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Rome’s Newest Hotel Is an Instant Classic

The Pantheon Iconic has opened. Guess which Eternal City landmark it’s inspired by?

There’s no denying Rome is in the middle of a big hotel boom—and it just got bigger. Joining the ranks of such new properties as the sleek boutique Hotel Vilòn and the recently renovated Hotel Eden is the Pantheon Iconic Rome Hotel, a contemporary retreat set amid the limestone structures and 18th-century monuments of the city’s historic center.

The Pantheon’s coveted location means there are already countless places to stay in the immediate area, but this newcomer’s glossy, contemporary style is a decidedly unique offering in a sea of old-world albergos and modest guesthouses. While its 79 rooms and suites are modernly dressed up in a sexy but subtle combination of brass and marble, the hotel’s design inspiration comes from something much older: You guessed it—the 2,000-year-old Pantheon.

Milan-based architect Marco Piva’s vision for the project was inspired by the ancient church’s circular form and the light that shines through its oculus. In the lobby, the hotel’s own domed cupola—set right above an illuminated marble spot on the floor—illustrates its aesthetic relationship to the actual Pantheon. The guest rooms’ custom-made sconces by Artemide and the bathrooms’ sculptural round mirrors also mimic the Pantheon’s famous cupola.

Piva’s other creative reference here is Roman elegance. He describes this “special kind of elegance” as something that is rooted in the city’s melting pot of styles: ancient elements, Baroque touches, and even hints of modernity. This is most evident in the bedrooms, where a patchwork of hardwood floors updates ancient mosaic tiles, and in the lobby, which is adorned with a tall, slender gold vase that looks like a beautiful relic from the majestic Palazzo Borghese.

On-property features like deep soaking tubs paired with Acqua di Parma toiletries and the soon-to-open gourmet dining room with a menu by chef Pasquale Palamaro (whose work in Ischia has been awarded a Michelin star) are sure to elevate anyone’s stay. Even higher are the jaw-dropping views: From the hotel’s rooftop restaurant Divinity, seven of the city’s domes are clearly visible, surrounded by atmospheric terra-cotta tiles. The views only get better in the Pantheon Suite, where direct vistas of the Pantheon are on display—even when tucked into bed in the master bedroom.

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