‘Colosseum underground’ tour immerses guests in newly restored ancient Roman tunnels

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Hornblower Group subsidiary Walks Tours just announced a newly reimagined Underground Colosseum tour that immerses visitors in the iconic Ancient Roman relic like never before.

Created in partnership with Rome’s Parco archeologico del Colosseo (PArCo), this brand-new VIP experience features fresh exhibits and multimedia installations that bring to life the history of this millennia-old monument in eye-opening fashion with a collection of specially curated artifacts and digitally projected gladiators on display.

Guests will feel themselves transported back in time almost 2,000 years to the Ancient Roman civilization, as scenes of gladiators passing through the underground tunnels that connected the arena with Ludus Magnus—the training facility where these combatants lived, ate and practiced—are brought to life before their eyes.

“Since the origin of Hornblower Group, environmental stewardship has always been a critical cornerstone to our business,” said Kevin Rabbitt, chief executive officer, Hornblower Group. “We are honored to partner with the Parco archeologico del Colosseo on this project, as it aligns with both of our company’s mission to offer amazing services and experiences to our guests, while underscoring our work in environmental and social sustainability projects for the global good. We are proud of the foundation we have built as we continue to expand our relationships with like-minded partners like PArCo, by working together towards common goals in education and preservation.”

The newly enhanced exhibition officially debuted on July 20, a sophisticated new multimedia experience, complete with realistic holographic projections animating these iconic ancient warriors as they would have walked the original floor of the Cryptoporticus in their colorful armor toward the amphitheater, where more than 50,000 spectators awaited.

The exhibition provides an up-close experience of the secret underground passageways leading from the Ludus Magnus to the Colosseum, which gladiators traversed on their way to their deadly performances. The tour is enhanced by a curated collection of authentic gladiatorial armor displayed along the tour path, along with various pieces of ancient weaponry representing the main styles gladiators would use while competing for victory.

The original Ancient Roman artifacts on display come from the collections of the Parco archeologico del Colosseo, the National Archaeological Museum in Naples and the National Archaeological Museum in Aquileia.

“Hornblower Group is proud of our continually expanding partnership with Parco archeologico del Colosseo and strongly supports the value added in the restoration to unveil parts of the Colosseum’s history,” said Stephen Oddo, senior vice president, Hornblower Group and president and co-founder of Walks.

“This is a prestigious honor to work with a renowned institution like the Colosseum as Hornblower Group is one [of the] only international companies to partner with PArCo on a project of this scale and to have a plaque displayed onsite to celebrate the collaboration.  Colosseum Underground is a revered touring experience and we couldn’t be more thrilled to be bringing this brilliant and innovative project to life by educating to the world on this remarkable piece of history.”

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