Slated to open in early this year, Cardo Roma, Autograph Collection is the debut property from Cardo Hotels. Joining Autograph Collection Hotels – the diverse and dynamic portfolio of distinctive hotels from Marriott Bonvoy – the resort is situated in Rome’s bustling Esposizione Universale Roma (EUR) district.
Originally designed by famed architect Lucio Passarelli, the extensively renovated hotel will feature 324 guestrooms and suites, offering inventive business and leisure facilities. The result is a creative hub for travellers seeking individual, inspiring workspaces as well as meaningful experiences that connect them to the culture of their destination city.
Nicolas Romero Oneto, Head of Cardo Hotels, explained the inspiration behind the brand’s name. “The cardo was a north-south oriented street in Roman cities, the central point of economic life, embodying a lively and energetic vision that inspired our new, all-encompassing hospitality concept,” he said. “Cardo hotels uniquely adapt to the aesthetics and culture of their city, making them the perfect fit for Autograph Collection Hotels, which are ‘exactly like nothing else’. Cardo Roma exemplifies this philosophy, blending personal well-being with business culture, setting a new standard for next-generation hotel experiences.”
The hotel’s interiors have been brought to life by award-winning Amsterdam-based designer, Saar Zafrir, who drew inspiration from ancient history. “In Roman times, ‘otium’ referred to being free from commitments,” he says. “Our goal is to immerse guests in this tradition of indulgence, luxury and comfort, where every moment is meant to be savoured.” This concept is reflected in an elegant palette reminiscent of the Roman Empire, featuring rich olive green, warm terracotta, and subtly sophisticated off-white. The inviting, spacious lobby fosters a sense of community, with playful geometry, dramatic arches, and distinct 3D wall textures enhancing its visual appeal.
At the heart of Cardo Roma, Zafrir has seamlessly blended business and pleasure. “We transformed a traditional conference hotel into an eclectic, contemporary resort catering to both business and leisure travellers,” he says. “The design incorporates the best elements of a business environment while offering a holistic atmosphere to leisure travellers, complete with a range of enjoyable activities.”
The 324 rooms (including 57 suites) are spread across eight different categories spanning seven guest floors. Signature suites range from 50sqm POP Suites and 75sqm FAB Suites to the opulent 100sqm TOP Suite. All accommodations feature smart technologies such as keyless entry and a tablet that acts as a digital concierge. Additional comforts include coffee table books from Taschen and a bespoke Muro room fragrance, with every element carefully curated for memorable stays.
Perhaps the hotel’s biggest draw is its versatile meeting and event space spanning an impressive 3,100sqm, making it one of the largest in Rome. This positions Cardo Roma as a leading destination for both local and international business and social gatherings. All spaces are thoughtfully equipped with the latest technology, while the modular setup allows every room to accommodate various configurations, making them suitable for executive meetings or collaborative workshops. The crown jewel is the immense, 1,400-capacity ballroom: an ideal venue for large conferences, gala dinners or grand celebrations. Further choice comes courtesy of the various outdoor spaces.
Cardo Roma will host two distinct dining venues, including the gastronomic treasure of signature restaurant, Vertici. Offering authentic Italian cuisine, Vertici elevates Rome’s rich culinary heritage by adding a contemporary twist. Here, guests can enjoy pasta-making classes and chef-hosted events showcasing fresh, local flavours. Accompanying the main restaurant is Vertici Bar, a perfect spot for an aperitivo chosen from a menu of finely crafted cocktails curated by an award-winning mixologist and served alongside small plates and light bites. Meanwhile, the seasonal pool bar Spectio is the go-to spot for alfresco cocktails, snacks and smoothies accompanied by live music and DJ acts.
Wellness is also integral to the overall concept. At the heart of the hotel lies Olea Wellness and Spa: a generous, 1,200sqm sanctuary dedicated to the rejuvenation of body and mind. At its four pools, each kept at a different temperature, guests can indulge in a bathing experience reminiscent of ancient Rome; a therapeutic circuit that honours the age-old adage, “mens sana in corpore sano” (meaning “sound in mind and body”). The spa offerings include a traditional sauna and hammam, along with six treatment rooms for holistic body and facial treatments featuring products from the renowned French brand Cinq Mondes. Complementing this, a state-of-the-art fitness centre equipped with Technogym gear underscores the hotel’s dedication to physical activity as a cornerstone of wellbeing.
With a personalized boutique approach, Cardo Roma, Autograph Collection, redefines the city’s hospitality scene, blending work, leisure, and wellness. The hotel will be joined later in 2024 by Cardo Brussels, Autograph Collection, the brand’s second property.
Main image credit: Cardo