Tuesday, May 16

La Dolce Vita: Insider’s guide to Rome


“Steve and I had the GREAT adventure of living in Rome for 3 years before moving back to the States to have our daughter, Stella. The city is another home to all of us, and we get back there as often as the bank allows.” —Lucy Wrubel


The Hotel De Russie is at the high end, but the private piazza and star-studded cocktail hour never disappoint. I DJed a wedding in the courtyard and Bruce Springsteen crashed. By FAR the best bang for the buck is the Albergo del Senato, where the rooms literally open up onto the roof of the Pantheon. The nightlife of street performers wafting into the room as you get ready to go out sets the perfect Roman stage.


Split your time between ANCIENT and RELIGIOUS. You won’t be able to cover it all, but these tips are solid: Post Colosseum and Forum, take the elevator at the back of the Vittorio Emanuele II monument and look back over all the excavations. It’s mind blowing and an Instagram gold moment! For the Vatican, an early private guide is imperative. So is lunch afterwards at Gusto (pza Augusto Imperatore, 9). Hello, the Pantheon is the finest building on the planet. The fact that this pagan temple is still standing is a marvel. Don’t miss it and if it rains, you must RUN to witness it streaming in through the oculus. The art collection at Galleria Doria Pamphilj (pza del Collegio Romano, 2), housed in the 17th century Palazzo Doria Pamphilj, includes Caravaggios, Brueghels, and Diego Velazquez’s portrait of Pope Innocent X. Snag the headphones to learn more about the Baroque-through-present-day collection and get a glimpse into a real Roman family dynasty’s home. At Villa Borghese, rent a golf cart or Segway and cruise Rome’s “Central Park”—full of art, cafes and merry-go-rounds!


Maccheroni (pza delle Coppelle)—”Mac” is the place I dream about at night! Straightforward and authentic. Ask for Luciano, the owner, and tell him the Wrubels sent you. Go late, sit outside, and order petto di pollo con patate al forno and caccio e pepe. Ginger (via Borgonona, 48) is a super chic lil’ lunch spot right off of the Via Condotti, with excellent juices, salads, and charcuterie platters…great for a meal or just a nosh and a glass of rosé. Our FAVE pizza joint is Da Francesco (pza del Fico), just behind Piazza Navona. It’s loud, local and family-style seating. Put your name on the list and grab a glass of Prosecco at Bar Il Fico next door while you wait (so worth it!!!). Al Moro (Vicolo delle Bollette, 13), just around from the Trevi Fountain, is like a little speakeasy packed with Roman senators. Put on your sport coat and let your waiter order for you.



Via Condotti and the streets surrounding (via Frattina and via Borgonona) are full up on Italian brands. I personally LOVE the art/school-supply store at via della Croce, 70, for stationery, paper, pens… The Italian stapler alone is a work of art! For glasses, Monocle (via di Campo Marzio, 13) offers the most curated of shades. And when in Rome, my FAVE shop is Luna L’altra (pza Pasquino, 76). The owner, Biba, is an art-loving genius and carries such a vibrant and diverse gathering of lines. I find forever pieces here. Also, ask your concierge about the Sunday flea market under the porticos of the Facistera Largo Augusto Imperatore. It’s such fun and has many gems!