I’m taking you back to the sleepy, hot days of late August, to share this last post from my vacation in Italy! After a few days spent on the Italian Riviera and in Tuscany, Jon and I decided to make the most of our one night in Rome.
We arrived late in the evening at the absolutely incredible hotel Villa Spalletti Trivellis. After much research (I take my hotel stays very seriously), I was delighted to find that the Villa was the most unique hotel on the whole trip. Owned by a wealthy family whose legacy is steeped in Italian history, the boutique hotel was recently converted from a private home alongside the Presidential Palace, to a luxury destination with 12 stunning guest rooms. With antiques lining the halls, and the friendliest staff I have ever met, I felt like the house guest of a very elegant friend!
Jon and I quickly freshened up, and, armed with a map made by one the staff members, headed out for a stroll around the area. We grabbed simply ah-mazing food at Ce Stamo a Pensa, a teeny restaurant whose fried pizza dough was both a blessing for my stomach and a curse for my waistline. Close to midnight, we took advantage of the hot tubs on the hotel’s rooftop. Entirely new, the wood covered terrace was simply stunning – straight out of a magazine – and all our own. I live for spas, so there was nothing better than ending our last evening in Italy looking up at the constellations!
The next morning we woke up at 4:30, got dressed and walked straight to the Forum. Jon was interested in shooting the ruins at dawn, so I decided to take the mantra “When in Rome,” very seriously and donned my most toga-esque dress – this one from the awesome brand, Smythe. Of course my Dolce Vita sandals were named Julius, which also wasn’t much of an accident (last seen here).
As the sun rose above the dusty hills, we walked the quiet streets of Rome, watching the city awaken just as it has for thousands of years. The ruins of the Forum are both awesome and sad – full of giant columns, marble rubble that once dwarfed the streets, and a huge number of important monuments commemorating the history of Rome. Before our visit I spent considerable time viewing recreations of the Forum, but nothing could do justice to what I’m sure, in its heyday, was an incredible center of politics and culture.
I love how the sun is just hitting the ruins of the Temple of Saturn in this photo! If you can image, this entire area would have been obscured by monolithic buildings dedicated to the Gods. It was nice to have the Forum to ourselves, with the Colosseum just peeking over the horizon too. If you’re curious about what it would have looked like, I found this video helpful (at 0:34, in particular), which reconstructs the entire area.
After, with the golden light of the sun shining on Capitoline Hill, Jon took a few portraits of me in my Roman garb!
Wouldn’t Romulus and Remus be proud? Ciao Roma! I can’t wait until we meet again!
Have you ever been to Rome? Share your favorite spots or stories from your trips in the comments below! And this post is dedicated to my Latin teacher Mrs. Manse – thanks for the four years of history, humor, and chariot races!