The Acquario in Piazza M. Fanti in Rome's Esquilino district has a new vocation: from 13 November it will be the official headquarters of Rome's Order of Architects, opening with an exhibition dedicated to the winners of the 2002 edition of the prestigious Dedalo-Minosse prize held annually in Vicenza. Inaugurated in 1887, the building started life as an acquarium and a stylish meeting place for the bourgeoisie of the new Esquilino area. Since then it has been a public baths, a theatre, a ballroom, an art gallery and a cinema set, as well as, more recently, a popular storage area. Though restored almost twenty years ago, it has recently been used only intermittently. As well as the order's headquarters, its 3,800 covered sqm will house exhibition spaces, a bookshop and a bar-cum-restaurant. Above all it will be a place to find out what is happening on Rome's many construction sites. German film director Wim Wenders, Italian architect Massimiliano Fuksas and Rome's mayor Walter Veltroni will be present at the official inauguration on 13 November at 18.00.
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