After wanting to visit the Republic of San Marino since I was nine years old, we finally did last May, 2014, but for only one night. We really liked San Marino and decided one night was not enough. This past July, 2015 we returned and spent three nights in the same Ristorante Hotel Cesare. The hotel is a 4 star property located almost at the top of Mt. Titano just inside the the ZTL. This place is outstanding, as is San Marino, in general. Our room had a large balcony that overlooked the lower city, the illuminated government building, and some beautiful mountains. We would sit out on the balcony at night and just looking at the stunning panorama. It seemed as though we did not want to go to bed because of the spectacular scenery and we would miss something.
As for san Marino, itself, we found it to be one of the cleanest and well kept places in Italy. After traveling in Italy since 1980 and every year since 2005, I can speak with some first hand authority. There are a lot of tourist type shops, but anyone who has been to Venice or the Le Cinque terre can attest to the massive tourist schlock in those venues. The city was not too crowded during the day and we had the place to ourselves to explore at night. We walked the three Torre (towers) and visited the museums in Towers one and two, which were very interesting. The arms museum in Tower two was especially interesting. The scenery from any of the towers are unequaled. Thirty km away you can see the cities along the Adriatic Sea and the inland mountains in the other direction. Simply beautiful.
The restaurants were moderately priced and the whole environment was extremely friendly. Our hotel's restaurant was really first class and their product was also first rate. They give hotel guests a complimentary appetizer consisting of two marinated anchovies or sardines and a 10% discount. My wife rapidly passed them to me when the waiter left our table with a most unsettling expression on her beautiful face.
One day we took a field trip to Maranello to visit the impressive Ferrari Museum. All I can say is...I want one...a candy apple red one. They make only one all wheel drive model...like who is going to drive a Ferrari in the winter!
We do not know when we will return, but without sounding like we work for their tourist board, it is a nice place to visit after you've seen Venice, Florence, and Roma. And, and...you can walk around without wearing your money belt.