For unaware tourists those ten Chinese warriors in the middle of the Curia, one of the biggest and best preserved building of Foro Romano, might look misplaced, totally out of context, in stark contrast with the rest of the beautiful ruins around. But these terracotta warriors form Xi’An, the ancient Chinese capital, mark a big event for Rome: the start of a cultural alliance with Beijing. The capitals of the largest Empires of the past are cooperating to show each other their artistic wonders.
And you must take advantage of this big occasion. The warriors are incredibly fascinating and mysterious. Wheather or not you like the Roman Forum, you should go there to meet the fierce eyes and the frightening armories of these soldiers and officers of Qin Shin Huang, the first Emperor of China. Until February 6, always open until 4:30 pm, last entrance by 3:30 pm.
The Terracotta Army display is part of a bigger exhibition “The Eagle and the Dragon” in Palazzo Venezia, also running until February 6, where you will be able to see beautiful items from Ancient Rome and from the Qin and Han Dynasties. More than 450 Italian and Chinese masterpieces show the emergence and expansion of both empires, highlighting various aspects of everyday life, society, religion and economy.
For more recent (from the 18th century onwards) Chinese art and design Galleriaotto is our favorite destination in Rome. Vintage objects, tapestries, lamps, sculptures and clocks are on display in this gallery located in one of Rome’s nicest areas: Monti.
Another interesting showroom for Chinese furniture and vintage items is Dynasty Emporium, near Via Giulia, one of our favorite Roman roads.
If you want to buy Chinese books the best bookshop in Rome is Orientalia Libri with a wide choice of texts from all over Asia in Italian, English and Asian languages.
One of our favorite Chinese restaurants in Rome is very close to Orientalia. Hang Zhou opened in the late 70s, one of the first in Rome, and has a very different menu from the rest of Chinese restaurants in Rome. The owner Sonia is a Mao fan and you can tell from the many posters of the Chinese leader hanging on the walls of the restaurant!
A completely different atmosphere but equally good food can be found at Green Tea, a very modern and sophisticated place that is also a boutique (from sleepers to chopsticks to tea items) and a tea house, between Pantheon and via del Corso.
For the latest updates on Chinese events and happenings in Rome, check out this page.