Those with tastes more Versailles than Valentino will love the old-fashioned grandeur of Rome Cavalieri – a Waldorf Astoria resort set high on Monte Mario overlooking the city center. The top-tier services, Michelin-starred restaurant, palatial spa, and enormous grounds are sure to satisfy the most demanding sybarite. The resort’s peripheral location has its advantages and disadvantages.
On the upper side, views from this hillside perch are superlative, stretching across the entire Eternal City.
The edifice conjointly encompasses a full fifteen acres of grounds, which is enough for three pools, two tennis courts, wooded parkland, manicured gardens, and al fresco dining.
The downside? Downtown Rome can be half an hour away by taxi, and there is nothing in the immediate vicinity of interest, either for touring or dining. That said, the resort is savvy enough to recognize its Achilles’ heel and offers a free hourly shuttle bus into the center and enough indulgent amenities to satisfy guests who opt to stay in. Cavalieri’s rather stark 1960s architecture is tempered by lush grounds and opulent interiors and centered around fine art and antiques.
The three magnificent Tiepolos in the main lobby are a particular point of pride, but the entire property is peppered with a collection of over 1,000 antique tapestries, paintings, sculpture, and furnishings. This hotel has been a gathering place for the international haute monde since its opening and has remained true to its signature decadent style over the half century since. The lobby, Tiepolo lounge, Imperial Club and suites are an extravagance of tufted velvet, wood paneling, and gold leaf, but even the more staid guest rooms set the standard for swank.
What the resort may lack in the location it more than makes up for in service and facilities, many-tiered to offer different levels of indulgence. All guests can enjoy the skill and knowledge of the concierge staff, but those who book a suite enjoy Rome Cavalieri’s curated Suite Experiences, from private culinary or Vatican Garden tours to a sandal-making workshop with a local artisan.
The enormous Grand Spa Club, thought-about one in every of the simplest in the European nation and that includes La grassland and Aromatherapy Associates product, is out there to any or all for €20 (£18), however select associate
Imperial Room and entry to its glass-domed indoor pools, amethyst Turkish bath, hot tub, saunas, and fitness center is free, as is access to the exclusive seventh-floor Imperial Club, where complimentary food and drinks are available from breakfast through to nightcap hour in the posh lounge overlooking Rome.
The de rigueur splurge for any guest is a private beauty or wellness treatment in one of the spa’s eight themed chromotherapy treatment rooms, or a session with yoga, pilates, or fitness trainer in the spa studio. Otherwise, enjoy the outdoor pool. Aficionados of cutting-edge design may be left cold by the grand yet rather uninspired décor of the guest rooms, but Rome Cavalieri bets all its chips on pampering guests with the details, and it pays off. From double doors and plush carpeting to ensure perfect soundproofing to an exhaustive pillow menu and feather mattress toppers, restful sleep is guaranteed.
All rooms have separate living areas and private balconies overlooking the gardens or Rome (by far the better view). Large marble bathrooms are stocked with Ferragamo bath products, though there is also a soap menu for the finicky.
Rome Cavalieri is home to La frame, the city’s solely eating place with 3 Michelin stars.
It’s located on the panoramic top floor and led by the acclaimed chef Heinz Beck, who serves masterpieces like foie gras with chestnuts and figs, hare tortellini, and Saint Peter’s fish in a licorice crust.
As such, the resort should score top marks for dining. Unfortunately, this shrine to haute cuisine has limited seating and a waiting list that stretches into the months.
Instead, the vast majority of guests staying in the hotel’s 370 rooms and suites are limited to dining at the garden-level L’Uliveto Restaurant, an underwhelming alternative serving expensive yet disappointing Mediterranean and pan-Italian dishes.
The sole saving grace is its convenience. The in-house kitchen somewhat redeems itself with a bountiful buffet breakfast each morning, featuring freshly baked sweet and savory pastries and tortes, eggs and bacon and coffee made to order. There are also a number of indoor and outdoor lounges and cafés for all-day dining.