Many famous brands like Valentino and Fendi were born in Rome, and the central part of town is dominated by labels that are now known all over the world. As beautiful as they may be, these are not the kinds of shops that make for a fun day of browsing or shopping with a teenager with whom you want to experience a more distinctively Italian exploration. Instead, head to the charming neighborhood of Monti, which is not far from the Colosseum, to wander a few streets of independent shops, where local designers are making their first foray into fashion, often crafting their pieces on machines inside the ateliers.
Designer Tina Sondergaard, who opened her eponymous shop in this neighborhood 15 years ago, has witnessed the arrival of many other designers. Monti is “now the heart of people making their own things in Rome,” she says. Sondergaard loves that it is not only Romans who shop in the area but also visitors. “You can take home your Roman Holiday dress instead of a tourist souvenir like a plastic Colosseum,” she says.
Interspersed with these reasonably priced boutiques selling fashion, jewelry, leather and home décor, you will find antiques shops, vintage stores and cafés, as well as venues that fuel the life of the residential neighborhood: laundromats, hardware stores and nail salons. Follow a trail that encompasses Vicolo dei Serpenti, Via del Boschetto and Via Leonina, and look out for the shops below, in addition to newcomers.
For a lunch break, consider one of the cafés with outdoor tables on Madonna dei Monti, Magasin Bistro at 108 Via dei Serpenti or the family-run trattoria Valentino on Via del Boschetto.
Our Teen Shopping Picks:
Fusioni (Via del Boschetto, 5)
Kokoro (Via del Boschetto, 75)
LOL and LOL Outlet (Piazza della Madonna dei Monti, 1)
Uni (Via Leonina, 85)
Contact Indagare for assistance planning a customized journey to Rome.