Wednesday 30 January 2013

New "Dolce vita" for the Trevi fountain thanks to Fendi?

A famous scene taken from the Fellini's movie "La dolce vita"
with Anita Ekberg and Marcello Mastroianni
in the Trevi Fountain
One of the most important Italian fashion house, Fendi, will fund the restoration of five of Rome's most important fountains, beginning with the Trevi one. 

The Trevi Fountain, completed in 1762 and set of one of the most famous scenes of Fellini's movie "La dolce vita", was last restored in 1989 but a new restoration seems strongly needed after chunks of stone crumbled and fell from the fountain's fa├žade last June.

The project, titled "Fendi for Fountains", will also cover the restoration of the Four Fountains located at the insersection of Via delle Quattro Fontane and Via del Quirinale in Rome. Fendi has given € 2.1 million to restore Trevi, while giving a "significant contribution" of € 320,000 for repairing the other Four Fountains.

The restore of the Trevi Fountain will last 22 months ending within 2015. Such works are announced as a real "gift", an act of cultural patronage from the fashion house to the city of Rome without being a sponsorship. 

In this regard, the mayor of Rome informed that the city approved a new resolution encouraging not only sponsorship but even free donation with the aim of protecting and enhancing Italian cultural goods.

Such donations have the obvious effects to help cultural entities - with a more and more reduced cultural budget - to preserve the artistic patrimony saving the cultural memory of Italy. In addition, since it deals with a donation rather than a sponsorship, there will be no Fendi's advertisement on the restoration . 

However, charitable monetary donations for cultural purposes have at least two undeniable advantages for companies:  an effective marketing return but, above all, they are wholly tax-deductible (with no upper limit contrary to sponsorship) from the company income according to Art. 100, paragraph 2, lett. m) of the Italian Income Tax Code. 

Such benefits can better explain why many Italian fashion companies are helping Italy's chronically underfunded cultural heritage, as the footwear company Tod's which will fund the restoration of Colosseum for 25 milllion €. 

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