Beach style is all about carefree, effortless dressing. A stylishly printed silk scarf, efficiently redesigned into a sarong, not only saves room in your suitcase but also looks elegant: All you need for this look is a silk scarf. Tie the two ends together and then wear it as either a skirt or a dress. Keep this article as a handy reference, it demonstrates 6 different ways on how to tie a beach pareo.
I’m wearing: My beautiful Lily and Lionel “Lavender Bloom” scarf. The lightweight silk is perfect for a sweltering hot day at Sicily’s Isola Bella beach near Taormina, Sicily. The makeshift dress easily switches from beach day chic to after-sun apero whilst sipping a Spritz or two.
Sicilian cuisine is just as rich and diverse as it’s culture, bearing traces from the Arabs and Greeks. The opulent deserts and sweets have been influenced by the Arab candymakers of the 9th century.
My all time favourite desert from Sicily is Granita, also knows as Granita Siciliana. Hailing from Catania, Sicily, the delicious, sorbet-like dessert made of sugar, water and flavourings is savoured all over Italy, but it tastes best in Sicily! (Yes, you guessed it, Sicily is NOT the place to go when you’re on a diet)!
The quality of Granita is amazing almost everywhere on the island, but Bam Bar in Taormina is the prettiest spot for enjoying the sweet but light local speciality. At the orange-themed café in the heart of Taormina, you can chose between several flavours: Café, Almond, Nutella, Peach, chocolate & and many more. The icy granite is a saviour during a hot summers day. Dip a brioche into the Tranita to eat it like a real Sicilian!
The texture and taste of Granita varies from city to city in Sicily: Catania specialises in chocolate Granita and he texture is smooth like a sorbet whereas in Palermo, the sweet is more coarse and grittier.
My favourite Granita flavour? A mix of Coffee and almond. Delish!
The pretty tiles of Bam Bar also decorate this year’s Rough Guide travel book
Mr Romantique cooling down at Bam Bar, Sicily.
I am wearing a floral Max Mara dress and Moschino cross body bag. Sandals from Attilio Giusti Leombruni
The opulent artistic style of the Baroque is my favourite architecture: Romantic cherubs, minutely detailed facades and domes that create emotion and drama. For my wedding, I chose a 1700s baroque Roccoco venue in Berlin and it was only natural to book our honeymoon to Rome, where the baroque architecture started, follwed by a lazy beach holiday in Puglia and a day trip to nearby Lecce.
Lecce is the only city tourist destination south of Naples. Known as the “Florence of the South” or “Little Rome”, the historic town is a feast for the eyes, a masterpiece of baroque architecture. Floral pattern and mythological figures adorn the ornate buildings. Our Italian landlord recommended we visit at night when the town is lit up. A magical time to go there and stroll in the picturesque alleyways and marvel at the wonderfully over-the-top-facades of the Santa de Croce Church.
As if this is not enough, Lecce also boasts a Roman amphitheatre and theatre in the middle of the centro storico.
Basiliica of St Giovanni Battista in Lecce
Mr Romantique strolling along the alleyways
Lecce’s ruins of a Roman amphitheatre
Entrance to Lecce’s centro storico
Remember Dolce and Gabbana’s wonderfully baroque AW 2012 collection? Inspired by the opulent churches and the baroque if Italy
What is the perfect place for a romantic honey moon? Exactly, Italy, the land of Dolce Vita and La Bella Figura. After 3 days of touring the eternal city of Rome, we spent seven relaxing days on the beautiful coast of Puglia, the southern heel of Italy. Gallipoli is located on a limestone island, capturing the romantic charm of Italian fishing villages and the rustic Mediterranean. Reminiscent of Dolce & Gabbana’s ad summer 2012 ad campaign, Gallipoli oozes the essence of Southern Italy. Enjoy the beautiful pics of Bella Italia!
I am wearing: For an overcast but warm day in Gallipoli I’m wearing all Italian! Vichy checked dress from Max & Co, metallic sandals from Attilio Giusti Leombruni, cross body bag from Moschino and Ray Ban Wayfarer 2140 sunglasses.
Ingredients for Dolce and Gabbana’s ad campaigns? Take a gorgeous model, throw in a rustic Italian seaside setting, garnished with a little black lace dress and matching lace tote bag. Viva Italia!
Narrow alleyways, a typical site in Gallipoli’s historic heart
All Italian! AGL shoes, moschino bag and max & co dress
Watch the fisher men sell their fish after a day out on the sea after 17.30.
A black feline soft paw chiling in the evenign at Largo Argentina
Rome is just an incredible city. Strolling through the heart of the city, every corner could be taken from a post card scene. From baroque churches to ancient archaeological sites; every building is a feast for the eyes.
Even more fascinating than the opulent buildings is the strong bond the ancient city has with cats. Yes, cats! During our trip, we stumbled upon a colony of 200 cats (!!) living at the ancient site of Torre Argentina, where Julius Cesar was once stabbed by Brutus. The cats live in a shelter which is publicly protected. Italy is a no-kill nation, meaning no healthy stray cat is allowed to be put down. The cats of Rome, Gatti di Roma, are a well known tourist magnet and decorate lots of calendars you can buy around the city. All together more than 260,000 stray cats live in Rome in over 2,000 colonies. Rome’s city council even declared cats as part of the Roman bicultural heritage.
Why do cats have such a special place in Roman culture? Apparently, it all dates back to the bubonic plague. The cat population in Italy kept the disease carrying rats in check, avoiding Italy’s population to succumb to the disease, unlike the rest of Europe. When the Italian Catholic church started to chase and hunt down cats in the 1300s, there were not enough cats anymore to chase rats and disease spread rapidly across the country.
Today, organised volunteers and the neighbourhood “gattare”(=cat ladies who feed cats) look after Rome’s felines. The most famous gattare was Italian movie star Anna Magnani, known for feeding the stray cats of Trastevere with pots of pasta.
Anna Magnani with one of her cats
So on your next trip to Rome, look out for the cats of Torre Argentina, the Colosseum and the garden of Trajan. Beautiful animals majestically perching on marble columns, looming over Italy’s ancient cultural treasures. What a sight!
Italy is my favourite country in the world! After having visited the Amalfi Coast, Napoli, Sorrento and Sardinia, it was only logical to book in a three day trip to Rome to kick of the Italian honeymoon extravaganza after my wonderful wedding (full wedding update will follow once I am back in Londres).
A lifetime is not enough to get to know Rome so I won’t even try to give out travel tips for Rome. Just sharing a few highlights I cherry picked from the wealth of culture to see in the Eternal city.
Trastevere: We were lucky enough to base ourselves just 20 minutes walking distance from world famous sites such as the Trevi Fountain or the Piazza Navona. The bubbly district of Trastervere is located west of the Tiber river. Quintessentially Italian, you will find cobbled, narrow allies lined by medieval houses, beautiful piazzas coming to life at night and many amazing restaurants, trattorias and cafés.
Via Scala in Trastevere
We stayed at a wonderfully romantic apartment in the heart of Trastevere, booked via airbandb. Accommodation in Rome can be hit and miss so we were delighted to have found this jewel. Contact us if you’d like us to share the details.
One of the many Piazzas in Trastevere. Polka dot dress from Max & Co.
Victor Emmanuel II Monument aka the ‘Wedding Cake’
This is a very young sight compared to most of Roms historical buildings dating back to BC. Completed only in 1911, the grandiose palace towers over the rest of the city. I love the marble white exterior and the stunning views the palace provides, often shared with brides who use this stunning setting as a wedding backdrop.
Crossbody bag from Moschino, wayfarer sunglasses from Ray Ban
Just outside the historic centre in Trastevere, Giancolo Hill provides stunning views overlooking the city. If you are a bit overwhelmed by the rich culture of the city (like I was!), this is the place to chill out and to enjoy a bit of peace and quiet.
The Aqua Paola fountain at Gianicolo is a 17th century basin made from marble taken from the forum. I dipped my feet into the fresh cold water to cool down. Like many of Rome’s sights, this is a popular wedding backdrop.
A lucky bride using this stunning, ancient amphitheatre as a background for her wedding photos.
What I love most about travelling is discovering local shops to see what the country’s own influences, trends and styles are.
Porto Cervo is the capital of the Costa Smeralda, Sardinia and caters for its affluent visitors with high-end shops.
I discovered the jewellery shop “More & Chic” at Porto Cervo’s luxurious shopping mile.
Their stunning pieces of jewellery reflect the colours of the Emerald coast:
- Off-white gem stones like the sugary white sand at Spiaggi Principe
- Emerald green earrings and necklaces like the crystal clear water that gave the Costa Smeralda it’s name
- yellow and light brown zirconia as warm as the Italian sun
As you can see, the jewellery is, like everything in Italy, excellently crafted and shows the expertise of its designers.
Above: Italian Model Bianca Balti wears stunning emerald green Jewellery by “DeGrisogono”
Emerald pearls with a golden bow – cute!
Look at those gorge cocktail rings!
Sea and shells! Imagine this necklace on tanned skin and an elegant dress!
How amazing are these heart earrings?
All of the above eyecandy jewellery is sold at More & Chic at Porto Cervo, Sardinia, Italy.
Never forget to have fun with jewellery too! I’m messing about with pop orange pineapple earrings, €5, from a Sardinian souvenir shop.
Teresa di Gallura is the most Northern tip of Sardinia and just 30 minutes away from Corsica. It’s a dream location for spending the day at the seaside.
Italy is a feast for the senses: The spring with its luscious, rich colours of bright pink colours embedded in moss green mountains, the gelati coloured houses, decorated with loving attention to detail, the tasty food and of course the crystal clear waters in shades of turquoise , deep blue and emerald green.
Above: I’m wearing an aquamarine pleated skirt from Benetton and espadrille wedges overlooking the beach.
Dream of summer and enjoy the beautiful pictures of Sardinia
Needless to say I had a few gelatos too many last week!
It’s Sardinia for me the second time round as we leave dreary London behind for a little bit of springy sunshine in one of Italy’s most beautiful spots.
On arrival in Olbia, I’m wearing a silk A-line skirt by Stefanel in one of my favourite colour combinations – turquoise and brown. A light trench coat is a safe option for a spring trip – after all it can rain in the Mediterranean too! Nude ballet pumps from Pretty Ballerina will fit with any colour packed in my suitcase. The light pink straw bag is from Sofia C.
Mummy Romantique is wearing a white, ruffled blouse by Airfield, lemon yellow handbag by Mulberry and quilted ballet pumps by Pretty Ballerina.