There was a cabbage in our bedroom. Along with a pepper and an artichoke. I’d expected Le Suite di Giulietta to be a bit over the top with romantic touches, given that it was most superbly located overlooking Verona’s biggest money spinner. The Juliet balcony of Shakespeare fame. But I hadn’t been anticipating a collection of vegetables. Certainly not in the guise of teapots!
To be honest I was relieved. Over the top lovey-dovey stuff just doesn’t do it for me (and hubbie would run a mile), whereas ornamental teapots…well, we love quirky places. Le Suite di Giulietta certainly ticks that box. For all the right reasons.
Le Suite di Giulietta is a relais (charming hotel) in a 15th Century monument which was once an inn, right in the heart of Verona. Planning law restricts renovation work in this old part of town, so the building has retained all of it’s allure, whilst the contemporary fixtures and fittings mean comfort isn’t compromised. Furnishings are elegant with a tasteful hint of fun, it’s the sort of place where lavish gold upholstered chairs sit companionably next to see-through plastic ones, without looking out of place.
There’s a lot to see in Verona, but the Juliet House is the most famous.
Each day between 8.30 – 19.30 hordes of tourists are elbowing their way into the courtyard below the famous Juliet balcony. Standing shoulder to shoulder with strangers they hold their cameras high in the air, trying in vain to take a photo without anyone in it. These same tourists will be back that evening for an open air performance of the most famous love story in the world. All part of the tourist conveyor belt of Verona.
Yet if you stay at Le Suite di Giulietta you have an unobstructed 24 hour view of that balcony…
…as well as prime seats to watch the performance, without having to pay a penny, all from the comfort of the hotel! A bit like having your own private box.
Ok, so much of the show was in Italian and we didn’t really understand most of it, but who doesn’t know the story anyway. No translation needed.
Despite considering myself immune to such purely theatrical romanticism, there was something quite magical about sitting up on our hotel balcony in the dark, enjoying a drink and gazing on the illuminated silent scene below. And perhaps feeling just a little bit smug.
Luisa, one of the lovely lasses who run Le Suite di Giulietta told us that during the summer season, she sees a couple of marriage proposals on that balcony every week! I guess love really must be in the air, although nothing will ever beat hubbie’s choice of a ruined Mayan temple in Guatemala for our engagement moment.
Each room at Le Suite Giulietta has it’s own style, creating ‘an enchanting scene between the legend of Shakespeare and the reality of the present’.
Whilst there are some standard rooms, I’d urge you to opt instead for one of the suites. Located on the upper floors the views are better, and the lavishness is definitely worth the extra euros. The top suites, yep, named Romeo and Juliet, are both special, with the best views of all, yet we actually preferred our Lamberti Tower Suite.
The Lamberti Suite overlooked the street below and the upper reaches of the Lamberti Tower. We actually found this preferable to a view of the Juliet House as it was quieter in the mornings and evenings (although all the windows are insulated and soundproofed). Besides, you can see the balcony from the public areas anyway. Best of both worlds.
The suite was tastefully done in cream and gold, with plenty of space to spread out. The bed was enormous and comfy, although the pillows were a little hard, and there was enough state of the art lighting to almost require an instruction manual. Effective though.
The bedroom and living area are separate, which we much preferred to the open plan style of the Juliet Suite across the hall. It’s a personal thing but at night I like to shut the doors on the day. I think it helps me sleep.
I loved the flamboyance of the living area, which contrasted suitably with the stark white kitchenette (where breakfast is usually served). An espresso machine, cookie jar and a dish of sherbets ensured everyone was happy!
As well as the surreal teapot collection, the suite was decorated with quirky romantic little touches. Including a leather bound tome of a guest book, complete with red feather quill and scarlet ink.
There was a minibar too, and a basket of wine including the region’s own Valpolicella in case you fancy a late night tipple to help send you off to dreamland.
Y’all know I’m a sucker for a groovy bathroom, and this one didn’t disappoint. Sure it was shiny and modern, with fluffy towels, cool wall art, bathrobes that actually fit, and a sink both trendy and practical.
Yet I have my shallow moments and have to admit the colour changing lights in the shower soon became my latest obsession.
Apparently it’s called chromotherapy, a scientific method of natural healing using coloured light. It is reputed to have cured patients of everything from strokes to depression. Sceptical has always been my middle name, and to me it just sounded like one of those newfangled ideas based on nothing much. Yet the ancient Egyptians were using coloured light therapy in their solariums, and if it was good enough for them…!
I had to give it a go, which meant factoring in an extra few minutes each morning to allow time for colour choosing! Blue is calming, green fights irritability, red is to energise and yellow aids with digestion. It has also been suggested that the application of blue light to knees may help with body clock adjustment, thus combating jet lag.
I didn’t have jet lag, but blue is my favourite colour so I went with that! The shower was thoroughly enjoyable, and had it not been for the walk of pain across the aesthetic pebbles in order to get out, I’d like to say it was indeed a calming experience.
Alas they didn’t pass the conditioner test, and had bath foam rather than shower gel, but that’s just being picky. If every hotel I stayed at had bathrooms like this I’d be a happy lass!
Once again Europe has surprised us. Spoiled too often by the almost over-friendly service in South East Asia, we rarely find anywhere to match what we’re used to. Yet here the staff are both welcoming, and genuine. Luisa and Kristina were lovely and bubbly, full of helpful tips about the sights, and keen to chat about their home city. Nothing was too much trouble, and we felt almost like returning friends rather than first-time guests. Spot on for service!
A traditional continental style breakfast is included in the room rate, as well as a choice of eggs and fresh pastries.
We were travelling with my mum so ate together down on the balcony outside her bedroom. These two tables are usually reserved for the 2 standard bedrooms on that floor, and normally occupants of the suites eat in their own rooms. I have to say however that sitting on the balcony with a cappuccino and croissant wasn’t a bad way to start the day.
If you ask however, so long as you fit around the chosen breakfast times of those room guests I’m sure anyone can request breakfast there if they wish.
The only slight niggle was that on the second morning staff assumed we wanted the same hot drink as the day before. It’s probably an Italian thing, and indeed wasn’t a problem, but having a choice would have been good. Not that it affected me. I don’t do hot drinks.
There are plenty of cafés and restaurants nearby, and we highly recommend eating at Ristorante La Greppia, just around the corner. It’s a traditional osteria serving a wide range of typical Veronese cuisine. We found the food excellent, the service attentive and jovial, and the wine even better!
What I loved about Le Suite di Giulietta was that fact that not only did it look good, it was also comfortable, and whilst outwardly luxurious, it was unpretentious and ever so friendly. The location in the centre of the old town is superb, the area is quiet at night and you truly do feel like you’re sleeping in history.
We’ll be back!
A taxi costs about €30 from the airport, and €20 from Porta Nuova train station.
Vicolo Crocioni is a pedestrianised street so ask to be dropped off by the Teatro Nuovo on Via Nizza. The front door is just a few metres away to the right of the theatre.
There is free wi-fi.
Reception is only open between 8.30am – 7.30pm but there is a telephone number for out of hours assistance.
Be aware that late check in after 9pm will be charged at €20.
Finally don’t forget the tourist tax of €2.50 per person per night.
We received a complimentary night at Le Suite di Giulietta in return for this review. As always, all opinions remain my own.