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Venosa is one of Italy’s Most Beautiful Little Towns and it was called after the goddess Venus, to whom the Romans dedicated the colony.  

An ancient Jewish community

In the province of Potenza in the Basilicata region it is also the birthplace of the Roman poet Horace who was born here in 65 B.C. in what was then a Roman colony in a strategic position between Puglia and the historical region of Lucania.  From the IV century A.D. there was an important Jewish community in Venosa, as has been shown by the epigraphs, and the hypogeum complex that was used for burials and has many inscriptions in Greek, Latin and the Jewish alphabet.

Remains of baths and of an amphitheatre

The most important Roman archeological area is San Rocco and the most interesting remains are the baths and the amphitheater, as well those of many private houses. In the tepidarium it is possible to see some brick pillars and in the frigidarium there are mosaic floors with geometric patterns and aquatic animals.  The amphitheater could host 10,000 spectators and had an elliptical shape; the parts visible today include the perimeter and the walls in opus mixtus and opus reticulatus styles.

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The 15th-century Aragonese castle

One of Venosa's most important artistic and architectural treasures is the majestic Aragonese Castle built in the middle of the 15th-century by Duke Pirro del Balzo. On a similar layout to the Castelnuovo Castle in Naples, it was surrounded by a defensive moat and had a drawbridge and mighty cylindrical towers. In the 17th century it was turned into a noble residence, and today it is the Municipal Library and the Archaeological Museum. 

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Famous for its red Aglianico wine

Broad beans and chicory, fresh cheeses, lamb and honey are just some of the delicious gastronomic specialties to be enjoyed in Venosa, which is famous for its Roman archaeological park and magnificent castle. Without forgetting that Venosa is one of the municipalities in Basilicata that are home to the famous Aglianico del Vulture which is one of Italy’s great red wines.
For information: www.venosaturistica.com



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Published in Cities & Regions

Tickets for travelling on board the FS Italian State Railway’s Treni Turistici Italiani's Espressi trains are now on sale through all Trenitalia distribution channels.

Daytime trains on the Ligurian Riviera

For this summer they include the Espresso Cadore and the Espresso Versilia, but within the next few weeks the other daytime service, the Espresso Riviera, will also be on sale.  The Espresso Versilia includes an itinerary through the Ligurian Riviera, with Portofino, the Cinque Terre, the beaches of Versilia, Pisa and Livorno. There is a daytime round-trip connection from Milano Centrale and Pavia to Genoa, Santa Margherita Ligure, Monterosso, Corniglia, Riomaggiore, Massa Carrara, Forte dei Marmi, Camaiore, Viareggio, Torre del Lago-Puccini, Pisa and Livorno. Departures will be on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 August to 26 September.

A night train to Cortina d’Ampezzo

The Cadore Express departs from the heart of Rome travelling at night to Calalzo di Cadore and, thanks to a dedicated bus connection, on to Cortina d'Ampezzo. The frequency of summer departures is modulated to offer the opportunity to experience not only Cortina d'Ampezzo but also many places in the Cadore and Belluno Alps. There are departures from Roma Termini on Tuesdays and Fridays, with intermediate stops at Ponte nelle Alpi and Longarone, and the return is from Cortina d'Ampezzo/Calalzo on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The Espresso Cadore will run from 25 June to 31 August.

Compartments for 4-6 people at weekends

The Espresso Riviera is the daytime train that passes the beaches on the Ligurian Riviera dei Fiori to the French Riviera, with departures from Milano Centrale and Pavia to Varazze, Savona, Albenga, Alassio, Sanremo, Bordighera and Ventimiglia. Here too, it will be possible to rediscover the pleasure of travelling in serenity and privacy, thanks to the return of lounge compartments accommodating no more than four to six people, and with XL windows. Weekend departures are from 3 August to the end of September.

Restaurant service and a carriage for bicycles 

All the FS Treni Turistici Italiani's express trains have a restaurant service. In the special carriage, unique of its kind and with large windows  there are refined interiors and comfortable seating, and typical Italian menus. The on-board bar is available for the duration of the journey. They also all have a special carriage with ample space and manned by dedicated staff, for the comfortable and safe transport of bicycles, sports equipment and large luggage.

Small pets are welcome and there are 50% discounts

Small pets are welcome on board and FS Treni Turistici Italiani has activated the promotional offer TTI Special, offering a limited number of seats with a 50% discount on the basic price and available within 48 hours of the train's departure.

Published in Transportation

ITA Airways boosts its North American routes with a new flight from Rome Fiumicino to Toronto. 

Operated by Airbus A330-900 aircraft

Six weekly frequencies will be operated on the route, which will become daily from June to September and will become five weekly in October. During the month of May, the departure from Rome Fiumicino is at 10:15 a.m. landing in Toronto at 2:05 p.m. (local time), while the flight from Toronto departs at 4:40 p.m. (local time) and arrives in Rome Fiumicino at 7:15 a.m. the following day. The inaugural flight was operated with the new-generation Airbus A330-900 configured with three classes including 30 seats in Business Class, with seats that fully recline to become a bed, 24 seats in Premium Economy and 237 seats in Economy, 36 of which are dedicated to Comfort Economy.

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“We expect to carry up to 2 million Italian-Canadians”

"The launch of ITA Airways' connections between Italy and Canada responds to the high demand for mobility between the two countries, also by virtue of the significant presence of Canadian citizens of Italian origin,- said Emiliana Limosani, chief commercial officer ITA Airways and CEO of Volare. -With our direct flight we expect to carry up to two million Italian-Canadians each year. The flight will give passengers access not only to point-to-point traffic, but also to other destinations within both countries, thus combining leisure and business travel. The new route is already seeing excellent results in terms of bookings, with over 30,000 passengers in the period from May to September."

“A record for carriers operating to and from Canada”

"With the launch of this new route, the 2024 summer season for Canada can count on peak months with as many as seven daily departures from Rome to the main Canadian cities - said Ivan Bassato, chief aviation officer of Aeroporti di Roma. -This is a record for carriers operating to and from Canada that positions Fiumicino among the best European airports, with a growth of over 30% compared to 2023. This is an important connection that allows us to better collaborate on a strategic market,- said Ivana Jelinic, CEO of ENIT, the Italian national tourist board. -Canada is a country with one of the highest presence of Italians in the world and therefore plays an important role in the growth of return tourism.  The new ITA Airways Rome-Toronto flight offers a unique opportunity to expand and diversify tourist flows to our country, positioning Italy as a first-choice destination for travellers from all over the world."

New Jeddah flights from 2 June

ITA continues to grow its connections with North America, the carrier's number one market after Italy. Last 7 April the Rome Fiumicino-Chicago route was inaugurated and with these two new routes the number of destinations reached between the United States and Canada rises to eight. On 2 June, the Rome Fiumicino-Riyadh flight will also be inaugurated, followed by Accra, Dakar, Kuwait City and Jeddah, bringing to 57 the destinations operated this  summer, of which 16 domestic, 26 international and 15 intercontinental. 

Published in Transportation

ITA Airways was focused on the MICE sector at the IMEX 2024 from 14 to 16 May in Frankfurt. 

Tailor-made conditions for individual needs

ITA’s recently launched offer for MICE traffic has a dedicated team and tailor-made conditions for this specific segment, which has a great potential for growth. Whether for small corporate meetings or events with more than 40 participants, the carrier allows its MICE customers to travel individually, taking advantage of a preferential offer tailored to their individual needs. The aim is to make travelling as simple, relaxing and sustainable as possible. For individual travel needs, the company offers dedicated airfares in Business, Premium and Economy Class in the seven days before and after the event, as well as the planning and management of all requests through a single point of contact and all-round customer service.

New flights from ITA’s Rome Fiumicino hub

The Italian airline’s summer network of 57 destinations includes 16 domestic, 26 international and 15 intercontinental routes. North America, Africa and the Middle East are the markets where the airline is introducing new direct flights from its Rome Fiumicino hub. In April the new Chicago-Rome flight was launched and last week the direct Toronto-Rome connection was added. In June it will be the turn of non-stop flights to Riyadh and Accra, in July to Kuwait City and Dakar, and in August to Jeddah, which will complete the network for summer 2024.

The German market is well catered for 

ITA currently offers 152 weekly flights between Germany and Italy, with direct connections between the airports of Frankfurt, Munich, Stuttgart, Hamburg and Düsseldorf and Rome Fiumicino and Milan Linate. In addition there are connections to the entire network of destinations in Italy and the rest of the world, including South American destinations in Brazil and Argentina, as well as seasonal connections to the Balearic Islands (Ibiza, Majorca and Menorca) and Mediterranean tourist destinations.

Published in MICE & Events

The 32nd edition of the Doge’s Ball will be staged on 1 March 2025 in the spectacular setting of the Scuola Grande della Misericordia, a majestic historic building in Venice’s Cannaregio district. 

A confidential rate for the trade 

The doges were the rulers of the Venetian Republic in Medieval and Renaissance days, and each year the Cannaregio venue, which can be reached both by land and water, by water taxi or - for the most romantic of arrivals by gondola - becomes a new and different stage, reminiscent of the magnificence of the Doge’s court. The opulent sets and decorations for the Doge’s Ball gala evening are designed for each edition by its founder, patron and host Antonia Sautter who told us that many bookings have already been confirmed for next year's highly anticipated new edition.  “There is a confidential rate for the trade for both ticket purchases and costume hire, and bookings can be made on our website or by calling our offices.” 

“Private tables are available for the gala dinner” 

The event lasts the space of one night, starting at 8.30 p.m. when the first guests enter to attend the grand opening show, and it continues into the early hours of the morning. The gala dinner at the Doge's Ball show comprises four courses, accompanied by prestigious wines and rivers of champagne. The tables are many and varied, with large imperial tables alternating with smaller round tables. “Tables are generally shared,” said Antonia Sautter,- because the Ballo del Doge is also about sharing and networking, but private tables can also be reserved.”

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Dancing and an after-dinner event

While the main show is at its climax upstairs, there is dancing on the ground floor with DJ sets and further performances. The after-dinner is included with the full ticket or can be purchased separately for those who cannot attend the whole evening, but still want to soak up the atmosphere of Venice’s spectacular Doge’s Ball.

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The sumptuous costumes can he hired or purchased

For those attending the evening, the first step into the world of the Doge’s Ball is a dress rehearsal. This is the magical moment when guests choose the perfect outfit from among the more than 1,500 costumes Antonia Sautter has designed and made over the past 30 years. “These are unique pieces from every era and style, and they are available for hire and also for sale, along with accessories like iconic tricorn hats, large wigs, sumptuous headdresses, fans and sticks…you name it.” The Ballo del Doge is truly a night-to-remember, an experience that will leave lasting memories of Italy’s magical lagoon city, its traditions and its timeless beauty. For information: www.ballodeldoge 

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Published in MICE & Events

By adding Olbia - its 30th airport served in Italy – Ryanair ups its network of 10 domestic and international routes.

Ryanair offers 300,000 new seats at Olbia’s Costa Smeralda airport

With 60 weekly flights, which, as Costa Smeralda Airport's route manager Mario Garau explained, “are perfectly articulated with respect to the traffic at our airport and destination,” according to forecasts "Ryanair, is the 39th company in our network, bringing us 300,000 new seats and allowing us to reach 3.5 million passengers, with a 20% growth in traffic."

The aim is to carry over 1.2 million passengers 

The low-cost airline will therefore be operating "to all three Sardinian airports from this year, with record operations for North Sardinia, with over 230 flights per week on 33 routes. The aim is to carry over 1.2 million passengers to and from the region," said Ryanair’s CCO Jason McGuinness.

A 12% increase in frequencies over 2023

Alghero airport is set to have its best season ever, with the confirmation of last year's 22 routes, the addition of Frankfurt, and a 12% increase in flight frequency compared to 2023. The airport welcomes Ryanair's choice of a five-year agreement. "Thanks also to an important investment by the reference shareholder, Alghero airport is not only not left alone or abandoned, but has plans for long-term development," says Fabio Gallo, the airport's general manager.

Asking Sardinia to axe the municipal surtax

McGuiness asks Sardinia to fall into line with the Friuli Venezia-Giulia region which recently decided to abolish the municipal surtax from 1 January. "Following that decision, Ryanair opened a new base in Trieste, with a 50% growth for next summer. The same thing could happen with Alghero and Olbia.” 

Published in Transportation

The Hotel Mediterraneo Sorrento has been awarded one of the new keys in the Italian Michelin Guide. 

Outstanding style and service

Designating the most exceptional hotels in Italy with its new key accolade, the Michelin Guide has awarded one key to Hotel Mediterranean Sorrento. This luxury property on the Sorrento Coast, just an hour from Naples, and with easy access to Amalfi, Capri and Pompeii, has been selected by the prestigious guide for the “excellence of its architecture and interior design, individuality, personality and authenticity, the quality of service, its relevance in the context of the location and the consistency between price and experience.” 

2 Pietro Monti 2 copiaPietro Monti, sales and marketing director

“Customer satisfaction is our main objective”

"We are extremely proud of this accolade. It is another step on our path of continuous, sustainable and inclusive growth,- says sales and marketing director Pietro Monti. “When I started working in the hotel we had three stars and the management was predominantly family-run.  Year after year we invested in the property and in training both ourselves and our team who are our most valuable asset. Customer satisfaction is our main objective.” 

Sky Bar aperitif at sunset hotel mediterraneo sorrento

An Autentico Collection hotel 

“With our fifth star in 2021 we reached a first important milestone, and the Michelin key this year is another step on our journey. We are now aiming to continue making the Hotel Mediterranean a benchmark in Italian luxury hospitality, which has no equal in the world." At the Mediterraneo modern design and the typical colours and materials of the Sorrento Coast create a timeless style in the 55 rooms, four Junior Suites and two family suites, which earned the hotel the LIV Hospitality Design Awards in 2021 while in 2023 it entered the prestigious Autentico Collection of independent luxury Italian hotels.  

Published in Hospitality

Things have become more intricate for the Bauer Hotel in Venice, with King Street saying no to a sale to Schoeller.

The situation is increasingly more complicated

The property, which is part of the Italian investment portfolio of the Austrian giant Signa in default, is in an increasingly more intricate situation. Following news of the sale of the property to the Swiss-German group Schoeller, the US fund King Street Capital Management, one of the main financiers of Signa itself, to which the ownership of the Venetian hotel had apparently passed a few weeks earlier, immediately intervened.

A pledge that moved from Luxembourg to a Gulf family

“Things are complicated,” says the Italian financial daily Milano Finanza. The issue involves a pledge that, through a Luxembourg sub-holding, weighed on Bauer, in favour of a Gulf family office, which in turn had granted a loan to the company founded by René Benko. Last March, however, the Arabs allegedly assigned their claim to King Street, which, upon announcing the signing of Signa's contract with Schoeller, enforced the pledge through another Luxembourg company traceable to the US fund.

The property is currently valued at around €300 million 

The transaction was understandably not appreciated by Schoeller, which intended demanding fulfilment of the contract. Hence the possibility that the Austrian group could sue King Street, which in the meantime, however, has already instructed the financial advisor Eastdil Secured to put the asset on the market. As of now, the property is valued at around €300 million, but the original plans would have been to renovate the hotel, although work to the sum of €150 million is currently at a standstill.

Published in Hospitality

The W Hotels brand, part of the Marriott portfolio, is set to make its debut with a new opulent lifestyle complex in Poltu Quatu in Sardinia. 

150 hotel rooms and serviced apartments

Encompassing more than 240 units, including some 150 hotel rooms and areas designated as serviced apartments, confirmation of the project coincides with the completion of the deal, with the asset management company Castello SGR acquiring a local real estate complex for €70 million. The transaction was facilitated through the recently established Gem Fund and the entire property, currently composed of a 139-room hotel and over 100 residential units, will undergo a refurbishment.

“The Costa Smeralda is a premier global destination”

This venture aligns with Castello SGR's strategic development plan to strengthen its foothold in the hospitality sector. The recent inclusion in the Anima group has further boosted its position, and with a portfolio valued at some one billion euro, consisting of 32 properties and over 4,000 rooms, Giampiero Schiavo, CEO of Castello SGR, highlights the operation's significance in the context of Sardinia's luxury brand allure. “In the current market dynamics, the hospitality segment stands out as particularly attractive, and this acquisition contributes to the repositioning of properties in the super luxury segment, reinforcing Arzachena with the Costa Smeralda as a premier global destination.”

Published in Hospitality

Emirates will put its new Airbus A350, due to enter service in September, at Bologna from 1 December.

The new A350s will have three cabin classes

With 10 new A350s expected to enter the fleet, the Dubai-based airline plans to deploy the aircraft to nine destinations in the coming months. The new A350s will be configured with three cabin classes, with 32 seats in the new generation Business Class, 21 seats in Premium Economy and 259 seats in Economy Class. All are intended to serve short- and medium-haul destinations in the Emirates network: the first A350 will fly to Bahrain with daily frequencies from 15 September next, with a second service starting on 1 November. The aircraft will land in Kuwait with daily service on 16 September and in Muscat from 1 December.

“The Airbus A350 adds more premium cabin options”

In Europe, the A350 will make its debut in Bologna from 1 December, as well as in Lyon and, from 4 November, in Edinburgh. 

"The A350 will be a game changer for Emirates, allowing us to serve regional points with superior operational efficiency and flexibility in the Middle East and GCC, West Asia and Europe," said Adnan Kazim, the airline's deputy president and CCO, Emirates' A350 confirms our long-standing commitment to investing in the best customer experience in the sky. Flying the A350 to nine cities in such a short timeframe adds more premium cabin options, greater choice across all geographies for our customers, and ensures we maintain our competitive edge and industry-leading position."

 

Published in Transportation
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