When it comes to hotels with great views, Rome delivers. There’s no lack of luxurious properties overlooking the city’s rooftops and famous sights. But one stands out for being the only 5-star hotel with unparalleled views of the Colosseum: Palazzo Manfredi.
Part of the Relais & Châteaux collection and situated directly above ruins of the Ludus Magnus, an ancient gladiator training school, Palazzo Manfredi is a modern hotel immersed in Rome’s singular culture and history. Built in the 17th century by the Evangelisti family and later purchased by Count Goffredo Manfredi, an Italian entrepreneur and construction magnate, it also feels more like a comfortable home than an upscale hotel.
That is, apart for the fact that nearly every angle of the property looks out onto Italy’s most famous landmark. When you stay at Palazzo Manfredi, you’ll notice how the light washes the Colosseum in different colors throughout the day – and you’ll be able to admire the splendor of the 2,000-year-old monument without the crowds. Despite its central location, the hotel feels like a peaceful enclave away from all the action.
Palazzo Manfredi is located at the edge of the Celio district with the ancient Ludus Magnus on one side, and the leafy Colle Oppio park on the other. The hotel is set across two buildings: the original 17th century palazzo, which comprises 12 suites and 2 bedrooms, and a new acquisition next-door which hosts 5 Grand View Suites – featuring ceiling to floor windows that look out onto the Colosseum. With unobstructed views, the amphitheater looks so close you can nearly touch it.
The interior design pays ode to Rome’s ancient history coupled with elements that honor the city’s 21st century rationalist architecture. Rooms feature clean lines, travertine marble elements and modern furnishings, along with fanciful wallpaper by Glamora to add texture to the spaces. Neutral tones of beige and grey are offset with bright pops of modish furniture by Italian brands such as Cassina and Baxter, enlivening the atmosphere and adding a touch of contemporary style to the mix.
It’s a romantic hotel, one that beckons for a rendez-vous and has seen its fair share of marriage proposals and honeymoon escapes, but it also has an air of old-school business travel. A night at Palazzo Manfredi is meant to impress and the 180 degree-views of the Colosseum speak for themselves.
This year saw a number of new openings at Palazzo Manfredi. The Court, a cocktail bar that doubles as an outdoor living room for guests and visitors, is the perfect place for an aperitif before dining at Aroma Restaurant, a one-Michelin starred restaurant located on the rooftop of the hotel. And the Palm Suite, a sister property located in nearby Monti, is an excellent option for those looking for longer-term accommodations in Rome. The 12 stylish suites boast a tropical flair, with statement statues and funky furnishings, so they’re great for couples or young families who will appreciate the playful atmosphere.