While it’s starting to show signs of spring here in Stuttgart, it’s already warming up on the west coast of Tuscany. If you are looking for a perfect, romantic weekend getaway, look no further than Livorno, Italy. Also known as a port city, Livorno is a quaint little town outside of the hustle and bustle of Pisa. When traveling, I try to find places to stay outside of the city center because I have found you can usually get a better price, you don’t have to listen to people at 2 a.m. and in this case, gives you a much better view! I will pay extra for free breakfast, a clean room and a high rating. It’s just who I am. I believe the hotel can really make or break your stay.
Early in May of last year, we found a cheap flight to Pisa. I’m talking 40 Euro round trip through Ryanair.com. The only thing I knew about Pisa was obviously, The Leaning Tower of Pisa. After researching and reading, I found there wasn’t much to do there besides visit the tower and a few cathedrals. Spending countless hours wondering what we were going to do in Pisa for 2 whole days, I began searching for a hotel. When I typed in “Pisa, Italy” on Booking.com, I didn’t find anything that really stuck out to me. Being land locked in Germany for the last year I was craving some sun and the smell of salt water. I changed my hotel search to the ‘map option’ on Booking.com to seeing how far it would be to stay somewhere near the water. I refined my search to “room with a view” and “outdoor pool”. The NH Grand Palazzo was the first hotel to come up. Located a short 25 minutes outside of Pisa’s city center and one mile from the train station in Livorno, it was easy to get to. We took a quick train ride from Pisa to Livorno, booked through ItaliaRail. I found ItaliaRail to be one the easiest and cheapest sites I have ever used to book a train ticket. We caught an afternoon train out of Pisa and headed straight to Livorno. Once in Livorno, we caught the bus from the train station directly to our hotel. The hotel’s website gave detailed instructions under “how to arrive” with what bus to get on and what stop to get off at.
While scrolling through the hotel’s photos my heart began to race with excitement! Located right on the Mediterranean, this hotel had everything (and more) that I was looking for! Free breakfast, a five-star rating (holy cow!), and get this, an infinity pool of the rooftop! Yes, you heard me correctly, an infinity pool on the roof top! If that wasn’t enough, it also had a spa, a gym, free parking, free wi-fi and air conditioning throughout the hotel! Priced at $134/night it was a little out of our price range, but let me tell you, it was worth every single penny.
This hotel fed all of our seaside cravings! The front door of the hotel was a mere 50 feet from the Mediterranean. This hotel offers a panoramic seaside view from its roof. All guests have access to the restaurant and the bar on the roof, appropriately located next to the infinity pool. The breakfast buffet was divine and sure to please anyone! You could choose to sit inside and enjoy the peace and quiet or outside and enjoy the salty breeze and the sound of the waves crashing in front of you. The restaurant also offers lunch and dinner options as well. However, we didn’t eat there as we felt we needed to explore the peaceful little city. The front desk staff kindly helped us locate the best pizza and gelato in town!
My husband and I couldn’t wipe the smiles off our faces for the next two days. Lucky for us, we had beautiful weather. We spent our mornings walking along the beautiful water and our afternoons basking in the sun on the roof, sipping fresh mojitos all while listening to the seagulls play around us. If you are wanting to get away from the noise of a busy city and have a relaxing weekend, I cannot recommend this place enough. NH Grand Hotel Palazzo in Livorno, Italy- go and enjoy yourself, you’ll be glad you did!