Rome – Off the beaten tracks

VILLA TORLONIA: MUSSOLINI’S BUNKER & THE THEATRE ARE OPEN AGAIN

VILLA TORLONIA: MUSSOLINI’S BUNKER & THE THEATRE ARE OPEN AGAIN

For those interested in roaming around Rome a little bit off the beaten track, until 31 December 2014 Villa Torlonia will be worth a visit more than ever. The beautiful neo-classical & liberty structure which belonged to nobles Torlonia, and which was home to Mussolini and his family, just opened to visitors two more sections: the theatre and the bunker (built at the very beginning of the II World War). After long time restorations, the theatre will serve again as a collector of events such as plays and concerts. Beyond this, it will be accessible during the day as well, even if upon mandatory booking (which includes a guided tour as well). The same opening conditions are provided to visit the bunker.
Venue: Villa Torlonia, Via Nomentana 70.
Ask Yes Hotel’s staff for more details & reservations!

OUTDOOR URBAN ART FESTIVAL: AN UNCONVENTIONAL ROME

OUTDOOR URBAN ART FESTIVAL: AN UNCONVENTIONAL ROME

Lady Aiko (strong of her cooperation with Banksy and Takashi Murakami) from Japan, Laurina Paperina from Italy, Faith47 from South Africa: 3 out of the 15 big street artists currently in Rome are women. Until 22 November the Eternal City gives room (literally!) to Outdoor Urban Street Art: an occasion to give new life to disused buildings in areas reputed out of the classical Roman itineraries. For 5 weeks, street artists gathered in Rome from 6 different nations will enhance an abandoned industrial site in San Lorenzo area (few steps away from the well-known Termini station): bright murals and fusion lights spread on 5m²“Moving forward” – such the title given to 2014 event – through an artistic itinerary which is in fact a physical, mental and emotional journey.
Venue: ex Dogana, via dello Scalo San Lorenzo 10 – San Lorenzo quarter (walking distance from Termini station).
Time: daily 12:00-22:00 until 22 November 2014
Yes Hotel offers you the perfect accommodation to easily reach this unconventional festival!

Spring and the Azaleas of the Spanish Steps

spanishAs every spring from 1951 you will have the chance to admire one of the most beautiful sights the Eternal City has to offer: the stairs of the Spanish Steps will be embellished with flowerpots of azaleas as a colourful way to celebrate the arrival of the new season.

Why use Azaleas to celebrate spring? The answer, besides the fact that azaleas are beautiful and are in full flowering during April, is hard to guess. For some, the idea might be somehow connected to the legend of the Roman goddess Proserpine who escaped from her husband Pluto to go back to her mother Ceres, but due to a spell cast on her by her husband she had to spend six months on earth and the other six months in the underworld with him. According to the legend Proserpine, by going back to earth, gave start to spring and summer, while during the six months that she had to spend in the afterlife autumn and winter arrived on earth.250px-Proserpine-(utdrag)

The dates can slightly vary in operation of the flowering of the azaleas, but the office of the tourism will provide all the necessary information.

If you’ll be in Rome in that period don’t miss this opportunity!!! The Spanish Steps are waiting to celebrate with you! Book at the Hotel Des Artistes or Yes Hotel located only a walk away from the Spanish Steps!

When: Springtime

Where: Spanish Steps, Rome

How to get there: From Yes Hotel or Hotel Des Artistes, take the red subway line at the Termini Station and get off at the station Spagna

More info: (+39) 060608

Andy Warhol in Rome

Warhol-Campbell_Soup-1-screenprint-1968From April 18 to September 28 2014, Palazzo Cipolla, Via Del Corso 320, Rome.

Andy Warhol by Brant Foundation is a rare opportunity for the public to be able to see one of the most important groups of works by the artist father of American Pop Art, collected not by a simple collector, but a character, Peter Brant, a close friend of Warhol, with whom he shared the years artistically and culturally vibrant New York in the 60’s and 70’s. Warhol was only twenty years old in 1967 Peter Brant bought his first work of Warhol, a drawing of the famous Campbell‘s Soup, starting what would become one of the most important contemporary art collections in the world.

Through masterpieces and works by lesser-known but equally amazing, as a series of Polaroid never seen before in Europe, the exhibition tells the Brant Foundation is not just the star of Warhol’s art world and the market but also the intimate Warhol, friend, the man.

From April 18 to September 28 2014, Palazzo Cipolla, Via Del Corso 320, Rome.

Start the Year with… Monsters!

b4114baf5a98776cbc39f51630f76234_XL

Monsters were a very important part of classical culture. After all, every hero needs a monster to face and defeat in order to stay (or become) a hero.
The exposition at the Palazzo Massimo brings together for the first time pieces from all around the world to show how Minotaurs, Pegassus, Sphynxes, Harpies and Centaurs played a central role in the narratives that ancient peoples used to make sense of the world and ultimately, of themselves.
The Palazzo Massimo Museum is located at  Largo di Villa Peretti 1,  basically around the corner from Yes Hotel and a couple of blocks away from Hotel Des Artistes. The Exhibition will be on display until June 1, 2014.

Book Recommendation

9788842097686
This is not a blog about books, but I just came across one that’s too good to be ignored.

Elena Bonora’s “Roma 1564″ is authoritative and educational but is also as entertaining as the best thriller. The book documents with great historical rigour a conspiracy to kill pope Pious IV and unveils through its reconstructions the sometimes brutal past of the city and the peculiar worldview of its inhabitants (there are astrologers and treasure hunts involved!)

Unfortunately the book is yet to be translated in English. If you know italian, get it; if you don’t, keep checking for the translation: it’s an indispensable read for those who believe that reality is stranger (and sometimes more intriguing) than fiction.

Marcel Duchamp in Rome

duchamp2One day in 1917 a man submitted his peculiar contribution for a modern art exposition: a  signed a urinal.
The man was Marcel Duchamp and with his work was inaugurating conceptual art and changing aestethics forever. Since then we want art to outrage us,  to force us to follow unusual thought-paths and to grow free of the bi-dimensional space of a canvas.

Starting from October visitors will be able to appreciate the works of this intriguing artists at the National Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, which can be easily reached from Yes Hotel or Hotel Des Artistes: just take the red subway line and get off at Flaminio and walk through Villa Borghese to get there.

Book Advice

512739Books and travel go together naturally; both are journeys: one mental, the other physical. Reading a book while traveling is a journey within a journey, an activity much more rich and rewarding than any of the two undertaken separately.

This considerations come to mind because a couple of days ago I noticed that Borri Books, the bookshop located inside the Station Termini has a small but very interesting selection of books about Italy and ancient Rome.

The whole third floor is dedicated to books in foreign languages (English, Spanish, French, German and Russian) with the English section being the largest covering topics that range from humor to literature and current affairs.The Ancient Rome section (the second aisle counting from left to right with the elevator or stairs behind you) includes many rather academic books but also volumes that offer useful information using a very light tone, like the one pictured here that promises to teach you  “the Latin you need to know for surviving the 21st century”.

Borri Books is located inside the Termini Station and is open from 8.00 am until 10.00 pm, and from 8.00 am until 22.00 pm on Sundays and holidays.