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Italy’s Hotel Star Ratings

Classical Hotel Lake Garda Italy

Industry ratings are important because they provide a measure of quality for consumers and a scale for performance by entrepreneurs and service providers. Italy’s hotel industry also uses 5 stars to rate the quality of the services and the lodgings being offered by its member establishments. It is important for travelers going to Italy to also understand how the ratings work to make their stays more productive, relaxing, and satisfactory.

In other countries, hotel classification programs are often voluntary. Initially in Italy, public authorities manage hotel classification ratings to better inspect and manage establishments and handle customer complaints. The General Policy Law for Tourism, enacted in 1983, awarded these powers to public officials. By 2002, the new law covering tourism and its succeeding amendment moved these powers to regional governments instead. Instead of having just one national ratings program, regional governments began creating and implementing their own hotel ratings. This method was implemented to better reflect the various localized needs of hotels and travelers in per area. A 2008 decree, however, recalibrates the direction towards a more national ratings system but one that is individually implemented by a locally authorized body per region.

Before, the Italian authorities gave ratings to hotels on the basis of accumulated points. For example, room service is 10 points and free shampoos and soaps is another 10 points. Hotel owners needed to accumulate these points to reach a particular level. If a new hotel wants to meet a one star rating, it will need to accumulate a total of 30 points and then if they want to upgrade to a two star rating, they need to reach up to 80 points. The new ratings system goes beyond point-tallying and aims to make establishments meet minimum requirements and detailed specifications.

Thumbs Up Hotel Rating Two Stars

Although guidelines and specifications can vary from region to region in order to reflect local customs, practices, and economics, a 2009 decree outlines the following minimum standards that establishments should meet to achieve a particular star:

One star rating

Customers should be able to expect that the front desk is staffed at least 12 hours a day. The standard size for double rooms should be 14 square meters. Staff should clean the rooms once a day and change the bedsheets once a week.

Two star rating

A one star hotel bumps up to a two star hotel if it has an elevator and the staff cleans the sheets at least twice a week.

Three star rating

A three star Italian hotel contains features and amenities consumers can expect from a modern establishment: reception must operate 16 hours a day and the receptionists need to speak a foreign language, the staff and concierge need to be dressed in uniforms. Hotels of this rating must have a bar service and its rooms must have Internet and a bath.

Four star rating

A four star hotel must have its staff clean and reset the entire room once a day. This is usually done in the afternoons. They need to replace bedsheets and towels daily as well. The hotel must offer a laundry service. There must be as many parking slots as 50% of the total number of rooms. Room measurements also get upsized in this rating: a double room should be 15 square meters in size while the bathroom should be at least 4 square meters.

Five star rating

Five star hotels must have receptionists who can speak at least three languages. Reception should be open around the clock, 24 hours a day. Single rooms must be 9 square meters and double rooms must be 16 square meters to be considered as five star quality.