“A secluded oasis in Rome’s most charming and buzzing district, with rooms surrounding a cloister full of orange trees and a rooftop terrace”
All 18 rooms are arranged around the cloister, with covered walkways running in front of the doors. They have been appended onto the original building, so some of the room shapes are unusual. For example, some ceilings are double height while others are low.
There are 8 Double Rooms, 4 Triple Rooms and a Quadruple Room. Delicate apricot tones give them a cosy glow, and softly mottled walls are enlivened by hand-painted borders. Latticed windows frame the leafy views. Wrought-iron lamp fittings, light terracotta floor tiles, floral bedspreads, pale oak-wood furniture and paintings of Trastevere (by a local artist) complete the picture. Beds are firm and comfortable with plain, soft headboards. One of the Doubles is located at the back of the property and features its own patio; we thought this would be an ideal bolthole for a couple after a little more privacy.
There are also some larger suites which come in all shapes and sizes (sleeping 3-6 people). The Junior Suite consists of a double bedroom and a living room, which can be made up as a twin room on request. The Junior Mansard Suite is a duplex sleeping up to 4; it resembles a cottage, with quaint low ceilings upstairs (not for the tall). The Senior Suite is an even larger duplex that will sleep 6, with the upper floor (again, you might have to stoop) reached via a wrought-iron spiral staircase. The Mansard Suite (sleeps 5) in 2 adjoining rooms, with low slanted ceilings embedded with skylights.
All rooms have flatscreen satellite TVs, WiFi and sparkling (though not huge) bathrooms with showers and/or bathtubs.
The great buffet breakfast is served in what was once an artisan’s workshop, with a huge stone fireplace and arched ceilings, or on the sunny terrace surrounded by orange trees. The spread includes scrambled eggs, cheeses, cold meats, breads, yoghurts, cereals, pastries, cakes and fresh fruit. There’s also a choice of teas and coffees, including freshly made cappuccino.
There's a well-stocked wine cellar and bar open all day until 11pm; sometimes guests gather between 5pm and 8pm for some nibbles and to share stories from the day.
Trastevere is one of the best areas of Rome for beguiling eateries to suit all budgets. Try rough-and-ready Da Augusto, dig into some of Rome’s best pizza at Dar Poeta, or indulge in Sicilian dishes at more refined Osteria La Gensola.
Santa Maria is a really good place for families thanks to the strength of its accommodation and location. You're in a buzzing area in the centre of Rome but it's secluded; you're also walking distance from the Forum, and the large multi-bed rooms and suites here work really well, whatever the age of your children or number you're travelling with.
There's plenty to get children excited in Rome, from the Colosseum and stories of lions and gladiators to the Trevi fountain and street-corner gelato sellers. Eating out is easy and even the most fussy should find something to their taste.
Take your pick - there are Double, Triple and Quadruple Rooms, all of which can accommodate an additional baby cot. Plus there are the 4 large suites: Junior Mansard Suite (sleeps 4), Junior Suite (sleeps 4 + 1 baby), Mansard Suite (sleeps 5 + 1 baby) and Senior Suite (sleeps 6 + 1 baby).
Babysitting is available by arrangement.
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
There are child-friendly cafés nearby (this is Italy, after all!), plus takeaways too. Dinner is served late by UK standards but the pre-dinner snacks could serve as a high tea for little ones.