Is there a better way for the Flaminio borough to celebrate its first 100 years than with a great basketball win versus Italy’s best team, Siena? We don’t think there is, really, and we loved to see all those people filling the Palazzetto dello Sport last week.
This neighbourhood was actually created to host big events and people from all over the world.
Inaugurated for the 1911 World Expo (you can find some beautiful pictures of that event here), with fantastic pavilions from all over the world, (some of which are still on, such as Britain’s) it was then totally modernized for the 1960 Olympic Games. It has now become a major cultural hub with the Auditorium, hosting some of the best concerts in Rome, and MAXXI, the city’s best contemporary art museum – further details in this post.
Until 2011 Italy’s Six Nations tournament games were played here, in the Flaminio stadium, every February and March with lots of European rugby fans livening up this otherwise quiet area on end-of-winter Saturday afternoons.
In 2012 Rugby went away to the nearby bigger Olympic stadium and basketball came in, in the Nervi designed Palazzetto dello Sport. Rome’s team started very poorly, and this is why they left the big Palalottomatica at EUR to the much smaller Palazzetto, but they’re now led by a new coach and have good chances to reach the playoffs after defeating the front-runner Siena. For other US sport games in Rome, read here.
The same building also hosts volleyball games. But it’s a shame that even though Italy has the world’s best Men and Women Leagues, Rome hasn’t had a good team for years now.
This area also features other, non sport, International events such as the Rome Cinema Festival every October, which is now probably one of the top 5 world cinema events. You can find this blog post on the last edition useful.
In June (the nearest Sunday to the 12th) it hosts the Philipino Independence day. A great opportunity to know this long-standing immigrant community, one of the biggest and most appreciated here for their nice, warm character and hard working skills, their dances, traditional costumes and surprising food.
Here are some tips if you want to visit the area.
- Perilli, in Via Cesare Fracassini 36. Restaurant, Roman cuisine
- Il Vignola, in Via del Vignola 25. Restaurant and pizzeria, Italian cuisine. Cheap
- Buchetto, in Via Flaminia 119. Lovely pizzeria. Very small, very authentic and cheap.
- Treebar, in Via Flaminia 226. One of Rome’s coolest places for the wood and glass design. It is actually owned and conceived by three architects. One of our favorite restaurants. Great chianina (Tuscan beef breed) hamburger!
- Mondo Arancina, in Via Flaminia 42. Take Away of Pizza and Sicilian stuff like rice ball, panelle – chickpeas little pancakes and desserts.
- ReD Bar/Restaurant in Auditorium, Via de Coubertin. Perfect for a cocktail. Pretty posh place.
- BArt. Snack Bar in Auditorium. Typical Italian bar. Limited choice of drinks available
- Kilmoon Pub, in Via Giovanni Battista Tiepolo 2.
- Caffè dei Pittori, in Via Flaminia 57
- Castroni in Via Flaminia 28. For a great coffee. Italian way, of course! Also high quality food products shop.
- for Kids Explora Museum, in Via Flaminia 82.
- MAXXI, in Via Guido Reni 2. Rome’s newest and biggest Contemporary Art Museum. Designed by world wide famous anglo-iraqi architect Zaha Hadid.
- Villa Borghese. Rome’s oldest park and downtown’s biggest. Nice statues, fountains and views of Rome
- Auditorium Parco della Musica in Via de Coubertin 30. One of the few contemporay buildings in Rome designed by Italy’s most famous architect Renzo Piano. Concerts. Free contemporay art & photo exhibits. Big music/bookshop.
- Skating in piazza Mancini. At Axel, Rome’s permanent ice-skating rink. Can rent skates.
A map of all the places mentioned in this story can be seen here.
For a recent set of beautiful photos of the area go here.