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MAXXI Museum Rome Guide: History, Construction & Architects

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Rome may be the eternal city, renowned for its history, but with the Maxxi Museum, we can look at contemporary Rome too.

A unique location, it is both a home to important modern and contemporary art pieces and a work of art in its own right.

Here’s how you can make the most of your visit.

Plan Your Maxxi Museum Visit

Ready to plan your visit? We’ve gathered all the essential details for you.

From ticket information and opening hours to our exact location and other helpful tips, everything you need to know is right here.

Maxxi Museum Tickets

There are a range of tickets available depending on what you want to do and how many times you want to visit.

🎫 There are a range of tickets available depending on what you want to do and how many times you want to visit. Maxxi Museum Rome tickets from the official site start at €15 and rise to €18.

The cheapest tickets are for students and only valid on Wednesdays, while the regular ticket can be used any day the museum is open. There are reduced cost tickets at €12, which apply to those under 25 as well as groups of 15 people or more who book in advance.

While a Maxxi Museum Roma pass is available, it's better to use a Roma Pass for the more expensive attractions in the city center.

visit borghese gallery travel tips Tip – To save queuing there are several options for buying in advance so you can avoid waiting by skipping the lines. This lets you fit more into your day and avoids annoying delays in getting to the sites you want to visit.

Maxxi Museum Hours

🗓️ Days 🕒 Opening Hours
from Tuesday to Sunday 11 am - 7 pm
Every Monday
May 1
December 25
Saturday and Sunday last entry at 5:30 pm

The Museum is open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 am to 7 pm. It is closed on Mondays.

You can purchase tickets for entry until 1 hour before closing time. The museum also closes on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.


You can find the Maxxi Museum in Via Guido Reni, 4A, Rome.

Using public transport, you can get there on Metro A, using Tram 2 from Flaminio, and getting off at Apollodoro.

By bus, use bus number 53, 168, 280 or 910. There is also a dedicated Museum Express that takes you directly to the museum.

Maxxi Museum Architecture Explained

The museum is full of wonderful art displays, but perhaps the most interesting art to be found is the Maxxi Museum Rome architecture itself.

From the outside appearance and Maxxi Museum plan for exhibits, there is so much to see on your visit.

Not everything is clear from a Maxxi Museum Diagram, so to make sure you don’t miss a thing, we will go through the various parts and show you why this is such a special building and design, as well as being an amazing museum.

Maxxi Museum History

The MAAXI Museum Rome began as an idea from Italy’s Ministry for Cultural Heritage. The nation needed a new home for its collection of contemporary and modern art, somewhere that reflected the importance of the pieces included.

While there had been understandable focus on the historic subjects across Rome in many museums, the new museum for modern art needed to stand out too.

In keeping with the history of Rome, a competition to design the new Maxxi in Rome was announced. The tradition of leading architects from around the world coming to Rome to bring their designs to life was begun again.

In 1998, with 278 entries from around the world to choose from, British-Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid won the competition. Maxxi Rome as it was to become, brought old and new together, much like Rome itself. The unique solution incorporates existing military barracks (Caserma Montello) with the curves and shapes of the new design.

The result is a building that is a piece of art in its own right. A structure that stands out even among the majestic buildings of Rome. Completed in 2010, the Rome Maxxi Museum is a wonderful building, and houses a superb collection.

Essentially two museums in one, it features both a contemporary and modern art collection inside Maxxi house. This makes the Museum of art history a really special place to visit, and an experience not to be missed.

Who Built and Designed the Maxxi Museum?

The winner of the competition to design the new museum back in 1998 was Zaha Hadid, and award winning British-Iraqi architect.

Even before the design of the Maxxi Museum Zaha Hadid had built a reputation for innovation and stunning design.

Her signature feature was the gentle curves that we can see within the Zaha Hadid museum design today. That, alongside a willingness to use materials in new ways as part of the overall effect, made her vision stand out.

As the Maxxi museum architect, she managed to reflect the essence of Rome while creating something visually unique. It is a sublime building that stands apart from anything around it. Once you see the Maxxi Museum in Rome by Zaha Hadid, the beauty and impact become obvious.

Our Maxxi Museum Analysis

Much has been written about the design, along with the protracted 12 year Maxxi Museum construction process. Our view of the building itself, one of the first examples of what the architect refers to as parametricism, is focused on its impact.

Rome is a city renowned for sitting at the cutting edge of architecture for millennia. Even here, this blend of old and new, with its curves and radical angle, the Maxxi museum construction stands out. It follows the ideals of Rome architecture and brings that need for statement design into the 21st Century.

The building itself very much reflects its own function. The Maxxi Museum case study was to create a home to contemporary and modern art, and it has been achieved successfully. With the Maxxi museum structural system of concrete supports, the large glass areas and stunning design set the tone for the collections the museum houses.

Maxxi Museum Interior

The Museum continues its ground-breaking design once you go through the entrance doors too. The design by Zaha Hadid museum interior features overlapping shapes and angles with spaces using unusual angles to create a unique ambience that reflects the collection of art displayed.

The Maxxi museum stairs, lighting and overall design allow for very different lighting and overall feel. This design approach builds the museum into an experience, and allows for unique approaches for displaying the wonderful art collection it houses.

Maxxi Museum Competition

The competition to design the Maxxi museum took place in 1998, with candidates from all over the world submitting designs for the space. In total, there were 278 entries, with candidates from every continent submitting designs.

Hosted by the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage, as befits such a high profile building, leading architects were key candidates.

Eventually, the design by Zaha Hadid was chosen, thanks to its innovative approach. She had already built a reputation for pioneering a new wave of design, and had continued it with her vision for the Maxxi Museum.

Maxxi Museum Materials

Construction of the Museum was not completed until 2010, a full 12 years after the competition ended. The complexity of the design and the materials used contributed to that long period to completion.

With a glass roof, steel stairs and cement walls, it has a neutral appearance that is the perfect backdrop for the art collection and various exhibitions held in the space.

Function of the Maxxi National Museum

Maxxi museum architecture Erin Doering Unsplash
Photo by Erin Doering on Unsplash

The Maxxi modern art museum is more than a home for the extensive Maxxi Museum collection of both modern and contemporary art that form its permanent exhibition.

It also provides space for temporary exhibitions, while acting as an archive for the pieces not on display. In addition, the building houses a library, Maxxi Research (a media library) and more.

It set out to become a cultural touchstone, and with so much art, photography, film and more found within the Maxxi Modern Art Museum Rome, it has definitely achieved it.

The Maxxi Museum floorplan reveals a flowing display of important works as well as the archives and more, together making a wonderful and important collection.

Maxxi Museum Criticism

Maxxi museum Kurt Cotoaga Unsplash
Photo by Kurt Cotoaga on Unsplash

As with any project that pushes boundaries, the Maxxi Museum is not without its critics. The location itself was the first thing to attract negative commentary, as it was considered too far from the center of Rome to be practical.

After that, the design itself was heavily criticized as inappropriate for a museum, with the angles and curved walls deemed to be unsuitable for displaying art.

However, while design really is all about personal opinion, over the years the interior of the Maxxi Museum has proven to be highly effective for displaying the sculpture, art installations and paintings that are found within its walls.

We disagree with the criticism of the design too, it is certainly different for a museum, but in fitting with its aims and the building itself adds to the experience when viewing the collection.

Maxxi Museum Facts You Won’t Find on the Internet

Here are four things you may not know about:

  1. MAXXI Museum Rome is the first national museum for contemporary arts in Italy
  2. Architect Zaha Hadid was the first woman to be awarded the Royal Gold Medal from the Royal Institute of British Architecture
  3. The design superimposes one building on top of another to give the broad open space and fluidity that makes it such a visual treat.
  4. Each of the five galleries in the Maxxi National Museum of 21st century art has a 6m ceiling height.

3 Famous Roman Attractions Near to the Maxxi Museum

how to visit the villa borghese gardens

With so much to see and do in Rome, making the most of your day by including other nearby attractions is the best approach to any visit.

Here are three close to the Maxxi Museum you can enjoy.

Villa Borghese

Housing a wonderful art collection and set among beautiful grounds, Villa Borghese is just a short walk from Museum. With works by Raphael, Caravaggio, Bernini, Titian and Canova to see, along with incredible 17th century architecture, it is the perfect compliment to the Maxxi Museum.

visit borghese gallery travel tips Tip – Consider booking this skip-the-line ticket for a guided tour with an expert guide.

Auditorium Parco della Musica

The Auditorium Parco della Musica stands as a dynamic complex in Rome, purpose-built for hosting a diverse array of musical and cultural events.

Designed by the acclaimed architect Renzo Piano, it is conveniently located in Parioli, near the Maxxi museum. Don't miss out—check the official site to see if there are any events during your visit! You can also book a guided tour.

Where to Eat near the Maxxi Museum

Where to eat near MAXXI Museum in Rome

Spending all day exploring the Museum and other attractions can be tiring, and at some point you will want to stop for a bite to eat or a relaxing coffee.

Here are three great options nearby you can enjoy.

The Palombini Café

Located inside the Maxxi Museum itself, this is a great place to eat or relax with a coffee surrounded by wonderful design and incredible art – The Palombini Cafe.

With much of the food made in-house, it has a real artisan feel, with quality food and one of the most popular coffees in Rome, Espresso Palombini.

A choice of pastries, bread, chocolate snacks and ice cream are on offer, it’s the perfect place for a snack during your time at the Maxxi Museum.


Another option you can find inside the Maxxi Museum, Mediterraneo has a more comprehensive offering if you want more than a snack.

With Bruch, Lunch and Dinner menus based around Asian Fusion cuisine, the food is exquisite, and service is excellent.

Again, you benefit from the wonderful design of the Maxxi Museum itself, giving a unique ambience and making your dining experience a special one.

Greco Romano

Just a short walk from the Museum, this is a fantastic bistro offering traditional Greek dishes – Greco Romano.

If you’ve been in Rome for a while, a change from the traditional Italian fare may be just what you are looking for. With a home-made feel, fantastic service and a relaxed dining experience, it’s a great place to stop and relax.

Where to Stay Nearby Flaminio Luxury Home in Rome

If you're looking to stay nearby without breaking the bank, choose one of these fantastic places!

B&B Da Ponticello

With spacious and comfortable accommodation and a great location, you are near to the very best of Rome when you stay here. The highlight is the terrace though, giving you amazing views over the rooftops of Rome.

The Break (La Pausa)

Close to the Museum and other attractions, this hotel offers simple but comfortable accommodation and a range of amenities.

You can hire bikes here for getting around Rome, and the hotel operates an airport shuttle for convenience. Great service from the staff and a fantastic location makes it a great choice.

Flaminio Luxury Home

A wonderful home close to the Maxxi Museum offering the freedom of your own accommodation with the convenience of a city location and more.

Beautifully furnished and ready to go, Flaminio Luxury Home is the ideal location to use for exploring the museum and everything Rome has to offer.


faq visit borghese gallery blog

How big is the MAXXI museum?

The Maxxi Museum has a total of 27,000 square meters of gallery space, covering 2 distinct museums and 5 galleries.

What is the purpose of the MAXXI museum?

The museum was created to house the national Modern and Contemporary art collections, however it is also a social and cultural hub and national archive. It houses a large collection of photographs, films and other media in its archive of modern Italy, and also hosts events and exhibitions of various types.

What style is MAXXI museum?

A modern design, The Maxxi Museum is often referred to as one of the earliest designs of the parametricism style.

What is the MAXXI museum made of?

The Maxxi Museum is made of a range of materials, but mostly Glass (ceiling), Steel (staircases) and Cement (Walls).


As both a striking architectural wonder and a fine collection of modern and contemporary art, the Maxxi Museum is a must visit if you are in Rome.

There is nothing quite like it anywhere else, and it makes for a fantastic experience you don’t want to miss.

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