The architect Kock projected today's Square
between 1882 and 1887: Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II
, centre of Rione Esquilino. It was named after the first King of Italy, Vittorio Emanuele II.
was one of the seven hills of Antique Rome and everywhere you can find traces of the antique past.
, as it is called more commonly, is a wide rectangular square completely surrounded by arcades in Piemontese style, unique in this type in Rome and with its dimensions of 316x147 side meters, is one of the biggest squares of the Capital.
In the middle of the square there is a big garden
(recently restored) that exposes remains of the so called Marios' trophies: a ruin of a fountain from the Severian Age.
The remains of the antique Villa of Prince Poniatowsky, noble of Polish origin and famous alchemist of '700, where the "Magic Door", gives more interest visiting the park.
You can find alchemic symbols on the ancient pillars, and the legend says that there is a magic formula hidden about transforming simple metals into gold.
Around the park there are several stands to drink something and flower stands open 24h!
In the surroundings of Piazza Vittorio
you find plenty of restaurants, some of them are the most important ones of Rome.
Close to Piazza Vittorio, in Principe Eugenio Street, you find "Il Palazzo del Freddo" of the Fassi family. This is the biggest and most antique ice cream shop in Italy, renowned in the world for an excellent artisan ice cream. The building exposes objects and documents that tell of the history of Italy. More info entertaiment >
Worth a visit is the Esquilino market
, that once was in Piazza Vittorio and nowadays is in a building close to the square. The Romans call it "the producers' market": A lovely mix with fresh and tasty products from the local farmers, Indians and Middle Eastern salesmen.
Piazza Vittorio preserves lots of the original spirit of Rome: attached to the traditional, cheerful and always hospitable towards tourists and people from all over the world, coming to Rome to visit the Eternal City, make business or to find a job.
During the summer season
Piazza Vittorio offers music festivals and open-air cinema together with several theatre, photographical and art events. All these events enrich Piazza Vittorio with magic and creative energy.
The famous band the Orchestra of Piazza Vittorio
, also well known through a successful film with the same name, represents probably better than anybody else the real spirit of Piazza Vittorio: A cosmopolitan melting-pot, active and able to express a high level of culture and art.