This First Roma Dolce Hotel Review with photos is from our late 2022 site inspection trip. The property is part of The Pavilions Hotels & Resorts, which has two other hotels in Rome (The First Arte, The First Musica) as well as hotels in Amsterdam, Madrid, Lisbon, Bali, Phuket, Niseko, the Himalayas, Mongolia, and El Nido in Palawan. As the hotel is a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts Platinum, TravelSort Clients enjoy special benefits, more on this below.
First Roma Dolce Hotel Location and Check-In
The hotel's entrance is at Via del Corso, 63, but as this is a pedestrianized area, taxis are unable to drop passengers off in front of the hotel, they have to use one of the side streets that are open to vehicles, and you'll walk the rest of the way along Via del Corso to the hotel.
I arrived in the evening and there was no wait at check-in, although Reception informed me that contrary to the Preferred Hotels & Resorts confirmation, Platinum benefits were only applicable on stays of two nights or longer. I pushed back on this, although didn't get a resolution until the following day.
There's a small lobby seating area just off of Reception which was already decorated for Christmas during my late November stay.
Prestige View Room
Regular Prestige Rooms are 269 square feet with one queen bed, and face the interior courtyard. Thanks to the Platinum benefits, I was upgraded to a Prestige View room, which is in fact smaller at 215 square feet, but has a king bed, faces Via del Corso, and has a small step-out balcony.
Here's the small step-out balcony and view from the room:
As you'd expect for a 215 sq. ft. room, the bathroom is small, with just one sink, but there is a separate toilet chamber with a bidet, and the window opens to let in fresh air.
The marble has definitely seen better days, but I appreciated the rain shower.
Bath products are Etro:
There were a few sweets as a welcome amenity, although they were nothing to write home about, and the meringue on one of them was quite dry, as if it had been sitting out a long time.
There was an illy espresso machine, but what I was particularly happy to see given my evening arrival was bottled water by the bed and a Smeg hot water kettle to make myself herbal tea after a long travel day.
Breakfast at Velo
I wasn't necessarily expecting much for a small boutique hotel in Rome, since Italians aren't generally known for eating much breakfast. But Velo was a pleasant surprise, with a generous breakfast spread and friendly service.
I was offered fresh squeezed orange juice, a bowl of cut fresh fruit, muesli, pourable plain yogurt, and a variety of breads and pastries as well as locally produced cheeses. A number of mini jams and local honeys were already on the table as accompaniments. I was also offered a variety of cold cuts, but declined, since I don't care for meat so early in the day.
If you still have room for a hot breakfast after all this, eggs can be cooked to order; I requested mine poached, with avocado, and it also came with tomatoes and a garnish of greens.
Ultimately a manager did provide the promised Platinum benefits on my one night stay, so I enjoyed a light lunch of caviar and bread in the Velo restaurant before departing, which was covered by my 100 USD hotel credit. The same friendly server from breakfast was there, and she even provided some complimentary chocolates at the end of the meal, which were much better than the rather stale welcome amenities that were in my room on arrival.
Preferred Hotels & Resorts Platinum Benefits
TravelSort Clients enjoy these Platinum benefits when we make the reservation (two night minimum required):
-Room upgrade based on availability at check-in
-Daily breakfast for two
-100 USD hotel credit once during stay
The First Roma Dolce is a decent boutique hotel well-located on Via del Corso in the heart of Rome, near the Spanish Steps. Rooms are tiny, so better for a solo traveler or a couple who won't be in the room much, otherwise a suite is a better choice. The room is somewhat dark and the bathroom was a bit tired looking, so for a boutique hotel we'd more highly recommend The Portrait Roma, or for a larger hotel with more facilities, the Hotel de la Ville, a Rocco Forte property. The highlight of our stay apart from the location was the delicious and copious breakfast at Velo, which was very good. Less good is that the hotel hasn't made the necessary changes to its listing on the Preferred Hotels & Resorts Platinum site, which still show the Platinum benefits as applicable on one night stays, even though Reception was adamant that they only apply on stays of at least two nights. I would have thought that after my visit and pointing the discrepancy out to them, they'd have fixed this.
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