Monthly Archives: November 2008

Fancy going back100 years in time?… Then go to Calcata!

Our Blogger: Arianna

Only 47 Kilometres away from Rome, there is a typical example of medieval architecture, one of the most well conserved fortresses in all of Italy.

Calcata is located on the Treja valley, characterized by volcanic material and red tuff in particular.

In the magic atmosphere that surrounded the suburb, history and mythology come into play together.


The legend says that the area was built by the Falisci people who originated from Haleso, Agamemnon’s son.

But we really don’t know when Calcata was constructed because the first stories about it go back to around 772 – 795, under Adrian’s I papacy.

During the XIII century Calcata became well known because the Anguillara family erected a tower with fortified walls and many doors. What we know for sure is that according to an old legend, a prepuce and an oil bottle used to wash Jesus Christ’s feet was Calcata.

During the pillage of Rome in 1527 made by lansquenets, one of them steeled the relic and hid it in a barn. Another story is that someone else hid the relic inside a cavern.

Only after 30 years was the relic found and collocated inside the church of S. Cyprian and Cornelius.

Visiting the entire village doesn’t take a long time but it’s a spectacular walk .It’s like going back 100 years in time. The houses are small and compact, the paths in the streets are extremely straight and are infact built on previously active volcanic land.

Calcata has another strange history. In 1930 the government decided to evacuate the village because it believed the foundations of the buildings’ were fragile and there was a risk of rock fall. A new calcata was also built 2 km away from the old village.

At that time, Calcata, together with another village called Civita di Bagnoregio, became knows as “the dying villages�.

What happened after that?

Well, starting from 1960 approximately, a lot of old hippies, artists and writers, started to rebuild the “dying village�, giving it new life.


In fact, its actually like a status symbol nowadays to be a Calcatan and its even possible to rediscover the simple life there once was, with nature and spiritualism bearing real significance.

For example, in the treja area just below the village there is a temple of spiritualism where you can try a different kind of life – keeping contact only with the land and its animals.

Visitors (no more than six at a time) are asked not to use electrical appliances and for water there is only a barrel.

I hope I made you curious enough to come and visit this beautiful town. And if you are curious enough, why not check out our special prices at Yes Hotel in Rome? Being so centrally located, our hotel is the ideal spot for transport connections to other places in the Lazio region.

Directions by car

From Rome’s “great ring road” (Grande Raccordo Anulare): take the exit 5 – S. S. 2bis Cassia V. (Veientana) -, go past the third exit for Campagnano Romano, after 200 m turn straight into the exit for Mazzano Romano – Trevignano, and then follow the signs for Calcata.
Otherwise, take the Flaminia Road (Via Flaminia) in the direction of Civita Castellana as far as Rignano Flaminio, then follow the signs for Faleria-Calcata.

Directions By bus

Take a bus from Saxa Rubra, Roma.


‘’Trova il tuo equilibro’’, means find your balance in Italian, while ‘’Equilibro’’ means balance, playing at the same time with the word ‘‘libro’’, which means book in Italian. This is the new slogan of an event taking place in the beautiful city of Rome.

Roman Literature

From the 5th until the 8thof December 2008, ‘’Più libri, più liberi’’ (more books, more freedom) the Roman fair will be held at the Rome Palazzo dei Congressi . Seven years ago the Lazio Region, Province and Municipality of Rome, and the Italian publishers decided to match and dedicate this fair to our unconditional friend, the book.

Mister Fabio del Giudice, who developed it, said: ‘’The fair will host this year more than 400 publishers, 200 meetings, editorial previews and international guests’’.
This year the fair welcomed around 50,000 people but in 2009 the expectations are even higher.


The Rome Universities of La Sapienza and Tor Vergata gave some help, aware of the fact that most books are aimed at young people. Even the youngest ones, with the traditional set dedicated to children, so they will become happy readers in the future by knowing a friendship with books from the early age.

Several spaces for professionals and foreign publishers will be provided alongside stands of their Italian colleagues for this seventh edition. If you are one of them, you may want to  stay in one of our central  hotels such as  Yes Hotel Rome.

Palazzo Congressi Rome Italy

As Fabio Del Giudice explained ‘‘often the small and medium Italian publishers cannot be known abroad and we felt this was the right way to publicize the Italian books. We also hope that the  Book Fair in Rome, the only of its kind, will become an international event. "

Tickets fee: 6 euro

Where  : Palazzo dei Congressi, Piazza John Kennedy 1, Rome


More Information on the official website of the Rome Book Fair.


Our Author: Nic Brun


Perhaps it was the lipstick she put on everyday. Perhaps it was the electric blonde hair that took hours to style. Or perhaps it was just the shining glint in her eye.

Whatever it was, it caught the attention of New York photographer Sam Shaw enough to make him produce some of the most iconic photos of 1950s film.

His pictures of Marilyn Monroe went on to become perhaps, the most famous ever taken.

And this month the stills are being shown in Rome at a special photographic exhibition.

Many of the 140 pictures taken by Shaw even went unpublished, as he was given regular access to the blonde bombshell during his career.

Some of his pictures paint a serene, peaceful Marilyn, who was often solely seen as a unique American sex symbol by the public.

Funnily enough, it had been Shaw who came up with the idea to place Marilyn above a steam gate in the photo used to promote the film, Seven Year Itch.

The photo depicts her standing on the grate when a burst of air vents upwards, blasting her skirt around her waist. This depiction of pure sex is in stark contrast to his later photos of the blonde beauty.

Shaw had met Marilyn on the set of Viva Zapata around 1952 and was said to have been taken back by her very presence. He had already produced an iconic photo of Marlon Brando standing by a pool table in the film, Life and Look.

He also went on to photograph Marilyn alongside several friends, most of whom were not famous. Shaw is said to have worked so closely with his son, Larry, towards the end of his career, that some of the photos cannot be attributed individually to either.

The exhibition takes place until November 23 at the Margutta Ristorarte restaurant, Via Margutta. Do not miss this great opportunity while you will be visiting the Eternal City of Rome, visit me at family run, nice and cosy Lucci Hotel in Rome, so that I give you indications on how to enrich your cultural adventures in this spectacular city.


Via Margutta 118



imageFor something which started off as just a sand racetrack for horses, few would have tipped Vallelunga to become one of the most important racing training circuits in Europe. 

But the 2.5 mile speed circuit, in Campagnano, north of Rome, can today claim to have trained some of the best motor sport drivers in the world.

The circuit’s Federal Rally School (CSAI), which trains young drivers into professionals, helped bring about the development of four-time world rally champion Tommy Makinen (now retired). image

Meanwhile, the circuit’s Federal Speed School has seen the rise to stardom of students such as Jarno Trulli, Giancarlo Fisichella, and Alexander Zanardi in Formula One.

The success story now seems a long way away from the early nineteen fifties, when a simple Roman horse lover bought the land to create a racing circuit for horses.

1951 saw the first motor race on the circuit and in 1957 it was developed further to fully accommodate motor racing.

Following extension work to make the track 3222 metres , it eventually welcomed the Rome Formula One Grand Prix in May 1957.

But it is difficult to see the circuit’s humble roots today. As well as boasting the two famous driving schools, the circuit also plays host to a safe driving course for absolutely every kind of motor vehicle.

There is even a special off-road section for specialist training in four-wheel drive vehicles. So whether it be, jungle, countryside or desert, the circuit is prepared to show drivers the ropes.

And the story doesn’t end there.

During regeneration work in 2001, an ancient Roman road was discovered running just off the site. This led to the discovery of an ancient Roman village, which is believed to date back to the Hellenistic age.

So who said the ancient Romans weren’t forward thinking? Ben- Hur might be history, but motorsport is the future.