Open House Roma

Open House Roma grants access to dozens of normally inaccessible buildings.

Many of Rome’s museums, libraries, galleries and contemporary buildings to which there is normally limited public access are open free of charge over the weekend of 6-7 May during the sixth edition of Open House Roma. Since its launch in 2012, the annual initiative dedicated to Rome’s varied architectural design has opened up hundreds of interesting, important and sometimes off-limits buildings.

The annual event, which last year registered 70,000 tours, features a multitude of buildings around the capital, with 30 guided tours and 50 special events including a musical performance along the banks of the Tiber organised by Tevereterno.

Open House Roma takes place over two days and is divided into five categories: Abitare (visits to private apartments), Architettura del Quotidiano (buildings which animate daily life in Rome but are little known to many of the city’s residents), Factory e produzione creativa (new sites of innovation and creative production), Attraversare la storia (exploring Rome’s buildings through the various historical ages), and Città della conoscenza (visiting the city’s sites of knowledge, culture and research).

Plenary Hall at FAO.
Plenary Hall at FAO.

The 2017 programme includes a special focus on "international Rome", including the city's foreign academies and cultural institutes, as well as spotlighting contemporary architecture and interior design, particularly in newly up-and-coming districts such as Portuense and Pigneto. One venue to look forward to exploring is the city's Food and Agriculture Organization on Viale Aventino. Other highlights include a visit to Palazzo della Civiltà Italiana (the headquarters of fashion house Fendi), the Italian Space Agency, the new Metro C station in S. Giovanni (which is scheduled to open later this year), and the air-raid shelter under Palazzo degli Uffici in the EUR district.

Studio AKA Architetti.
Studio AKA Architetti.

This year the programme will be preceded by Urbanitas, a two-day forum promoting a discussion on the future of Rome, with experts putting forward concrete proposals for a sustainable city, resilient and creative city. The conference takes place on 4-5 May at the MAXXI Museo nazionale delle arti del XXI secolo.

The Rome version of the worldwide Open House initiative, which began in London in 1992, is co-ordinated by non-profit cultural association Open City Roma and its 500 volunteers.

Booking is required for many of the Rome tours, for details see website or Facebook page.