Bed and Rome and Breakfast

giovedì 21 settembre 2017


Se i Fori e il Camidoglio sono la storia di Roma, Piazza di Spagna con il Tridente il salotto, San Lorenzo è l'anima di Roma ma non solo di Roma.
Abbiamo già avuto modo di parlare del quartiere dove si trova San Lorenzo Guest House, ma qualche altro approfondimento è d'obbligo.
La zona di San Lorenzo misura in totale poco più di 30 ettarai, mezzo kilometro quadrato includendoci la parte a nord della Via Tiburtina. Eppure questa piccola zona ha avuto una influenza enorme sulla storia contemporanea, e non solo quella italiana.

Nota: quelle che seguono sono osservazioni derivanti da mie opinioni personali. Come tali esse sono criticabili e ogni visione alternativa è ben accetta. 

martedì 5 settembre 2017


In a recent review a guest of San Lorenzo Guest House wrote the following words.

"We weren't completely happy about the localization because we sometimes were afraid to walk as it was getting dark ( many homeless people and drunks).It was safe to walk during day."

I think that it is necessary to provide some clarifications especially for our future guests.

The first thing to say is that, in several years of operation, no guests of San Lorenzo Guest House has ever experienced a problem in the neighborhood.

It might well be that a pickpocket stole the wallet of a guest in the metrro or in some other crowded place, the same that happened to me once in Prague and was almost on the way to happen while getting a train in Warsaw. Maybe a thief crashed the glass of their car to steal the luggage, and that is an experience I had in Amsterdam (in Rome, but in other areas, the spare wheel of my car has been stolen several times). But none of those unpleasent experiences ever occurred close to San Lorenzo Guest House.

*** TIP ***

In any city there are dangerous places, but much less than you could believe when reading the tourist guides. Most of the dangers are related to situations or behaviours. There is a simple way to avoid the risks, and that is "to follow the flow". Ask to a local, especially if he/she is also used to travel, about the best way to behave.


That said, let's talk about the specific comment. The Italian headquartes of the Salvation Army are located in the San Lorenzo nighborhhod. the Salvation Army is a very well known humanitarian organization that, among other things, provides assistance, and a meal and a bed, to homeless people. 
It's therefore not so strange to see homeless people, although that's is no more a correct definition because at the Salvation Army they have a home. 

But it has to be added that the Salvation Army has a strong moral characerization, and a strong discipline. People who are being assisteng must maintain proper behaviour and should not commit any harmful action for others. 

And what about drunk people? 
San Lorenzo neighborhood is a night life area, one of the most lively in Rome, largely frequented by university students. Have you ever seen a night life area without drunk people? I have not.  Some years ago I was attending a business meeting in a city of northern Europe that is well known for night life, in a country that is well known for its beer. On the evening, finding a sober person in the central square was actually a very hard task. And what about Oktoberfest? Will anyone be sober in Munich during it?  
By the way, even if not very evident, police control is ratherr efficient.

*** TIP ***

If you enjoy night life, reserve your room at San Lorenzo Guest House.
If you prefer quiet areas, reserve your room at Villa Borghese Guest House or at the St. John Villa.

It's a matter of fact that San Lorenzo has the highest concentration in Rome of restaurants, cafes, bars etc., having over 200 places where to eat or to drink in an area of 0.5 square kilometers. In other words you will never risk to stay hungry or thirsty.  What I personally like a lot is the fact that, with a couple of exceptions, you will not find places that are a copy of a British pub or of an American bar or restaurant. They have their own style, no matter if nice or not.
Last, but not least, San Lorenzo is also a place for great music. Twice per year, on March and on Septeber, the great jazzman Barry Harris helds a seminar and concerts at the Felt Music Club.
Enjoy a taste of his genius.

And, to finish, just a couple of additionl pictures of San Lorenzo on the evening and night hours. 


domenica 6 agosto 2017



In a city like Rome there are thousands of restaurants of every type for all pockets.
And there are a lot of websites where one can find the ranking of their top restaurants.
Obviously the rankings are not always the same but some restaurants can be found in several of them.
But, in most of the cases, their location is not whown on a map. Once entered in those websites, the visitor will have to start hintng to find the closest place.
Well, I took one of those rankings, click here to see the full details, and placed all of them on a map of Rome. It contains 38 restaurants of all types and for all pockets. Just open the map and give a look.

And, don't forget to book your room at our properties.

San Lorenzo Guest House
Villa Borghese Guest House
St. John Villa

sabato 5 agosto 2017


Talking with our guests, I have realized that several people believe we are not central in Rome.
Well, that is not true, even if the 3 Bed and Rome and Breakfast properties are located out of the official border of the historical center of Rome. Well, let's see some facts, those facts that all well known to a Roman


The historical center of Rome is constituted by the 22 Rioni, toponomastic subdivision, plus the Vatican. Nineteen of them are on the east side of the Tiber river and are surrounded by the Aurelian Walls. All the three properties are no more than 300 meters aways from the Aurelian Walls.


The historical center of Rome has the size, approximately, of a square of  4 by 4 kilometers. Even being exactly in the center of that area, one will be 2 km away from its border 


The first organized visitors' tour of the city, the Seven Pilgrim Chirches, is at the borders or outside of the center.


I personally believe that the visit to a city must consist of two parts
  1. Knowing its landmarks
  2. Understanding its soul, its people, the food.
Well, the landmarks are normally located in the center, although not all of them, but to understand the city it is necessary to get out from the places with a flowing crowd of tourists. No restaurant that is located where thousands of tourists go around will offer real good food. And what I always did was to select a hotel in the real city, not in the historical center. 


So, where is the real city of Rome? In the ancient Rome, the city life was centered at the Forun and on the Capito, the saced hill. Nowadays, the Capitol is the center of the political life of the city.
After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, although maintaining a central role in the European political life, Roma became a small city of 20-30 thousands inhabitants. It was only after it became the capital city of the Kingdom of Italy that it started to grow again, initially filling the empty spaces inside the historical center and then immediately outside its border. The maps below show the new centers. Follow the blog in the future, there are reasons whyy that areas and not others.  The most important one is the one that has grown around the Termini railway station and St. John Lateran. Our properties are exactly inside it.


Everything in the center costs at least twice. 


Reserve your room at our properties

mercoledì 2 agosto 2017


Il 10 Agosto è la festa di San Lorenzo, il patrono del nostro quartiere. Ed è anche la notte delle stelle cadenti..
Per celebrare la festa, i prezzi del soggiorno a San Lorenzo Guest House sono anch'essi in caduta.
Per ogni soggiorno di almeno 2 notti tra l'8 e il 16 Agosto, otterrete uno sconto immediato del 20 % prenotando direttamente tramite il nostro sito ufficiale.


August 10 is the day of Saint Lawrence, the patron of San Lorenzo neighborhood. And the night is the night of the falling stars.
To celebrate the event also the prices at San Lorenzo Guest House are falling.
For any stay, minimum 2 nights, between August 8 and August 16 you will get an immediate 20 % discount, when reserving through our official website

domenica 23 luglio 2017


Pantheon, a masterpiece of engineering and architecture

Hadrian was one of the greatest emperors of Rome, for sure the one that, more than anyone else, patronized arts, literature and philosophy. By many, he is considered to have be the most wise emperor.
Nowadays we can still admire its legacy in many works, starting from the Hadrian's Wall, one of the most important landmark in Britain, to Hadrina's Villa in Tivoli, near Rome, to its mausoleum, now known as Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome.
However the most impressive among the buildings that were erected under Hadrian's rule is for sure the Pantheon in Rome. He rebuilt the temple dedciated to all Gods, originally built by Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa during the empire of Augustus, that was destroyed by a fire in the year 80 AD. What remains of the original buildg is the inscription in the front part and the to massive bronze doors, each one having the weight of 7 tons.

Before going on , I wish to ask you a question: whinch of the two walls in the picture below, both built essentailly using the same technique, brick binded by concrete, is the older and what differences do you observe? The walls are located few hudreds meters away one from the other, so weather conditions are the same. You can place your answwer in the comments. 

martedì 18 luglio 2017



Come to Rome to celebrate your birthday and reserve your room with us at
If your birthday is on one of the days of your stay, including the day of departure, you will be eligible for our special offer HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
  • 2 nights stay: 15 € cash back
  • 3 nights stay: 30 € cash back
  • 4 nights stay: last night will be free
  • 5 nights stay or longer: price of last night plus 5 € per day of stay cash back
And, if you come with your relatives and friends, the offer will be applied to all the reserved rooms!
The offer is valid only for reservations made using our official web-sites or contacting us by phone/mail. It is not valid for the reservation of one room only with single occupancy.
All discounts will be applied at the moment of your stay.
In your reservation please indicate in the notes HAPPY BIRTHDAY and the name of the person. birthday.

Note: the offer is not valid in the following periods
  • From December 24 to January 6
  • From the Monday before Easter to the Tuesday after Easter
  • From April 23 to May 2



Festeggiate a Roma il vostro compleanno soggiornando presso una delle nostre strutture
Se il vostro compleanno cade in uno dei giorni del vostro soggiorno, incluso il giorno di partenza, avrete diritto alla nostra offerta speciale BUON COMPLEANNO.
  • 2 notti di soggiono: vi sconteremo 15 €
  • 3 notti di soggiono: vi sconteremo 30 €
  • 4 notti di soggiono:l'ultima notte sarà gratis
  • 5 o più notti di soggiono: l'ultima notte sarà gratis più 5 € per ogni notte di soggiorno
E se venite con i vostri parenti ed amici l'offerta sarà estesa a tutte le stanze prenotate.
L'offerta è valida solo per prenotazioni fatte attraverso i nostri siti web ufficiali o contattandoci per telefono/mail. Non è valida per prenotazioni di una sola stanza ad uso singolo.
Tutti gli sconti verranno applicati al momento del vostro soggiorno. Nel caso di tariffa prepagata, la somma vi verrà restituita in contanti
Vi preghiamo di indicare nella prenotazione BUON COMPLEANNO e il nome della persona che compie gli anni.

Nota: l'offerta non è valida
  • Dal 24 Dicembre al 6 Gennaio
  • Dal Lunedì prima di Pasqua al Martedì dopo Pasqua
  • Dal 23 Aprile al 2 Maggio

domenica 9 luglio 2017


The walking tour we are presenting in this post starts from the St. John Villa. It touches some of the most famous sites of Rome, Colosseum, Santa Maria Maggiore, St. John Lateran.
The hidden jewel of the tour is the Ckuvus Scauri with the Roman Houses of the Celio. Clivus Scauri (Clivo di Scauro) is a street named after the officer that built it, ha kept its name since the end of the II century BC. The Roman houses offers a view of the daily life in ancient Rome.

Walk with us

lunedì 3 luglio 2017


As well as every city, and even more, Rome is a city that must be discovered walking. There are so many places to be seen, such a long history and so much art that, jumping from one of the main spots to the other does not allow to understand it fully.
We have already prepared and presented some walking tour and we have presented those in the series One week in Rome.
The walking tour that we have prepared for this post, starting from Villa Borghese Guest House, is in the north side of the center, inside and out side the Aurelian Walls. With the exception of the Ara Pacis and of the Mausoleum of Augustus, it does not include sites of the ancient Rome but to the period going from the XVI to the XX century.
You will go from the quiet Villa Borghese to the crowded shopping paradise of Via Condotti, visiting some of the most famous squares of Rome, Piazza del Popolo, Piazza di Spagna and Piazza Barberini. At the end of the tour one will see two important architectural works, Porta Pia, designed in the XVI century by Michelangelo Buonarroti and the building of La Rinascente department store.
La Rinascente has been awarded the prize of "Best World Department Store" during the Global Department Store Summit 2016 held in Zurich.
A curiosity about Palazzo Marina (Palace of the Navy): the two anchors at the entrance door are from th dreadnought battleships Tedetthof  and Viribus Unitis of the nay of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. My father, that was a civil employee of the Minintry of Defence, worked for many years in that building and had in his office the safebox from Viribus Unitis.