ROME There is no place like

Go for the past, stay for the fu­ture, the iconic des­ti­na­tion is a non-ne­go­tiable, must-see for any self-re­spect­ing adult.

Esquire Middle East - - TRAVEL - BY DANIEL HIG­GINS

RI OME IS OF­FI­CIALLY A BIRTH­PLACE OF CUL­TURE. Italy’s cap­i­tal city is a buzzing, cos­mopoli­tan melt­ing pot in­fused with nearly 3,000 years of glob­ally in­flu­en­tial art and ar­chi­tec­ture. The an­cient ru­ins of the Fo­rum, the Colos­seum and the Vatican Mu­se­ums, hous­ing mas­ter­pieces such as Michelan­gelo’s fres­coes in the Sis­tine Chapel, means you have the op­por­tu­nity to tick off half your life’s bucket list in one short city break.

When in Rome, only the best will do, and lo­ca­tion is ev­ery­thing. The Ho­tel de Russie is a lux­ury five-star ho­tel lo­cated in the heart of the city, be­tween the Span­ish Steps and Pi­azza del Popolo. The 88 bed­rooms, 33 suites and Ni­jin­sky, Pi­casso, Popolo, and Vaselli Suites — all with pri­vate ter­races — en­sure you will find some­thing to fit your ev­ery want, need, and budget.

The ho­tel is a good mix of old and new, with mod­ern de­sign that re­spects the clas­si­cal ar­chi­tec­ture of the build­ing — we are in Rome, af­ter all. The his­toric gar­den of the Ho­tel de Russie has come to be known as the Se­cret Gar­den, re­stored by ar­chi­tect An­tonella Dar­oda who re­stored it back to its orig­i­nal glory. It’s the ul­ti­mate date-night lo­ca­tion when eat­ing from Le Jardin de Russie. Boast­ing sea­sonal menus by cel­e­brated Chef Ful­vio Pierangelini, the pasta dishes en­joyed al­fresco in the Se­cret Gar­den dur­ing the warmer months is a must.

Although all the mod­ern fea­tures of a gym, spa, bars and restau­rants are present and cor­rect, it is the ho­tel’s sur­round­ings and re­stored ar­chi­tec­ture that re­ally bring The Eter­nal City to life. Per­fectly si­t­u­ated for the tourist must­sees, and the lesser-known should-trys.

When it all comes down to ev­ery­one’s favourite rea­son to visit Italy — the food — you won’t find sen­sa­tional pizza and pasta alla Ro­mana bet­ter any­where else in the coun­try. While Naples claims own­er­ship of the pizza, a slice from a Ro­man pizze­ria is also a thing of won­der. Why does it not taste like that any­where else? You couls as­cribe it to the fresh in­gre­di­ents and ex­per­tise of gen­er­a­tions, but it’s also down en­joy­ing it with a base of an­cient his­tory, topped with lux­ury ho­tels, bars and an un­matched fre­netic buzz. Well, as they say, when in Rome…

For prices and pack­ages for a week­end trip to Rome stay­ing at the Ho­tel de Russie, visit roc­co­forte­ho­tels.com

Rome’s food shops will leave your mouth wa­ter­ing

Popolo Suite at the Ho­tel de Russie; dine al­fresco at the Se­cret Gar­den

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