“Rome wasn’t built in a day,” the saying goes, reminding us that great achievements take time. Dorchester Collection's recently renovated Hotel Eden in Italy's capital city proves the truth of that frequently stated maxim. Guests at the meticulously restored hotel will be the first to agree.
Closed for a 17-month renovation, the hotel re-opened in April 2017 under general manager Luca Virgilio with 98 guestrooms, reduced from 121 rooms to provide more spacious accommodations. Thirty percent of the rooms are now suites. High ceilings and expansive windows take advantage of city views from the hotel’s quiet location two blocks from Via Veneto and near the Borghese Gardens and Spanish Steps.
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Originally a three-story mansion, the Eden was first opened as a hotel in 1889, before the addition of elevators, electricity, heating, and running water and long before its present rebirth as one of Rome’s premier destinations.
Through the years, the hotel has housed royalty including Princess Maria of Bourbon on the day of her marriage to Prince Giovanni of Asturias, the Grand Duchess Olga of Russia, King Alfonso XIII of Spain, Queen Amelia of Portugal, and Umberto of Savoy. Other renowned guests have included Roberto Rossellini and Ingrid Bergman along with their children. Isabella Rossellini and Martin Scorsese spent the first night of their marriage at the Eden.
Today, arriving guests are greeted with a breathtaking view of the main floor La Libreria, a sumptuously decorated living room with an antique fireplace, grand piano, bookshelves, and inviting furniture. Situated off to the sides are two intricately carved white marble reception desks.
The softly lit, ornate golden box ceiling overlooks the contemporary black, gray, and white geometrically patterned marble floor, just one example of the hotel’s seamless combination of classic Italian and modern contemporary styles. Trompe l’oeil frescoes on the walls suggest Roman columns, adding depth and interest to the room.
When nighttime approaches, La Libreria is an ideal place for a relaxing cocktail along with soft background music. The elegant secret bar beyond the library shelves adds a clever dimension.
Guestrooms are furnished in soothing colors and elegant fabrics. Smooth white linens cover the ultra-comfortable beds. Plush towels and robes along with Bottega Veneta bath toiletries and walk-in rain showers enhance the luxurious bathrooms. Room décor reflects both classic and modern, combining framed Roman-style prints with abstract art. Modern technology includes iPads to control lighting and temperature, place room service orders, and more.
Under Michelin-starred chef Fabio Ciervo’s scrupulous planning and direction, the hotel’s kitchen was also renovated, incorporating the latest in high-quality equipment. His focus on fresh, healthful cuisine and his international training and experience are apparent in the hotel’s restaurants.
The fine dining restaurant, La Terrazza, provides spectacular vistas of Rome from its top floor location, along with exceptional dining experiences featuring seasonal ingredients and creative presentation. A tasting menu pairs scallops with mango and passion fruit and sea urchin with curry and black pepper.
Il Giardino, open all day, offers healthy choices for breakfast, lunch, and dinner as well as pastas, pizzas, and much more. It’s the perfect place to begin or end the day with a relaxing meal on the open air terrace.
Decorated with delicate glass leaves in varied shades of green, the wall of Il Bar on the top floor suggests the hotel’s location near the lush Borghese Gardens, bringing the outside in as you enjoy the view along with your aperitif.
The hotel's new urban spa is another perfect spot to be pampered, with signature treatments by Beverly Hills skincare guru Sonya Dakar and Officina Profumo - Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella, one of the oldest pharmacies in the world. Two private spa suites and a couple’s suite are available for soothing facial and body treatments by expert therapists, in addition to manicures, pedicures, and a blow-dry bar. Complete the indulgent experience with a salad, smoothie, or juice specially created for the spa by Chef Ciervo.
From top to bottom the designers, craftsmen, and hotel staff have pulled off an impressive feat: authentically maintaining the Roman sensibility and style of the hotel while providing every modern comfort for its guests.
Rooms from $850 per night; dorchestercollection.com