With its magnificent Baroque architecture, restaurants nestled in the shadows of Bernini’s fountains and bars frequented by Rome’s finest, Piazza Navona is a glamorous spot to see and be seen. But just a few steps away lies a cosy little nest where you can settle for the afternoon with your laptop, a coffee and a huge slab of cake, meet your friends for brunch, lunch or aperitivo and catch some great live music in the evening.
Its name might imply noise and chaos, but Ex Circus is a chilled out café-meets-bar-meets-bistrot, with a unique, artistic and laid-back style. Definitely no creepy clowns or lion taming here – and the only magic tricks you’ll see are when they’re mixing the cocktails.
If you’re a freelancer who craves company and is fed up of staring at the same four walls in your apartment while you frantically tap away on your laptop, this is the perfect place for you to get a bit of work done (thanks to the free WiFi) and still feel connected to the outside world.
The friendly staff, assisted by a charming little spaniel called Ruby, are attentive and chatty enough to keep you well-fuelled with tasty treats, caffeine and booze, but relaxed enough to let you sink into one of the comfy couches and feel right at home.
It also boasts a creative and varied menu, offering anything from bagels, sandwiches and superfood salads to a generous Sunday brunch and yummy desserts, all for reasonable prices (particularly surprising when you consider Ex Circus’s location near one of the world’s best piazzas).
Vegans and vegetarians are well catered for here, with diverse sweet and savoury dishes to ensure those with a meat-free diet don’t end up feeling like an afterthought.
If you’re in the mood for a chai latte or an artisanal beer, there is also a wide selection of teas, coffees and alcoholic beverages available.
But for all Ex Circus’s quirky cosiness, after 5pm it transforms itself into a cool nightspot, hosting live bands and singer-songwriters from across the musical spectrum, from rock and folk to jazz and reggae.
So choose your favourite chair and become one of the regulars at one of Rome’s hidden little gems. We promise it will soon become your regular hideaway or the perfect place to meet some new friends.
Monday to Thursday: 08.00 to 22.30
Friday and Saturday: 08.00 to 02.00
Sunday: 09.00 to 20.00
For more information visit the Ex Circus Facebook page