Sitting on Rome’s famous Spanish Steps can get you fined

Tourists who visit the Eternal City which is the nickname of the Italian capital are no longer be able to sit down on the stair of the Spanish Steps after Rome authority has implemented the ban.

From 6th August, Rome police began to enforce the ban by blowing the whistle forcing those who are sitting on the famous steps to go up or down, according to AFP.

Marble terraces, one of the architectural gems of the Italian capital, have been many people’s favorite for a long time. They sat down hustling on each stair, sipping on their food and drinks while watching the lines of people below.

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However, the city council has announced a new regulation, prohibiting “camping” or “sitting” or “lying down” on the monuments and locations with a long history including Scalinata di Trinità dei Monti, the Spanish Steps, and the below fountain.

People who violate the new regulation will be fined up to 400 euros (around 452 USD) for inappropriate actions such as sitting on the steps, taking a bath at the fountains and dragging their suitcases on the stairs.

According to Simone Amorico, CEO of Access Italy, a private tour company, the law is considered necessary. He said that the number of tourists became out of control. The new regulation of Rome authority follows other recent preservation efforts, for example, banning swimming in Trevi fountain; Florence’s ban of eating in the streets, and most recently, Venice’s prohibition of huge cruise ships traveling to the historic center.

In 2016, Rome carried out the restoration of the Spanish Steps for a total cost of 1.5 million euros, after its beauty was damaged by many people’s inappropriate behavior such as sticking chewing gum on the stairs, pouring coffee and alcohol on the ground.

Last month, 2 German tourists were fined 950 euros for making coffee on the steps of the famous Rialto bridge in Venice and forced to leave the city.

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The Spanish Steps is a steep set of stairs in Rome, Italy. They connect the Spanish Square at the bottom and the Trinità dei Monti Square at the top where the Trinità dei Monti church is located.

The stairway was designed by architects Francesco de Sanctis and Alessandro Specchi with the cost of 20,000 scudi funded by French diplomat Étienne Gueffier. It took them 2 years (1723 – 1725) to finish building it.

Its original purpose was to link the Bourbon Spanish Embassy (which explains its name) and the Trinità dei Monti church that was under the patronage of the French Bourbon kings. The Spanish Steps which is a world cultural heritage has gained worldwide fame after the 1953 film titled “Roman Holiday” starring 2 main actors Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck.

 

By: Wallace Castillo

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