At €48 a night for a double room Hotel Balbi was the most budget-friendly hotel I found in Genova. Even better, the cheap price didn't mean cheap service or ammenities. We’re not talking four stars, but the tidy rooms and helpful staff were exactly what I was looking for. It’s a particularly good choice if you’re arriving in the city via Principe train station because it’s only a couple minutes walk from the station.
Hotel Balbi is on the third floor of an old palace. You’ll have to carry your bags up the worn-in marble staircases because there’s no elevator, though the friendly staff will be willing to help you schlep. It’s a small hotel, run by a family who lives on the premises, and from what I could tell most of the rooms were quite spacious and tidy. My room was a bit more cramped than the others, but what it lacked in space was more than made up for by the privacy. A small staircase led me up one level to a floor that I only shared with the pigeons outside the window.
The cleaning service never skipped a beat with clean towels and a freshly made bed waiting for me each day. The shower worked well, with hot water and good pressure (always a good sign in a less expensive European hotel) and the small TV played CNN international along with the standard Italian stations. Breakfast is offered in the high-ceilinged dining room that harkens back to when the building was a palace, but at €6 a day breakfast probably isn’t worth buying since you can get a coffee and brioche at any number of cafes down the street for half that price.
Back at Balbi there’s a computer internet access and a printer, incredibly helpful for last minute activity planning. If you have a laptop with you, the staff will let you hook it up at the computer terminal for free. Hotel Balbi is easily walkable to all the main city sites. There’s a midnight curfew, which may feel a bit constraining, but Genova is not known for it’s hopping nightlife, so the curfew shouldn’t be a problem.
Directions: Towards the Stazione Principe end of Via Balbi
Piazza Fontane Marose, Genoa
Via Capolungo, 15, Nervi, Genoa
Via X X Settembre 35, Genoa
Corte Dei Lambruschini 4, Genova, GE 16129
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Address: Via Balbi 21/3, Genoa, Italian Riviera, 16126, Italy