Up to now 300 years, the Spanish Steps in Rome have been descended by artists, poets and lovers. They’ve provided a sweeping backdrop for fashion shows and selfies, and have featured in dozens of movies, including 1953’s “Roman Holiday,” starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck.
And prior to now week they’ve again drawn international headlines, after a tourist pushed an electrical scooter down them, causing 25,000 euros (about $27,000) in damage.
On June 3 around 2:45 a.m., two American tourists, a person and a girl, aged 29 and 28, were stopped by the police after throwing a scooter down the Spanish Steps, based on a news release from the local police. The pair weren’t named.
Widely circulated video showed the lady shoving her scooter down the steps while a handful of individuals looked on. The person, who was accompanying her, was also seen dragging his scooter down the steps.
The pair were each fined €400 (about $430), the discharge said. Because the lady appeared to intentionally push her scooter down the steps, a more formal criticism was filed against her for damaging a monument. That offense is punishable by up to 1 12 months in jail or a high quality of a minimum of €2,000.
Franco Pasqualetti, a spokesman for Rome’s City Council, said that the 2 tourists were “completely drunk” on the night of the incident and had been barred from the positioning for six months after causing the damage.
The steps, one in every of Rome’s hottest tourist attractions, were inbuilt the 1720s and connect the Piazza di Spagna to the Piazza Trinità dei Monti. In 2016, they underwent a 10-month, €1.5 million restoration that was underwritten by Bulgari, the Italian luxury brand whose flagship store in Rome sits at the bottom of the steps.
Three years ago, recent municipal rules introduced a high quality for sitting on the steps, a part of a broader effort to guard the character of Rome’s historic center.
The scooter incident got here weeks after a person from Saudi Arabia drove a Maserati sports automotive down the steps, damaging a minimum of two of them, based on the police in Rome.
Mr. Pasqualetti said that incident was not an act of vandalism, but an accident. “As an alternative of turning right he turned left and located himself on the staircase,” he said, “at that time he didn’t have the time to brake and went down the steps.”
Tourists have returned to Rome in droves, two years after Italy was the grim epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe.
The Italian authorities recently announced that travelers to Italy would now not be required to indicate proof of vaccination, recent recovery or a negative test.
“I feel the conditions exist for a summer without restrictions,” Andrea Costa, the under secretary of health, said on the time.
Those working in the town’s most iconic spots said in May that travelers were again filling the streets, with a minimum of one hotelier telling The Recent York Times, “It looks like nobody is afraid of Covid any longer.”