Red Maps Travel News Blog

Rome for the Holidays - Great Restaurants

view of the patio dining area of santa lucia restaurant in rome

We're just back from three days in Rome, and we managed to eat like emperors every night.  It took just a little research before the trip, coupled with conversations with locals to find these great restaurants.  Here they are:


Clemente alla Maddalena - Lovely casual piazza setting.  While near the Pantheon, the square with two side-by-side restaurants was not overcrowded. Spacious tables, pleasant staff.

Osteria Siciliana - A highly recommended neighborhood restaurant on a corner of the via del Leoncino. Like the name says, Sicilian cooking.  Elegantly plated courses served by an attentive staff, made for another delicious meal.

Santa Lucia - Located on the intimate square of Largo Febo, just in front of the Hotel Raphael (where we stayed). The setting under the trees, looking down towards a street of other cafes was perfect.  While we were outside enjoying the last of warm nights, the restaurant's interior dining rooms are classic looking and very inviting.

Parallel to Piazza Navona, (behind the church of Santa Agnese in Agone) is a street called Via di Santa dell'Anima.  Its north end is lined with some pleasant casual cafes.  Here we had a wonderful pasta lunch at Solo Vineria e Gastronomia.


Hotel Raphael's Terrace & Restaurant, as well as the roof bar of the Hotel Eitch Borromini.


Dal Bolognese Roma - We did not get into Dal Bolognese, but it was on numerous locals' lists for fine Roman dining.  The restaurant's setting on a street near Piazza del Popolo was quite nice - very chic. 

In the same neighborhood, we saw and loved the courtyard dining of the Locarno Hotel.  And very highly recommended is Taverna Trilussa Trastevere, located in the Trastevere neighborhood.

Lastly:  If you're heading to the Vatican Museums and think that you're going to find many good lunch spots near the museum entrance?  Forget that idea!  Eat in your neighborhood before you go  :)

image of a bowl of pasta at rome restaurant clemente della maddalena

image of plate of pasta at santa lucia restaurant in rome

image of pasta at restaurant solo vineria e gastronomica in rome

image of red map Rome and set of italian city guides called la dolce vita


NYC: 2019-2020 Season

interior view of the store at MoMA New York City


MoMA - Reopens after a 4 month renovation and expansion.

Nordstrom - Opens a 320,000 SF (29,729SM) flagship of shopping and dining on West 57th Street.
Fall Colors in Central Park - Whether you see the full autumn color effects in early November or the first frost in December, Central Park is always dazzling.

And architecturally... the super-tall condo skyscrapers along Central Park South are topping-out, with residences at 1,000ft/304m to 1,400ft/426m+ above street level.  These buildings are really something to see.

WHERE TO EAT, Right Now?
Michelin has just announced its NYC starred-restaurants for 2020.  Here are the exciting newest additions to the coveted list:

Atomix in the Flatiron District, Manhattan

Crown Shy in the Financial District, Manhattan
Estela's in Nolita, Manhattan
Le Jardinier in Midtown East, Manhattan
Oxalis in Crown Heights, Brooklyn
The Four Horsemen in Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Ukiyo in the East Village, Manhattan

view of 111 West 57th Street building in NYC

image of nyc buildings Central Park Tower and 53 west 53rd St




7 Cities: Holiday Markets & Ice Skating

christmas market in old town Prague at night

Holiday markets are serious business in these cities.  To help plan your December travel, we created a guide of where to get a big dose of Santa & Co, as well as see some pretty lights and perhaps ice skate!


Berliner Weihnachtzeit at Roten Rathus - From its charming created street scenes to a skating rink, a ferris wheel and classic German foods, the oldest holiday market in the city continues to deliver great holiday cheer.

Weihnachtszauber Gendarmenmarkt - Located between the beautiful churches of the Franzosischer and Deutscher Doms, this Mitte neighborhood market is always busy.  Especially with nearby Brandenburger Tor (gate) and the instagram-ready, tree-lit boulevard of Unter den Linden

Weihnachtsmarkt Schoss Charlottenburg - Holiday markets are always a little more fun with a palace as their back drop.  If that's your thing, then this spectacular palace-setting is for you, along with German crafts and holiday foods.

Try ice skating at Alexanderplatz under the city's iconic Fernsehturm Tower.

Christmaskindlmarket - This traditional German-style market is located at the center of Chicago's famous Loop Business District.  A great way to enjoy an evening with nearby Broadway show theatres, and the newest restaurants of the Fulton Market West District.

Ice skating in Chicago

Southbank Centre Winter Market - Holiday booths, the nearby London Eye ferris wheel, and cheerful lighting make this Thames riverside market very popular.

Winter Wonderland Hyde Park - The most seriously expansive holiday market we've seen, including a huge selection of amusement rides and lights.

And don't forget, Oxford and Regent Streets are lit head-to-toe for the holidays.  Try ice skating in the lovely courtyard of Somerset House.

Bryant Park Winter Village - At the center of this holiday village is an ice-skating rink and a theatrical setting of lights, skyscrapers, and the historic New York Public Fifth Avenue Library.

South Street Seaport - In a newly renovated and preserved area of Downtown Manhattan is this broad street with its own major holiday tree, new shops, cafes and entertainment.

Union Square Holiday Market - Filled with locals, this sprawling holiday village plays an annual leading role in NYC's seasonal offerings and festive atmosphere.

In addition to Bryant Park, there's ice skating at Rockefeller Center and Wollman Rink in Central Park.

Village de Noel at Champs de Mars - The arrangement of holiday tents takes place dramatically at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, providing you with perhaps the best light show ever to shop under.

Le Village de Noel at Les Halles - One of the city's larger holiday markets, Les Halles offers endless crafts and classic French holiday bites.  Its location is a bonus, as you're just blocks from the narrow streets and little shops of the always charming Le Marais district.

There is ice skating in front of the Hotel De Ville, as well as in the Tuileries Gardens.
For additional info on Paris:  Paris Visitors Bureau.

Old Town Square - (Pictured) With the spires of Tyn Church and the famous Astrological Clock Tower as a back drop, this location is about as charming and classically Christmas as you will find anywhere.

Republiky Square - Located at the foot of the Obecni dum (Municipal House) is this holiday market of hand-crafted Czech gifts and traditional foods.

Wenceslas Square  - The setting here is a long open boulevard lit for the holidays and running up to the front doors of the elegant National Museum.

Ice skate in the center of Old Town at the outdoor space of Ovocny Trh.


Christmas Market Schonbrunn Palace - Held in the front courtyard of Marie Antoinette's childhood summer home, the stalls and food purveyors will entertain and amuse you in the best Viennese style.

Christmas Village on Maria-Theresian-Platz - Near the city's historic center, and in-between two of its most famous art institutions, the Kunsthistorisches-museum and the Naturhistorisches-museum, is this holiday market of classic crafts and quick bites.  Also in town is the Christmas Market at the beautiful Belvedere Palace.

Enjoy Prater Amusement Park with its rides, food markets and holiday entertainment.

Ice skate in Vienna in front of the city hall at Rathausplatz. 
Vienna Holiday Markets Information.


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