A guide to Rome’s trendy Piazza Bologna neighbourhood
Nestled North-East of Monti and South-East of Trieste, you can find the stylish, chilled district of Nomentano – home to the bustling Piazza Bologna. With short and regular bus routes to Villa Ada, Villa Borghese, Barberini, Termini and San Lorenzo – this thriving, social area has a humble charm; there are less tourists and over-priced cafes, instead this is where locals love to hang out and dine in authentic, superb restaurants. As soon as you exit the metro, you are met with unconventional Piazza Bologna, a circular roundabout lined with cocktail bars and boutique shops at affordable prices. With Sapienza University nearby, Nomentano often attracts young people who live nearby looking to spend relaxing evenings with friends. Yet whoever you are, there is plenty to explore.
Places to See and Explore in Nomentano
Here are some of our favourite places to visit in the Nomentano area.
Via Nomentana, 70
Daily 9am – 7pm
The elegant Villa Torlonia is filled with impressive art and a rich history. It used to belong to the Torlonia family in the late 17th century and it even became Mussolini’s residence from 1925 to 1943 (his bunker is a great photo opportunity, with walls four meters thick and curved to absorb impact). In addition to the villa, there are also two secondary buildings open to the public: La Casina delle Civette and Casino Dei Principi. In 1977 it was turned into a museum for the public to enjoy. Take a stroll around the park, not as well kept as other areas such as Villa Borghese, but there is appreciation for its edgy, ‘no frills’ feel.
Via Bari, 18
A place to attend dance, music and drama performances or even theatre school – look out for events taking place at Teatro Italia.
Via Nomentana, 216
Formerly inhabited by wealthy governors, Villa Blanc is now the LUISS Business School. Yet anyone can enjoy the quaint park in the shade of the Villa, which is well-suited for dog walkers. The park boats outdoor workout equipment and a play area for children.
Accademia Tedesca Roma Villa Massimo
Largo di Villa Massimo, 1-2
This villa is an institution for exceptional German artists to study abroad and be part of a prestigious academy. Take a stroll and admire this grand building whilst walking along Viale XXI Aprile. And don’t forget to keep your eye out for events and fellowships – the German Academy awards a prestigious fellowship to promising German talents who receive a studio, living space and access to Roman institutions!
Quartiere Coppedè is known as the fantasy district, with buildings that look like they’re from a Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale. Don’t forget your camera to capture the fairy houses, spider palace and fountain of the frogs – you will be in awe of the enchanting architecture which is not in a typical Roman style. Also accessible from Viale XXI Aprile via bus routes 38,88, 60,82,90 or trams 3 and 19, it is a breeze to get to this district from Nomentano in no more than 25 minutes.
Azienda Speciale Palaexpo
Via Nazionale, 194
Not far from Salario, Rome’s smaller museum of Modern Art might seem like MAXXI’s baby, yet MACRO consistently impresses visitors with unusual exhibitions and a well-stocked bookshop and café. Admission is free but it is a requirement to book entry online.
Where to Drink in Nomentano
It is not difficult to find bars or unique drinking spots in Nomentano but here are a few standouts.
The Meeting Place
Piazza Bologna, 1A
Mon – Fri 9.30am – 7pm
This very popular bar and restaurant super close to the Piazza Bologna metro is frequented by many students and is back open since late September to make it suitable for social distancing. It offers very reasonable brunch, happy hour and group deals so look out for those!
Vespa Café Enoteca
Piazza Massa Carrara, 5
Mon 5pm – 12:30am, Tue, Wed, Thur & Sun 12pm – 12.30am, Fri – Sat 12pm – 1.30am
Tucked away in the corner of a residential street, a 10-minute walk from the metro station, Vespa is a sought-after wine bar amongst locals. Indulge in a cocktail or treat yourself to something off the food menu whilst admiring the bohemian décor and rustic chandeliers.
Viale XXI Aprile, 38 A
Mon – Wed 6.30pm – 1am
Head over to Bocamora for Instagram worthy photos, this hipster style cocktail bar is open in the evenings until late. Perfect for a date night or to catch up with friends, mingle amongst the jungle plants and themed décor for a night that’s a bit different!
Piazza Lotario, 5
Mon 12 – 2am, 6pm – 2am, Tue – Fri 6pm – 2am, Sat 6pm – 12am
Another hotspot for drinks, Blend is popular amongst theatre-goers before they head to a show. With an extensive choice of quirky cocktails in this fun, laid-back bar, Blend certainly will not disappoint and it offers an impressive food menu, too.
Via di S. Orsola, 35/37
Sun – Thur 5pm – 12am, Fri – Sat 6pm – 1am
For craft beer lovers, Malto Misto is the place to go. Affordable and atmospheric, enjoy a weekend beer from local Italian breweries.
Viale XXI Aprile, 67/A
Mon – Sat 7am – 8pm
If you’re searching for something more low key, stop off at Bar Valerioti and grab yourself a fresh juice or coffee. A short walk from the metro stop, Valerioti is ideal if you need a quick refreshment. Friendly staff and no fuss!
Viale XXI Aprile, 19
Daily 6pm – 10.30pm
Momart is at the heart of Nomentano and offers a great €12 all-you-can-eat happy hour formula and a vast selection of cocktails. Huge heating lamps dot the inviting outdoor area while students from the two nearby universities indulge in plates with scrumptious gourmet pastas and breads. The wood fired oven in the back pumps out endless varieties of pizza.
Where to Eat in Nomentano
Nomentano is a superb area for different types of cuisines. Here are some of our favourite foodie hotspots.
Piazza Bologna, 51
Daily 6.30am – 2am
My personal favourite, Flamingo is a stylish, pink themed tapas bar open all day till late. Sit inside to appreciate the glamorous décor and thoughtful food menu, or find a spot in their outdoor seating area to people watch with a coffee at the center of Piazza Bologna. Normally very busy on weekends, this inviting restaurant is also worth visiting for a week night treat.
Via Catanzaro, 30-36
Daily 7am – 9pm
Visit bar Mizzica for a sugary delight, this authentic Sicilian pasticceria offers up a range of sweet treats perfect for birthdays, weekend celebrations or simply to reward yourself for making it through a rainy Monday!
Via Spalato, 35/37/39
Mon – Sat 10am – 2am, Sun 6pm – 2am
About a 15-minute walk north of Piazza Bologna metro or a one-minute walk from S. Agnese metro is White Rabbit, part of the international chain. Satisfy your burger cravings in this urban space offering hearty Italian or American meals, including American style breakfast. White Rabbit also offers cocktail masterclasses and welcomes students with laptops thanks to their extensive comfy seats and reading area.
Via Cremera, 21
Mon – Thurs 12.30pm – 2:30pm/ 7pm – 10pm, Fri 12.30pm – 2.30pm / 7pm – 10.30pm, Sat 7pm – 22:30pm
It is a myth that Rome doesn’t offer international cuisine – Galbi for example is a fantastic place to go for Korean food. Located in the Salario neighbourhood near the MACRO, Galbi offers a variety of barbecued meats, traditional Korean cuisine and cocktails. If you’re not up for getting out of the house you can just order in!
Via Mantova, 5
Daily 12.30pm – 2.30pm, 7pm – 11.30pm
Head over to trendy Berbere Pizzeria for tasty, great quality pizza in an atmosphere perfect for meeting friends. Berbere is a popular chain throughout Italy and is unlikely to disappoint.
Via Brescia, 23
Opening times vary
If you want to taste the best cous cous in town you need to get yourself to Cus Cus. They cook the famous Arabic dish imported to Sicily according to the ancient Sicilian recipe, combined with 6 different sauces (meat / fish / vegetables). Home deliveries are also available.
Where to Shop in Nomentano
Packed with shops of all kinds, Nomentano is a great place to go on a shopping spree.
Viale delle Provincie, 78
Mon – Sat 9.30am – 1.30pm, 4pm – 8pm
If fashion is your thing, at Charme you’ll find effortless women’s clothing. Head on over there and have a browse.
Largo Ravenna, 10
Opening times vary
Noise boutique can be found next to Fonzie’s Burger Place (another well-liked fast food burger spot), it offers an array of elegant, stylish and glitzy clothes or accessories at a reasonable price.
Viale XXI Aprile, 2/B
Mon – Sat 10.30am – 1.30pm, 4pm – 8pm
For British brands such as Fred Perry, take a peek inside this menswear store. They’re always up-to-date with the latest trends in UK streetwear, sportswear and shoes.
L’Accessorio di Alberto Saliola
Via Cremona, 15/a
Mon – Sat 10am – 1.30pm, 4pm – 8pm
For all your party and fancy dress needs, this shop is a treasure trove of cheerful and creative goodies.
How to reach Nomentano
Reach this area by bus: numbers 62, 61, 310, 93, 542.
Reach this area by metro: Bologna, Linea B.