Estruscan ruins found in Chiesa dei Santi Giovanni e Reparata and The Holy Face in The Cathedral. For the last night of our trip we wanted to have a special dinner. The Assistant Manager recommended the Buca Di San Antonio. It was a spectacular dinner to end our best trip to Europe.
Thank you In Italy! We can't wait to return to Tuscany.
Mike and I enjoyed our honeymoon in Italy. Although everything was under his name, I planned it all. Believe me, I was relieved when we arrived at Palazzo Alexander. It was absolutely gorgeous! It was more than we'd expected. I was a little leery because with the internet you don't always get the quality you expect. However, I paid attention to all of the comments that were on your web site posted by previous travelers and took the chance. Mike and I were thrilled with Palazzo Alexander and the city of Lucca. We fell in love with Lucca and felt like we were "home" whenever we came back from our daily trips. It's so well situated, allowing us to visit Florence, Pisa, Rome and Marble Mountain in Carrara. This latter was something Mike knew about as he'd lived in Italy for 3 years when he was stationed for the Army. We rented a car through AutoEurope, which saved us a lot of money and we even received a free upgrade in class of car. We appreciated the off season rate that Palazzo Alexander gave us through InItaly.com. I feel that if I hadn't come across InItaly.com, we may not have had the dream honeymoon we did.
We had a fabulous trip to Italy, thank you.
The Palazzo Alexander was excellent. It is perfectly positioned in the old town and the staff were an absolute delight and particularly helpful on recommending and making reservations at restaurants. The only downside was the car park which is very tricky!
Thanks and regards,
We had a marvelous time in Lucca. The Palazzo was a find. Though the manager and the owner were both on holiday the two gentlemen who acted as duty managers could not be faulted. They were very helpful and kind--nothing was too much trouble. The service your organisation provided was extremely efficient and I have recommended your company to my friends. Hope to use you in the future.
Lucca was one of our favourite stops on our tour of Tuscany. The Palazzo Alexander was the perfect compliment for our stay in such a charming town. Mario, Piero and Franco took wonderful care of us! Their suggestions for restaurants and arrangements for private tours was quite exceptional. Lucca and is an absolute must see for those traveling Tuscany! Thank you Jessica and to the rest of the In Italy staff for helping to make our trip to Tuscany so unforgettable.
Bill D. & Julie L.
The Palazzo Alexander was really lovely! The front desk staff could not be more accommodating. The room and bathroom were a little small but the cleanliness and location made up for it. Lucca was one of our favorite spots. You could walk everywhere and restaurants starting with the little cafes and ending with the top notch were really reasonable and the food was delicious. On Friday Sept. 13th the town had a religious celebration and the whole town turned out to celebrate. The two main churches were all lit with candles...thousands of them and there was a parade. People were dressed in period costumes and there was music which culminated with a fantastic fireworks display that we watched from atop the city walls. The whole town had a really nice family atmosphere. On Saturday there were several Farmer's markets and a large antique market. I would like to recommend Lucca to everyone but would hate to see it lose its charm to the hordes of tourists we experienced in Florence and Pisa.
One of the treasures we discovered was the Grotta Giusti Treme which is a lovely hotel and spa in the town of Monsummano. The time we spent there was a really unique and truly European experience. The whole facility is built around an underground lake that was discovered there in the 1800's. Besides an extensive list of spa type offers, if you are certified, you can make a reservation to dive in the lake. If I was there longer I would have loved to do just that!
Thanks for your help in making this trip so enjoyable.
The Palazzo Alexander was terrific, we would highly recommend it again. We loved the La Boheme room, and when we extended our stay, they found another for us since that one was taken. The next room was just over the breakfast room, and scrapping chairs could be heard in the morning, but it was a nice room otherwise, and the last one left. Restaurant suggestions that they made were good, see below, and they were very helpful finding an airport hotel in Milan.
Lucca is just great and we had nice meals at Ostaria dei Neni -VERY nice hostess-and two great meals at Puccini, plus other good ones. We would definitely consult your site again for Italy.
The Palazzo Alexander was an absolute gem and we loved it. The accommodation was excellent, the four charming gentlemen, Mario, Marco, Piero, and Fernando could not have been nicer and as for Lucca, well, it turned out to be the highlight of our trip. We felt that we had discovered hidden treasure as we wandered around Lucca and in the end were sorry that we had only allocated two nights there.
We are very impressed with your website and your efficiency. If I may make a couple of suggestions though - firstly although the directions for finding the Palazzo were very thorough we nevertheless managed to lose our way (it happened often in Italy I might add). Somehow after the toll and the first traffic light something went a bit haywire but in the end we found it. I do think that travellers by car in Italy need lots of instruction as to the intricacies of the autostrada and the tolls, we really got very confused with them especially about which lanes to exit from and a bit of useful information beforehand would have helped us a lot. By the end of our stay though we managed to get it right.
Despite that though we had a marvellous time travelling around and cannot wait to go back to Lucca and especially the Palazzo Alexander.
June and Clem D.
Palazzo Alexander in Lucca was wonderful. I can't say enough good things about Lucca and the Palazzo Alexander! We were in a family suite on the 4th and top floor. The lift went to the 3rd floor, so if stairs are a problem, one should not stay on the 4th floor. However we were rewarded with a small balcony, which overlooked the red tile roofs of Lucca. The breakfast room was elegant and there was an email connection available for the price of a local phone call. Fresh fruit was available each afternoon. We had some difficulty with hot water the first day and it was fixed instantly! Lucca is a charming city. There was plenty to do there for 2 days and then we ventured out for a short hike on the Cinque Terre. I think that if we were to visit Cinque Terre again, I would stay in one of the towns. The day we went, the train was not running reliably and so we had to adjust our plans. We ate twice at a wonderful restaurant in Lucca called Osteria Neni, a five minute walk from the hotel. We made a quick trip in to Pisa when we returned our car. We hoped to return the car and make a quick visit to the Leaning Tower and Campo di Miracoli, but stowing our luggage turned out to be quite a problem. The car return at the Pisa airport was very quick and the airport is the only place where one can check baggage (not possible to do at the train station) However, the bags had to be checked by security and departing passengers had priority, so it was going be an hour wait to check the bags. So... instead we hopped in a cab at the airport with our luggage and asked the driver to take us to the Tower and wait for us for 5 minutes while we simply looked. He was very nice and drove us as close as possible. So we can say that we saw the tower.
Palazzo Alexander is a very nice small hotel in Lucca. Driving inside the city of Lucca is difficult (very narrow streets), but the directions were good and we did not have any problems. Watch the blue arrows on the buildings to determine which direction traffic flows.
The hotel has parking spaces available for an additional 12 Euros each day. The breakfast, which is included in the room rate, is outstanding. Very helpful and friendly staff. Good restaurants can be found in Lucca, and it seems to be safe walking at night (before 10 PM). Lucca is a very old city and shopping is very good. Silver items and jewelry seemed to be rather cheap.
My trip was fantastic. Adventurous, unpredictable, magical and exhausting. The parts that In Italy planned were exceptional. My sister and I particularly loved exquisite Lucca. What a jewel. The Palazzo Alexander was charming and the staff, even though we arrived at midnight after getting lost in the countryside for two hours, were most delightful and prepared a lovely tray of food for us. PLUS, the big positive at this hotel was that it had a bath that was also a jacuzzi (in the La Boheme Suite). And the view out our window was delightful (a view from the bath too!). Everywhere else we stayed had showers and some were even cold! The shopping and the food and the beautiful cathedrals and miniscule amounts of tourists were wonderful.
Palazzo Aleander was quite nice! Nothing fancy... just very nice! The people were delightful, the food was quite good, the only complaint was that the pillows were terrible. (I can live with that if I need to).
We had a fabulous culinary experience in Lucca! I'll send those restaurants on to you in a few days as well.
So, the final thought for tonight... Initaly.com was wonderful to us! We had fabulous experiences in 3 very different kinds of places... all of them quite nice!
WE LOVED ITALY! It was our 20th wedding anniversary and nothing could have been more romantic. Thanks for a great time!
I'll write more later!
Our stay at the Palazzo Alexander was a great success. As we arrived in a car, thank you for the instructions as finding our way to hotels in the centre of Italian towns is never easy. The reception was charming and helpful, the magnolia were in blossom, the restaurants were good and sauntering round the walls irresistible. We have been before and will go again and will stay at that hotel another time. I feel you should always let people know that most hotels in Italy are noisy and that parquet floors, however beautiful looking, do mean that you are very aware of the people overhead. I think the Italians enjoy noise! Next time we go to Italy I will be in touch as I found not only that hotel but all kind of information through your site.
The Palazzo Alexander was very good value for money. The Hotel was very well presented in terms of decor and cleanliness and the continental breakfasts were very good. The management and staff could not have been more helpful and were always ready to give advice. We will certainly return one day.
Colin and Yvonne I.
Palazzo Alexander was our favorite place that we stayed on our trip. The hotel was beautiful and the staff and service were excellent! In fact, if we had to do it over again we would stay in Lucca the entire trip and travel out from there.
We planned a day trip to Florence while we were there. Even though we had a car-we thought about taking the train-since it would minimize parking hassles. The hotel staff again recommended that we just take the "direct bus". The bus station was only a "5 minute" walk from the hotel and the train station was 15-20 minutes. We did take the bus-it cost approximately $9.00 US round trip-well worth it. The bus was extremely clean and efficient. It was convenient as it dropped us in Florence right by the train station and returned us to the station around the corner from the hotel. In addition, there were almost hourly buses to and from Florence all day.
The only difficulty we had was following the instructions to reach the hotel. We arrived after dark and found it difficult to follow.
Thanks for all of your assistance! We had a great time!
Danna & Gary C.
Your help in planning our trip was fabulous. The arrangements all worked smoothly and we will use your wonderful resource again. The Palazzo Alexander was a perfectly wonderful experience - we had a suite with high ceilings (the Michelangelo suite), beautiful decor, marble bath with whirlpool tub and beautiful rooftop views of Lucca. The staff was lovely and helpful and we would confidently recommend the hotel to anyone. Lucca itself was great fun. The staff sent us to a restaurant on the old walls - La Mura - which was terrific - and the chef even gave us a pasta recipe we asked for. We biked around the old walls which is a fun thing to do and bike rental is easy.
Thanks again for your terrific help!
We loved Palazzo Alexander. The staff was the most helpful of anywhere we stayed. Bicycling on the ramparts with the bikes from the hotel was perfect as was the weather. Would highly recommend the hotel. Lucca great. Montecatini Alto is a must for a day trip for those staying in Lucca. Also, of course The Cinqueterre. Once I have some more time I'll try and email more about our stay. Thanks again for your help.
The Palazzo Alexander was wonderful. The room was adequate, shower/water pressure excellent (modern bathroom), the service was superb; Mario and Franco made us feel so welcome and comfortable. The breakfast every morning in the breakfast nook was a wonderful way to start the day. The room is beautifully decorated, elegant, cozy and charming. The variety of foods was splendid. We highly recommend this hotel and we loved Lucca.
For people who plan to take a side trip to Cinque Terre, a must-see experience, I would recommend before taking your car to Spezia, people need to get very specific directions for finding the railroad station in Spezia. I don't know why, but there are no signs. We know people staying in La Spezia who could not find the station. If people decide to go by train from Lucca they must realize that the trains back to Lucca are very few and non-existent in the evening. If people want to take the hikes from town to town, you really need to devote at least a full day, if not more. Otherwise, if you don't have that much time, you are better off taking the railroad from town to town.
I hope this is helpful. Thank you, and do stay in touch.
We were very particularly happy with Palazzo Alexander. Had no idea it was so new. Alexander had a testimonial book in the foyer that people had written extremely laudatory things in. Their decor was terrific. Their guests seemed all to be English speaking when we were there. Their breakfast room also very attractive, with civilized (Italian classical) background music and a more extensive breakfast selection. The room had air conditioning, which was appreciated, and some English language news tv stations, which we enjoyed having not had television news in a week or so. So thank you for making the second week of our stay so enjoyable as far as accommodations went. The trip overall was terrific. Can't wait to return.
Ciao e grazie,
Thank you for your assistance in booking Palazzo Alexander. We enjoyed the hotel very much indeed. The rooms (we had three suites at the top of the building, one with a small terrace overlooking the rooftops) were very comfortable, the breakfast just lovely, but the very best part was how friendly and helpful the staff were, most notably the manager Franco who handled everything with ease and humor. The location is great for walkers and although that particular area is undergoing lots of renovation and is kind of crumbly, we were lucky that nothing was happening while we were there or it would have been noisy perhaps.
I am already dreaming of our next trip and will contact you again.
Hello In Italy folks!
We just returned from our trip to Italy and want to thank you for recommending the Palazzo Alexander hotel and the city of Lucca in general. The Palazzo was better than we expected in terms of atmosphere, decor and service. Its proximity to Florence and the Vespucci airport were perfect and Lucca felt like a real Italian town, not a tourist trap. The hotel loaned us bikes on which to tour the city and we felt like a couple of locals! The wall surrounding the old city made for a great morning run and the antique fair on the 3rd weekend of the month was absolutely fantastic, a real highlight - if only we had a freight container to take back everything we wanted to bring home.
We stayed in Lucca at the beginning of our trip and again at the end and were upgraded to a Jr. Suite for minimal cost (I think because the suite wasn't booked anyway). The suite was beautiful and had its own terrace overlooking the tiled roofs of the city. I would highly recommend the suite if you can afford it for the air conditioning and the quiet. Our earlier room on the first floor was a little noisy - through no fault of the Palazzo's, just noisy vespas and narrow, echoing streets.
Thanks also for the driving tips on your website. We read these prior to leaving and were prepared for the driving habits of Italians and had no problems whatsoever with what might appear, to the unaware, to be chaotic driving.
Thanks again for providing a great service.
Our stay at Palazzo Alexander was wonderful. The staff and owner were extremely friendly and helpful, all very pleasant to deal with. Although our room was a bit small, it was beautifully furnished and impeccably clean. The breakfast room and buffet were lovely, with fresh fruits, pastries and hot cappuccinos. Lucca is a beautiful city, off the main tourist track, so it was very relaxing to be there. I'm so glad I found InItaly.com... your recommendations and service were excellent. I'll be sure to recommend your site to fellow travelers.
Bye for now,
Our family had a most enjoyable stay at the Palazzo Alexander in Lucca! The management did everything possible to make our stay as comfortable as possible. Centrally located, Lucca was a perfect spot for touring Montecatini, Siena, Florence, Cinque Terre, Pisa, and Pompeii. At night, there were any number of excellent restaurants in town for our evening meal within walking distance of the hotel. Also, on Sunday there is an antique market in the central square which was wonderful. Thanks again for all your help.
We had a fabulous time on our trip. The Palazzo Alexander was wonderful. All the staff were very nice and helpful. Piero, one of our hosts was great. We only wished we could have stayed longer. We used this as our base point for Pisa and the Cinque Terre and it was great. Lucca is a wonderful city and largely unspoiled. We spent the evening at this bar called Ginos in Lucca located in the Piazza Napoleon. The bar is actually located under the magnolia trees on one of the corners of the Piazza. The staff was wonderful there as well and it was a very relaxing close to our day. Thank you again for your assistance. We found that Lucca was our favorite part of the trip and the Palazzo Alexander our favorite hotel.
We just returned from a trip to Tuscany where our final 4 days were spent at the Palazzo Alexander in Lucca. Lucca was a gem - uncrowded, unhurried, unspoiled. Its location affords many opportunities to explore the Ligurian seacoast (including Cinqueterre), Siena, Pisa, Livorno, Florence and the Garfagnana. Our welcome at Palazzo Alexander couldn't have been more courteous and efficient. Both Mario and Piero have a knack for making each guest feel like a friend of the family. They spoke English fluently and were most helpful in recommending wonderful restaurants, giving accurate directions, and suggesting interesting activities. Having recently been renovated, our suite was luxurious and well-appointed. I would not hesitate in recommending the Palazzo to friends. I understand that the owners have purchased the adjacent building and renovations are already underway for 12 luxury suites. We'll have to return when the project is completed!
Lynda and Alfred D.
Thanks for asking - the Palazzo Alexander was a PERFECT way to end our stay in Italy. Frankly, it is difficult to provide enough positive adjectives about the experience. It was our only accommodation in Italy where we actually spent one afternoon just relaxing and drinking wine in our room.