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THE POPE’S SWISS GUARD: FIVE CENTURY OLD TRADITION

THE POPE’S SWISS GUARD: FIVE CENTURY OLD TRADITION

Swiss Guard’s birthday was celebrated just few days ago in the Vatican City: 22 January traditionally marks the official recruitment of this corp by the Holy Seat in order to guarantee the Pope’s safety.
A fascinating story is at the origin of these guards’ proverbial loyalty to the chief of Roman Catholic Church: Swiss soldiers were first hired by Pope Julius II in 1506 for his personal safeguard, in a time characterized by basic political unrest. The choice fell upon men-at-arms from the region corresponding to modern Switzerland as since 13th Century they had developed a strong attitude towards military art, which was offering the only alternative to poverty in those ages. Since then statesmes from all over Europe used to count on these well trained soldiers for their own safety. Despite political status of the whole continent deeply changed, the Church did not renounce to this five century old tradition.
Interestingly enough, the Swiss Guards’ colorful attire is not as ancient as their service at the Holy Seat: the current uniform was indeed designed no more than one century ago and is based on drawings by Raffaello.
Hotel Des Artistes will be happy to provide you with any information and suggestions to let you enjoy at the best your visit to the Vatican!

EVEN ROME HAS GOT HER PYRAMID!

EVEN ROME HAS GOT HER PYRAMID!

Did you know Rome has a pyramid? Pyramid of Cestius is actually one of the most intriguing and still less known monuments in the Eternal City, standing at the crossroad between via Ostiensis and another fundamental lane in ancient times.
Its story is kind of unusual: it was built in just 330 days by Caio Cestio’s heirs under the threat of losing their rights on the inheritance, as prescribed by Caio Cestio himself. It’s one of the few monuments dating back to I Cent. BC survived for us, and it’s particularly remarkable because it testifies the spread of Egyptian customs in Rome as a consequence of the conquest of Egypt by Roman army in 30 BC.
The reason why time passing spared the pyramis major damages (despite it was covered in marbles, which were commonly reused in the antiquity to build new constructions) has probably to do with the fact that since III Cent. AD it was included in the Aurelian walls as a stronghold, which thing prevented both abandon and devastation.
Restoration works of the Pyramid of Cestius have been recently completed, the monument being now open to public with guided tour upon reservation.
Getting there is very easy: just catch metro line B (2 minutes walk from Hotel des Artistes) and get off at the namesake stop Piramide. Ask our staff about other sites in the area, such as the suggestive Protestant Cimitery. And whenever you want to take a rest, Eataly is just beyond the corner… your boutique for Made in Italy food!

DIVINE AUGUSTUS… 2000 YEARS AFTER

DIVINE AUGUSTUS… 2000 YEARS AFTER

Two thousands years are in between us and Augustus, Julius Caesar’s great nephew, one of the most charismatic personalities of the Ancient Rome, the first to be named Emperor.
The year 2014 precisely marked two millennia after his death (he expired in Nola, not far from Neaples, on 19 August 14 AD), and two great exhbitions in Rome are still open to public to commemorate him and his revolutionary impact on Roman politics.
Both the exhibits take advantage of the ultimate high technologies and go far beyond a mere display of pieces from the past: they allow visitors a true interactive experience where they feel like walking in the Imperial Fora shoulder to shoulder with other big personalities of the time.
The set-up at Mercati di Traiano is mostly a digital expo, the fruit of a majestic joint project involving at the same time 4 cities from the former Roman Empire: Amsterdam, Sarajevo, Alexandria of Egypt and Rome of course. Each of the four museums (Allard Pierson Museum, City Hall Museum, Bibliotheca Alexandrina and Imperial Fora Museum respectively) offers a different perspective on the Roman Empire during Augustus age.
The exhibit at Palazzo Massimo is rather focused on one of the most important cultural revolutions by Augustus: the changes he introduced within the Roman calendar, marking new days with festivities and events as tools for propaganda.
Here a short compedium of the two venues:
MERCATI DI TRAIANO, “Keys to Rome – The City of Augustus”, 9 am- 7 pm (Mon closed)
ROMAN NATIONAL MUSEUM AT PALAZZO MASSIMO: “Augustus Revolution”, 9 am – 7.45 pm (Mon closed)
Hotel Des Artistes is at walking distance from the latter and at 10 minutes bus journey from the former!

SUPERMAGIC ROME

SUPERMAGIC ROME

At the edge between dream and reality, material world and illusion stands “Supermagic”, the festival of magic which will be held in Rome from January 29 to February 8.
For one week people of any country and age will have the chance to be talked to via a universal language which doesn’t need any words to marvel and amaze. The best magicians, illusionists, conjurers and manipulators of our time will be gathering in Rome to offer their astonishing skills to public, challenging the laws of physics and time.
To protect their tricks’ secrecy, the backstage will be rigorously locked, only the illusionists being admitted behind the stage, to the point that they themselves will look after every technical and logistical step of the performance which otherwise would be up to technical staff.
Several shows are scheduled: to know them in detail you just need to contact “Supermagic” venue, that is to say Teatro Olimpico, or alternatively get any info you need from our staff at Hotel Des Artistes: “Supermagic” is the perfect way to spend an enchanting night in Rome even with kids!

CINECITTÁ SHOWS OFF

CINECITTÁ SHOWS OFF

From this week a brand new exhibition will put on display splendor and glory of Cinecittà, the City of Cinema in Rome which was home to some of the greatest film industry productions around the middle of the past century. “Shooting in Cinecittà, 1937-1989” guides visitors on an itinerary across film genres such as Hollywood on the Tiber, Italian comedy, Neorealism and Spaghetti Western, and in so doing it celebrates the immortal artists who contributed to the greatness of Italian film industry production worldwide.
Among the historical and propaganda movies on show: The Siege of the Alcazar, 1940; The Iron Crown, 1941. Then excerpts from Neorealistic films like Miracle in Milan, 1951; Bellissima, 1951; Umberto D, 1952, as well as a large section dedicated to stars such as Audrey Hepburn, Jayne Mansfield, Ava Gardner and Italian Loren, Lollobrigida, Mangano. On display costumes evoking unforgettable actors and films: Alida Valli and Farley Granger in Senso, 1954, by Luchino Visconti; Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in The Tame of the Shrew, 1967, by Franco Zeffirelli; the costume of character Don Saverio Petrillo, “O pazzariello”, interpreted by Totò in L’oro di Napoli, 1954, by Vittorio De Sica, or the outfit worn by Clint Eastwood in A Fistful of Dollars, 1964, by Sergio Leone.
When: from 24 January, permanently.
Where: Cinecittà Studios, Via Tuscolana, 1055.
How to reach it: metro line A, get off at Cinecittà.
Time: Mon-Wed-Thur-Fri-Sat-Sun 9.30 am – 7 pm. Guided tours provided.
Hotel Des Artistes is at your disposal for any further info!

FESTIVAL DELLE SCIENZE 2015: “SO O NON SO, QUESTO É IL DILEMMA”!

FESTIVAL DELLE SCIENZE 2015: “SO O NON SO, QUESTO É IL DILEMMA”!

“L’Ignoto” arriva a Roma. Ma niente paura, si tratta dell’Ignoto in senso filosofico e scientifico. Ancora più paura? No, davvero, non temete! Per capire quello a cui ci stiamo riferendo basta fare un salto al Festival delle Scienze che si aprirà fra pochissimi giorni a Roma.
Si tratta della decima edizione dell’evento, ospitato quest’anno dal 22 al 25 gennaio nella bella cornice dell’Auditorium Parco della Musica, e che avrà per tema appunto il concetto di Ignoto, ovvero tutto quello che si trova ancora al di là del livello di conoscenze sinora raggiunto. Dell’Ignoto, ci spiegheranno, non bisogna aver paura, in quanto è proprio ciò che ancora ci sfugge a darci la spinta propulsiva per continuare a cercare, a capire e dunque a conoscere.
A sviscerare l’argomento interverranno alcuni fra i più grandi scienziati del nostro tempo, stranieri ma non solo: Carlo Rovelli, celebre fisico attualmente impegnato nello studio della gravità quantistica e dei buchi neri, aprirà il Festival con una lezione dal titolo illuminante “La scienza ci dà certezze?”.
Perché, citando le parole del fisico Stephen Hawking, “il piu grande nemico della conoscenza non è l’ignoranza, ma l’illusione di sapere“.
Hotel Des Artistes sarà lieto di fornirvi il programma completo del festival e tutte le indicazioni necessarie per raggiungere l’auditorium.

CANDLELIGHT DINNER, LIVE JAZZ CONCERT & TOUR OF ROME ALL IN ONE

CANDLELIGHT DINNER, LIVE JAZZ CONCERT & TOUR OF ROME ALL IN ONE

Rome offers an original form of entertainment to those who wish to combine at one time a romantic candlelight dinner with a tour across the most beautiful spots of the Eternal City on the notes of a live jazz concert. All this is possible on TramJazz, a vintage cable car converted into an itinerant restaurant and cozy concert hall.
The night starts at 9 pm: guests are warmly welcomed on the cable by refined starters and drinks; by that time the concert reaches its peak, the cable will have covered an enchanting itinerary at the end of which it will stop on the hill right opposite the Colosseum. It’s there that the dinner of typical local products will be served. Every event on TramJazz is dedicated to a specific theme (Dolce Vita, Brazilian Jazz, etc. just to name a few).
This exclusive 3-hour music and tasting journey can be enjoyed upon previous reservation, which we suggest to forward quite in advance for better chances to get your spot.
Hotel Des Artistes will be glad to help you with any bookings you may need during your stay with us!

ROME, THE CAPITAL OF  SPORT: “ROME MARATHON” & “ROMAFUN”

ROME, THE CAPITAL OF SPORT: “ROME MARATHON” & “ROMAFUN”

Rome Marathon, considered as the greatest sport event in Italy given the number of its participants, will take place this year on Sunday 22 March. The race will start at 8:50 am, departure and arrival points being established on via dei Fori Imperiali. Registration is compulsory and expires on 5 March, 2015.
Runners will vie for the first medal, that was won by Ethiopian athlets in 2014 edition, in both the males and females competition.
Together with this professional marathon, a parallel non-competitive event will take place: the Romafun, “La Stracittadina”, a 5km walk in the heart of the city open to everyone (classmates, families, together with their favourite domestic animal, on skates, ecc.). Starting point for participants is on via dei Fori Imperiali at 9:10 am, to end up at Circo Massimo. Registration deadline for “Romefun – La Stracittadina” is 21 March, its fee being € 8,00 (inclusive of the official t-shirt).
Hundreds of thousands of people will gather in the Eternal City to enjoy these special sport events: don’t miss them and stay with us at Hotel Des Artistes!

ENJOY A UNIQUE EXPERIENCE IN THE HEART OF ROME!

ENJOY A UNIQUE EXPERIENCE IN THE HEART OF ROME!

Rome temporarily discloses one of its secret gems: Palazzo Ferrajoli, the prestigious 18th century palace facing on Piazza Colonna, in the heart of Rome, will be exceptionally open to public from January 3 to 7, 2015, on occasion of the Festa delle Luci in Piazza Colonna. It will be a four-day event dedicated to food & drink, traditional handicraft , music and art. Literature will have great attention through the exposition of ancient original documents (many of them in English; captions available). The access to the Palace is for free, and it includes a guided tour of it which will provide visitors with a unique chance to admire Antonine Column from above.
To get more info and free vouchers to take part to the event, please ask Hotel Des Artistes‘ staff!

PLUNGING INTO THE FUTURE: ROME’S HIGH-TECH AQUARIUM

PLUNGING INTO THE FUTURE: ROME’S HIGH-TECH AQUARIUM

2015 promises to enrich Rome with many exciting entertainments. One of these is the introduction of Rome’s first aquarium, a colossal structure which will be the biggest in Italy and one of the major in Europe. Its first opening is currently fixed to June 2015, at the end of a long path of construction works. The aquarium will be covering a surface of 16000 square meters underneath the EUR lake and has been conceived to show history, environment and biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea, from which its own name comes: Mediterraneum – The Aquarium of Rome. An authentic revolution lays behind this project as the most sophisticated technologies were applied. The traditional section of the aquarium will host – as one would expect – living fishes born in captivity, while another sector will be entirely dedicated to scientific research, technological innovation and educational services: it will include an auditorium for 3D shows and huge tanks where high-tech robot-fishes will be swimming. Visitors will feel like plunging into the ocean abyss for real, thanks to special acrylic tunnels.
From Hotel Des Artistes you can easily get to EUR (the modern quarter in Southern Rome born to host the Universal Exposition in 1942) by metro line B: ask our staff!