Six Senses Rome: This Stunning Italian Palazzo Now Beckons As Rome’s New Luxury Wellness Pad

  • 3 May '24
  • 3:54 pm by Satarupa Datta

The Romans were undisputed connoisseurs of luxury wellness, having bath halls as awe-inspiring sights, distinguished by the rich artistry of mosaics, sculptures, frescoes, and columns that added a monumental regality to the space. Roman architecture continues to inspire awe and admiration. A blueprint for the design commune, Six Senses Rome is a fascinating historic restoration by the supremely talented Spanish designer, Patricia Urquiola who embraced the concept of genius loci, meaning preserving the essence of the place through materiality and art–an ode to its past. Discovering Patricia Urquiola’s design philosophy in restoring the 18th-century ‘Palazzo Salviati Cesi Mellini’ for Six Senses Rome is truly captivating, where ​​the legacy of antiquity is honoured with ancient materiality, retrofitted in the hotel’s contemporary design styles. Urquiola is known for her modern playful style with feminine accents and unexpected elements.

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The baroque-style Palazzo reincarnated as Six Senses Rome sits in the centre of the ancient city blocks away from the Trevi Fountain & Pantheon. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

Getting There: 

The hotel sits in the heart of the city– making it incredibly convenient to access all of Rome’s landmark sights. Only an hour’s drive from the Fiumicino Leonardo Da Vinci International Airport, and a mere 40 minutes from the city’s second International Airport, Ciampino. If one takes the train, the hotel is a 15-minute car ride from the main Termini railway station.

The 18th-century colonnaded staircase with its ornate skylight leads to private rooms and the roof-top terrace. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

The Architecture and Design Reinterpret Roman Classism Meeting Modernity 

On entering the grand lobby, an unabashed showstopper with its colossal arches, and travertine claddings in walls and floors, the space is a stunning work in a uniform colour palette that flows across forms and styles. Under the strikingly modern center-piece chandelier, sits a marble table with a pedestal taking the form of a sculpture chiseled in classical features. The majestic foyer doubles as a living area with an array of sofas and lounge chairs from Urquiola’s oeuvre. The ground-floor gallery boasts a fluid circular design that mimics a sprawling large piazza while the roof’s exposed beams flanking the skylight create an awe-inspiring effect of natural light pouring in. The courtyard, which has been restored as a patio, follows the European matrix of dining alfresco and is perfectly complemented by a wodge of tumbling greenery.

The grand lobby’s decorative details of mosaics between potted plants spread across the travertine floors and restored stucco columns allow visitors to read the history of the building. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

The circular forms that adorn the space are truly captivating. Everything blends perfectly with the hotel’s monumental features, from the plush sofas, and the green marble bar to the sinuous furnishings. The attention to detail is remarkable with every finish and materials carefully curated to create a union with the biophilic spaces while staying true to both Roman classicism and the rich history of the Palazzo.

A circular green marble bar positioned in the courtyard with an overhead design of suspended plants and benches holding greenery at the rear emphasizes the harmonious connection with nature. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

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The FSC-certified-sustainably sourced wood furniture, carpets weaved of regenerated nylon waste, and suspended air plants contribute to eco- design philosophy. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

Rooms and Suites Are Modern Spin On Halcyon Refinement

Step into a world of timeless elegance where modern comfort meets Rome’s revered architectural tradition. The 96 rooms and suites are a stunning testament to this, with soft neutral tones accentuated by the traditional ‘Roman cocciopesto’ wall cladding, tambour panelling, and patterned rugs. The spherical light fixtures and modern art pieces add a touch of contemporary flair to the classic design. Underpinning modern technology and eco-friendly practices, Urquiola introduces innovative amenities that prioritize the well-being of their guests. Using handmade customized organic mattresses with pure cotton sheets, pillows, and soundproofing systems she is aligned to the brand’s ‘Sleep With Six Senses’ ethos.

The rooms showcase a unique collection of artworks curated by Urquiola’s art adviser Federica Sala, featuring watercolours, sculptures, textiles, and canvases elevating the interiors. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

Located on the third floor, the ‘Mellini suite’ boasts two spacious rooms with king beds, perfect for a relaxing night’s sleep. The bathrooms are well-appointed with a shower booth and a bathtub‌. The living and dining are tastefully designed giving you a feeling of home away from home. Adding to this is the breathtaking double view from the comfort of the  private terrace. With one side overlooking the ‘Piazza di San Marcello’ and the other  giving off a buzzing inner courtyard view, this luxury cocoon breathes a residential flavour for its guests.

The spa is a tribute to the Roman art of bathing with selective spaces introducing the mechanism of boosting the wellness of our bodies amidst diverse water temperatures. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

Six Senses Spa Undertake Innovative Approach To Ancient Roman Wellness

The architecture and craftsmanship of the ancient Roman baths inspire the spa, with its striking bas-relief embellishments on the wall. Under a two-floored unit, fusing a beautiful interplay of ancient materiality and modern features, the Six Senses Rome Spa replicates a sanctum sanctorum devoted to rejuvenating the mind and body aided by cutting-edge and holistic therapies like biohacking and sound baths. Experience ultimate relaxation by stepping into the three plunge pools – each replicating the caldarium, tepidarium, and frigidarium. This wellness ritual of ancient Romans of warming up and cooling down simultaneously causes an energy uplift.  Other facilities include the hammam, a sauna, meditation rooms, an aerial yoga deck, a fitness centre, a tea lounge, and five treatment rooms on the first floor (one for couples) to be pampered by signature body wraps and facials. 


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BIVIUM’s farm-to-table delicacies are a nod to Six Senses Sustainable living, (Credit Image: Six Senses Rome)

The Culinary And Mixology Bend Towards Modern Italian Organic Dining

Rome is a city that truly has it all, from rich historical and cultural offerings to an unparalleled gastronomic scene. Six Senses Bevium, a restaurant-cafe bar offers an innovative take on Italian cuisine, all within a convivial and casual dining atmosphere. With a well-designed space that inspires lively conversation and live music, Bevium celebrates seasonality and farm-to-fork dining. The space features dedicated deli corners like speciality coffee servings from ‘Aroma Bar,’ cold cuts and raw food from ‘Sapore,’ and the best homemade gelato and sweet treats from ‘Delizie’ and the open kitchen invites a sneak peek at the ‘Josper grill.Along with small plates, the menu also features plant-based recipes and flavours reflecting the Sicilian roots of Chef Nadia Frisina. Cocooned by a lush herb garden, terracotta planters, and comfortable garden loungers, NOTOS, the garden terrace is the perfect spot to escape from the hustle. Sip on a refreshing botanical-infused cocktail and absorb the breathtaking views while feeling the city at your feet.

Earth Lab is dedicated to workshops and fun DIY tutorials on do-it-yourself compost and chemical-free detergent or extracting essential oils from herbs. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

Final Thoughts

 Six Senses Rome is a triumphant eco-design tack in restorative architecture that labelled it as Rome’s latest green oasis. The expertly restored building operates on the highest possible energy, water efficiency, waste management, plastic reduction, and cutting-edge technology to reduce carbon footprints, thus aiming to secure the LEED Gold certification for sustainable design. By prioritizing well-being, conviviality, and sustainability Urquiola is able to preserve the historical pieces of the property while adding modern Italian finishes. The result is a stunning space that seamlessly juxtaposes old and new. From the luxurious rooms to the signature spa, every aspect of the property has been carefully designed to provide guests with a novel experience, off the archetypal frills of a modern luxury hotel.

Six Senses initiated the restoration of the next-door San Marcello Al Corso Church to honour Rome’s legacy of antiquity. (Image Credit: Six Senses Rome)

DP Loves

# The tasteful use of traditional cocciopesto plaster and Travertine limestone in modern interior layouts.  

# The Zen design of the Roman baths brings balance, tranquility and harmony to the mind. 

# The leitmotif takes the form of laurel leaf imprinted as a bas-relief wall decoration.  

  # The sound healing combines the sound of the drums recreating oceanic sound effects that boost mental wellbeing. 

 # The Roman-inspired bath pools with hot and cold soaks and a unique basin that dispenses crushed ice to cool you down in hot weather. 

# The apothecary workshops at the alchemy bar on creating bespoke skin elixirs using nature’s purest ingredients.

# The sustainable bend to NOTOS rooftop lounging where beds of aromatic plants give shape to a botanical garden.