The Trevi fountain is – quite possibly – the most famous of all the fountains in Rome. In fact there have been many versions and amendments made to the fountains in this vicinity over the years by such notables as Leon Batista, the architect, Pope Sixtus IV and Pope Pius V. It is worth noting that older versions of the fountain did not necessarily stand in the exact same spot as the modern-day Trevi fountain does now.
It was, in fact, the actions of Pope Urban VIII that decided the current location of the Trevi fountain. It was basically his idea to move its location to the Poli Palace. Urban commissioned Bernini to help him create a suitable fountain design and soon had plans to remove materials from the Pantheon and from part of the tomb of Cecilia Metella to use in the fountain’s building. Urban's grand ideas to loot from the treasures of Rome to build a new fountain did not please the general public and the pope gave up on his plans. So, the Trevi fountain in this form wasn’t actually built until another eleven popes had ruled over the city.
The next attempt to build the fountain was given to the architect Niccolo Salvi who worked on behalf of Pope Clement XII - although the fountain wasn’t actually finished in either of their lifetimes. Salvi did consult Bernini’s original plans as well as adding his own ideas to the statuary, structure, and design. The resulting fountain is considered by many to be one the finest in Rome of its time. It is certainly one of the most visited – tourists and visitors to the city are encouraged to make a night-time visit to the fountain, to take a drink to toast to their return to the city and to throw coins into the water.
The current Trevi fountain was designed as a large basin in a semi-circular shape. You have to go down steps to actually get close to this two-tiered fountain as it is sunk right down below pavement level. This adds immediate effect to the design of the fountain as – once you approach – it is easy to forget that you are actually in the center of Rome. If you approach the fountain you’ll see its water cascading down a trio of ledges and rocks at the feet of Neptune, his sea-shell chariot and his sea-horses. To the side you can also see statues of Abundance and Health. All in all, the fountain is an impressive haven in a bustling city.