Celebrating Italian Cuisine

Celebrating Italian Cuisine

Italian cuisine is simple. My Italian friend gasped when she opened up my heavily stocked spice cupboard typical of American households. “Why would anyone need so many spices?!” she complained. (After visiting her kitchen I clearly understood why she was overwhelmed....
Local connections in Italy: Handmade Deruta Ceramics

Local connections in Italy: Handmade Deruta Ceramics

It pays to have local connections. They throw up the door to experiences you might not have otherwise. Take this experience in Deruta, Italy, for example.   We’d been in Italy for several days when our local friend Dawn said she’d like to introduce us to her...
Four Reasons to Visit Arezzo, Italy

Four Reasons to Visit Arezzo, Italy

“Florence without all the crowds” is how someone once described Arezzo. And it’s true. Arezzo is home to upscale shops, fine restaurants and quaint cafés. Yet it can boast of Renaissance Art and amazing Etruscan history that seems to pop out at you...
Back from Italy! What to expect on your next trip

Back from Italy! What to expect on your next trip

(Thanks to both Lydia Grotberg, adventurous traveler and longtime family friend, who recently returned from Italy and Ann Hinrichs, trip planner and expert on travel to Italy for sitting down with us for this article.) Early July, after a rough week both at home and...
Rome or Florence? Where should you spend a few extra days

Rome or Florence? Where should you spend a few extra days

Last summer, my friend took her daughter on a surprise birthday trip to Italy. (Was she in for an incredible surprise or what?) Several weeks before the trip, my friend emailed and asked,   “If we had two extra days to tour around, would you suggest Rome or...
Villa del Balbianello

Villa del Balbianello

I have visited Lake Como on a number of occasions. From the first time I laid eyes on the setting, I was in love. In love with the luscious gardens protected by thick, stone walls. In love with the sleek sailboats of the rich and famous. In love with the small, cobble...

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