Rome Travel Guide

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Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Rome's Balconies

Romans love their sunshine, and to enjoy it they have their terraces (terrazzi) and balconies (balconi). You won't find many in the Centro Storico, where the palatial homes built by elite families resembled fortesses and looked inward, rather than toward the street. But terraces and, especially, balconies, are a feature of many apartment buildings constructed after about 1925 and are nearly universal in post-1960 structures. It is possible to date a building from the materials used to construct a balcony; round, curved, pipe-like railings--an element of the modernist aesthetic--were common in the 1930s and into the 1940s; thinner railings, of bent or curved wrought iron, are often of 1950s or 1960s vintage.

And some balconies--like the ones presented here--are spectacular works of architectural art. These buildings are side by side above a massive hillside wall in the upper reaches of Trastevere, just above where viale Trastevere turns the corner and becomes Circonvallazione Gianicolense. The photos were taken from via Parrasio.


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