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Domus Aurea, Rome
(4.1/5 based on 480+ reviews on the web)
The Domus Aurea was a large landscaped portico villa built by the Emperor Nero in the heart of ancient Rome, after the great fire in A.D. 64 had cleared away the aristocratic dwellings on the slopes of the Palatine Hill.InformationConstructionBuilt of brick and concrete in the few years between the fire and Nero's suicide in 68, the extensive gold leaf that gave the villa its name was not the only extravagant element of its decor: stuccoed ceilings were faced with semi-precious stones and ivory veneers, while the walls were frescoed, coordinating the decoration into different themes in each major group of rooms. Pliny the Elder watched it being built and mentions it in his Naturalis Historia.Suetonius claims this of Nero and the Domus Aurea: When the edifice was finished in this style and he dedicated it, he deigned to say nothing more in the way of approval than that he was at last beginning to be housed like a human being.Though the Domus Aurea complex covered parts of the slopes of the Palatine, Esquiline and Caelian hills, with a man-made lake in the marshy bottomlands, the estimated size of the Domus Aurea is an approximation, as much of it has not been excavated. Some scholars place it at over 300acre, while others estimate its size to have been under 100acre. Suetonius describes the complex as "ruinously prodigal" as it included groves of trees, pastures with flocks, vineyards and an artificial lake—rus in urbe, "countryside in the city".
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • If you are passionate about ancient history, architecture and how mysterious still in Rome, you simply must visit the Domus Aurea. It was the residence of the Emperor Nero, was built in the first decades after Christ, his greatness speechless hard to explain what it feels like visiting it. The times nearly 17 meters high and are finely frescoed. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful, not to be missed.
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  • It was the shortest way from the hotel Edera to the Coliseum, so he went almost every morning here. Place very nice day, but a little lonely at night.
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  • I had visited some twenty years ago before closing duration several years. Continues to be fascinating and thanks to the skill of guides are unable to enter a little in the world of Nero. Visit by booking online or over the phone in advance since it's open only on Saturdays and Sundays.
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Google
  • Very very old stuff to see. You need an guide who tells you the story behind this bunch of bricks
  • Very interesting underground tour, also a great way to escape the heat of the day as the excavations are nice and cool.
  • Domus Aurea. Built by Nero and partially deconstructed by Trajan to build his baths on top. This was an excellent site to visit, one of my favorites. The place us under renovation and in a few years this place will be more accessible than now as they need to remove lots of rubble. Get your ticket online as its only tours. Weekends only. As mentioned Below, the entrance is almost facing the colloseum, so when you leave colloseum metro, take a left, walk inside the park and it will be on your left side.
  • Maybe interresting inside, but outside it's not.
  • The Domus Aurea (or ‘golden house’) has one of the most historically exciting stories in Rome, starting with the decadent excesses of Nero and inspiring Renaissance artists such as Raphael to a new style of art ,and giving us the word ‘grotesque’ or grutesque in the process.Immediately after the fire of 64 A.D., which destroyed large parts of the centre of Rome, the emperor Nero ordered the construction of a new residence, much larger and more luxurious than the one he had on the Palatine Hill. Faced in precious marble, its vaults decorated with gold and gems, this new residence certainly deserved the name Domus Aurea (House of Gold). It was inspired by the opulent palaces of the Eastern Mediterranean, but with innovative and original design features. The enormous complex included immense vineyards, wooded glades, pastures and even an artificial lake, as well as treasures plundered from Eastern cities and precious ornaments and monuments, one of the most imposing of which was an enormous statue of the emperor himself.