Rome’s 18th century world famous Trevi Fountain is getting a €2.18 million ($2.9 million) makeover compliments of the Italian Fendi fashion house.
The project will span over a 20-month period and was unveiled at a city hall press conference on Monday. Fendi designers Karl Lagerfeld and Silvia Venturini Fendi both spoke at the conference. Lagerfeld said Rome’s fountains “are there to glorify water, which is the most important thing in life.”
This move is the latest example of Italian fashion companies coming to the aid of Italy’s underfunded cultural heritage. Founder of Tod’s footwear company is also doing their bit by footing the bill for the near $34 million restoration of Rome’s ancient Coliseum. Mayor Gianna Alemanno said he hopes these two donations were just the start. He said “without similar initiatives, we won’t be able to save the cultural memory of our country.’
Fendi is also set to donate $430,000 to restore another fountain in Rome, the Quattro Fontane.
The Trevi Fountain is a famous landmark and a must see on any tourist itinerary. Visitors toss coins into the fountain in following the tradition that doing so will ensure a prompt return to the Eternal City.
The restoration is expected to be completed by 2015 and will involve a complete overhaul of the fountain, including cleaning the façade and marble statues and replacing the gilded Latin inscriptions and re-waterproofing the main basin.