There is something about Italy that makes it different than the rest of the world. As state before, growing up in America, I grew up with American culture. In fact, American culture has permeated much of the world, McDonalds on every corner worldwide, Coca Cola being sold on every street corner in every industrialized nation. And while there is nothing wrong with this, there is something to be said about Italy and its resistance to change.
Perhaps resistant to change is the wrong choice of words, perhaps it is the heritage that Italy holds so dear that makes it a gem of a European city. Think about the sights and sounds of Italy and try to compare it to the rest of the world, especially those saturated with American culture. Italy is just different in many ways.
The ways in which it is different
Italy is different not only because it is not as saturated with American culture, but that it has so much history that it is up there as far as worldwide cultural influence. The food, wine, style, and ideals of Italy have spread far and wide, not only due to the Roman empire, but because of how unique and alluring it is as a whole.
The language, people, dress, pretty much everything one associates with Italy is that of refinement and style. A romanced culture that is second to none and needs not be subject to the cultural whims of other countries. Italy is perhaps the most noticeable culture worldwide, second only perhaps to the US, and with good reason.