The best B&Bs in Rome

How to find, and reserve, the best bed and breakfasts in Rome in every price range and neighborhood

More on how B&Bs work in Italy: info, tips, and advice
The B&B concept—a handful of rooms run as an inn by a family in their own home—has recently spread throughout Italy and there are now nearly than twice as many B&Bs in Rome (around 2,000) than there are hotels.

A Roman bed and breakfast essentially works something like a small hotel that provides breakfast and is located in the owner's home (or at least an a converted apartment in their building). The size is limited to no more than 3–4 rooms or 6–8 beds total.

This usually means a cozy, welcoming, friendly place with a bit more interaction with your hosts than at a hotel—and B&Bs are usually anywhere from 5% to 40% cheaper than hotels.

Expect to pay anywhere from €35 to €140 for a double room at a typical B&B.

Note that there's a thin line (often just which set of local standards, requirements, and legal complications the owner wants to deal with) between what's called a B&B and what's called an affittacamere (rental rooms).

Finding the perfect Roman B&B

The Rome tourist office provides a complete list of all bed and breakfast outfits in town, but it's simply that: a list, of all 2,000 B&Bs, presenting in alphabetical order by name. Each entry includes the address, phone, website (if any) and price range. That's it. A great resource, but one that requires a lot of legwork to use, since you have to click on each entry individually to find out more.

At least the entry for each, once you click on it, provides a bit more intel—"Numero camere" means number of rooms; "Numero posti letto" means number of beds—including, crucially, a little interactive inset map showing you where it is located.

If you want more intel to go on, try using a private booking site that will provide descriptions, user reviews, photographs, and more information to help you make a choice.

Best sites for booking B&Bs in Rome

  • PartnerBooking.com (www.booking.com) - Another general booking site, and one of the few that includes B&Bs—some 406 in Rome (filed variously under "Bed and Breakfast" and "Guesthouse").
  • PartnerBedandBreakfast.com (www.bedandbreakfast.com) - Massive site and database with thousands of choices all across Italy, including nearly 200 in Rome.
  • PartnerVenere.com (www.venere.com) - Generalist booking site based in Italy with a huge representation of B&Bs—some 448 in Rome alone (in addition to hotels, apartments, and other options).
  • Bed-and-Breakfast.it (www.bed-and-breakfast.it) - Probably the biggest and best of the huge, national services, with more than 10,000 B&Bs across Italy.
  • Bed & Breakfast Italia (www.bbitalia.it) - Another major nationwide service, with more than 1,000 members and three quality categories where prices range from €44 to €116 ($52 to $137).
  • Airbnb.com (www.airbnb.com) - Network of both official and unofficial B&Bs, homestays, and apartment and house rentals, including 563 B&Bs in Rome. Its rates are among the lowest around, charging anywhere from $15 to $250 per night (a handful charge more)—in part because many of these are unregulated rentals. That means they don't pay local taxes (resulting in a savings for you), but that they are also un-inspected, and are technically illegal (though regular, legal B&Bs sometimes also use this as a listing outlet to drum up traffic). Buyer beware.
  • Bed and Breakfast Association of Rome (www.b-b.rm.it) - Great service with more than 100 rooms for let in my old hometown; downside: prices can be pretty steep (nearly as high as hotels).
  • Generalist booking sites - The following sites have limited listings in Italy (from a few dozen to a few hundred total), but you never know where you'll find the perfect place, so feel free to sift through the offerings: www.innsite.com, www.karenbrown.com, www.lanierbb.com, www.bbonline.com, www.ibbp.com, www.1bbweb.com

Tips & links

Details
Rome hotel & lodging links
Useful Italian for lodging
English (Inglese) Italian (Italiano) Pro-nun-cee-YAY-shun
Good day Buon giorno bwohn JOUR-noh
Good evening Buona sera BWOH-nah SAIR-rah
Good night Buona notte BWOH-nah NOTE-tay
Goodbye Arrivederci ah-ree-vah-DAIR-chee
Excuse me (to get attention) Scusi SKOO-zee
thank you grazie GRAT-tzee-yay
please per favore pair fa-VOHR-ray
yes si see
no no no
Do you speak English? Parla Inglese? PAR-la een-GLAY-zay
I don't understand Non capisco non ka-PEESK-koh
I'm sorry Mi dispiace mee dees-pee-YAT-chay
     
Where is? Dov'é doh-VAY
...a hotel un albergo oon al-BEAR-go
...a B&B un bed-and-breakfast oon bet hand BREK-fust
...a rental room un'affittacamera oon ah-feet-ah-CAH-mair-ra
...an apartment for rent un appartamento oon ah-part-tah-MENT-toh
...a farm stay un agriturismo oon ah-gree-tour-EES-moh
...a hostel un ostello oon oh-STEHL-loh
     
How much is...? Quanto costa? KWAN-toh COST-ah
a single room una singola OO-nah SEEN-go-la
double room for single use [will often be offered if singles are unavailable] doppia uso singola DOPE-pee-ya OO-so SEEN-go-la
a double room with two beds una doppia con due letti OO-nah DOPE-pee-ya cone DOO-way LET-tee
a double room with one big bed una matrimoniale OO-nah mat-tree-moan-nee-YAAL-lay
triple room una tripla OO-nah TREE-plah
with private bathroom con bagno cone BAHN-yoh
without private bathroom senza bagno [they might say con bagno in comune—"with a communal bath"] SEN-zah BAHN-yoh
for one night per una notte pair OO-nah NOH-tay
for two nights per due notti pair DOO-way NOH-tee
for three nights per tre notti pair tray NOH-tee
Is breakfast included? É incluso la prima colazione? ay in-CLOO-soh lah PREE-mah coal-laht-zee-YOAN-nay
Is there WiFi? C'é WiFi? chay WHY-fy?
May I see the room? Posso vedere la camera? POH-soh veh-DAIR-eh lah CAH-mair-rah
That's too much É troppo ay TROH-po
Is there a cheaper one? C'é una più economica? chay OO-nah pew eh-ko-NO-mee-kah
Rome's hotel tax

In January, 2011, Rome began charging a hotel bed tax. This is the city's doing, and sadly it is not a scam.

The following tax rates are per person, per night for all guests over the age of 10 and can be charged for stays of up to 10 days:

  • 1–3 star hotels: €2
  • 4–5 star hotels: €3
  • B&Bs: €2
  • Apartments: €2
  • Rental rooms: €2
  • Agriturismi: €2
  • Campsites: €1 (up to 5 days)

So a couple staying three nights in a four-star room would pay an extra €18.

Some hotels have begun folding this tax into their quoted rates; others tack it on when you go to check out, so be prepared.

How long does Rome take?

Planning your day: Rome wasn't built in a day, and you'd be hard-pressed to see it in that brief a time as well. Still, you can cram a lot into just a day or three.

To help you get the most out of your limited time in the Eternal City, here are some perfect itineraries, whether you have one, two, three, or four days to spend in Rome. » Rome itineraries

Rome tours

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