Fantastic, engaging, knowledgeable, professional
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2018 via mobile
Ilaria is a fantastic tour guide and we highly recommend her. We spent 6 hours with her in Rome, and she was perfect! She was extremely flexible and accommodating in organizing our tour, including the private car we needed for part of it. We saw catacombs, Appian way, aqueducts, San Clemente and the Roman Houses. She was great at engaging our kids (age 9 and 11), while providing my husband and I with lots of details and information. We asked lots of questions, too - and she always had insightful responses. She was very knowledgeable. Personality wise she is also great: Illara is very friendly, kind, likeable, and just a really nice person. You feel like you are enjoying Rome with a friendly local as well as a professional tour guide!!! Very recommended!!
Best Tour guide in Rome
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2017
This is the 3rd time that I have used Ilaria for tours of Rome, She is fantastic! She is very knowledgeable and tried to make the tour as interesting as possible with little tidbits of information. She will work with you to tailor your tour to your interests . I will use her again and again!
Amazing 2 days with Ilaria for private tours in Rome -Thanks
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2017
We normally like to do private tours because we enjoy the flexibility. Ilaria is amongst one of the best we had.
I cannot say enough about how we enjoyed the tours with Ilaria in Rome in Dec 2017. My husband and I spent two amazing days with Ilaria in Rome, visiting the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel the first day and then visiting the Forum and Colosseum on the 2nd day. Ilaria is amazing and so knowledgeable. She makes art and history come alive. My husband who normally has to be dragged to museums came away totally in awe of the Vatican Museum and the knowledge imparted to us by Ilaria. This is because she makes the paintings and tapestries and statues come alive. She is funny and witty and the love she has for what she does shines through and she passes her enthusiasm to us. Without Ilaria, the Ancient Forum would be a cluster of random stones scattered all over the place and one can finish the tour in 30 minutes. Instead, we spent almost 4 hours there. At the end of the two days, we really felt like we learnt something about Rome and the great art in Vatican and the ancient Rome. But the best part is the we felt we made a new friend in Rome. We are already planning to come back to Rome in 2019 and bring our family to Rome for a holiday with Ilaria's help.
Ilaria, thank you so much for a wonderful two days and looking forward to planning the next vacation in Rome with you
"Rome as never known!"
5 of 5 stars Reviewed Oct 22, 2017 lpancia, Rome, Italy
Preparation, love, unknown details and sympathy to sell; These are its characteristics, a tour that soon becomes a walk with friends where the history of Rome is based on the historical gossip, on the descriptions of Roman life full of details. The love for his city he always feels; nice to find things that I know in a few; an adventure, a walk or a great day to spend with Ilaria, to get carried away with your mind when you describe moments of everyday life in Roman times ... how to be in it! Thanks Ilaria!
Bringing history alive amongst the ruins of Rome!
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 6, 2017
Rome is somewhat overwhelming to the first time visitor, so much to see, to understand and so much history to get your head around. Friends in Australia recommended Ilaria Marsili as a great guide to help us better understand what the layers of stone, brick and marble were and more importantly what they represent. We spent an invaluable 3 hours with Ilaria as she talked us through the ruined remains of over 2,000 years of occupation and the story of Rome. We met up at the Il Vittoriano, started in the Roman Forum, through to the Palantino and finished up in the Colosseum which was a great way to go. Ilaria was delightful and we gained a great understanding of the long and extraordinary history of Rome which really has to be told with the passion and exuberance of a true Roman! Her diagrams of what the ruins originally looked like were helpful and we had a few laughs as we drew parallels between some of Romes brutal politics and more modern equivalents. Her tour has helped us to better appreciate the rest of our time in this incredible city, well worth the price and a great pleasure.
Hugh and Sarah from Australia.
A Fantastic Private Tour Guide
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile
My wife and friends recently utilized the services of Ilaria Marsili on three separate sightseeing tours of Rome. Ilaria's knowledge, energy and passion for the subject matter thoroughly enhanced our experiences. Ilaria's hourly rate is very reasonable and I would recommend her services without reservation!
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2017 via mobile
My wife and are honeymooning in Italy and we budgeted very little time to take in the sights of Rome. With the help of Ilaria we were able to see as much as possible while also having the right context that allowed us to enjoy it even more. She was like the energizer bunny. From morning until late afternoon, she told us facts upon facts upon facts, which she blended into a continuous story of the history of Rome, from ancient times to the Papal State, to modernity. My wife and I don't usually take guided tours and prefer to tour on our own, but Ilaria came highly recommended from a close friend. She surely did not disappoint. During our tour of the Vatican and Ancient Rome, Ilaria displayed her mastery of both the progression of Renaissance Art and the history of Ancient Rome. She also gave us a look into local (current) culture and gave us great suggestions for the rest of our stay. Simply put, a wonderful and worthwhile experience. Would definitely book another tour with her if we are lucky enough to come back.
48 hrs in Rome...and, of that, 6 wonderful hrs spent with Ilaria braving the heat!!!
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2017
My wife and I began our "babymoon" in Rome where we met our friends who spent the week prior vacationing in Sardinia. It was my friend's idea to book a guide to show us the major sights in Rome and he was referred to Ilaria from his older sister.
My friend contacted Ilaria and she sent him the website to purchase the admission tickets in advance. This saved a lot of time!
As we were there during the weekend, Ilaria suggested to visit the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel on Friday evening at 7:30pm when the crowds are at a minimum. It was such a great idea! The sun was setting and it was beautiful.
On the Saturday, we visited the Colosseum and the Forum ruins after lunch where we each drank a bottle of wine! Being tipsy and walking outdoors was not the most pleasurable, but Ilaria made it so entertaining we could not help but listen intently!
She made the time pass very quickly!
Ilaria is very passionate about Rome and its history and we were mesmerized by her stories and knowledge of everything.
She allowed us to take breaks when we will sweltering and also told us to sit down in the shade when an opportunity arose.
She reads the body language of her clients and is able to be succinct when necessary.
She was very considerate and mindful of my 6-month pregnant wife and made sure she was comfortable every so often!
We loved her diagrams and her notes that she was able to share.
As someone who is a history buff, I can appreciate how she can retain so much of knowledge of ancient civilization.
The six hours spent with Ilaria was worth every dollar as it was captivating and a very educational experience.
Highly, highly recommended!!
I hope to arrange another tour with Ilaria upon our next visit to Rome but definitely not in the summer months when the crowds and the heat are at its worst!
We could not have done it without Ilaria! The best!
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2017
This review is long overdue. My sister and I engaged Ilaria for a private tour of the fountains and piazzas in Rome. This was as three hour tour on the day of our arrival in Rome. She was wonderful. I had been to Rome twice before and had taken a similar tour, but Ilaria showed us the most amazing churches that are not on the typical tour. And, just as we were about to run out of energy, she expertly guided us into the best espresso bar in Rome. The next day, we toured the ancient Roman ruins. She has a brilliant sense of humor and we enjoyed every moment of our tour. Last November, I returned to Rome and had one free day. I booked Ilaria for a private tour of the Borghese. What a treat! I highly recommend Ilaria Marsili.
3 days touring all of Rome
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2017 via mobile
Awesome time in Rome with this very knowledgeable tour guide. We were able to skip the lines and felt like there was not anything we missed in Rome. Ilaria was very helpful with places to eat and kept us organized (we were a group of 15). I would definitely recommend her if you are in Rome!
baths of caracalla & domus aurea (imperial palace)
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2017
Hired her for a 4 hour private tour and found her to be very knowledgeable and personable. We have been to Rome many times & she made this so enjoyable & memorable. Grazie Ilaria for a perfecto afternoon.
“Visita a Ostia Antica”
"Visit of Ostia Antica"
5 of 5 stars Reviewed Feb 19, 2017
Ilaria si è dimostrata una guida eccellente nel farci scoprire il fascino di Ostia Antica con descrizioni della vita quotidiana e spiegazioni molto particolareggiate. Abbiamo camminato per oltre 8 km scoprendo scorci e particolari che solo con Ilaria è stato possibile vedere. Ilaria è molto preparata, professionale , comunica entusiasmo e passione coinvolgente.
Ilaria has proved an excellent guide in making us discover the charm of Ostia Antica with descriptions of everyday life and very detailed explanations. We walked for over 8 km discovering views and details that were possible to see only with Ilaria . Ilaria is very prepared, professional. She communicates enthusiasm and compelling passion.
“Tour of Roman Forum with Ilaria Marsili”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2016
After my exciting tour of the Vatican Museum with Ilaria in February of 2015, I returned to the city to tour the Roman Forum with Ilaria in early November of 2016. Once again, Ilaria made my visit incredibly memorable. With her limitless energy and passion for history, she made the tour most informative and enjoyable. We even stopped to enjoy an espresso during the tour!!
Visited November 2016
“Private Tour of Rome with Ilaria”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2016
Wow!!! I can't tell you how fortunate we felt to have Ilaria as our guide for Rome in October, 2016. Over the years, we have had many guided tours and Ilaria certainly rates at the top. We couldn't have asked for a better guide. Her passion and knowledge of everything Rome was evident throughout our four days with her. Her English is excellent and she is easy to talk to.
Even though this was our second trip to the Eternal City, she gave us outstanding new perspectives on many of the areas we had seen before, including the Coliseum, the Forum, the Vatican and its Museum. But most of all, Ilaria helped us discover new highlights on the Palatine Hill, at the Borghese Gallery and especially our new, favorite hidden gem, Ostia-Antica (a little off the normal tourist track, but well worth the effort to visit).
Ilaria's rates are reasonable, and she is very responsive to all communications. We highly recommend her if you're searching for a great guide to Rome!
Visited October 2016
“Excellent tour of Ancient Ostia and the Vatican”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 1, 2016
Although it is difficult to select a favorite part of our first trip to Rome, visiting Ancient Ostia with Ilaria was an absolute standout. Without notes, she unwrapped Ostia, layer by layer, to reveal what daily life was like in this astonishing and important site. We were completely mesmerized and entertained for hours. Later in the week, we toured the Vatican Museums and the Sistine Chapel with her. It is here that the breadth of her knowledge about all things Rome was most evident. Ilaria is a virtual encyclopedia of Roman culture, art and history. Her enthusiasm and energy are infectious. She is authentic and endearing. We hope to visit Rome and tour with Ilaria again.
Visited September 2016
“Extraordinary Tours of Rome ”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2016 via mobile
We have been extremely lucky to have toured with ilaria on several occasions. Her knowledge, enthusiasm and good humor have made her tours one of the real pleasures of going to Rome. The depth of her knowledge on multiple subjects is extraordinary and is always presented in an extremely enjoyable and interesting manner. Whether you are going to Rome for the first time or have been there many times as we have, your trip should always include at least one tour with her.
Visited September 2016
“Best tour ever!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2016 via mobile
Without question, one of the biggest highlights of our trip to Europe this year was the tour of Rome with Ilaria. She was fantastic! Her historical knowledge of the city and people of Rome made every minute of the tour a joy. Her energy and skills at navigating the streets, transportation systems, and crowds allowed my family and I to move around Rome, it's museums and historical sites with ease. She took us to a wonderful restaurant for lunch in the old Jewish section of town and always catered to our two teenage kids, making sure they were happy and well fed. I would recommend using Ilaria again and again. Worth every Euro and more!
Visited August 2016
“Excellent tour of the Forum & Coliseum”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2016 via mobile
Ilaria was fantastic at providing my husband and I our own personal tour of the Palatine Hill, the Forum and the Coliseum. If you want to enjoy history with a story-telling ease of weaving together past with the present, then Ilaria is the best!! She took time with us, was warm and personable, and made our visit thoroughly enjoyable! Thank you Ilaria! We hope to be back someday.
Visited June 2016
“LUNGA PASSEGGIATA AI FORI”
"LONG WALK IN THE FORUM"
5 of 5 star Reviewed April 14, 2016
tre ore ad ascoltare la storia di Roma visualizzando i personaggi nel loro ambiente
Il luogo del rogo acceso dalla gente per il corpo di Cesare che ancora oggi riceve tributi, Nerone folle a causa delle vicissitudini familiari ma anche fine sensibilità artistica che metteva il benessere a disposizione del popolo, la storia del Colosseo degenerata in mano al potere, potere usato con ingegno dai grandi e abusato dagli astuti arroganti..
Spendide Ville dall'architettura moderna, spazi vitali per ogni capriccio, tutto illustrato allegramente dalla vivace guida della Signora Ilaria
Visited April 2016
Three hours listening to the history of Rome, viewing the characters in their environment. The location of the fire lit by people to Julius Caesar who still receives tributes now. Nero who become mad because of family vicissitudes but also a man with fine artistic sensibility that worked for the well-being of the people. The history of the Colosseum.. Spendid Villas deigned with modern living spaces... Everything explained cheerfully with the lively guidance of Ilaria.
Thank you .
“Loved seeing Rome with Ilaria”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2015
Went to the Pantheon, Vatican, and Borghese Gallery in one full day in Rome. Ilaria emailed us details about advance reservations that made everything run smoothly without wasting time standing in lines. Thoroughly enjoyed the experience and would highly recommend her services.
Visited October 2015
“Ancient Rome, Vatican Treasures, out-of-the-way winders”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 28 October 2015
I lavish enough praise on Ilaria. From the moment we started emailing her to design and customize our two-day adventure, we all knew we were in for a special treat. She is knowledgable, fun, energetic, and extremely flexible. There were 6 of us on the tour and we all agreed on how beautifully she handled the group and gave us a true feel for the wonders of Rome. We covered all of Ancient Rome on day 1, and the Vatican Treasures in the morning of Day 2. In the afternoon she hired a van and driver to take us to places we would not have gotten to on our own. We love her and hope you hire her on your next trip to Rome. You will be enchanted!!!
“Knowledgeable & Energetic Mary Poppins”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 12 October 2015
Ilaria has helped us appreciate Rome. It is becoming our favorite city. We have had the pleasure of touring with Ilaria three years ago and again recently. (We previously toured the Sistine Chapel and the Vatican.)
This last time we spent four hours seeing the Coliseum and Borghese Park. We were not prepared for the rainy weather. Ilaria (aka Mary Poppins) was prepared and pulled two ponchos out of her backpack. Later in the day she noticed I had a cough and she pulled out lozenges!
Ilaria tailored the tours to our requests. Her knowledge is amazing. I loved observing her passion for art, architecture, history, and coffee. I highly recommend Ilaria for anyone visiting Rome.
"Wonderful tours with family in Rome. Thanks Ilaria!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 September 2015
My family of four (2 teenage boys) spent parts of two days with Ilaria touring the ancient sites and then separately the Vatican in August. Ilaria was fantastic! Not only was she very pleasant to speak to and extensively knowlegable about the subject matter, she tailored much of her communication in a way that engaged our children and kept them interested in what we were seeing in really hot weather (totally exceeded my expectations). Planning for the tours with Ilaria was easy. Her communication on email was exceptional with clear directions on acquiring tickets and establishing meeting points. Once at the sites she knew exactly where to go to minimize waiting on any lines whatsoever and was able to suggest the best vantage points to view the site. It was fantastic how we breezed by tons of other tourists waiting to see everything. I wouldn't hesitate a second to hire her again in the future. Thanks Ilaria!
“Our family vacation”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 14 August 2015
My family had the privilege to have Ilaria as our guide in Rome for 6 hours. What a fantastic guide! We have experienced many tours but Ilaria was the best guide that we have ever encountered. My wife and I had our daughter and grand daughter with us on this tour. Three generations and Ilaria kept the interest of everyone. Her knowledge was amazing and her presentation was great, she is passionate about Rome and her work. We were advised by Ilaria to purchase our tickets for the Vatican, the Coliseum and the Forum on line in order to avoid waiting in a long queue. We entered the different venues with ease. We toured the Vatican and the Forum with Ilaria. Prior to visiting the Sistine Chapel, Ilaria sat with us in the Vatican Museum and explained Michelangelo's paintings in the Sistine Chapel by showing us pictures and told of his life long career. This really helped us to understand and appreciate his work. The Roman Forum came alive for us because of Ilaria's verbal presentation. She photographed us using our cameras in front of all the major sites and some minor ones.
We were in Rome in August and the heat was intense. Ilaria ensured that we were in the shade where ever possible and made sure that we stayed hydrated. She also gave us tips on other sites that we would visit on our own.
Ilaria is a people person and her tour was marvellous. I highly recommend her as a Guide and hope that if we are ever fortunate enough to be find ourselves back in Rome that she would be able to guide us.
Bernie and family
“A tour of Rome to remember...”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 6 August 2015
We spent two half days with Ilaria in July visiting the Coliseum/Roman Forum and then The Vatcan/St Peter's with our two children (11 and 13 years old) and we loved it! Ilaria has a wealth of knowledge about everything - art, history, culture! - and she explains these things in an interesting and informative way so as to captivate children and adults alike. We were in Rome when it was 38 degrees and Ilaria made sure to keep us in the shade and adjusted the tour accordingly so we could still enjoy it despite the oppressive heat. Definitely recommend (have already done so!) Ilaria to anyone who wants to bring Rome and its rich history to life. Thank you!
“Loved seeing Rome with Ilaria”
5 of 5 bubblesReviewed December 2, 2015
Went to the Pantheon, Vatican, and Borghese Gallery in one full day in Rome. Ilaria emailed us details about advance reservations that made everything run smoothly without wasting time standing in lines. Thoroughly enjoyed the experience and would highly recommend her services.
Visited October 2015
“Book early!! You will not regret it!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 18 July 2015
We just returned from a ten day tour of London-Paris-Rome with six kids. When asked who was everyone's favorite tour guide, it was unanimous... Ilaria! She was mine and my husband's as well. We only got to spend a few hours with her at the Forum, but she transformed the ruins into a magical place through her storytelling. She took a tired family of eight and got us excited about Ancient Rome. Her passion and love of history and Rome energized us. We all learned more in those few hours than we had in school. Our only regret was that we hadn't booked her earlier, so we could have spent our entire visit with her.
Her friend, Theresa, gave us lovely tour of the Vatican the following morning. She, too, was a plethora of information.
So glad we reached out to Ilaria Marsili Rome Tours!! Book early!!! Both guides were able to get us right into the attraction without waiting in line. It was crazy how long the lines were. It is SO worth it!
“Wonderful day with Ilaria”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 15 July 2015
Our family spent a wonderful day touring the Vatican, forum and colosseum with Ilaria. Our trip was very informative but at the same time full of lots of humour. Ilaria has a great ability to make art and roman history interesting to both adults and children at the same time. I would highly recommend Ilaria to anyone looking for a guide in Rome!
“A Knowledgeable, Passionate, and Friendly Guide"”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 10 July 2015
My wife and I booked a tour of the Vatican with Ilaria during our honeymoon in July 2015, and it was one of our favorite experiences during the entire trip. Her passion for art, history, and Rome in general sets her apart from other tour guides. I would highly recommend her to anyone who is visiting Rome.
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 May 2015
As cruise passengers, my husband and I only had 12 hours for our first ever trip to Rome. I wanted to make the most of every moment. We hired Rome Driving Tours (highly recommended) who in turn set us up with Ilaria to tour the Vatican. Best decision ever! Ilaria made our scant 2.5 hours at the Vatican amazing! Our tour was the perfect balance of seeing as much as possible without being overwhelmed. One of the many things we loved was that she took the time to sit down in the courtyard with wonderful pictures and charts of the Sistine chapel BEFORE we went in to help us understand the art. That way, we could enjoy the splendor without trying to have a lesson as we walked through. Ilaria loves her city and it shows. I also found her rates reasonable. There truly is no down side to including time with Ilaria when you visit Rome!
“Passion, humor and history!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2015
Rome and Ilaria will always be associated in my mind! She is the perfect combination of knowledge, passion and humor. A tour with her makes Rome come alive! A necessity when trying to understand close to 3000 years of history! Spend a beautiful day with a wonderful guide!
"an immersive experience"
5 of 5 stars ReviewedMar 23, 2015 paola g
It is not easy to continue to be of interest to tourists for over three hours! Our guide is a complete success. Driven by her enthusiasm, we had the feeling of living in ancient Rome, on the Palatine and in the Forum, including senators, emperors, consuls and clientes .... Clear historical analyzes, passionate descriptions, full narration, easy understanding of the times, places and characters. Especially our eighteen year old daughter appreciated the skill of Ms Ilaria. We recommend everyone a similar experience! Last, particularly important: though we had gone beyond the allotted time, Ms Ilaria continued to lead for even half an hour, in order to complete the course without worrying about the clock, thus giving proof of professionalism and passion. Thank you again!
“Don't see Rome without her”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2015
We were in Rome with two other couples and hired Ilaria for several different tours of Rome. I was especially interested in seeing sites that were significant for the roles that women played in the early church. Knowing that this was a special interest of mine Ilaria did some additional research for us. Her knowledge of history and her passion for her city really added to our experience. My recommendation is "Don't see Rome without her!"
Visited September 2014
“Private tour of Vatican Museum”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2015
My private tour of the Vatican Museum with Ilaria on February 14th was fantastic! Ilaria and I spent over 4 hours in the museum after Ilaria provided me with a brief history of Rome. The brief history of the city was essential as a precursor for me to fully understand the phenomenal collection of the museum.
Ilaria has a real passion for her work, more so than any other tour guide that i have met. She made this trip to Rome most memorable and the tour of the Vatican an experience of a lifetime for me. I plan to hire Ilaria for future tours of other parts of this wonderful city.
Thank you, Ilaria.
Visited February 2015
“Antique Rome tour with Ilaria”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 29, 2014
Ilaria's walking tour of antique Rome is full of beautiful anecdotes, passion, fun stories, knowledge and deep love of the city. We brought back a wonderful souvenir with us.
Thank you so much.
Visited September 2014
“Ilaria is Rome's best guide”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2014
We had two days to see the Colosseum, Forum, and Vatican and Ilaria Marsili was just the person to help us! Ilaria is dedicated, passionate, smart, funny, and constantly aware of the moods and attitudes of her customers. We had two children in our group with jetlag and she constantly engaged them and made sure they were in the front to keep their attention.
I cannot speak highly enough about Ilaria. You can see her love of Italian architecture and history through every phase of her tour. She will be a highlight of your visit to Rome and all seven of us strongly recommend her.
Visited October 2013
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2014
Don't look further. You will not be disappointed with any tour you choose with Ilaria. I only wish we had the opportunity to spend more time with Ilaria. Our entire family (kids ages 11 & 13) thoroughly enjoyed our Colosseum, underground and forum tour with the most energetic, informative, interesting and personable guide. Ilaria also introduced us to a great local café with wonderful, local food. We loved our few hours with Ilaria and have recommended her to many friends.
Visited July 2014
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2014
Grazie Ilaria for helping us fall in love with Rome with its beauty, history and art.
First Ilaria went through our itinerary and helped adjust it so we could see the most of Rome. She was very responsive to our emails.
We arrived on Saturday late morning from NY and met Ilaria at the Vatican. We had a quick bite to eat while Ilaria explained to us what we would see. We have two teens and she not only kept them awake but pointed out things that enabled the visit to be their own. It was mesmerizing and we quickly saw the depth of Ilaria's knowledge and love for the city she calls home. In the Sistene Chapel, she quickly found a seat for us to sit and observe the beauty around us. Ilaria checked in periodically to see our interest and guided us to quiet spots to discuss the history, some of the more interesting Popes and picturesque views. By the end of the four hours we were very happy we engaged her the following day for Ancient Rome.
We met her the next morning at the Colosseum. We met very early in order to avoid the crowds. It was perfect. This was my 18 year old son's favorite part of the sites and her explanations of the history, how it was built and utilized. Her energy is contagious - even for the jet lagged travelers. Once again, her knowledge of Roman history and the personalities that occupied the city during the Roman Empire was overwhelming. As we walked she pointed out additional interesting sites. Ilaria took great pictures of us, directed us to beautiful vistas of Ancient rome from Palantine Hill and was very patient as our teens explored the ruins and took pictures. At each stop Ilaria painted a picture of the Emperor strolling through the gardens, overseeing visitors or languishing in the dining areas. Again, she continually checked in to see what our interest and energy levels were.
We never would have seen so much or understood our surroundings. It truly made for an enjoyable and educational first visit to Rome.
Ilaria's rates are reasonable, and she is very helpful with all aspects of the short stay we had in Rome. Her English is strong and she adapts to all types of clients. We were on a cruise through the Meditteranean after Rome and met numerous guides. Ilaria ranked as #1.
Visited August 2014
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2014
Ilaria's love of Roma's history is incredibly contagious. We toured many places in Italy and even my 14 year old puts our tour with Ilaria as a favorite. She's wonderfully energetic taking us through the Colosseum and the Forum in an incredibly vivid way. Highly recommend!!
Visited July 2014
“Truly wonderful tour!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014
We met Ilaria at the café directly across from the entrance to the Vatican museum. It is a great spot for tourists to meet their tour guides and grab an espresso to energize for an incredible experience.
For the next 4+ hours, we received an in depth education of the construction of the Vatican and the Sistine Chapel and more information about the art throughout both places than I was able to process!
Ilaria really knew her way around and was able to move us quickly through the less important areas and was able to find quiet spots to explain the art and antiquities scattered throughout the Vatican Museum, the Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica. Her knowledge was very impressive and she delivered the information with a passion that was contagious! She really gave us a deep appreciation of the lives of the both the Popes and the Roman emperors all the way back to St. Peter’s death in the first century.
She was able to position us in the Sistine Chapel for an optimal view of the artwork, to ensure that we received the full experience.
As we went through St Peter’s Basilica, she told the story of how the current structure was built and was able to provide the history of the site dating back to Peter’s original burial site, under the grand altar. I was so interested in the archaeological expedition in the 1930s and 1940s that took place under the altar that, upon returning home, I bought the book “The Bones of St. Peter”. Fascinating.
Ilaria was excellent. Her passion for the art and beauty that is St Peters and the Sistine Chapel comes through in her explanations and the way she guided us through the entire facility. She has a particular love of the different marbles used in all over the Vatican and is able to describe which color came from which country! It was a wonderful and informative 4 hours. An experience that our family won’t ever forget.
Visited July 2014
“Engaging private guide, especially for kids”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2014
We met up with Ilaria twice for several hours while in Rome with our teens. Our younger son is not exactly enamored with lots of detailed tours, but Ilaria did a great job explaining the amazing sweep of Roman history, art and culture in ways he (and we all) could really understand and enjoy. I knew Ilaria was a good choice when, tater the first day, our son started asking more about the stories and details we had heard during the day. The other thing is that Ilaria is amazingly passionate about the art and history of Rome and, boy, does it come through. Truly memorable hours spent with Ilaria - highly recommended. As she would say, bellissimo, fantastico! Ciao.
Visited July 2014
“Ilaria is in love with Rome!”
5 of 5 starsReviewed July 20, 2014
Ilaria is in love with Rome! Her passion for the beauty of Rome is evident at every turn.
Our children (age 16 and 15) were entranced by her stories. She is extremely knowledgeable of all things Rome. Her Art lesson at the Vatican made the Sistine Chapel masterpiece come alive.
Ilaria points out details otherwise missed. She tailored our tour and made our quick side trio to Rome memorable.
Visited July 2014
“Ancient Rome revisited”
5 of 5 starsReviewed June 2, 2014
Ilaria is a wonderful guide. Her passion for the subject matter is so contagious and she is able to provide fact delivered with humor. Ilaria was able to paint a picture that brought history to life for us.
Visited May 2014
“Vatican and Colleseum tours with Ilaria”
5 of 5 starsReviewed May 28, 2014
We had Ilaria as our tour guide for the Vatican and the Colleseum while in Rome. She was amazing. Knowledgable, and passionate about her city. We were a party of 6 and she quickly adjusted the tour to our individual likes and desires. We packed a lot in 2 great days. She gave us historical info as well as practical knowledge for our visit. We highly recommend her.
Visited May 2014
“Ilaria brought history to life!”
5 of 5 starsReviewed April 26, 2014
We brought our children (12 and 18) to Italy to celebrate our daughter's high school graduation. Knowing how important a knowledgeable guide was for us on our first visit to Italy and Greece decades earlier, I researched someone who could breathe life into the ancient ruins and help explain the mind boggling amount of history in Rome. Ilaria did just that. She met us on two separate days, taking us to ancient Rome (Coliseum, Forum, Catacombs and the Appian Way) one day, and to Underground Rome and the Vatican/Sistine Chapel the next. Her knowledge was amazing, and her personality, "Momma Mia!", so charming. She was patient with our son who would occasionally grow hot and tired. Splashing him with cool fountain water, and making sure he was fed pizza on a regular basis, Ilaria not only kept us entertained, but brought each site to life.
Visited June 2013
“tour guide with passion”
5 of 5 starsReviewed April 25, 2014
We had only one day to see many of the sights of Rome and Ilaria was excellent to provide us with the ability to see our wish list and pack the sights full of information. Ilaria has a great passion for the culture and history of Rome and it spills into her speech and enthusiasm to share it with others. She brought Rome alive for us. We had a fabulous time.
Visited March 2014
5 of 5 starsReviewed April 3, 2014
Our family of four (children ages 11 and 13) spent two mornings with Ilaria touring the Piazzas and the Vatican. She was very engaging and passionate about roman art and history, and balanced this with a great sense of humor that kept things light and moving along so our children didn't get too overloaded. Five stars.
Visited April 2014
"An experience to treasure!"
Reviewed February 26, 2014
We feel so fortunate to have had Ilaria Marsili guide us through Rome. She is very knowledgeable and brought Rome's history to life for our family. She is warm, intelligent and engaging and speaks English very well. She provided us the background information we needed before reaching each site so that we could deeply appreciate what we were seeing. The study of Rome is her passion and the excitement she feels as she speaks is contagious.
We had limited time to spend yet Ilaria helped us navigate the vast architectural sites and art collections to make the most of our visit. She has a wonderful gift and ability to simplify complex information and make it accessible to all. I am particularly grateful to her for her ability to engage our teen and tween. We are all much richer for having this experience.
We toured three days beginning Day 1 at the Roman Forum, Palatine Hill, Capitoline Hill and the Colosseum to get an overview of the city. Our second day was spent exploring three separate and fascinating subterranean sites that Ilaria had specially chosen to give us an even deeper understanding of the way Rome has been continuously built over, parts recycled and made new. We got an up close glimpse of Roman life through time, discovering how they lived and what they were thinking and believing.
Our last day was spent touring the vast art collections in the Vatican, viewing museums, the Sistine Chapel and touring St. Peter's Basilica. Through it all Ilaria kept our comfort in mind, suggesting stops for food, drink and rest as well as bathroom accommodations. We moved along at a good pace without feeling rushed. Ilaria has great strategies for touring areas to best avoid the crowds. She always noted the best views and photo opportunities as we toured. Ilaria was also very helpful at making suggestions for places we might explore on our own and where we could find nice shops and great places to eat. Ilaria made our visit an experience we will treasure. We give Ilaria our highest recommendation.
“Excellent local knowledge w good English”
Reviewed January 10, 2014
We had the pleasure of Ilaria guiding us twice during our recent visit to Rome. Once for the Vatican Museum and St Peters, and once for the Forum and Colosseum. Ilaria was wonderful in her depth of knowledge and ability to tailor it to suit our family, which included two teenagers. Her English was excellent and we really enjoyed her enthusiastic and informed commentary. She engaged us all and made the whole experience so much more valuable than had we struggled alone with our guidebooks.
“The best part of our trip to Rome”
Reviewed December 9, 2013
We found Ilaria on Tripadvisor and booked a tour of the Vatican for my wife and myself. This was the best decision made. Prior to our trip Ilaria was helpful with our planning. We met up at the entrance to the Vatican museum and instantly were impressed by the warm welcome . As we moved into the actual tour it quickly became clear how passionate and how much of an expert Ilaria is on Rome , her city . We spent 4 hours plus going around the Vatican and all the time Ilaria was taking time to ensure that we saw and understood the details around us. I felt so sorry for tourists in parties of up to 30 persons being rushed around missing lots of important sights
Its really very simple , if you want a tour that will really take care of you and ensure that you see the maximum detail you should book Ilaria . We plan to return to Rome next year and will make a point of booking with Ilaria
Thank You Ilaria
David & Norma
Visited December 2013
“Incredible knowlege explained with passion”
Reviewed November 13, 2013
Ilaria Marsili is passionate about her city and relates it in such a way that inspires you to learm more. We had Ilaria show us the Forum, Colosseum & Vatican over the space of two days and we believe it would be difficult to find a better guide to explain the history, art and treasures these places possess. She communicated with us by e-mail before we arrived and even suggested an itinarary for the day we spent exploring on our own. You would find it difficult to find anyone better.
Visited October 2013
“We had two wonderful tours with Ilaria!”
Reviewed November 1, 2013
We just retuned from Italy where we had booked two tours with Ilaria; the Vatican and the Roman forum which we did on two separate days as they were each 4 hours long. Ilaria is charming and very entertaining as well as extremely knowledgeable. We were able to navigate the Vatican painlessly without the long lines and crowds and really enjoy it (my last time there was not a great experience!). The Roman forum took on a new life with her guiding us as she is full of information and colorful stories.
All in all we would highly recommend her and would definitely use her services again.
Visited October 2013
“Ilaria Marsili is superb.”
Reviewed October 21, 2013
We contacted Ilaria though a friend of a friend to take two of us on a tour of the archeological sites of Rome. We started right on time and had 4 hours of a very informative walk in and around the historical sites. We learned a great deal from her. She was able to accommodate our limited knowledge of Roman history and help it all make sense. She is very enthusiastic, dynamic and passionate about her city which makes for an entertaining tour. Without her help the walk about would have been a very superficial visit. I would highly recommend her services. You will have a delightful and informative tour.
You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Visited October 2013
“Ilaria Marselli tour was fantastic!”
Reviewed October 24, 2013
Ilaria brought Rome to life for us with her knowledge and enthusiasm. Due to her busy schedule, we had to tour Ancient Rome in the morning and the Vatican & St. Peter's in the afternoon, but Ilaria tied the two together with her stories. After discovering that I am an artist, she expertly maneuvered us around the large tour groups and took us straight to the newly restored Raphael rooms. Being friends with the restorer, she gave great insight into the restoration and the paintings that cover every square inch of the walls and ceilings. Without her we would have missed so much and would have been swallowed up by the slow moving herds of people. She brought Rome to life.
Visited October 2013
“Ilaria Marsili private tour was incredible”
Reviewed September 10, 2013
Our second trip to Rome and our best yet thanks to Ilaria Marsili's passion for Roma's history and art. We have hired private guides in Rome and other cities before but Ilaria was by far the best yet. Since this was our second trip, she made certain that we had new experiences and explained the sites and art in more depth. Her pace was perfect and her recommendations on restaurants and places to see on our own were spot on. She is extremely articulate, easy to understand and her delivery is nearly an art in itself. I would not hesitate to recommend her for any type of tour you are interested in.
Reviewed June 25, 2013
We 'found' Ilaria through her sister Marta who is also a tour guide (who is also excellent and reviewed separately). We spent one tour with Ilaria in and around St Peter's and Castel Sant' Angelo and had a great time. She is infectious with her enthusiasm and educational with her historical knowledge. She kept our entire group (family ranging from 13 to 80) engaged and learning the entire time. We would highly recommend Ilaria, but make sure you book in advance as she is very busy, particulary during the summer months.
Visited June 2013
“Ilaria Marsili Bellissimo”
Reviewed August 3, 2013
My wife, son and myself toured the Colosseum, Forum and Vatican with Ilaria Marsili and it could not have been a better experience. As I was planning our trip to Italy Ilaria was always helpful making suggestions about how to see as much of Rome as possible in two days.
When we finally got to meet her she was not only a very knowledgeable tour guide, but she enhanced the experience with her great personality, humor and passion for Rome.
Ilaria was always concerned about our needs and the pace of the tours.
If you want the best guide in Rome, look no further!
Visited July 2013
“Ilaria Marsili and Marta Marsili passionate about Rome”
Reviewed September 30, 2013
We were so happy to find these sisters. They both made us feel like family in minutes. Ilaria was our guide for the colosseum, forum and Trevi Fountain. She met us at our B&B we were 6 adults and one 18 month old. She has great humor and was very knowledgable about every place we toured. It was great to skip the long lines and get right in with Ilaria. She catered to us when we were hungry she found a place for lunch with outdoor seating.
We toured the Vatican with Marta the next day (also skipped the l. She also is warm and friendly. At one point before going into the Sistine Chapel she found a quiet spot to show us pictures of the paintings in the Chapel and we were so glad she did because not only was her knowledge about the paintings very interesting but once in the Chapel it was very crowded and no talking was allowed yet we could see actual paintings and remember what she had told us.
Both were very honest in their dealings. Take a good camera and comfy shoes. We felt finding these two was a great stroke of luck for us.
“Made our trip!”
Reviewed July 27, 2013
Our tour with Ilaria was just what we needed to make the trip worthwhile. She was like an encyclopedia in each of the places we toured. Ilaria was also very attentive to the group needs. We covered six sites in one day while moving like a "Slinky" the entire time.
“Wonderful private tour of Ancient Rome, Vatican and St. Peter's”
Reviewed June 14, 2013
We were fortunate to book tours with Ilaria Marsili during our stay in Rome June 8 -June 12. Ilaria is so knowledgeable. She enhanced our visit to the Roman Forum and the Colosseum with her knowledge of Roman history. She was patient and sensitive to our need for a slower pace. She helped us avoid lines, find easier exits and obtain taxis! Before touring the Sistene Chapel she shared photos of the ceiling and explained what we would see. Her expertise made our visit memorable and enjoyable!
Visited June 2013
Reviewed June 16, 2013
We toured Rome on May 6th. Our guide was Ilaria Marsili, whose vast knowledge of Rome and the Vatican educated and informed us. We had only one day in Rome and Ilaria was able to facilitate our tour so that we could visit the desired sites. In addition, she was consistently attentive, considerate, and gracious. Our day in Rome was memorable and fun thanks to Ilaria's expertise.
Visited May 2013
“Tour of Rome and surrounds”
Reviewed July 21, 2013
We visited Rome in April of this year. Ilaria from Our Rome Tours did an extraordinary job of assisting us (a group of four) in planning our time in Rome and helping with making the arrangements for the needed transportation and guides. The guides Flavia and Guia were both excellent and went out of thier way to assure that our trip was informative and pleasant. They were both very knowledgeable and accomodating to our requests. Flavia provided us with visits of Villa Adriana and Villa D'Este in Tivoli. On another day she guided us through rooms at the Vatican Museum that we had specifically requested to see and led us on a tour of the Farnese Villa. Guida guided us for a day tour to the Castelli Romani area south of Rome along the via Appia. The transportation arranged by Ilaria for our visit was exceptional. In addition to providing the travel arrangements in Rome, she arranged a private night drive for us in Rome and a private transfer for us from our hotel in Rome to the cruise terminal in Civitavecchia. Based on the excellent service they provided we would highly recommend Our Rome Tours as an excellent choice for a small group wanting a personalized experience in Rome.
Visited April 2013
“Ilaria Marsili Rome Tours - Family Fun, Informative and Perfectly Paced”
Reviewed December 31, 2012
Ilaria led three generations of our family, ages 8-68 years old, on a tour of Rome. Ilaria is knowledgeable, engaging and approachable. She provided as much information on the art, science and history as Rome as we could consume, but was also very aware of our interests and tailored our trip perfectly. She gave us exactly what we were looking for! in a city where guides vary substantially in knowledge and service, Ilaria stands out as the perfect balance!
Visited December 2012
“Ilaria Marsili - great guide to explore Rome and Vatican”
Reviewed November 14, 2012
Our group of very close friends (4 families, 8 adults and 4 teenager kids) came from USA for ten day vacation in Italy. We stayed in Rome for four days and had two amazing tours with Ilaria Marsili on the consecutive days - the 1/2 day Rome Overview Tour and 3 hour Vatican Tour.
Ilaria has all the skills which the great tour guide should have - deep knowledge, passion, friendliness, kindness, enthusiasm and dedication. Ilaria was not only running her tour with high pace, but at the end of it gave us the “homework” - list of places to visit on the next day.
We came back home two days ago and already want to get back to Rome and have Ilaria guiding us through more adventures!
“great guide for Rome!!!”
Reviewed October 3, 2012
My friend and I planned a 7 days trip to Rome, we both want to know Coleseum and Ancient Rome much better. We are very lucky to have Marta to tour the Ancient Rome and Ilaria to guide us through the Vatican.
They are both very punctual, delightful, extremely knowledgeable and very passionate about Roman history. We had been to Rome before, but it was such a more enjoyable experience to tour it with delightful and knowledgable guide. We highly recommend Marta and Ilaria and will definitely go back again to have them tour us other sites.
Thank you so much for the wonderful experiences.
Visited September 2012
“We loved touring Rome with Ilaria Marsili!!”
Reviewed July 16, 2012
Based on a recommendation from a friend, we hired Ilaria as our tour guide while in Rome. We spent two FANTASTIC days touring with her. We fell in love with her and the city. She tailored the tours to meet exactly what we were looking for. The breadth and depth of her knowledge is tremendous. Her love and passion for the art and history of Rome is clear and her energy makes touring fun and exciting.
We spent our first day touring the Vatican and the second touring more ancient Roman sights such as the Colosseum and San Clemente church. We didn't waste a second because of Ilaria's knowledge and we learned so much. She ended each day with suggestions for the rest of the afternoon and evening. She even went so far as to make dinner reservations for us!
Ilaria is so friendly and kind. I would recommend that anyone who is traveling to Rome and looking for a personal tour guide contact her. We will definitely do so when we return to Rome!
“Tour with Ilaria Marsili - Fantastic, Informative, Fun”
Reviewed June 5, 2012
On May 8th, a friend and I met up with Ilaria Marsili, of Ilaria Marsili Tours (www.ilariamarsilirometours.com), who took us around the city of Rome, both ancient and modern. We started from our hotel on the Spanish Steps, and toured around to the Pantheon, the ruins under the Church of St. Nicholas in Prison, the Roman Forum, the Caracalla Baths, and the Colloseum. At every step, Ilaria had more information about the history, the geology, and the modern climate of the city. I learned a ton walking through with her, much more so than I would have gotten on my own. We picked up a Roma Pass to get into most of the sites, which made things less expensive. Overall, awesome experience, and I highly recommend it.
“Ilaria Marsili - Fantastic Rome tour guide!”
Reviewed May 2, 2012
An amazing private tour guide called Ilaria Marsili took my 8 and 10 years old children, my dear husband and I for a half day tour of the Vatican in Rome.
It is a daunting task to try to arrange travel for a family of 4 from afar. However, Ilaria really did take all my fears out of the experience. First and foremost she was very responsive to my emails and helped us with the planning. Ilaria is so proud of her city where she grew up. She will bend over backwards to make sure we don't miss anything important.
We arrived almost an hour late...but she was so patient, professional, very friendly and immediately engaged the kids. Ilaria was able to take us through the museum entrance and quickly started the tour. She direct and navigated our path to avoid big crowds and kept us moving comfortably. Her tour was highly educational and personalized to our interest! Ilaria was also entertaining us by telling all the funny stories told.
Prior to entering the Sistine Chapel, she gave us an overview of the history and art of the chapel including small details to look for in a quiet and comfortable area. In the Chapel, we enjoyed and appreciated the quiet time.
Throughout the entire tour she checked the kids, to see if any adjustments were needed. Our family is impressed with her that we can't wait find a reason to go back and do another tour with her.
We truly had an exceptional time and this was really one of the highlights for our family. Not only was she extremely knowledgeable, incredible at her job, but her humor, gentleness, and enthusiasm exceeds our expectation.
I was pleasantly surprised that we received such excellent treatment for a very reasonable price and believe me I did a lot of research on private tour guides. We highly recommend Ilaria to everyone!
Ilaria Marsili's contact info: email@example.com / www.ilariamarsilirometours.com
Visited March 2012
Ilaria is everything that you could wish for in a tour guide. Ilaria combines an in depth knowledge of Rome with her natural charisma and enthusiasm to make a fascinating and entertaining tour which I would recommend to anyone. The tour was expertly tailored to our needs and interests and Ilaria knew exactly the perfect photo spots and shortcuts around the city and this allowed us to get the most out of our time with her. Her ability to engage and inspire young people makes her well worth a tour and in my opinion, there is no one better to open your eyes to such a fantastic city.
"Best of Best"
Reviewed February 8, 2012
My husband and I have traveled to many places and toured with many guides. I have to say Ilaria Marsili is the best guide we ever encountered. Ilaria is extremely knowledgeable, client oriented, and very personable. She easily adjusts her tour to the client's interests. She answers questions not with standard tour book answers but with enthusiasm for your particular interest. Ilaria is deeply connected to Roman roots, sometimes she made think she was there when it all happened! I loved just having conversations with her about the places and events. This is not a lecture tour. This is an, "I love my city and I can't wait to share it with you!" tour. She is so in love with Rome and it's history, she should be made Rome's Emissary To The World! Can't wait to spend many, many more days with Ilaria. Gotta start saving now!
Reviewed February 8, 2012 NEW
This was a second tour with Ilaria Marsili on the same trip. She skillfully took my husband and I through the Vatican Museum, Sistine Chapel, and the Basilica. My husband and I love museums! Ilaria knew we could spend days in a museum but only had this one day for these three sites. Given her extensive knowledge, coupled with our interests she discerned from our prior day together, she chose to show us select but important pieces. For example, Ilaria knew my interest in Michelangelo's David. I particularly enjoyed how she wove together the evolution of sculpture/sculptor pieces to show us how the art form grew, developed, and culminated with David. Her tour was both educational, introducing me to new pieces, and also personalized!
Prior to entering the Sistine Chapel, Ilaria not only explained what were about to see but also the small details to look for. Our time in the Sistine Chapel was exceptional because of her guidance. We so much more enjoyed and appreciated our time in this very crowded place.
The Basilica was very moving for me. Ilaria silently acknowledged the emotion of the moment and shed a few quiet tears with me. Again her knowledge, gentleness, sincerity, and most importantly, love of her city, made the tour so much more. I recommend Ilaria to everyone! My husband and I are so impressed with Ilaria that we can't wait to get back to Rome just to spend more time with her.
Excellent personal tour guide for Vatican”
Recensita il 7 agosto 2011
We hired Ilaria Marsili as a guide for our family (2 parents, 3 children (ages 11,13,15)) for a half day tour of the Vatican in Rome. She was excellent. Her planning and communication before our travels from the US was responsive and complete. She arranged a timeslot that worked within our travel schedule, and provided a plan for meeting at the Vatican. This all worked out very easily. For the tour, we purchased our Vatican tickets beforehand at Ilaria's instruction.
She is very friendly and immediately engaged the kids. Ilaria was able to navigate us through the museum entrance area (bag check etc) quickly and then the tour began. She found a quiet spot and provided a quick history and reviewed what we wanted to see. She tailored the tour based on this intro. Ilaria is extremely knowledgeable about the art and history of Rome, and how it all fits together.
Throughout the museum she checked in with us, especially the kids, to see if any adjustments were needed. She was able to direct our path to avoid big groups and backups to keep us moving comfortably. Before visiting the Sistine Chapel she again arranged a quiet spot to catch our breath and she reviewed the history & art of the chapel, so we were well prepared when we entered.
We spent 5 days in Rome and this was one of the highlights for our family -- especially the kids. We felt that the money spent was definitely worth it, as we could not have gotten nearly as much from a short (half day) visit as we did with Ilaria. She is fun, very energetic, good with the kids and again - very knowledgeable.
Visitato a Luglio 2011
“The ancient ruins came alive for our family with ilaria's keen knowledge and expressive style.”
Recensita il 31 luglio 2011
What a wonderful afternoon spent with Ilaria Marsili among the ancient ruins in Rome! Despite the sweltering heat that day, her tour really made the ruins so enticing for our family and her historical knowledge was impressive. She has an incredible sense of warmth about her and a sharp sense of humor. It was a highlight of our stay in Rome. I would recommend touring with her wholeheartedly.
“Rome, Ancient and Spiritual”
Reviewed February 6, 2012 NEW
Rome truely is the eternal city, but it is so full of wonderful experiences that it cannot truely be experienced without the services of a personable and knowledgeable guide. For this I cannot compliment enough our guide, Ilaria Marsili. She MADE our trip to Rome. We saw and did more then I ever thought possible, and her knowledge and anacdotes brought out the charm of the Eternal City.; If you do nothing elese, hire this woman to show you her home. You will not regret it.
Visited October 2011
“Ancient Rome Private Tour”
Reviewed July 13, 2011
My wife and I went to Rome in April. We were interested in taking a private walking tour. We emailed a guide some friends had used before, but since she was booked, she directed us to a guide that we eventually used, Ilaria Marsili. We briefly emailed each other back and for and set up a date to meet with her. A day prior to taking our tour, we decided to venture over to the Vatican for a run through the museums. Big mistake -- we got caught up in the crowd going to see the papal audience. Since we were Rome beginners, and not knowing what to do, I phoned Ilaria. She came through with great advice, giving us a quick day plan that allowed us to avoid the surging crowds and long lines. We went to the Vatican museums when she suggested and there was practically no wait.
Our tour the next day was fantastic. Ilaria speaks excellent English and she seems very knowledgeable about Roman history, architecture, and culture. She was very friendly and wiling to accommodate our wishes for what we wanted to see. We saw so much more than I would have even known was there if we had not taken the tour. Unfortunately because of our schedule, we were not able to meet her until our last day is Rome. My recommendation is to do the ancient Rome tour first. She can give you great advice on where to go and what to do for your remaining time. I found her hourly rate quite reasonable, and I would highly recommend her. She took great pictures, too! Her name and email address are:
Visited April 2011
“Best private guide for the Vatican, St. Peter's Basilica & the Sistine Chapel!”
Reviewed June 6, 2011
Magnifico! If you are looking for a great tour guide for the Vatican, St. Peter’s Basilica and the Sistine Chapel - look no further. Ilaria Marsili (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the person you need to contact. My husband and I took our 15 year old son to Rome in late March, and knew we would be overwhelmed on our own. We considered a small group, rather than a private tour, to keep costs down, but found that with three of us, the price for a private tour was too close to the price of a small group tour to quibble about. A couple years back we took a small group tour of the Palace of Versailles and not only couldn’t hear anything, but didn’t have any opportunity to focus on the things we were interested in . . . let alone inquire about them. The guide had her agenda, and really wasn’t interested in fluctuating from it.
We were referred to Ilaria by her sister, Marta, who we had booked to guide us through Ancient Rome. At first, we were a little worried that just because one sister was considered a good guide, didn’t meant the other would be . . but, not so. They are both fantastic! I only wish we had hired one of them to go through the Borghese Gallery with us, which we did on our first day. I know we would have gotten much more out of it. We “saw” everything, but since we don’t read or speak Italian, we really couldn’t appreciate what we were looking at.
Ilaria met us at our hotel and we hit it off immediately. As we walked over to Vatican City, she explained some of what we had seen at the Borghese and gave us suggestions of “must see” sites to do later on our own. Since Ilaria is a licensed guide, she was able to take us directly into Vatican City, bypassing the long (and I mean really long) line. When I told Ilaria that my son was going to be taking an AP Art History class next year, she suggested that we start off by going to the Vatican Museum. When Rick Steves’ describes it as “Four miles of the finest art of Western civilization”, he is not kidding! Ilaria was extremely knowledgeable about the various artists and kept a good pace, so my son was never bored. She was also willing to jump over periods of art that we were not particularly interested in and focus on what we were interested in seeing. She went at our pace, and even gave us time in the Sistine Chapel to reflect on our surroundings. By the time we left St. Peter’s Basilica, we felt we were among the luckiest tourists there that day - we saw everything we wanted to see, at a relaxed pace, with an exceptionally pleasant and informative guide, at a reasonable rate. Ilaria knows art, architecture and history, and, the icing on the cake is that she is actually from Italy! When you take into consideration how much her expressions, gestures and humor added to the tour, we have to question why anyone would hire someone who was not from Italy to guide them. All and all a fantastic tour. We would highly recommend her (and her sister, Marta), if you are looking for a guide in Rome.
“A guide to Rome with exceptional depth, knowledge, enthusiasm and energy”
Reviewed June 21, 2011
I want to second what another reviewer (Mary JST; June 6, 2011) says about Ilaria Marsili the guide who introduced my wife and me to Rome over the course of two visits, one in May, 2010, and the other in June 2011. Ilaria is immersed in the archaeology, geography, history, architecture, politics and, especially, the art of Rome; her incredible enthusiasm and passion for every facet of the city is evident almost every step one takes with her, every stop one makes. Her vivid and precise explanations bring the city to life. She will do the research needed to make certain that a customized tour is as detailed and thought-provoking as one through familiar scenes. We spent one full day with her looking for places meaningful to nineteenth century British poets, another exploring Baroque art and architecture, seeing at least half of the Caravaggios in the city, as well as comparing Borromini and Bernini. She's given us fantastic accounts of almost every crucial site in the Forum, has explained what modern scholars have figured out about the layout of the Baths of Caracalla, shown us where Caesar and Domitian were assassinated, explained the contribution of each Renaissance Pope to the culture of the city, taught us how to understand what’s engraved on Trajan's Column, uncovered the drama of the Piazza Navona, figured out who's who on Canova's memorial to the last Stuarts, patiently explained the iconography of the mosaics in Santa Maria Maggiore, and gotten a taxi driver to stop long enough so we could get photos of where Tosca made her last jump. While standing in front of the Moses, she defined the complex relationship between Michelangelo and the della Rovere family; while taking us through the Coliseum, she helped us imagine its relationship to the Golden House of Nero. But it is not just what Ilaria knows that makes time spent with her so valuable: her exuberance for Rome, for everything about it, helps forge powerful and lasting memories.
Ilaria has a fine-tuned aesthetic sense, thus she could demonstrate how Borromini, working within constrained budgets and fairly common materials, helped bring a new artistic mode to life, or how the Lateran is at its best where his hand is most visible, and where he was free to realize his ideas for the church.
She is very effective at planning complex itineraries. Since Rome’s churches in particular are only open to tourists for limited periods each day, Ilaria’s skill at timing things is indispensible to her ability to be certain that clients get the most out of their visits.
And she is excellent about making sure that her clients can make the most of time they spend on their own: she told us how to make sure we wouldn’t miss the Faberge Eggs on display in the Vatican, how to get around the city quickly, and where to find a great dinner. Her warmth and her kindness make time spent with her seem too short. If you are looking for a unique way to discover a city that does not disclose its secrets easily to travelers, please consider working with her.