where's neri
  19 Oct 2012, Friday  
LINEAPPELLE, ITALIA
The Very Best
  4 Dec 2012, Tuesday  
SANTA MARIA LIGURE
Behind The Scenes
  30 Aug 2012, Thursday  
RIVIERA DI LEVANTE, ITALY
Camogli
http://500px.com/photo/9746183

In addition to Paraggi, Portofino, Santa Maria Liguria, and Cinque Terre, there is Camogli. The beautiful maritime village is out of this world gorgeous, and what will catch your attention right away is the pastel colored houses close to each other, and in fact in Italian, the name 'Camogli' has a double meaning. One is 'houses close to each other' and the other 'house of wives', symbolizing the women who held closely together as they awaited their husbands to return home from their sea journeys.

I loved every moment I spent in Camogli, and I hope to return to Villa Rosmarino (http://www.villarosmarino.com). Hopefully in the summer of 2013!

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  29 Aug 2012, Wednesday  
PORTOFINO, ITALY
Puny

Couple of years ago, I heard of a restaurant called Puny in Portofino, and of course, it was on my ‘to-do’ list when and if I ever visited this beautiful seaside village in the Italian Mediterranean. One early evening in Portofino, I walked up to the restaurant on Piazza Martiri Olivetta. It was still empty and when I wanted a table, I was told ‘no’. Apparently, it was fully booked. I returned the next day for lunch, and I asked for a table and as I was about to leave after being told ‘no’, Mr Puny himself offered me a table in the typical Italian accent “You alone soul. For you, I will find a place” He was incredibly kind, and eating at Puny turned out to be much more than good food. Mr Puny served me himself (trofie con pesto, fish baked in sea salt and served with a lemon sauce). The espresso that I ordered formed a shape of a heart – perfect way to start off lunch in one of the most memorable restaurants in Portofino. The place is always full, and you may have to return again and again, especially if you are there during the summer months, but it is well worth the visit. Grazie Puny!

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  28 Aug 2012, Tuesday  
IL PARADISO RITROVATO
Portofino
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Perched on Italy's northwest coast, Portofino is one of the most perfect, most photogenic fishing ports in the Mediterranean. It is one of the smallest seaside villages in the world, and of course, one of the most picturesque. I spent few days in this piece of paradise.

Stay: Hotel Splendido is the oldest and most famous one in Portofino. I recommend it for pre-dinner drinks to enjoy the beautiful view.  You can also enjoy a delicious meal at La Terrazza, cooked by Corrado Corti – his pasta al pesto, which is the regional specialty is out of this world. If you choose to stay at a design hotel, you can choose Eight Hotel Portofino. I do recommend staying at its sister hotel, called Eight Hotel Paraggi – it is nicer, has its private sandy beach (the only one in Portofino), and has a free shuttle service that brings you to and back from Portofino harbor.

Eat: Da Puny is the best and most famous restaurants on the harbor. The fish is very fresh, and cooked superbly. The real joy though is meeting Mr Puny himself, who makes the diners feel special and at home. He remembered my name the next day when I was back for lunch, and recommended that I try a fish that he had just received. It was wonderful, and finished in front of my table with Mr Puny assisting himself. As I was leaving, he handed me a flower to say goodbye.

See: Explore the northern shore and the tiny bay of San Fruttuoso, where a Benedictine abbey was built in the eighth century. If you can't face the two-hour walk from Portofino, the abbey is served by regular ferries. It's stunningly beautiful, and over the years, the arches of the portico on the seaward side have become silted up, so that they are now all but buried by the beach. Don’t miss the Oratorio di N.S. Assunta, which dates back to 1300. It's right at the end of Via Roma towards the Piazzetta on the right. Visit also the Brown Castle with a beautiful garden and a terrace with a beautiful view of Portofino. It was built around 1000 in a dominant position so to watch over the entrance of the bay. The Church of San Giorgio is dedicated to the dragon-slaying hero of legend: find it walking up from the Piazzetta, the most famous spot of Portofino where everyone gather during the evening. At walking distance from the Church of San Giorgio you will find Portofino lighthouse.

Drink: As the sun starts to set, enjoy carefully selected Italian wine at the wine bar, simply named “Wine Bar”. It was wonderfully delicious to end the day with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc. Perfection!  

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  20 Aug 2012, Monday  
ON CREATIVITY
No Excuses

When I saw this post, I remembered the infamous quote from Henry Ford who said whether you believe you can do something or not, you are right. Creativity is linked to confidence, and I believe every single one of us is creative, but it takes confidence in oneself to bring forth that creativity, and to be willing to share it with the world. Remember, if you believe you can do it or not, you are right!

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