The location isn’t totally perfect, near the Piazza della Repubblica, on the north side of the Public Gardens. This is a business district and while there are a number of restaurants nearby it is fairly deserted at night. However, it is close both to the Central Station and the Quadrilatero d’Oro, and there are metro and tram stops nearby.
I remember my introduction to the "Westin heavenly bed" – bizarrely, it was at an open-air breakfast during morning rush hour in New York City. We all lounged around and drank champagne on the beds while the commuters gawked open-mouthed. But the beds were undoubtedly heavenly (there really are some perks to my job)! They’ve been installed in hotels across the world and are the centerpiece of all Westin’s hotel rooms, so popular they now also sell them online to guests who want to take them home. Around the beds, the rooms are designed in a classical style while the bathrooms now have Heavenly Showers, with surround jets.
Categories range from single to classic, superior, deluxe, grand deluxe, the Westin Workout Room (with its own gym), junior suite, executive suite, deluxe suite and finally, the presidential suite, which is twice the size of my (not small) flat! Not all of them have been fully upgraded yet and the air-conditioning in some doesn't work properly, so if this is an issue, check when booking.
Nothing is overlooked by these incredibly thorough hoteliers, with even the air of the lobby perfumed invitingly with a signature White Tea scent while carefully selected music adds to the sensory welcome of the marble hall.
The Lounge Bar is a popular meeting place for locals, allowing for comfortable chats with an aperitivo cocktail and canapés in thoroughly civilized surroundings, surrounded by permanent art and sculpture exhibitions. There is live jazz in the lounge on some evenings. There is also a rooftop sun terrace.
Eating and drinking
The well-being continues with breakfast, which has a superfoods section alongside the bacon and pancakes on its groaning American style buffet. The lounge bar offers lunches and canapés during the aperitivo.
For bon vivants, the smoking lounge is the place to tuck yourself in with a glass of cognac and a fine cigar.
Room service will deliver to the roof terrace during the day and there is an aperitivo there on Monday and Wednesday evenings while Ivory on the Terrace restaurant offers a wonderful alternative to the main restaurant in summer. Cigni is a more intimate space, often used for private functions.
The hotel’s main restaurant, overseen by chef Augusto Tombolato, is the Casanova, an imaginative and creative place specializing in the cuisine of Lombardy, Piedmont and Liguria.
There is a gym and you can ask for an in-room massage. Now that is heavenly!
This is an American chain, so expect service with a smile. You won’t always get it (the Italians are still catching up), but the ethos is in place! This family-friendly hotel has a Kids' Club programme with a goody bag for 3-12 year olds, a tour programme designed for children and early meals.
Who stays there
Visiting Americans – tourists and business people alike, plus plenty of other business people from around the globe. The hotel is family- and female-friendly, so you find solo travellers and families around.
Families are welcomed with a 50 per cent discount for a second room. There are various other offers from weekend specials to added value packages. Starwood supports clean water projects for children globally and has raised US$22 million since 1995. On check-in you will be invited to add a one-euro donation to Unicef to your bill.
- Business travellers
- Families with younger children
- Mature travellers
- Celebrity spotting
- People watching
- Special occasions
Pros & Cons
- Heavenly beds
- Not all rooms have full air con
- No free WiFi