Dining at "Papa Rex" in Rome: Dinner with Flair

Sometimes in life it's good to have a little 'cheese'.  No, not mozzeralla - I'm talking about tacky, wacky, and even a bit cliched type cheesy.  What's travel without a little 'over-the-top' now and then?

When my husband and I visited Rome, we were there for three days with a tour group. On our last evening in Rome, our group was invited to an evening meal at a restaurant called "Papa Rex", which offered amazing food and, even better, dining entertainment.  After eating a delicious multi-course meal, we were surprised by a man, fully dressed in gladiator regalia, leaping into the center of our tables.

Our delicious meal menu from Papa Rex

What ensued was a dramatic, funny, and well-choreographed battle between two gladiators, while uniformed Roman soldiers stood nearby and gave orders.  Our group laughed, gasped, and applauded - the battle was quite entertaining.  It turns out the actors were promoting a 'gladiator school' that you can attend for a full or half day while visiting Rome. We never got to go, as it was our last night, but for anyone traveling to Rome with children it would probably be worth checking out!

gladiators in Italy, gladiator school Rome
The gladiators preparing to fight

After the gladiator fight, we settled in for some tasty dessert, but were interrupted by another surprise: a love triangle acted out in front of us, but sung in opera!  It was more of a love duet, except that at one point, I got pulled into it!  I had innocently walked over to compare photos of the gladiators with another member of our travel group, and was trying to return as sneakily as I could to my spot at the table, when the two singers pulled me in.  It was embarrassing, but I endured it!

opera in Italy, opera in Rome
Getting trapped in some sort of operatic love triangle

I have compiled a little video of the shots we took - my 'video camera' was the cheap one on my old-school digital camera, so the quality is not the greatest, but it will give you an idea of what fun we had at the "Papa Rex" restaurant!

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