One of the gems in Sienna, Italy
It is on the outskirt of the city ctr, but still within the city wall of Sienna. Actually, from the hotel, you can see and even walk to the WALL. Great ambience, with an adequate lobby. The room that we stayed in had no carpets, and it was still winter time (sorta). So, wear socks while in the room, or you will get cold feet. Unique qualities...hmm, well, it isnt too far to walk to the centre of town, about 10 mins or so walk. But, we had bn doing a lot of walking already, so, 10 mins was a lot. No pools, small parking lot, but we didnt drive though... the rooms hv nice views, cos it is a little bit high up, compare to the level of the streets... US$80 a night, i think, if I remember correctly, again i booked thru Council Travel, in the USA.
We stayed at the Hotel Athena during a recent trip in October. We were hesitant about this hotel from the beginning especially from previous reviews and pictures. However, the location was extremely convenient for exploring Siena so ultimately we booked it. The lobby was impressive and well maintained however thats about it. Our room was very dirty, the carpet was nothing more than tattered cloth and in need of replacement. The walls were yellow and dirty and the whole room smelled musty. There was no hot water when we stayed either. On the plus side, our room had a great view of the rolling hills of Tuscany and the rooftop terrace was a pleasant place to relax with similar beautiful views of the region. If you are interested in an evening glass of wine here forget it because no one came to help us. Try elsewhere. Overall a big dissapointment.
Great location, good value
We thoroughly enjoyed the 3 nights that we spent at Hotel Athena in March. After reading some of the reviews that have been posted we were little worried about what to expect, but we were pleasantly surprised. We stayed in mostly 2 or 3 star hotels throughout our travels in Italy, so when we arrived in Siena, our room was not any different than what we had stayed in Venice or Rome. If you are looking for a true 4 star hotel, I can see how one might be disappointed. The rooms are a bit old, but clean. We paid a little extra (120 euro) to have a room on one of the top floors with a view. Very worth it! The hotel is a great location inside the city walls, well within walking distance to everything. The hotel staff was wonderful, very helpful with places to eat and suggestions for nearby towns to visit. If you are looking for a 2 or 3 star hotel at about 100 euro per night this is your place!
If this hotel is four star I'm the queen of sheba
Positive bits first, we had a bath in the bathroom and the parking was fairly easy.
The signing was from the outskirts of town on the bus shelters. So the hotel was very easy to find.
The room was clean, except for the hole in the plaster where we could see the breezeblock underneath (lovely). There was a lot of noise from outside through the metal window frames.
We checked in and went to our room, then wandered down to the bar and sat waiting to see if we could get a drink (it was early evening), but no-one came, so we went to the rooftop bar, thinking maybe everyone was up there.....nope.
Eventually we gave up and went out for dinner bringing back a bottle of wine to drink (since there was no bar service nor wine in the mini-bar).
The next morning we ventured to breakfast early and found quite a good selection of food. Not so the next morning when we left it till 8am. There were no pastries left and we were presented with a basket of rolls only for breakfast.
The room was cleaned efficiently, however we had no replacements for shampoos (after the first day), nor soap.
However the piece de resistance occured on the last day. I wasn't feeling well and so we decided, against our better judgement to try the hotel restaurant (which is in the breakfast room - complete with the breakfast buffet table set out).
There was no-one in there so we went to reception and asked why the restaurant was closed and were told it was definitely open, and when we returned sure enough, someone turned up and gave us a menu.
I ordered a spaghetti with tomato sauce and my husband ordered chicken in lemon sauce with patate fritte (chips). After about twenty minutes, my spaghetti turned up (with ragu instead of pomodoro sauce) as did his chips.
The waitress looked really pleased with herself and vanished. We called her back. 'Dove sei la pollo' I attempted (where is the chicken). She said: oh you wanted chicken. And again vanished. My husband looked at this chips. Hopefully we thought she'd just forgotten to bring it out.
Twenty five minutes later the chicken arrived. We asked her to warm the chips and reluctantly she did so (taking long enough for the chicken to go cold). By this point we were torn between annoyance and feeling like we were on some candid camera show.
We ate and took the wine to our room, desperate to get away from the oppressive glares of the waitress - there were only two of us in the restaurant and I can now understand why).
I honestly can't understand how this hotel got four stars. The food was no better than you'd get in a very basic italian restaurant. Perhaps one of the stars is for surliness?
I stayed in several different hotels, from three to five stars, and the three star hotel was actually better in many respects than this one.
This felt like a conference hotel off a motorway, rather than the luxurious retreat described in the brochure.
Loved the Athena
My wife and I stayed at the Athena for two nights while in Siena. The room and hotel staff were excellent- Loren was the most helpful in terms of restaurant selection. The room was modern and very clean. Included in the 115 euro per night rate was a very nice breakfast. The Athena is located minutes from the Piazza de Campo.
Not my favorite
This is not a four star hotel. We arrived without a reservation, so we should be thankful that they had a room. They did have free parking and a very helpful front desk staff. The room was relatively clean, but the bed was mushy and the noise outside our window made it difficult to sleep. We stayed only one night and the rate was cheap compared to many of the hotels we stayed in during our trip. It is basic, certainly not 4 stars.
Overpriced, but Great View
The room was very worn and poorly maintained, and was considerably overpriced. Housekeeping also leaves a little to be desired - we had to request toilet paper even after the room was made up. On the bright side, the terrace has spectacular views, and the breakfast is very well done with a good selection.
Good, Clean Hotel
Stayed at the Athena for two nights during the August, 2006 Palio horse race. I found this hotel to be just fine. The rooms were spacious and clean. We had the most awesome view from our room. Reception was friendly and spoke English very well. The location is excellent as the center of town is only a short walk away (although some of it is uphill, so be prepared!). Maid service was just fine as was the restaurant. The breakfast was a nice suprise. We didn't expect to have such a large selection to choose from.
I have to disagree with some of the reviews stating that the hotel was dirty. Maybe they have cleaned things up, but I didn't see any part of the hotel that was dirty. In fact, it was very well kept. I would definetly stay here again.
Siena Italy / Hotel Athena
I was wondering if anyone has stayed at the Hotel Athena in Siena?. If so, what are your thoughts on the accomodations?. Also, if not there, then would you recommend another hotel, within the city walls.
Re: Siena Italy / Hotel Athena
I don't know the Hotel Athena, but if you are looking for an alternative I recommend the Piccolo Hotel Etruria which is just off the square (Il Campo). It is small, very clean and we had a double room with modern en suite bathroom for less than $100 for two. Unless they have changed it, I would forget the breakfast and find a good pastry shop. Have a great trip! Are you going to be there for the Pallio?
Re: Re: Siena Italy / Hotel Athena
Thanks for the suggestion. No, we won't be there for the Pallio. Have you been?.