THE SPANISH STEPS
Hotel Hassler Roma is located at the top of the Spanish Steps, the monumental stairway of 135 steps which was built in 1723–1725, linking the Bourbon Spanish Embassy and the Trinità dei Monti church.
The stairway was designed by architects Francesco de Sanctis and Alessandro Specchi.
In 2015 - 2016 the Steps experienced an important refurbishment by the Italian fashion company Bulgari.
The 1953 film Roman Holiday, starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck, made the Spanish Steps famous to the American audience.
The famous Villa Medici can be reached from the Steps: a historical villa and architectural complex with a garden contiguous with the larger Borghese gardens, now property of the French State and housing the French Academy in Rome.
At the bottom of the Spanish Steps is located Piazza di Spagna, one of the most famous and picturesque squares in Rome. It owes its name to the Palazzo di Spagna, seat of the Embassy of Spain among the Holy See.
In the Piazza di Spagna is located the Early Baroque fountain called Fontana della Barcaccia, built in 1627–29 and often credited to Pietro Bernini, father of a more famous son, Gian Lorenzo Bernini, who is recently said to have collaborated on the decoration.
In the “piazza”, at the corner on the right as one begins to climb the steps, is the house of the English poet John Keats; on the left, there is a famous traditional English tea shop established in 1893, Babington's tea room. Plus, from Piazza di Spagna the famous via dei Condotti starts, where you can find the most famous luxury boutiques (Prada, Gucci, Bulgari, Damiani, Cartier, Armani, Ferragamo, Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Dolce & Gabbana etc).
Every year, in occasion of Rome’s birthday celebration, on April 21st, part of the steps are covered by pots of azaleas, up until early May.