Emilia Romagna

Emilia-Romagna Italy’s Jewish heart

A lone bell tolls from somewhere close by, not an unfamiliar sound when you’re in Italy, but at this moment it’s rather more poignant. I’m inside Ferrara’s ancient synagogue, still going strong in the heart of the former medieval ghetto, nearly 600 years after it was built. Tonight though it’s completely rammed, standing room only for the Friday night service and Rabbi Luciano Caro is beaming from ear to ear. Is Emilia-Romagna Italy’s Jewish heart? This region is a veritable treasure trove of Jewish history, and the cities of Bologna, Cento and Ferrara in particular, owe their very existence to their Jewish communities.

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The Beaches of Emilia Romagna

Emillia Roagna’s Adriatic coastal stretch is impressive. Miles and miles of soft sandy beaches, all of them clean as a whistle and family friendly. This is the thing about most Italian resort beaches, they are set up perfectly.From Lido di Volano in the north by the Po Delta to Cattolica in the south close to the border with the Marche region.

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Pink Night (La Notte Rosa) Rimini. Italy

Considering it was well into the early hours, Rimini seemed to have absolutely no intention of going to bed. It was staying up and having a ball; all the shops were open, the bars were doing great business and all along the beach in each direction you could only see a sea of pink. Pink Night is something a little special in Rimini. Not, as you might first think, a celebration of anything remotely gender based, but simply a celebration of a summer version of New Year’s Eve.

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Parma. italy. Prosciutto and Parmigiano heaven.

Aida was staring intently at me and explaining his unbridled passion for Verdi, so too for that matter, was La Boheme. La Traviata would have joined in the discussions but due to his advancing years was content to just sit and let his younger contemporaries take centre stage. In fact, I would think all 27 of Verdi’s works would have wanted to have their say given the opportunity. Let me just add at this point, these famous compositions were not Verdi’s original pieces, but very real gentlemen. They were life members of the Parma “Club of 27” and I was an honoured guest at their exclusive premises in the heart of Parma’s old town just a few miles from the great man’s home town of Busseto.

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Osteria La Campanara. Galeata

Tucked away behind an unassuming alley in the tiny Italian village of Pianetto near Galeata magic happens. Believe it. A restaurant revered by the locals, almost as much as the glorious renaissance church of Santa Maria dei Miracoli that sits next door.That is the magic of Osteria La Campanara.

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Antica Corte Pallavicina Relais

It’s not often you would find me deep in a damp ancient cellar, down and dirty among racks of hanging meat, but on this particular occasion it was well worth it, for this particular cellar was under the Palazzo Antica Corte Pallavicina Relais, the domain of Massimo Spigaroli, the undisputed King of Culatello, the Rolls […]

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