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Ravenna: Hotel Centrale Byron

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Breakfast buffet

Hotel Centrale Byron, Ravenna: Hotel Review

About the Hotel Centrale Byron

Hotel Centrale Byron, Ravenna

I stayed at the Hotel Centrale Byron in April 2008. I had booked a standard single room a couple of days beforehand online, for the very reasonable price of 58. An 'economic single room' was also available at a slightly lower price; apparently these are smaller in size.

This three-star hotel is fairly large by Italian standards, with 52 rooms. It's located right in the town centre, with modern and comfortable rooms at affordable prices.

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The hotel was easy to reach on foot from the station: about ten minutes' walk away. I had to bump my suitcase over paving stones but otherwise it was a straightforward walk (directions at the foot of this page). Hotel Centrale Byron is as central as its name suggests; just off the town square, Piazza del Popolo, on a lively pedestrianised lane dotted with inviting shops: an ice-cream shop, food specialities, takeaway pizza. As well as being easy to find, I thought it was a superb base for exploring Ravenna, right in the middle of the historic centre and with the town's attractions a short walk away in all directions.

I was travelling by public transport and on foot. If you are arriving by car I'd suggest you contact the hotel for advice since they don't have a car park, instead offering discounts in local car parks, and the hotel is in a pedestrian zone (apparently hotel guests are entitled to park for unloading of luggage).

The hotel and its services

Unlike many Italian hotels, the Centrale Byron occupies a whole building. In the window area before you reach the reception desk is a sitting area with some books and information about Ravenna. Reception staff were friendly and helpful when I arrived and during my stay. Beyond the reception desk are stairs and a small lift, and on the other side is a bar and breakfast area facing onto another street.

The hotel had an efficient feel to it, and it had the advantage of offering free wireless internet in the bedrooms, which for me was a big point in its favour as at the time of writing this is not the norm in Italy.

My bedroom

Bedroom and facilities

My bedroom was at the front of the building on the third floor. Although I requested (at short notice) a non-smoking room, there was an ashtray on the desk and once I noticed the corridor did smell of cigarette smoke. Apart from this I was very pleased, however. My room (a standard single) was a comfortable size for a single room, with a wide single bed. The room was fitted out in a rather retro style - cream-beige leather effect - which nevertheless was smart and new. This was a proper, carefully thought-out hotel room, unlike many of Italy's establishments. All the small conveniences I look for were present, along with other helpful touches. There were coat hooks, a desk (with pen, notepaper and sewing kit), chair, suitcase stand, two full-length mirrors and another mirror over the desk, good lighting, a spacious wardrobe containing a small safe, a television set and a fridge-mini bar containing a few soft drinks (prices aren't exorbitant). There were a spare pillow and blanket in the wardrobe, a tourist information magazine, and some information about the hotel's services. The room was decorated with a couple of large bold modern artworks, but the general decor was pale, clean and restful. Floor-length windows opened onto a balustrade overlooking the street below. The view was very picturesque; there was the buzz of chatter as people wandered or cycled by but I didn't find it unpleasant. By leaning out I could see into Piazza del Popolo, and over rooftops and towers: it was a lovely way to begin my stay in Ravenna. Probably the only flaw with the room was that the position of the fridge made it impossible to fully open one of the French windows.

The bathroom too was clean and modern, decorated with simple blue tiles. It was slightly cramped, due to the inclusion of a continental bidet, making it tricky to negotiate the door and the base of the shower unit: a sliding door would be an improvement here. There were free toiletries, though not fancy ones. A hairdrier wasn't provided in the room, but the hotel information pack stated that they can be requested from reception.

Twice that first day I returned to the hotel to find my room looking suspiciously tidy - there were obviously invisible members of staff popping in for afternoon and evening tidy-ups - while I was out at dinner they even emptied the rubbish bins. Very good service though I was a bit embarrassed to find my shoes neatly peeping from under the bed, when I recalled how I'd previously flung everything about.

During Saturday evening the noise outside became louder and more random and I began to long for double-glazing. The absence of such sound-proofing was, I decided, the room's second flaw. I was also awoken early in the morning by deliveries or rubbish collections outside.

View from my window


The Byron provided a standard buffet breakast with the usual offerings: rolls, yoghurts, croissants, cereals, cold meat and cheese slices, fresh fruit, watered/sugared fruit drinks. This was all included in the room rate; they also offered freshy-squeezed orange juice for an additional charge..

My view

I found the Hotel Centrale Byron extremely comfortable and efficient. It is definitely better than typical town-centre hotels in its category and it was very good value at the price I paid. I don't think you could better the location, which is ideal for sightseeing.


The Hotel Central Byron is at Via IV Novembre 14. To walk there from the station: cross the road outside the station and walk straight along Viale Farini and then Via Diaz until you reach Piazza del Popolo, the attractive open square that is the town's heart. At the far end of the square you will find Via IV Novembre on the right. The hotel is just a few yards along the street, on the left-hand side.

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