Local: Rome

Rome was not built in a day. All roads lead to Rome. When in Rome do as Romans do. Eternal Rome. Probably no other city in the world has as many proverbs and sayings as Rome. And that indicates the obvious importance of the city to history and civilization. However, the interesting thing about Rome is that not only does it have some of the… Read more »

The sign in the exterior of La Carbonara is quite solemn in expressing the sentiment of the establishment: “…this is no MasterChef… there is no Gordon Ramsay around … we are not a fast food shop…”. It is explicit in affirming the message that the very traditional family run osteria wants to provide freshly prepared, made-to-order, traditionally Roman meals to be savored and enjoyed slowly.… Read more »

This very traditional Roman restaurant, with its quintessential red chairs, serves typical Italian dishes as well as Bolognese ones, the most famous being tagliatelle with meat ragu, original from the city of Bologna. We were delighted with the melanzana (eggplant) parmigiana with which we started our feast, as well as the thinly sliced carpaccio. The antipasti were followed by a delicious caneloni filled with ricotta… Read more »

Upon entering Salumeria Roscioli, your senses will be pleasantly captivated by all things Italian: shelves full of wine and pesto bottles, proscuitto hanging on walls, cheese refrigerators. It is located near Campo de Fiori, worth a visit on market days, in one of our preferred areas in town called Regole. Should a table not be available, request a seat at the counter, an equally enjoyable… Read more »

This busy Roman market is frequented by many locals who work in the region and are looking for a nice meal, as well as a few travelers willing to enjoy some typical Italian delicacies. There are many modern food stalls in this renovated market, where you help yourself and enjoy your meal at communal tables. Pastas, cheese and salami boards, pizzas, fish and meat dishes,… Read more »

A day in Trastevere, a former working class region, is a good way to escape a bit from the Colosseum or, if you are town for business, from air-conditioned offices and conference rooms. Start at Piazza di Santa Maria and its astonishing small Basilica, with its rich interiors and mosaics. Go ahead and get lost in the neighborhood’s labyrinth of streets and cobblestone alleys, maybe… Read more »

How would it be possible to go to Rome and miss Villa Farnesina? Commissioned by a banker from Siena, it is one of the highest expressions of Italian Renaissance. Villa Farnesina houses incredible rooms with amazing frescoes by Raphael, painted in the 16th century, and other, less famous (arguably as skilled) artists. Marble floors, trompe de l’oeil, huge windows with detailed painted panels and richly… Read more »

Just fifty minutes by train away from Rome lies this World Heritage site, known for its charming city center, the beautiful gardens in Villa d’Este, the waterfalls at Villa Gregoriana and nearby Villa Adriana. If you intend to go by train, definitely avoid Sundays as after you arrive in Tivoli it is extremely difficult to get a taxi (or even a local bus) to get… Read more »

If in Rome for the first time, or on business but want to escape from office for some time, or even if you have been here before but can’t resist revisiting your favorite sights, there is one very important rule: buy tickets in advance for the busy places like The Vatican, Sistine Chapel, Castel Sant’Angello or the Colosseum. If visiting on the peak holiday periods… Read more »

It is puzzling why most travelers miss a visit to this stunning Basilica, one of five papal ones in Rome. When talking to locals, we asked what their favorite place in the city may be, especially the ones travelers miss, and this Basilica was a top choice. Not only is it marvelous in terms of architecture and riches, but it is also home to the… Read more »

Located at Piazza della Repubblica, on the same site as Museo Nazionale Romano. An informative documentary film presented upon entering details what the Diocletian Baths used to look like, with magnificent rich detailing, marble structures and statues. Although much of the original details are no longer there, the structure has been maintained. It is interesting to learn that the beautiful adjacent basilica was built using… Read more »

Where else in the world would you find a park where you can go for a stroll or exercise in the middle of original Roman statues and fountains, Egyptian obelisks and marble Roman arches? Well, when in Rome you do find all of that at Villa Borghese. It is such a beautiful park and your visit will likely have the background sound of cicadas singing… Read more »

Leon’s Place is a well-known design boutique hotel set within a historical building renovated by distinguished architects. On our most recent stay, we enjoyed being in this less touristic neighborhood yet still quite close to many of the city’s attractions. Piazza della Republica and surroundings, or Villa Borghese, are within a 10-minute walk. The interiors have a modern appeal, with a trendy atmosphere and fashionable… Read more »

The name of this tiny hotel, located in bohemian and fashionable Monti, makes reference to the amount of rooms they have on offer. So, should you be looking for a homey stay in Rome, this might be the place. The property blends in discreetly with the surrounding residential neighborhood and it is hard to spot the golden sign on the outer wall, so be careful… Read more »

Very well located near Piazza Navona yet away from the main street to ensure some peace and quiet. Palazzo Navona is owned by Architects, as evidenced upon entering the very stylish and tastefully modern lobby. Practically brand new (recently renovated), a dark parquet floor adorned with colorful detailing, elegantly placed dim spot lights, modern design chairs and lamps, and marvelous lit up shelves all harmonize… Read more »

In our last long stay in Rome we decided to try Da Felice. Expectations were high so we made reservations for the last night, so as not to spoil other meals with comparisons. And we were right. The best Cacio e Pepe of our lives, fantastic roasted lamb with potatoes, lightly baked aubergine, Spaghetti alla Felice with tomatoes and perfectly cooked ricotta. For dessert, we… Read more »

If you are in the Monti region (Romans say “zona”), some blocks from the Forum and Coliseum, refresh yourself in this tiny hidden gelateria. The chocolate flavors are some of the best we had in town (madagascar was incredible), as well the stracciatela. Other more creative flavors were equally tempting, like basil walnuts and honey, coffee chocolate, banana and sesame brittle, peach with wine… but… Read more »

The line outside is generally a good indication of what is to come. The ambiance is relaxed, the décor frugal with a few tables covered in checkered tablecloths and cloth napkins, and there is no wine list, as they only serve the house wine selection. Yet, the food is probably one of the best in Trastevere. It is located in the less touristic part of… Read more »

It is “the” place to be in Rome right now for the younger adults. Drinks at a bar with an easygoing see-and-be-seen kind of vibe, very typically Roman in a small piazza, with people coming for happy hour after work on their scooters, live DJs, excellent creative cocktails, and a laid-back atmosphere. The later it gets the more lively it becomes, after 7pm the house… Read more »

Located in Trastevere, a lively region loved by Italians and visitors alike, near monuments and historic buildings, this restaurant has excellent Italian food in an unpretentious but distinctive setting. The menu is quite extensive with many appetizers, and as many “piatti” (dishes) as you can think of. Our choices were baked mozzarella with Italian prosciutto, followed by creamy ravioli (the ingredients of the filling are… Read more »