The sense of the city: Rinascente conquers the eternal city

18 . 10 . 2017 by Mariacristina Ferraioli

It took 11 years of restoration works and the help of some of the most respected international architects to create the flagship store in Rome, on via del Tritone. A true architectural gem that, contrary to other international department stores, is not just a shopping temple, but perfectly harmonises and blends with the city of Rome on a journey that captures the senses and mind.


An upward journey that necessitates the eyes, the first of the five senses to be involved. Starting with the two facade, one on via del Tritone with three entrances, seven shop windows and 96 windows, and the other on via Due Macelli, designed by Belgian architect Vincent van Duysen, who also realized the ground and first floor. There is then the heart of the structure: the large atrium, visible from all floors, with its strictly geometrical lines, reminiscent of the rationalist architecture of the Square Colosseum in EUR. Because Rinascente is a place designed to accommodate locals and tourists in the city centre. But it is on the top floor, among the food market, restaurants and lounge bars, that the sight becomes enchanted, the moment it meets the majesty of Rome skyline thanks to the two magnificent rooftop terraces overlooking the iconic monuments of the eternal city.


Touching precious fabrics, fluid and refined dresses, trying exclusive beauty products. Everything you need is there, without filters or divisions. Because Rinascente is first and foremost the temple of luxury shopping. More than 800 brands spread over five floors, each designed by a different architect. Five different ways of interpreting fashion but with one common denominator: bringing Rome inside the store while preserving its history.


Rome and its squares, with its colours, its open markets and flower shops on every street corner. This is the soul of Rome that Rinascente wanted to preserve and protect. Enter the store and feel suddenly enveloped by the magic fragrances that emanate from the exclusive beauty department, and, after a moment, have the impression of wandering around the city and smell all its scents in an escalation that finds its most complete realisation in the food hall, which overlooks the roof terraces and was designed by the Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands studio, which also completed the renovation of the top floor of Rinascente in Milan.


The sound of water, coming from a distant past. That of Aqua Virgo acqueduct, inaugurated by Augustus in 19 BC that runs along a whole side of the department store. But also that of the Trevi Fountain, a symbol of Rome, a few steps from Rinascente, which has always marked, through the sound of its water the pace of the city life.

Go to the -1 floor to discover the real gem of the new shop, the element that makes Rinascente in Rome unique worldwide: a part of the archaeological site of the Aqua Virgo aqueduct inaugurated by Augustus in 19 BC that architects Claudio Silvestrin and Giuliana Salmaso decided to leave clearly visible. This floor will also host a unique space for exhibitions and events in line with Rinascente cultural engagement that has always encouraged and supported innovation and research in the arts.
At this floor, lighting and acoustics are designed to complement the mood at different times of the day, following through lights and sounds the change of atmosphere that accompanies the transition from day to night.



Since it was opened, the food market of Rinascente in Milan has become one of the most popular destinations among the tourists of the capital of fashion. Rinascente in Rome aims at doubling the success. The sixth floor is occupied by an exclusive food market featuring the most refined food from every corner of the planet, a lounge bar and four restaurants: MadeITerraneo restaurant of starred chef Riccardo Di Giacinto, la Cantina Feudi di San Gregorio, Temakinho – specialized in Brazilian-Japanese fusion cuisine – and Vivi Bistrot with the new Juice & Salad Bar. Unique proposals, able to satisfy even the most demanding palates.

Mariacristina Ferraioli
Mariacristina Ferraioli is an independent curator. She worked at the Curatorial Department of the Center Pompidou in Paris collaborating on the creation of Traces du Sacré exhibition, and published a critical essay on the catalog of the same exhibition. She works as a professor at the Brera Academy.
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