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Best City in Italy 2019 – Putting Milan on the Map

Best City in Italy 2019 – Putting Milan on the Map

It’s official! Milan is breaking records at every turn, and has once again been named the Top Place to live in Italy, ranking it higher than any other city in the country in terms of quality of life. On the architectural front, the Fondazione Prada […]

Discovering a Taste of Paris Part 1 – Taking a Walk on the Sweet Side

Discovering a Taste of Paris Part 1 – Taking a Walk on the Sweet Side

As the recent Netflix series of “Chef’s Table” enticingly fills our screens with more mouth-watering glimpses into the lives of modern culinary visionaries around the globe, featuring four of the world’s most acclaimed pastry chefs and tantalisingly sub-titled “Dessert is Served”, we go in search […]

‘La Crème de la Crème’ Market Tour and Cooking Class in Paris

‘La Crème de la Crème’ Market Tour and Cooking Class in Paris

Tucked away on a tiny ‘passage’ just off the bustling, vibrant market street of rue Cler in the 7th arrondissement, the last thing you would expect to see when pushing open the front door of Charlotte’s home and workplace is a fully-fledged, gleaming professional kitchen that fills the entire floor. Built over 150 years ago, this four-storey dwelling still boasts original wooden beams and a charming spiral staircase, while the spacious and airy kitchen area contains all the modern equipment and utensils a professional or budding chef could possibly wish for, a real hidden treasure.

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‘In Vino Veritas’ – Discovering Leonardo’s Vineyard in the Heart of Milan

‘In Vino Veritas’ – Discovering Leonardo’s Vineyard in the Heart of Milan

Just across the road from where the sacred ‘Last Supper’ painting is preciously stowed under lock and key lies a small but perfectly conceived hidden gem of Renaissance Italy that would be all too easy to miss. It’s yet another example, so common in Milan, […]

“Life is a Cabaret, old chum” : Putting a Feather in your Cap in Paris

“Life is a Cabaret, old chum” : Putting a Feather in your Cap in Paris

Sally Bowles, aka Liza Minelli, famously urged us all in best carpe diem style to put down our knitting, the book and the broom to come hear the music play – and where better place to do so than during a stay in the heart […]

Going Behind Closed Doors in Bergamo’s stunning Villa Pesenti Agliardi & Palazzo Agliardi

Going Behind Closed Doors in Bergamo’s stunning Villa Pesenti Agliardi & Palazzo Agliardi

Picture gently rolling hills, the greenery of breath-taking countryside interspersed with a mosaic of captivating historic villas, and tiny villages scattered in the midst of luxuriant nature, all just twenty minutes’ drive from one of the most enchanting medieval cities in the whole of Italy. No wonder Stendhal described Bergamo and the surrounding area as “the most beautiful place on earth” when he began his love affair with the country in the early 1800s – this part of the world is truly a land of wonder and one of the most delightful and surprising places to discover for a day visit, or even longer… (more…)

Dishes to Die For Part 1 – dining out in traditional Milanese style

Dishes to Die For Part 1 – dining out in traditional Milanese style

With well over a hundred restaurants recognised in the Michelin Guide in Milan alone, there is no shortage of extraordinary and innovative places to eat throughout the city. Along with a legion of top quality mixology cocktail bars and exciting chefs offering modern, international dishes, […]

“Liaisons Dangereuses” : Exploring the Scandalous Side of Paris

“Liaisons Dangereuses” : Exploring the Scandalous Side of Paris

Paris is synonymous with being a city of pleasure, and lovers of the Musée d’Orsay will be familiar with Impressionist works by masters such as Degas, Manet and Toulouse-Lautrec above, depicting the life and times of colourful female characters from the 19th century. Take a walk on the […]

A British ‘national treasure’ abroad – Grayson Perry at the Monnaie de Paris

A British ‘national treasure’ abroad – Grayson Perry at the Monnaie de Paris

I’m not sure the one and only Grayson Perry would thank me for the ‘national treasure’ ticket, but it is meant as a genuine term of endearment. In times of political turmoil and constantly shifting sands, there is always something thoroughly dependable and thought-provoking about his no-airs-and-graces, self-deprecating vision of the world, which he has been translating into various forms of visual art form since the 1980s. (more…)

Follow in the Footsteps of the Literary Greats in Paris

Follow in the Footsteps of the Literary Greats in Paris

Which literary buff hasn’t stood in front of the Opéra Garnier and been tempted to burst into song à la Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera? Which child (or parent) hasn’t gazed up at the awe-inspiring façade of the Notre-Dame cathedral, without imagining Quasimodo […]

One Step Closer to Paradise : the Heavenly Frescoes at San Maurizio Church in Milan

One Step Closer to Paradise : the Heavenly Frescoes at San Maurizio Church in Milan

Regardless of how long or short your stay in Milan is, there is one sight you absolutely must not miss. Without a shadow of a doubt, one of the most stunning discoveries in the city is to be found behind the inconspicuous-looking doors of the […]