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  • Jennifer

Sanremo and the rental car that wouldn't say arrivederci

Updated: Jan 17, 2022

For some reason we both thought that Sanremo might be "it," the location that wouldn't be too small or too big, but just right for us.

We made a stop in Alassio on our way, which was another awesome town along the coast, and arrived at our hotel in Sanremo with high hopes. The Royal Hotel Sanremo was lovely, a true grand old hotel with a sprawling pool facing the vast Mediterranean sea. All was good so far!

Before we explored the town we had to return our rental car to Hertz because we were taking the train to Nice in the morning. Well...this is where it started going downhill.

We fueled up the car and went to the Hertz location...which was an empty storefront with the Hertz logo and nothing else. Dark. Vacant. No furniture, no people, nothing. We double checked to make sure it was the correct address, and it was. Back to the hotel to call Hertz and ask what the heck was going on.

Turns out, there is no longer a Hertz location in Sanremo. How were we able to book a reservation that had us dropping our car off there? No idea. We had a car and nowhere to take it. We parked ourselves on the hotel terrace, ordered lunch (and some stiff cocktails) and set about figuring out what to do.

Calls were made to Hertz in the US, Hertz in Italy. We contacted them by social media and emailed. And the outcome was... they wanted us to drive back to Alassio, an hour away in the opposite direction of Nice, and drop it off there. They had no problem with us wasting our day or having to take a train back to Sanremo. Well, that wasn't happening! Joe basically told them that their car was in Sanremo and they were more than welcome to come and get it. They were like: um, no. So we were at a stalemate. After 3+ hours of this, we made a decision that Hertz would have to live with - we were going to take the car to Nice and drop it off at the Hertz location there. We put that mess behind us (and crossed our fingers that when we got to Nice they'd actually take the car) and went looking for well-earned aperativo.

Well, Sanremo was nice but it wasn't "the one." It just wasn't quaint enough. We did end up finding our aperitivo, and then had an amazing last dinner in Italy at Osteria del Marinaio. It was exactly what we needed - a small, rustic restaurant with fabulous seafood and wine.

At the end of our meal they brought us some homemade limoncello to cap off our Italian adventures, and all was right with the world again (at least until we found the Hertz office in Nice).

The next day we would make an unexpected but very welcome stop in Monaco for lunch, and then head to Nice hell-bent on ditching our rental car. We hoped the force was with us.

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