Rome, the capital of Italy, is a vibrant cosmopolitan city that is almost 3,000 years old. It is famous for internationally influential art, culture, and architecture. Once here, you’ll be spoilt for choices when it comes to places to visit. Every year, hundreds of thousands of travelers flock the Eternal City to explore the Colosseum, the Forum, the St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican City, and the breathtaking Vatican Museums.
The most prized artwork in the world is also housed in some of the most important Catholic Churches like Santa Maria Maggiore, Santa Maria Sopra Minerva, San Pietro in Vincoli, and so forth. Most of these places are usually crowded at any time of the year, so getting the most of your travel can be difficult. So what is your best alternative when you are working on an unlimited budget? Here are the top five things to do for luxury travelers in Rome.
1. Go to NAZCA
NAZCA is one of the finest bars in Rome, situated at the center of the city’s elegant Ostiense district. It is a perfect destination for young, arty travelers, and features an edgy but stylish design with dinky leather stools and high ceilings. It has a fresh, modern look with a funky and low-lit atmosphere.
One segment of the bar is a formal restaurant area and the other is a cocktail bar. The main menu in the restaurant area is Italian cuisine with an odd contemporary twist. Drinks are excellent as well, featuring a cocktail list combining both inventive creations and classics. If you are a fan of house music and electronica, you’ll be entertained all through the night courtesy of the brilliant house DJs.
2. Explore the Giardino degli Aranci
The second most luxurious thing to do in Rome is, ironically, free. The Giardino degli Aranci, also known as the Orange Garden, is located between some of the most enthralling churches in the Eternal City. It is a favorite destination for couples and newlyweds, who often come here to take photographs of the picture perfect moment. The garden is concentrated with the beautiful scent of oranges and offers some of the finest views of the Roman skyline.
The park itself neighbors the Piazza Pietro d'Illiria and the ancient Basilica of Santa Sabina, and houses the glaring Giacomo Della Porta’s fountain that is believed to have been inspired by a River god named Oceanus. The mask was initially located at Lungotevere Gianicolense and Forum before finally settling at the calm Aventine Hill.
The remains of a wall that once fenced the 10th-century Savelli Castle can be seen to the side of the garden. The castle was initially built by Alberico II and later handed over to Ottone III. It subsequently found itself under the Dominican Order, after which it was transformed into a monastery. The small park became a vegetable garden.
The first orange tree was planted by Spanish Saint Dominic after transporting it from his homeland to the cloister, from which it thrived. Saint Catherine of Siena is said to have picked oranges from the tree to prepare candied fruit for Pope Urban VI. To date, the tree can be seen through a certain “porthole” in the nave’s wall.
3. Take a private tour of the Vatican and Sistine Chapel
Private tours are the best way to experience the finest of Rome. The Sistine Chapel, for instance, is a great destination for travelers looking to experience a spiritual or sublime moment. The quandary is that the Vatican City receives an estimated 17,000 visitors per day, which makes it difficult to draw inspiration from the ensuing hullaballoo.
Before 2007, private tours of the Sistine Chapel were reserved for celebrities, politicians, and royals. This has since changed and the public can now access these private tours in groups of about 20 people. The charges are about £232 per person, for about 2 hours. This is a significant deviation from the normal admission price, which is usually around €15 per person, but the experience is definitely worthwhile.
The itinerary tends to change each time depending on the availability of the secret rooms. However, you’ll likely visit the Scala del Bramante (Bramante Staircase) around the corner of the Pope’s Palace and the posh Sala degli Ori (Room of Gold), which houses a stunning collection of precious Etruscan jewels and papal jewelry.
4. A Ferrari tour of Lake Nemi
Enjoy a $3,000 six-hour trip across the enchanting Roman landscape in a luxurious Ferrari model. The adventure starts from your hotel in Rome and covers the best sights and cuisine in the country. A representative will pick you up at 8 am to the meeting point for a brief guideline on your Italian vehicle.
Once this is over, you can advance to the steep, winding Latium roads, following the picturesque path to Tarquinia with excellent local markets. Next, tour the gorgeous historical center of the 3 thousand year old city before making your way to Bracciano, where your next stop will be at the ancient Castle Orsini-Odescalchi. Continue to the dazzling Ceri village, where you will have lunch in the form of olive oil cooked meat while taking in breathtaking views of the valley below.
5. Art Restoration at Casino dell’Aurora Pallavicini
The Pallavicini Casino dell’Aurora represents one of the earliest Roman baroques in the heart of Rome. It resides on the Quirinal hill, which was previously known as Monte Cavallo, within the gorgeous Palazzo Pallavicini Rospigliosi architectural complex that once occupied the spectacular Baths of Constantine. Pastorella’s double staircase, which contains statues and busts of Roman origin, provides access to an extensive secret garden as well as the Casino dell’Aurora.
The latter was built by a Flemish architect known as Giovanni Vasanzio in 1612-1613. The Casino consists of marble reliefs from Roman sarcophagi slabs of the second and third century A.D. The pavilion boasts 3 connecting halls and a large central room featuring glass doorway and the renowned frescoes “L’Aurora”. The “Artemis the Huntress” statues also contribute to the cultural and artistic value of the Casino dell’Aurora.
There are two small rooms that feature ceilings by Baglione and Passignano when opened to the right and to the left. The walls are decorated with different precious paintings. The place is the exclusive venue for important meetings, special visits, gala dinners, conferences, concerts, and exhibitions. The fact that it is located at the center of Rome means that it is easily accessible with any means of transportation.
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Written by Garrett Parker
Read more posts by Garrett Parker