Owner: Fondazione Alda Fendi – Esperimenti
Apartment operator: Room Mate
Architecture: Ateliers Jean Nouvel
Interior design and furniture: Ateliers Jean Nouvel, Jean Nouvel Design
Furnishings: tailor-made furniture; Artemide, B&B Italia, Cassina, Figueras, Flos, Molteni&C, Pallucco, Troll, Unifor, Vitra, Wittmann, Zanotta
Photo credits: courtesy The Rooms of Rome – palazzo rhinoceros
Unrivalled art, food, and hospitality: this is the explosive combination that animates The Rooms of Rome – palazzo rhinoceros. The idea came from Spanish businessman Kike Sarasola who wanted to create an all-encompassing experience within this structure, made up of three large interconnected buildings owned by the Fondazione Alda Fendi – Esperimenti. Here architect Jean Nouvel’s exquisite recovery and restoration project aimed to recreate the original appearance of the complex, allowing it to tell its story while simultaneously applying a new architectural style with unexpected and sophisticated solutions.
Above all, the 24 apartments (which one can stay in from one day to one year) were not conceived as residential spaces in the traditional sense, but rather as ‘open-able areas’, steel containers that reproduce spaces and facilities (kitchen, bathroom, closet) with a modern interpretation, contrasting with the crude nature of the original structural elements. Amazing mirrored panels that respect the historical stratifications and reflect images from the past. Everything was designed and created specifically for the client, also integrating the latest automated technology.
The Rooms of Rome – palazzo rhinoceros, where art is a strong presence, is a truly special place. Not just because of the building itself, but because the collection and temporary exhibits of the Fondazione Alda Fendi – Esperimenti blend with the accommodations. An intentional choice that is in line with the philosophy of the foundation, which since 2001 has been promoting artistic experimentation that pushes the conventional limits between various disciplines, from the visual to the performing arts. Open to Romans and tourists, on the fifth and sixth floor of the building with two terraces overlooking the city centre, is Caviar Caspia, the historic French culinary brand known for its luxury cuisine and here tempered by Italian tradition. Culture and architecture that accompany one beyond the confines of tradition.