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When traveling, two of the most expensive parts of a journey are getting to where you’re going and staying where you’re at.  Some hotels can have hefty price tags and hostels aren’t for everyone.  If you are looking for an off the wall place to stay that is super clean, safe, incredibly welcoming, and an affordable accommodation option in Italy, staying at a convent might be a good option for you!

We recently stayed at a convent, Casa per Ferie Monsignor Aurelio Bacciarini, during our visit to Rome.  This convent is next to a beautiful church and is located in the Prati neighborhood.  It is just a few minutes walk from great restaurants and shopping, a metro station, and is walking distance from Vatican City.

Curious as to what it’s like to stay in a convent? 

The check in process is similar to that of any other lodging facility, except that you will need to be buzzed in to the building.  Room keys are still metal and are left at the front desk each time you depart the convent.  While modest, the rooms are clean and provide you with everything you need during your stay.  There are ample places to store your bags and hang your clothes in your room.  Unlike most hotels, the windows open fully and do not have screens, allowing for fresh air and great views of the happenings on the streets below.  The bathrooms are spacious and fresh towels are provided daily (even if you plan to reuse yours).  However, the toiletries are minimal so make sure to bring your own items.

The other travelers you may encounter are polite.  The dining room in the basement is a common gathering spot, and daily breakfast is included with your stay.  You may also add on dinner service for a minimal fee and advanced request.  We had the opportunity to invite a nun to join us for dinner!  It was great to talk with her and hear her perspective.  What an amazing life experience – I’m not sure when we will ever have an opportunity like this again!

 

Additional considerations

  1. Although the convent might be fully operational, you will rarely see nuns.
  2. Certain religious affiliations are not required to be a guest here.  They are very welcoming.
  3. There are established curfews. If you plan to stay out later, ask for a key.
  4. You are welcome to bring alcohol back to the property and enjoy drinks on the rooftop terrace.
    A view from the rooftop terrace

The staff here is incredibly helpful and hospitable!  They are always pleasant and provide good customer service.  They will even help you check in to your flight if you are having difficulties.  We received to-go breakfast bags they prepared for our flight home too!  So thoughtful!  We thoroughly enjoyed our time here and would recommend it to anyone seeking reasonable accommodation in Rome.  If you’d like to book at a convent in Italy, you can do so through this website.

Have you thought about staying in a convent? Did you even know it was an option?  Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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29 Comments

  1. The last time I stayed in a convent I was at school (I went to a convent!) – I would definitely stay in a convent in Italy – how fab and how different! I would have invited a nun for dinner too – how interesting! I will keep this in mind for my next trip to Rome (no idea when but I adore Rome so it will be at some point!) #feetdotravel

  2. Oh wow, I have never considered staying in a convent before, I didn’t actually think it was possible but this is fabulous! I love accommodation that is different and this definitely ticks that box, what a brilliant idea, thank you so much for bringing this to my attention! Pinned for future reference! #feetdotravel

  3. Yes. In Italy they are a really good option as they usually occupy the best places too! Here in Cefalu’ we have one run by nuns and it overlooks the harbour and beach! Costs practically nothing to stay in too

  4. This is such a cool experience and it’s awesome that you got an opportunity to have a nun join you – it must have been amazing! What kind of things did you ask? I would definitely love to do something like this on my travels. I am considering doing a temple stay on my next visit to Asia!

    1. It really was cool, and a temple stay sounds awesome too! We asked about what she was doing it Italy – she was on a pilgrimage to find some books she wanted to study that were only available in Italy. We also talked about how she has been treated during her time in the country, her views on some of the things going on in the States, etc.

  5. I’ve heard about staying at convents as an alternative lodging option, but never knew how it worked. Very interesting… Do you still have to book it ahead of time or do you just show up? And is it free? Sorry but I don’t think you said the price? I’d love to know more about this option!

    1. We booked ahead of time. Prices will vary depending on time of year, but our group stayed for a week and it was just over 800 euros total for about 12 rooms.

    1. It was a great experience all around. Couldn’t just let that sweet little nun have dinner by herself and we are so glad she was willing to join us for dinner!

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