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Io Adoro

During my trip to Ortigia, I saw many beautiful things and ate many dishes that were so delicious I wanted to Tweet/IG/FB about them immediately.

However, one of my goals during my vacation was to slow down.  I wanted to focus on what I was seeing, doing, eating at that moment.  I did occasionally post a picture on social media but cut way back.

My friend, Erica, is also a Sicily fan and we decided to highlight a few things we love about this incredible island for seven days.  You can following Erica on Instagram HERE.

First up is the Duomo.

I arrived in Ortigia during the early afternoon. After unpacking, and picking up some essential groceries, I walked over to the Duomo.

I was not ready.

Many friends have described the Duomo and its piazza as one of their favorites in all of Italy. Yet, I was still floored by her beauty, color, and presence.   It is truly one of the most magnificent buildings I have ever seen.

As with other regions of Italy, the layers of history in Sicily run deep.   Siracusa was one of greatest and important cities in the Greek empire. This dramatic cathedral was built in and around a 5th Century BC Doric Temple to Athena.   Doric columns are visible inside and outside the church.

In the 800s it was converted into a mosque by the Arabs who conquered Sicily.  Then the Byzantines returned to power, only to be defeated by the Arabs again.  They ruled until the Normans defeated them in 1085.

The Baroque facade was added after the devastating earthquake of 1693.  Somehow this very ornate style sits in perfect harmony with the Greek lines and aesthetics of the earlier structure.

I made it a point to see this building every single day.

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Photos: Me with my iPhone

This piazza is a perfect place to relax as the sun goes down and the locals start their passeggiata.

 

I’ve written before regarding how much I adore the collection Italian architect/furniture and interior designer Paola Navone has created exclusively for the American store Crate & Barrel.

Her new collection is out.  My siblings were kind enough to give me a gift certificate to Crate & Barrel and I had to get these glasses.

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Now they are sitting at my sister’s house.   One day they’ll make it to Rome.

I love the color of the rim and the lines of the glass.  Very simple and very stylish.

What a great tournament it has been so far (except for a certain jackass who has an issue with biting people).

We’re now at the knockout stage.  Brazil, Argentina, and Germany are the favorites to win it all but you never know.  Look what happened to Spain.

I was checking out old FIFA World Cup posters and below are five of my favorites.

ITALY 1934

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FRANCE 1938

343

ARGENTINA 1978

argentina-1978-world-cup-logo-design

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA 1994

Logo-of-1994-FIFA-World-Cup-Football-Championship-USA

SOUTH AFRICA 2010

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I’m curious to see what will happen with Qatar and the scandal.  It’s great that FIFA wants to have the World Cup in different regions of the world, but Qatar in the summer?   Sponsors are not happy about the bribery scandal.  This is a huge mess any way you slice it.   Moving the tournament to the winter will create even more problems, especially with broadcasters.

It’s a shame.  I hope FIFA can get it together.

There are going to be some serious nail-biting (no pun) games during the next two weeks.  Cannot wait.

Buon Weekend!

I chuckle when I read articles telling tourists they can see Rome in a day.

I have lived here for six years and visited regularly for three years prior and I still haven’t seen everything this city has to offer.

One of the places on my list was the Galleria Doria Pamphilj .      Note:  Sometimes the name is spelled with a “i”.

I have been to the café several times but never to the museum.  Last week I finally went.

Bellissimo.  It’s the largest palazzo in Rome that is still owned by the family.  There are free audio guides (subject to availability).  Prince Jonathan Pamphilj’s narration is fantastic.  He really makes the rooms come alive and it’s very interesting to hear his stories about growing up in the palazzo.  Jonathan and his family live in one of the apartments on the upper level of the palazzo, as does his sister Gesine and her family.

There are over 550 works of art.   The Doria Pamphilj family has one of the biggest private art collections in Rome.   Fortunately for art lovers, the collection is opened to the public.

For me the highlights were the Caravaggios, the ballroom, and the Velázquez.

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Photos: Doria Pamphilj

DETAILS

Open every day from 9.00 a.m. to 7.00 p.m.
Last entry 6.00 p.m.
Closed: 25th December, 1st January, Easter.
We inform our visitors that the Palazzo Doria Pamphili is open to the public November 1st, April 25th, May 1st.

TICKETS

Full price: €11,00 (audio guide included – subject to availability)
Concessions or Groups, children and young adults between 6 and 26 years old: €7.50
Schools/ University: 5,00 €
Concessions for school groups with prior reservation by fax or e-mail : info@dopart.it ; biglietteria@dopart.it
All cards are accepted except Am.Ex & Diners

CONTACTS

Entrance: Via del Corso, 305 – Rome
Tel: +39 06 / 6797323
Fax: +39 06 / 6780939
E-mail: info@dopart.it
Website: http://www.dopart.it

When certain people get on their high horse and say they never watch reality TV because everything sucks, in my head, I’m rolling my eyes.  That’s similar to saying they don’t read novels because FIFTY SHADES OF GREY was terrible.

As with any form of entertainment, there are great reality shows and then the ones that are pure garbage.  Regarding the latter I’m not talking about the ones that are so bad they’re good, but are truly awful.  They’re either boring or showcase the worst stereotypes of the protagonists.

I tend to watch shows where people are making something or doing something, like TOP CHEF, PROJECT RUNWAY, CAKE BOSS, MASTERCHEF ITALIA,  ONE BRYK AT A TIME, CERCO CASA DISPERATAMENTE,  (hmm lots of cooking and decorating shows), etc.

Since SKY Cable dropped the E! channel, my reality show intake has dropped.  That channel used to air most of the Bravo shows.  Tears.

THE FACE, the USA version, started airing in Italy a few months ago on Sky Uno.  I missed the first few episodes.  During one rainy (basta!) Sunday afternoon I happened to catch two episodes and I was hooked.

The format of this show is brilliant.  The wanna-be models are broken up into three teams with one of the supermodels coaching them.

Of course, nobody would watch a show that was all about rainbows and unicorns, so yes there is drama.  Naomi played to win and Coco and Karolina sometimes seemed like they didn’t know what hit them.

The UK version, which is currently on the air, is a little different.  Erin and Caroline give Naomi a run for her money.

I don’t understand why Tyra fired noted photographer™  Nigel Barker and Miss J.  I was so glad to see Nigel on the USA version of THE FACE.

Could someone please hook up Miss J. with a show?

 

 

 

The award-winning Fathom Magazine is celebrating Sicily this week.  I’m trilled that I get to join in the festivities.

IMG_4629My article is about Sicily and the solo traveler.

When I booked my trip, I didn’t think it was a big deal that I was traveling alone.   Then once everyone and their mother kept saying, “Wow, you’re going to Sicily by yourself?!”, I started to get nervous.

You can read about my Sicilian adventures HERE.

The entire series is fantastic.  I want to book a trip now.

 

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