The best places to stay in four price ranges: budget ($), moderate ($$), expensive ($$$), and luxury ($$$$)

$

Villa della Fonte
Tiny bed-and-breakfast a few yards from popular Piazza Santa Maria in Trastevere; small, clean, basic rooms with private bath, minibar, air conditioning. Great central location; breakfast delivered to individual guest rooms by owner's mother. 5 guest rooms. Via della Fonte dell'Olio 8; tel. 39 06 580 3797. www.villafonte.com

Grand Hotel del Gianicolo
"Great choice for visitors wanting an elegant hotel with a pool at reasonable-for-Rome rates."—Ann Wise, Rome-based journalist. Perched on the Janiculm Hill overlooking Trastevere, removed from the traffic and noise of town; manicured gardens and recently renovated pool; rooms classically furnished, with Italian draperies and textured wallpaper. 48 guest rooms. Viale delle Mura Gianicolensi 107; tel. 39 06 5833 3405. www.grandhotelgianicolo.it

$$

Casa Howard
"So small, it feels like home."—Ann Natanson, Rome-based journalist and critic. Small, colorful inn with playful details—pink-and yellow-striped wallpaper, zebra-print bed linens. Individually decorated guest rooms very cosmopolitan in feel. Fun touch: a private hammam steamroom. 5 guest rooms. Via Sistina 149; tel. 39 06 6992 4555. www.casahoward.com

Relais Le Clarisse
Tiny, sweetly styled hotel in heart of artsy-funky Trastevere neighborhood. Rooms individually furnished with such simple, rustic touches as wrought-iron bed frames, wicker bed stands, and tile floors. Small outdoor patio an ideal venue for breakfast or an evening cocktail. 5 guest rooms. Via Cardinale Merry del Val 20; tel. 39 06 5833 4437. www.leclarisse.com

Hotel Santa Maria
"Perhaps the closest one comes to a country hotel in the city; simple and refreshing."—Ann Wise. Former convent cloister (16th century) arranged around an open-air courtyard landscaped with orange trees in charming part of Trastevere. Bright uncluttered guest rooms with beamed ceilings, terra-cotta floors; dining room in colorfully decorated former artisan workshop. 18 guest rooms, 6 suites. Vicolo del Piede 2; tel. 39 06 589 4626. www.htlsantamaria.com

Daphne Inn
Comprises two buildings off central Piazza Barberini; guest rooms range from singles to two-bedroom suites that are more like small apartments. Guests given the use of a cell phone to help experience Rome. American co-owner. 17 guest rooms, 4 suites. Via di San Basilio 55; tel. 39 06 4782 3529. www.daphne-rome.com

$$$

Hotel Locarno
"Full of atmosphere; some very stylish, classic rooms; bar popular with Romans."—Silvestro Serra, editor-in-chief of Italian travel magazine Gente Viaggi. Classic boutique hotel; rooms boast fabric-covered walls, marble baths, and crystal chandeliers; those in the older section are done in a British Liberty style, the newer section reflects an art deco sensibility. 60 guest rooms, 6 suites. Via della Penna 22; tel. 39 06 361 0841. www.hotellocarno.com

Hotel Raphael
"On a lovely shaded piazza; small but elegant rooms, many with parquet floors; eclectically decorated lobby almost a museum."—Ann Wise. Modern accommodation just off Piazza Navona; dramatic ivy-covered façade; artful touches include ceramics by Picasso, Maya antiques, and classical oil paintings. Third floor recently redesigned in a minimalist fashion by international architect Richard Meier; its new rooms are all wood, glass, and right angles. 55 guest rooms, 10 suites. Largo Febo 2; tel. 39 06 682 831. www.raphaelhotel.com

Hotel Aleph
"Intriguing red and black interior décor; guest rooms small but very creatively furnished."—Silvestro Serra. By Piazza Barberini in the historic Via Veneto area; decorated in sleek Italian 1930s and '40s style; rooftop bar and living room popular with young hipsters. 94 guest rooms, 2 suites. Via San Basilio 15; tel. 39 06 422 901. www.aleph.boscolohotels.com

Hotel Eden
"View from the rooftop bar has made the Eden one of Rome's premier hotels for years."—Silvestro Serra. Longtime preferred retreat for world leaders and such celebs as Ingrid Bergman; done in classic Italian style, with plush fabrics and marble baths. 121 guest rooms, 13 suites. Via Ludovisi 49; tel. 39 06 478 121. www.starwoodhotels.com

Portrait Suites
New boutique hotel, around the corner from the Spanish Steps. Part of the Lungarno group owned by the haute-couture Ferragamo family; fashionable details include walk-in closets, vintage design sketches on the walls, modern kitchenettes, plasma-screen TVs, blond hardwood floors. Rooftop lounge offers wow views of the Spanish Steps. 14 suites. Via Bocca di Leone 23; tel. 39 06 6938 0742. www.lungarnohotels.com

$$$$

Hotel de Russie
"One of the prettiest spots in the city; peaceful, lush garden."—Silvestro Serra. Considered one of Rome's top hotels, just steps from bustling Piazza del Popolo; sleek, modern rooms and common areas; the best rooms have views of the terraced garden in back. 122 guest rooms, 33 suites. Via del Babuino 9; tel. 39 06 328 881. www.hotelderussie.it

Hotel Art
"Unusual mix of classical and modern design, something unexpected for Rome."—Ann Wise. High-concept design hotel featuring white columns and futuristic common areas. Located on the historic Via Margutta, where Gregory Peck's character lived in the film Roman Holiday. 46 guest rooms and 2 suites furnished simply and tastefully with minimalist décor. Via Margutta 56; tel. 39 06 328 711. www.hotelartrome.com

Cavalieri Hilton
Ten-minute drive northwest from Rome's historical center; on one of Rome's seven hills, overlooking the entire region; highlights include great views, umbrella-shaded pool, landscaped gardens, and the rooftop restaurant, the award-winning La Pergola. 370 guest rooms, 25 suites. Via Cadlolo 101, Monte Mario; tel. 39 06 35 091. www.cavalieri-hilton.com

Hotel D'Inghilterra
"An old private home transformed into a hotel; fireplaces in the guest rooms."—Silvestro Serra. Former guest residence of the princes of Torlonia; period furnishings include gilt-frame mirrors and silk-upholstered furnishings. Visitors have included writers Mark Twain and Ernest Hemingway. 97 guest rooms, 18 suites. Via Bocca di Leone 14; tel. 39 06 699 811. hoteldinghilterra.warwickhotels.com

Hotel Hassler
"The best view in the city; the Hassler bar is where all of Rome's politicians meet for a drink. To experience Rome it is absolutely necessary to have a drink at the Hassler."—Silvestro Serra. One of Rome's most elegant hotels, all curving staircases, velvet couches, luxurious fixtures, and modern amenities. 82 guest rooms, 13 suites. Piazza Trinità dei Monti 6; tel. 39 06 699 340. www.hotelhassler.com

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