OCCUPATION: Former anchorwoman for a children’s TV show, now a fulltime mom
MY STYLE: Classic and casual. Comfort is key, so I wear a lot of pants and flats. For special occasions, though, I really love high heels. Recently, I bought a pair of Manolos—so cool! The style of my house is classic too, but modern—everything is white!
I LOVE ROME BECAUSE: There is so much to do. There are many parks and fantastic weather that lets you enjoy them!
Amidst the leafy garden on Via Flaminia, this cozy birchwood bar specializes in light, Mediterranean cuisine. In the warmer months, parents can sip cappuccinos in the sun while their children enjoy the play area nearby. For a night without the kids, go on a Monday for delicious aperitifs, free tapas, and even a DJ set.
Forno Campo de’ Fiori
Italian pizza may have originated in Naples, but Romans take their pies pretty seriously, too. In fact, seriousness—along with passion and a commitment to the finest ingredients—is one of Forno’s guiding principles. In centuries past, the bakery served its breads to high-standing customers, including the lover of Pope Alessandro VI. Today, Forno often graces the incredibly competitive best-of-Roman-pizza lists. (Ricotta cake, pizza bianca, focaccia with zucchini flowers) Some swear by Antico Forno Marco Roscioli, another pizza place close to Forno and run by a different branch of the same family. For pizza bianca, however, Forno is the fan favorite.
Art Studio Café
In addition to a café, Art Studio functions as a workshop where kids can play with clay or learn how to make a mosaic. An in-store boutique sells jewelry and design objects that make great gifts, but chances are you’ll find your kids’ creations most precious of all. “At the end of the day, they can go home with their work,” Elisabetta Ferracini says. In this city overflowing with history, Art Studio is committed to art education. Check the website for a schedule of upcoming events, such as a lecture on the history of theatre in Rome or a guided tour of St. Peter’s Basilica for children and adults.
White Cloud Gyrotonic Studio
Juliu Horvath was a gymnast and ballet dancer before he developed Gyrotonic, a yoga practice that stretches, tones, and treats movement as an expression of life. Once called Yoga for Dancers, the program works for non-professionals, too. “I started because my back was so sore from always carrying my baby—something I’m sure moms will understand!” says Elisabetta Ferracini. Horvath’s original White Cloud studio in New York closed in 1999. He now travels the world for workshops and training, and the White Cloud in Rome was founded by Horvath’s protégé and friend, Pietro Gagliardi.
Steps away from the Piazza del Popolo, Hotel Locarno offers convenience with charm. Though it has served as a film location in the past, it is more often a quiet place of relaxation. There is a rooftop terrace, and the ground floor courtyard draws travelers and locals alike with its wisteria and aperitifs. “The lounge bar here has a boho style and the happy hour is quite cool,” Elisabetta Ferracini says. “I go with my friends for the delicious fried fish they serve with cocktails!”
Campo de’ Fiori
Named for the field of flowers it once was, Campo de’ Fiori is one of the liveliest piazzas in Rome. Flowers can still be had—at the market held every day except Sunday—along with fresh vegetables, spices, and an impressive array of sauce-worthy tomatoes. Charming restaurants and cafés offer the weary shopper a place to rest to rest with a glass of wine or a bite to eat. Located in the heart of the city, the market can’t help but attract some tourists, but it’s mostly retained a local, chatty feel. Though many of the artisans of crossbows and coffers that used to populate the area have gone, the inscription on the square’s fountain still applies. “Fa del bene e lassa dire,” it reads, which translates to “Do good deeds and let them talk.”
Nestled behind the Teatro Olimpico sits this intimate restaurant with an eclectic menu that fuses Mediterranean, Nordic, and vegetarian fare. A large blackboard displays the daily specials à la a Parisian bistro. The baked potatoes are much sought-after, but Elisabetta Ferracini especially loves the seasonal soups. “You can eat very, very well and it’s quite affordable,” she adds. Tiepolo is open late, but can draw a crowd even then. Reservations are recommended, especially during the weekends.
With an abundance of classes to choose from—from flamenco to modern—many students of Rome’s premier dance studio have been regulars for years. Newcomers, amateurs, and even young children are welcome, however. Toddlers twirl in tutus while, in a studio nearby, kids in street fashion work on their breakdancing moves. Busy moms with ever-changing schedules will appreciate that memberships are available, but not required, because you can opt to pay per class at the door.
Through the 16th-century villa that once stood on the grounds is no longer, this public garden in the elegant Parioli neighborhood still offers a lovely view of Monte Mario, Rome’s highest hill. Recently, the park underwent an extensive restoration that included putting fruit trees in the flowerbeds! Refreshing juices can be had at the Bar Villa Balestra. “There is also a closed play area for babies and a playground where the big kids skate and play sports,” Elisabetta Ferracini says.
Città del Sole
With locations throughout Italy, this toy store draws parents and children with its imaginative environment and unique products. From old-fashioned wooden horses to high-tech gadgets, “you can always find really beautiful, interesting things,” says Elisabetta Ferracini. Città del Sole recognizes that toys play an important role in a child’s development, so it’s the perfect place for products that mix fun and learning. Games can be found in Italian or English.