Friday, August 31, 2012

AUGUST 2012


FISHING VILLAGE


















08012012 In the past month, I've often found myself in the Naples seafront hamlet of Marechiaro. Here, Neapolitan individualism is on full display, usually tucked into a tight Speedo. In the 1950s and 1960s, Hollywood stars flocked here to get away from Rome. The district is full of fishermen, as well as residents who swim over to individual rocks to splay out beneath the sun. On a popular outcropping, a small stand sells water and fruit. Further out, fishermen collect mussels in large plastic buckets. If you approach them in a boat or kayak, they may offer you some to eat raw. I can't get enough of this place, perhaps because it strikes me as so Neapolitan. On a recent visit, I was trying to figure out how to get to a beach bar located across the water (apparently, you have to swim) when I ran into a group of fisherman who offered to take me out on their boat for a small fee. I said yes, mostly for the opportunity to snap photos of nearby rocks and buildings along the shore. Pure li pisce | The American
08022012 I specifically wanted to find the best pizza margherita, the classic 19th-century Naples pizza with tomato, mozzarella and basil. After a few weeks of sampling several hallowed pizzerie, I couldn't identify a clear winner. Even after narrowing down our pizzerie preferite to two finalists, the venerated Da Michele, of "Eat Pray Love" fame (closed most of August), and Pellone, a less-celebrated personal favorite on Via Nazionale, we couldn't agree on who had won the head-to-head comparison. Not surprisingly, the results seemed partially dictated by which pizza we ate first, when we were actually hungry. And it also depended on which pizzaiolo, or pizza maker, was working that day. (The gruff, grey-haired man with an eye-patch at Pellone is my favorite). The pizza chronicles | The American
08032012 "If it form the one landscape that we, the inconstant ones, / Are consistently homesick for, this is chiefly / Because it dissolves in water." When W. H. Auden wrote those lines he was here in the bay of Naples on the island of Ischia. Happy Birthday, Premio Ischia | The TLS blog
08042012 Wystan Hugh Auden was compelled to describe what he observed around him. The most important thing, beyond his poetry, was sharing his vision with a friend. Niebuhr’s biography tells us he was among the many writers and artists who were drawn to Ischia. Truman Capote, another of Niebuhr’s friends, came to the island and hoped to visit Auden at his home in Forio. But the poet, saying he was too busy, would not receive the emerging young writer. The two, apparently, had “irreconcilable disagreements.” Memories of the Isle of Ischia! An oasis for a great number of artists, dramatists, writers, poets, thinkers, and musicians, who spent pleasant days drinking aromatic cups of Italian coffee at Maria’s International Bar, while we - the children of that time - played among the little tables under a flowery pergola, running and laughing,observed by subtle and… pensive eyes. Castigat ridendo mores! | Florigium - The tree of my life
08052012 Gore Vidal, the prolific American author who passed away on July 31, left behind both an intellectual legacy and a reputation for living large. His former home in Ravello, Italy, dubbed Villa La Rondinaia or Swallow's Nest, which he sold in 2004, isn't open to the public, but has long been surrounded by rumors that it will be turned into a seven-room hotel by local hotelier Vincenzo Palumbo, who has said he would keep mementos from the famous author around the house. Gore Vidal's Former Italian Home |  TheHuffingtonPost.com
08062012 Located along the coastline of the Neapolitan Riviera, a holiday in Ischia draws upon the strengths of what embodies the best of a coastal holiday in Italy. Backdrops of hills covered in lemon groves and olive trees, dotted with whitewashed and multi coloured towns that lead down to the sea or in the case of Ischia Town a lake, holidaymakers have plenty of exploring to do after relaxing in the thermal springs. Aside from the beaches and the spas, the Grand Hotel Punto Molino offer is also an excellent chance to explore botanical gardens, castles, old towns and churches and the nearby island of Procida. Staying at the Luxurious Grand Hotel Punto Molino on the Italian Island of Ischia | digitaljournal.com
08072012 The island of Nisida belongs to the archipelago of the Flegree islands. Its circular form is a clear indication of the volcanic origin. Nowadays it is linked to the mainland by a bridge-dyke, from which there is a fine view of the coast to Pozzuoli. In the surrounding waters we can see the submerged park of Gaiola, of both archaeological and environmental interest. The island of Nisida | italia.it
08082012 From the Piazzetta, the pulsating heart of Capri, a pathway festooned with Mediterranean flowers leads to the viewing point from where to see a spectacular view of the Faraglioni rocks and one of the world's most exclusive 5 star properties: Hotel Punta Tragara. Conceived by none other than the great Le Corbusier, Hotel Punta Tragara is one of the boldest works of architecture on the whole island. Le Corbusier and the Faraglioni | italyTraveller
08092012 As a child in Naples, Italy, guitarist Marco Cappelli had little exposure to American surf music—the instrumental guitar-centric dance sound of the early 1960s popularized by the likes of Dick Dale, Duane Eddy, Link Wray and the Ventures featuring Bob Bogle. But, like many of his countrymen, he heard the twangy surf guitar featured in the film music of Luis Bacalov, Ennio Morricone, Carlo Rustichelli and Piero Umiliani, composers who scored Italian spaghetti westerns, gangster flicks and comedies. Catch a Wave | The Wall Street Journal
08102012 I think it’s not a secret that famous American people love Italy and apart those with Italian descends, many of them even decided to buy a home in the Belpaese. But, I was astonished when read a short news about Leonardo Di Caprio who after the purchase of a luxury apartment in Verona, came in my city because is daft about buffalo mozzarella. According to his entourage, the beauty of Titanic would be interested to start an in-house production of mozzarella, which is extremely fond. The Hollywood star is serious, and began to investigate the Campania region, in particular the area of Caserta and Salerno, to find a dairy farm to manage. Leonardo Di Caprio’s mozzarella | Italian Culture
08112012 One of the most prized cheeses in Italy is the mozzarella di bufala. Other forms of mozzarella can be found by different names, but they are made from cow's milk. It is the mozzarella di bufala that reigns supreme on an Italian's dinner table! So much so, that the production of mozzarella di bufala is strictly limited to only seven provinces in Southern Italy. Rigorous guidelines must be followed along with traditional methods in order to display the label "Mozzarella di Bufala Campana DOP." You know you are getting the 'real deal' when you purchase cheese stamped with this label. Italy's Mozzarella di Bufala Cheese | Travel With Julie
08122012 The Amalfi Coast lemons are iconic. You see them painted on ceramics and tiles, you drink them in the famous limoncello, and you eat them in gelato, cakes and regional pasta dishes. So what makes them so special? Lemons from the Amalfi Coast are larger and sweeter than the lemons we are more commonly familar with. There are two kinds grown in the region.The Sfusato Amalfitano, grown along the Amalfi Coast, is a more elongated lemon with knobby ends. It is a juicier lemon making it perfect for lemoncello. Grown along the Sorrento Coast is the Sfusato Sorrentino, a rounder and bumpier lemon with a meatier pulp, ideal for marmalades and desserts. Amalfi Coast Lemons | Travel With Julie
08132012 Charming hilltop towns, acres of lemon groves and vineyards, mile after mile of stunning cliffs kissed by cobalt-blue waters… its official name is the Amalfi Coast, but this magical land answers to ‘heaven.’ On this trip, you’ll live like one of the region’s (incredibly lucky) locals, discovering the small towns, mountain trails and local customs of this uniquely beautiful place. Explore the ruins of Pompeii in the morning, hike the coastline of the Med by afternoon, and tuck into bed at your converted 17th-century monastery homebase at sundown. Paradise incarnate. Amalfi Coast Local Living | G Adventures
08142012 Villa Rufolo is located in the historic center of Ravello. Built in the 13th century by the wealthy Rufolo family, a member of which was cited by Boccaccio in the Decameron, the villa was also the residence of several popes as well as of Charles of Anjou. It offers a stunning panorama over the Amalfi coast and the Gulf of Salerno. The German opera composer Richard Wagner was so moved by the beauty of the location that he imagined the setting as Klingsor’s enchanted garden in the second act of Parsifal. As a tribute to this inspiration, every year the lower garden of Villa Rufolo hosts a Wagnerian concert. Wagner said he would never have been able to complete his ultimate masterpiece had he not been inspired by its gripping beauty. Villa Rufolo, Ravello, Campania | Slow Italy
08152012 To capture the essence of Procida within the walls of an ultra modern design hotel was never going to be easy, but this is exactly what the owners of La Suite, an exclusive 5 star hotel bang in the center of the smallest island in the Bay of Naples, have done - to perfection. La Suite Hotel & Spa | italyTraveller
08162012 This is one of the palaces of the island, located on the heights of the very popular village. The property has been completely renovated under the guidance of Giampiero Panepinto in the idea of recreating "the atmosphere of a cozy house and embodied with here and there, references to the journey." The former fashion designer become interior chose to inspire Capri, imagining spaces both contemporary and timeless charm imprinted on the island. Capri Tiberio Palace Hotel & Spa | Artravel Magazine
08172012 Most of the Cilento region south of Naples is a national park with stunning rugged scenery lending itself perfectly to a week of horseriding on trails alternately running through ancient villages, olive groves, coastal paths and wild hilltops. The routes offered are suitable for beginner riders through to advanced and for those keen to taste more of Italian culture than horse hair, meals (along with accommodation) are provided at I Moresani, a farm which prides itself on its organic and home-grown produce. Horse riding in Italy | The Guardian
08182012 The Antiche Terme di San Teodoro combine both the well-known therapeutic treatments and a new wide series of services addressed to younger guests to enjoy them together with the quiet, unpolluted and green hills of Irpinia all around. Phylosophy of thermal baths | Terme San Teodoro Villamaina
08192012 A BBC crew has reached the rim of the crater the 1st of May. The aim is to produce a documentary during which it will be discussed about volcanic risk and scientific hypotheses on future eruptions of Vesuvius. Photo featured by an interview with prof. Mastrolorenzo. BBC on the crater | GuideVesuvio.it
08202012 Visit a vineyard at the foothills of the Vesuvius, where vines find nutrients and minerals in the thousand-year old lava, giving its wines particular colors and aromas. Explore the bustling streets of Sorrento, where you will find an extraordinary view of the entire Gulf of Naples. Relive history in Pompeii, the ancient Roman city buried by volcanic ash for centuries after the devastating eruption of 79 A.D. Discover how local products are made, such as Mozzarella di Bufala and Limoncello, take cooking classes, visit vineyards as you soak up the atmosphere of this vibrant Mediterranean coast. Jewels of the Amalfi Coast Tour | Nada's Italy
08212012 Locally they claim the Greco grape has grown near Naples since 800 B.C. and as you might expect it originally came from Greece – the southern end of the Italian Peninsula was part of the Ancient Greek world until the Romans took over. The soil is very mineral rich and to combat the heat the vines are grown at between 350 and 700 metres above sea level. Another fascinating grape that has been grown in the area for, Fiano is believed to have been the grape used for Apianum one of the famous wines of Ancient Rome. Avellino neighbours Tufo and again the height and mineral rich volcanic soils help counteract the heat to produce beguiling wines. Southern Italy – an eruption of terrific white wines | Quentin Sadler
08222012 The Irpinia tour is a celebration of Italy’s Renaissance with white wines that are produced in Irpinia, Fiano di Avellino and Falanghina. Situated 25 miles east of Naples and resting in the Apennine mountains, Irpinia is home to some of the oldest wineries in Italy. Operator Offers Wine-focused Tours of Italy | Luxury Travel Advisor
08232012 Campania, the rich region around Naples where the Roman nabobs had their villas, was the source of the celebrated Falernian wine, matured in terracotta amphorae for years or even decades. Wine is still made there today: the dark, berryish (and, in truth, rather variable) Falerno del Massico. Savouring wine from southern Italy | The Telegraph
08242012 We boarded the highs-peed ferry from Sorrento to Capri and suddenly I found I had Gracie Fields singing in my head: 'Twas on the Isle of Capri that he found her beneath the shade of an old walnut tree...' When we reached Anacapri, I decided I wanted to see Gracie Fields's house. It is where she lived for most of her life after the Second World War with her husband Boris, a former radio repairman from Romania. She owned La Canzone Del Mare, a swimming and restaurant complex which her home overlooked. It was a place frequented by passing Hollywood stars during the Fifties, with regular guests including Richard Burton, Greta Garbo and Noƫl Coward. Ferocious quizzes and dropping in on Gracie on a luxury European cruise | Daily Mail
08252012 Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton arrive on the island of Capri in June 1962. The screen stars, who were both married, were guests at Dame Gracie Field’s exclusive hotel on Capri, La Canzone Del Mare. New Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton Photo | Lisa's History Room
08262012 The final 24 hours of the Roman city of Pompeii are being relived on Twitter today - exactly 1,933 years after an eruption of Mount Vesuvius buried the city beneath a blanket of ash. The minute-by-minute reconstruction of the city's destruction is based on the tale of Pliny the Elder, the Roman scholar and admiral who took command of the city's evacuation. The city's cataclysmic final day will be retweeted as it happened from the Twitter account Elder_Pliny, who has been brought to life by experts from the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Final hours of Pompeii retold on Twitter (almost) exactly 1,933 years after Vesuvius eruption | Daily Mail
08272012  Across the bay of Naples from Pompeii, where thousands were incinerated by Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD, lies a hidden "super volcano" that could kill millions in a catastrophe many times worse, scientists say. The boiling mud and sulphurous steam holes of the area west of Naples known as the Campi Flegrei or Phlegraean Fields, from the Greek word for burning, are a major tourist attraction. But the zone of intense seismic activity, which the ancients thought was the entrance to hell, also could pose a danger of global proportions with millions of people literally living on top of a potential future volcanic eruption. "These areas can give rise to the only eruptions that can have global catastrophic effects comparable to major meteorite impacts," said Giuseppe De Natale, head of a project to drill deep under the earth to monitor the molten "caldera". "Super volcano", global danger, lurks near Pompeii | af.reuters.com
08282012 We are proud to share with you the first published photos of the House of the Telephus Relief at Herculaneum since archaeologists started their reconstruction of its wooden roof and completed studies of its decorated ceiling. Its extravagant decorations make it one of the most prestigious houses in the city, and one that once would have enjoyed spectacular views across the Bay of Naples. On the top floor, the sumptuous dining room with marble wall and floors, was surrounded by a terrace and topped by the multicoloured and gilded wooden ceiling. Raising the roof on the House of the Telephus Relief | Current World Archaeology
08292012 Rossellini, known as much for his colourful love life as for his movies. He filmed in Maiori, and stills from his famous scenes are displayed around the town. Visitors walk the streets recreating the poses of his leading ladies, Ingrid Bergman and Anna Magnani, pretending to star in their own movies. One person who doesn’t need to fake it is former builder Carlo Rumolo. Still sprightly at the age of 100, he was spotted by Rossellini in an amateur dramatics production in the early 1950s. Soon after, he was cast as a police brigadier in The Machine that Kills Bad People, a morality tale about a photographer whose camera has the power to kill. Carlo couldn’t be happier that visitors to Maiori still want to talk about his moment of stardom. ‘It is wonderful to have done something in my life that people care about so much,’ he says with a huge smile. Live the good life on the Amalfi Coast Live the good life on the Amalfi Coast | BBC Travel
08302012 "So why would anyone want to visit Naples? Because the city is magical! When you walk from the West district towards the sea, you see beautiful views and there are many nice places to swim. Naples is full of smells - from flowers, the sea but also from the garbage. Sometimes I recognise a scent when I'm in Milan and it immediately brings me back to Naples. The city is continuously balancing between love and hate, cruelty and holiness. It's like a lift, always going up and down. The landscape is somewhere between flatness and hills, and on the streets the past meets the present. When you visit Naples, you will find that people there are very friendly. If you ask a person on the street for directions, he will probably walk with you to the place, because people cannot speak English. Naples is a port city, so everyone is open to other cultures. All these reasons combined make the city very attractive to artists." Diana Marrone talks about Naples | Mediamatic
08312012 Naples. The largest and most extraordinary ancient center of Europe is an immense, gigantic ruin. Naples is a "Pompeii, which has never been buried," wrote Curzio Malaparte. In older neighborhoods along the Decumani, the ancient history of the city emerges from the catacombs, monuments, churches of every age, unknown masterpieces, palaces undone. City convent and monastic unique in the world, its greatest wealth lies in the numerous churches, chapels, cloisters, speakers with frescoed ceilings, arches, domes, incredible art treasures accumulated over the centuries. Almost everything in between alleys and abandoned homes defaced by graffiti, rubbish dumps and scaffolding that save crumbling walls after the earthquake of 1980. Ornaments and costly furnishings: stolen. In Naples, nothing is normal, the ordinary is extraordinary. Naples, the normal emergency | The Art Newspaper