Sophie Ritchie discovers 130-year-old paradise with a stay at the refined Hotel Eden in Rome
I arrive at Hotel Eden’s gleaming front doors with wide eyes, peering around at the lobby’s hive of well-rehearsed (and well-dressed) action before me.
The front desk is currently busy with another guest, so I’m shown to the adjacent La Libreria lounge to wait. Of all the places to queue in Rome, this is apparently not one of them.
With the soothing sounds of jazz gently filtering through the atmosphere, Hotel Eden’s downstairs parlour is certainly the place for sitting back and drinking in the elegant ambience – especially when paired with an Italian tipple from the well-stocked drinks cabinet.
The hand-crafted ceilings are gilded with gold, the tables topped with fresh flowers and the staff greet arriving guests like dear old friends – even myself.
With marble flooring beneath my feet and plush, velvety lounges around, I relax in this tucked away world of sophistication and style whilst the team whisk my passport away and take care of the check-in details.
Immediately, this property conjures the ambience of an emperor-worthy space – but also the grace of a humble one. And just as its name suggests, Hotel Eden is clearly a place of abundant beauty.
Known for its ship-size beds, panoramic views and enviable location, this central five-star stay recently celebrated its impressive 130th anniversary.
The building began its life as a collection of refined residential apartments in 1887, until it caught the eye of hotelier Francesco Nistelweck.
Captivated by the space, Nistelweck purchased apartment after apartment in Monopoly style until the entire building was his own – opening Hotel Eden to guests on October 10, 1889.
Now part of the prestigious Dorchester Collection portfolio, with 98 rooms and suites, there are few properties better known in the Eternal City than Hotel Eden.
With so much in Rome to already overload your senses with, rooms at Hotel Eden have been specifically designed with one sole purpose – to comfort.
Offering a home from home, I open the door to my Junior Suite to find white on white bed linen, flowing curtains that tumble down from the ceiling and soft carpets.
It’s a huge room, particularly considering Hotel Eden’s central address. There’s an evident focus upon quality rather than quantity – I find gold and metallic hues, white roses and most importantly, detail at the core of everything.
Wandering into the pristine marble bathroom reveals soft lighting and stacks of Bottega Veneta toiletries, whilst modern details appear in the form of USB points, iPads and even handy extra charging cables.
Despite its simplicity, there is intricate luxury interwoven into everything – my room at Hotel Eden is as palatable as the distinctive Prosecco bottle awaiting within it.
Categories range from the smaller Classic Room to vast Prestige Suites, as well as four stupendously individual Signature Suites. Each full of thoughtful composition, visitors are guaranteed their own slice of Italian paradise no matter the square metres surrounding them.
Guests can whet appetites with a number of dining options, starting with the notable Michelin-starred La Terrazza restaurant. Situated on Hotel Eden’s rooftop and open for evening sittings only, views stretch across the skyline whilst guests stretch their stomachs within.
No ordinary dinners, talented chef Fabio Ciervo incorporates Rome’s fresh produce into his native cuisine – creating a fine dining experience to remember.
Next door awaits the more casual Il Giardino Ristorante, where an elegant breakfast buffet is also served each morning.
Offering a menu centred around classic Italian fare, glide a fork through everything from tender asparagus with farm egg to sea bass carpaccio at this all day dining hotspot.
Heavenly cocktails are the words on every foodies’ lips at the Il Giardino bar, where tipples can be tried against views of the dramatic Il Vittoriano and the majesty of St Peters Basilica.
For those that love their coffee, I also thoroughly recommend grabbing your favourite read and heading to the downstairs La Libreria to drink in the Rome-inspired interiors with a smooth sip of Americano.
1 Work up a sweat at the cramped but well-equipped gym – but don your workout gear early to avoid any cardio overcrowding.
2 Pamper yourself silly with a treatment at the hotel’s newest jewel, The Eden Spa. Experience truly persona relaxation with own suite, own bathroom and private sanctuary.
3 Embrace your creative side and admire the work of Hotel Eden’s first ever artist in residence, Andrea Ferolla. An Italian illustrator, creative director and professor at the IED European Institute of Design, spot him behind a sketchbook as he captures the unique narrative of this legendary property.
The Wordrobe Verdict
With Michelin-star dining, contemporarily serene interiors and and hidden meaning interwoven throughout, it’s not difficult to understand what’s kept the magic of Hotel Eden alive throughout its 13 decades. If you’re heading to the Eternal City, do so in style with a booking at this luxe hideaway.
Make it happen
Where: Via Ludovisi, 49, 00187 Roma RM, Italy
Wallet: Rooms from £666 per night.
How: Please click here or phone (+39) 06 478121 to make a reservation.
Hotel review by Sophie Ritchie, Editor