Fosters + Partners has converted the Palazzo Marignoli on Via del Corso into an Apple Store, paying homage to Rome’s rich history of art and culture and making it the largest of all the 118 apple stores in Europe.
“We can’t wait to begin a new chapter in Rome with the opening of Apple Via del Corso,” said Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s senior vice president of Retail + People. “The new store represents a celebration of the unique history and art of Roman culture, and we hope to inspire creativity among the local community with our Made in Rome program and future Today at Apple sessions.”
Originally constructed in 1873 by renowned architect Salvatore Bianchi and a second renovation by architect Giulio Podesti, Palazzo Marignoli was the home of Marquis Filippo Marignoli and housed Caffè Aragno, one of Rome’s most notable gathering places in its day frequented by artists, writers, and actors. Several pieces of art showcased in Caffè Aragno have been carefully restored and thoughtfully incorporated within the new store design, including multiple graffiti panels created by Italian painter Afro Basaldella in 1950.
The teams were also able to revive and integrate Fabio Cipolla’s “Dawn” and Ettore Ballerini’s “Dusk,” two large ceiling paintings that date back to the early 1900s. Similar to previous restorations such as Apple Champs-Élysées in Paris, Regent Street in London, and Carnegie Library in Washington, D.C., Apple and a team of local restorers collaborated to create a thoughtful combination of historic and contemporary architecture with Via del Corso.
Large glass windows face Via del Corso, allowing natural light to stream into the interior. The store centers around a lush courtyard brimming with native Camphora trees — the green heart of the palazzo and a remnant of the historic monastery Santa Maria Maddalena delle Convertite. On the first floor, four sets of doors provide access to an exterior landscaped terrace filled with jasmine vines and olive trees inspired by Roman roof terraces that look into the courtyard.
Once inside, visitors will find a monumental staircase dating back to 1888, restored to its original detailing of locally sourced Carrara marble. On the upper floor, the Forum occupies the ballroom of the Marquis’s palazzo, which will be home to Today at Apple sessions. Adjacent to the Forum is a dedicated space for Apple Support and the Genius Bar, where a team of conservators have worked thousands of hours to restore the exquisite, geometrically patterned, hand-painted ceiling.