For those who are (understandably) upset by the show offered by the latest “Family Day” held in Rome this last Saturday, well, we have good news! It is a fact that Rome has been for centuries the capital of a multicultural and socially advanced empire, in which tolerance and peaceful coexistence were the hallmark of its greatness. And if you look close enough, you can find that it’s still true.
So here’s a short guide to the Gay Friendly Eternal City, for all you people who consider difference a value rather than something to be scared of!
Neighborhoods – For the past 30 years, the area around the Colosseum (namely Via San Giovanni in Laterano and its side streets) has been the designated meeting point for the open-minded communities of the city. From the dark ages of Pasolini’s walks of shame to the current, everyday joyful spree, this neighborhood has become a landmark, especially if you are looking for something different on a Saturday night.
Shops – Indie and underground fashion has always been a preferred medium for the affirmation of civil rights and emancipation, and in this case it’s no different. Several shops, related to just as many brands, are more or less directly connected to the Gay community of Rome. Pifebo and King Size, in Monti, both offer a wide selection of vintage clothing, and are two destinations of choice for fashion freaks and open minds. The Coming Out Shop awaits you in the Laterano neighborhood. This shop is simply and institution for the Roman LGBT community, and with its neighbor shop Souvenir, this street will be a fun place to spend some of your day window shopping! Alcova (in the Trevi area), Hydra and Pulp (in the Monti area) are some leather shops with a very particular (and sometimes somewhat transgressive) choice of products. Should you choose to visit Rome following your gaydar, surely you won’t risk going back home empty handed!
Nightlife – I guess this is what you were waiting for! Well, in the last ten years roman gay friendly nightlife blossomed with a variety of pubs, clubs, cafes and bars, besides the traditional gay street of Via San Giovanni in Laterano: you are definitely spoiled for choice! From Glamda and Quirinetta, both located in suggestive areas of the city center, to more suburban live music clubs such as Lanificio, Monk or the enormous Qube (where the famous party Muccassassina is currently taking place), you’ll get the chance to actually live the entire city finding a corner of friendly and open minded environment basically in every area. And if you need to eat and drink, peculiar restaurants such as Elle or the Chinese La Città in Fiore or Ristopubs Tram Depot and Freni e Frizioni are what you are looking for.
And that’s it, this non-exhaustive short guide the gay friendly eternal city has come to an end. Of course if you look close enough you will find a myriad of other eligible “gay friendly” places, so our advice is: go and explore!
And if this list was not enough, well… there’s always Zoolander 2, shot in Rome! I don’t think anyone can get more gay friendly than this:
Special thanks to our student Andrea Schorn who helped editing this article! ❤