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A true gastronomic and Christmas journey in the Lisander Fine Dining Restaurant at the Hotel Promessi Sposi on Lake Como from executive chef Angelo Biscotti.

Dishes celebrating the excellence of the Lombardy region

The dishes on Biscotti’s new menu and for this Christmas, transform each course into a symphony of flavours that blend together impeccably. This menu at the four-star luxury Hotel Promessi Sposi on Lake Como, which combines tradition with creativity is designed to celebrate the excellence of the Lombardy region.    

Hotel Promessi Sposi - Ph. Credits: Mattia Aquila

Traditional specialties in a modern key

Angelo Biscotti’s philosophy is expressed through the art of skilfully interpreting high quality ingredients that enhance typical local dishes. The dining room, which can seat 20, is an exclusive sensorial journey where the décor blends harmoniously with the natural colours that recall the evocative surrounding landscape. The proposed menu is a declaration of love for autumn, with dishes masterfully conceived by the executive chef who, on the occasion of the Christmas festivities, has studied two refined menus with creations that recall traditions in a modern key. Among his dishes are the Scampo with cucumber, fennel and green apple, and the Milanese Ossobuco with celeriac and puffed rice. The grand finale with the handcrafted Panettone made in the inhouse pastry shop comes in two versions: with fragrant citrus fruit cream or with mascarpone cream and salted zabaglione; all washed down with prestigious wines to toast Christmas and the New Year.

“It was like having a blank canvas”

"The design and realisation of fine dining inside the Hotel Promessi Sposi in the heart of the pretty village of Malgrate was a real challenge because it was like having a blank canvas. I started from scratch with the good fortune of being able to count on a competent staff," said Executive Chef Biscotti.

Published in Hospitality

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Published in Business

Jet2.com is particularly excited about an expansion for summer 20224 and 2025 with what CEO Steve Heapy calls a “trio of Italian delights: Sicily, Sardinia, and the city of Verona.” 

More summer flights to eight Italian airports

The expansion includes the addition of capacity to eight airports in Italy, offering thousands more seats for sale. Furthermore, the 2024 summer season will be extended until mid-November, introducing new flights to Sicily from Manchester and London Stansted. 

For the summer of 2025, additional services to Sicily have been put on sale from Birmingham, Edinburgh, Leeds Bradford, and London Stansted, just in time for the Easter holidays. Late summer 2025 will see further flights added to Sicily from Birmingham, Manchester, and London Stansted in November.

Sardinia is set to get increased flights

Sardinia is also set to receive increased flights from Manchester Airport in September, October, and November 2024, with additional flights in November from London Stansted. The summer of 2025 will see further growth with the introduction of flights from Birmingham, Manchester, and London Stansted airports starting in April.

Verona too with get new frequencies 

Verona, the third Italian destination in focus, will get new frequencies from Edinburgh, East Midlands, Leeds Bradford, and Newcastle international airports starting on 24 October 2024,. The 2025 summer season to Verona will be expanded with spring flights from Birmingham, Edinburgh, and Manchester. Additionally, flights are planned for the end of the summer between September and October 2025 from Belfast International, Edinburgh, East Midlands, Leeds Bradford, and Newcastle International.

“Our Italian operation is experiencing strong demand”

“Our Italian operation is experiencing strong demand, which is not surprising considering the amazing beach and city holiday options it offers to customers and independent travel agents,” says the airline’s CEO. “Sicily, Sardinia, and Verona are a trio of Italian delights, and today's announcement sees a significant expansion for all three destinations. Based on the demand we expect these flights and holidays to sell very quickly as customers look to escape to these magical destinations.”

Published in Transportation

Locorotondo is a dream in white in the Puglia region in Italy’s deep South. 

Just 50 kilometres from the city of Bari

This delightful little town in Puglia has a peculiar circular layout from which it derives its name, round place from the Latin Locus Rotundus. It is some 50 kilometres inland from Bari, Puglia’s regional capital, and just eight kilometres from the Alberobello which is the area’s main tourist attraction with its high concentration of trulli dwellings. 

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Whitewashed walls, flowering balconies and trulli

The ancient heart of Locorotondo is truly unique and exerts an uncommon charm and fascination on all who visit it. The old centre, enclosed in its circular perfection of stone and limestone, seems suspended between a dream world and reality. Its pristine whitewashed walls act as a dazzling backdrop to the Baroque architecture in local stone and the patches of intense colour of its flowering balconies.  From its belvedere you can admire a mosaic of small vineyards broken by dry-stone walls, patches of Mediterranean woodland and silvery olive groves surrounding ancient farmhouses, while thousands of the typical cone-shaped trulli dwellings are scattered around the surrounding area.

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Palaces in a stately main square

Passing through the Porta Napoli gate you enter the welcoming and elegant 19th-century Piazza Vittorio Emanuele square, once called Piazza Castello (castle square) as it flanked the ancient castle which once stood where the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows now stands. On the right side of the square stands an imposing 19th-century style mansion, and on the other side the grandiose Palazzo Aprile-Ximenes, painted a bright shade of typical Pompeian red. Worth seeing are the Mother Church dedicated to St George Martyr, the Church of St Nicholas (with a trullo dome) and the Church of the Madonna della Greca.  

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Local delicacies made from tripe and stale bread

Locorotondo is famous for its 130 or so contrade (districts) and for its Locorotondo DOC white wine. Visitors should try the gnumerèdde suffuchète lamb tripe rolls which are slowly cooked in terracotta pans. Another local specialty is A Ciallèdde, a typical and tasty dish of rural and Mediterranean tradition made with stale bread, tomatoes and onions.

Published in Cities & Regions

South Tyrol’s Sonnweiss has an environmental conscience.

Set in Luson, just 40 minute from Bolzano in the UNESCO World Heritage Dolomites, Sonnweiss, a luxury 5-star wellness family hotel preserves and protects the environment. It offers families a wide variety of educational and enriching activities that ensure that the younger generations grow to appreciate their surroundings. Junior guests can collect their own eggs in the morning for breakfast, feed the animals at the farm and also freely explore the 10,000sqm natural playground in the South Tyrolean mountain landscape, surrounded by fertile meadows and majestic forests. 

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Activities for the whole family

The hotel has luxuriously appointed family studios and suites, gourmet dining and a children’s restaurant as well as a water park and swimming pools, four of which are for children. There are also themed game rooms, an adventure park, a ski area for beginners and a 1,000sqm spa as well as an organic culinary garden and a farm that supplies the hotel’s restaurants. Sonnweiss is proud of its mission to instill in its guests its genuine devotion to, and appreciation for nature.

For information: www.sonnwies.com/familienhotel-suedtirol

At Borgo Pignano in rural Tuscany sustainability takes pride of place  

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Borgo Pignano, just an hour south of Florence, is a Tuscan estate in a nature reserve, on a 750-acre certified organic farm dating back to the 12th century. The property has a remarkable commitment to sustainable tourism, and is a founding member of Beyond Green, a global portfolio of properties that exemplify sustainable leadership.  

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Environmentally friendly, locally sourced products 

In 2020 it received a Green Globe Certification, in 2019 a Condé Nast Johansens Award of Excellence in Sustainability and most recently was awarded the Green Michelin Star for its farm-to-table restaurant. The villa, the farmhouses and the apartments of Borgo Pignano have all been restored using environmentally friendly products and materials such as locally sourced stone and slate, organic plaster and eco-paints. Here the past is used to think forward and perpetuate a circular economy that is crucial to sustainable development.

For information: www.borgopignano.com

Published in Experiences & Tips

Ita Airways is doubling down on its commitment to the London market, with increased investments in London City Airport from 1 April 1, 2024.

The route will be operated by Airbus A220-100s

The new route connecting London City to Rome Fiumicino will respond to the substantial demand from both leisure and business travellers in the two capitals. The aircraft on the route will be the Airbus A220-100, renowned for its suitability for London City's operational conditions, which necessitate the use of smaller aircraft with specific technologies. 

Business and economy seats and available Wifi

Operating twelve flights per week, the A220-100 is equipped with innovative features to enhance the passenger experience, including wider seats, personalised lighting, larger windows, and more spacious overhead bins. The cabin boasts a total of 125 seats and is configured with Business and Economy service classes. The reclining leather seats come with USB electrical sockets and the A220-100 offers Wi-Fi connectivity, allowing travellers to choose packages tailored to their needs.

London City-Milan Linate will operate through the summer

Simultaneously, Ita Airways is introducing a fifth frequency on the London City-Milan Linate route, effective from 10 April, 2024, for the summer season. This addition brings the weekly frequencies between Milan and London City Airport to a total of 31, with Airbus A220-100s also deployed on this route.

Published in Transportation

Tourism road transport is being discriminated against says Franco Gattinoni of  Confcommercio.

Confcommercio asked for a reform of limited traffic zone access

"The government and the Ministry of Transport are not showing due sensitivity for tour bus companies, a key segment of organized tourism, or for the industry in general,- said Franco Gattinoni, president of Confcommercio's Federation of Organized Tourism.  -We asked for a reform that would integrate the national criteria defining access to ZTL limited traffic zones,  thus abolishing chaotic ad hoc measures by individual municipalities. Instead, we find ourselves with a ridiculous regulation that discriminates only against tourism road transport."

“The proposal does not lower the cost for tour buses” 

The draft of the Draghi government's law under discussion should establish which cities can make use of the ZTL limited traffic zones while reducing the administrative burden on users, Gattinoni said.


“Instead, the proposed text lowers the cost for all categories except tour buses, a branch of organized tourism which is fundamental for group travel. Today an M3 bus pays €150 to pass through the ZTL in Milan and €160 in Rome. With these proposals, the price could shoot up to €480. So much for reducing administrative burdens.”

 

Published in Trade Opinions

With Pesaro taking over as Italy’s Capital of Culture next year, and Pesaro and Urbino jointly bidding for Cultural Capital of Europe 2033, a group of European journalists was warmly welcomed by the municipal authorities and Confesercenti Pesaro and Urbino. 

Greeted by the tourism councilors of Urbino and Pesaro

In an atmosphere of history, commitment and future prospects, the group was greeted by Marianna Vetri, deputy mayor of Urbino, tourism councillor Roberto Cioppi and the president of the association of tourist guides, Carla Rossi, and then welcomed to Pesaro by Daniele Vimini, cultural councillor and deputy mayor of the coastal city. 

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“We were one of the first areas to embrace organic farming”

Pesaro vicesindaco e assessoreDaniele Vimini, cultural councillor and deputy mayor of the coastal city

"For us it is of primary importance to promote the well-being, culture and excellent gastronomy of our territory, starting with organic farming which we were one of the first areas to embrace," said deputy mayor Vetri, who also stressed the importance of Urbino's location, between the sea and the mountains, and its high quality of life. "The candidacy for European Capital of Culture in 2033, together with Pesaro, is seen as an opportunity to further enhance our territory, and we would hope to see a return of the Faro-Urbino railway, a project on which we are working in cooperation with the ministry.”  

“Urbino’s centre is a place where various epochs overlap”

Included in the prestigious UNESCO World Heritage List since 1998, Urbino is currently celebrating the 25th anniversary of this recognition. Councillor for tourism Roberto Cioppi, emphasized the importance of the historic centre of Urbino, which boasts a unique harmony, being a place where various epochs overlap. "The Counts of Montefeltro played a crucial role in attracting the great personalities of the period, and in contributing to the birth of humanism, and then this is the city of the great painter Raphael". Next year, Carla Rossi announced, a major exhibition in Urbino’s Ducal Palace will present works by Federico Barocci, the Urbino painter who lived in the late 1500s, on loan from museums around the world.

Demand is soaring for non-hotel accommodation

The collaboration between the municipality of Pesaro Urbino, coastal cities such as Fano and Confesercenti is evident in the support for Pesaro as Cultural Capital of Italy 2024 and in the 2033 candidature of the two cities.

"In recent years we have promoted our artistic, cultural, environmental, and food and wine heritage with the utmost professionalism," said Cioppi, who also noted the growing demand for non-hotel accommodation. -There is more and more demand for this type of stay, and a lot of focus on quality with the construction of spas and swimming pools, we hope to see more entrepreneurs investing in this sector".

Published in Cities & Regions

Some 14 towns have asked for traffic limitations on the famous Amalfi State Road 163. 

Limiting traffic on the Amalfi Drive

Fourteen towns in the Campania region are asking the Italian government and parliament to amend the highway code, and authorize a territorial limitation to vehicle traffic along the Amalfitana 163 state road. This appeal to the institutions to definitively resolve the situation would, they say, benefit the quality of life of residents, as well as the experience for tourists and the environment, in one of Italy's most enchanting and scenic spots.  

“This is a move against overtourism”

"A good example of the work Cittàslow does is the proposal of the territorial ZTL limited traffic zone to the towns on the Amalfi Coast. This is a move against overtourism and it has received the support of the mayors of Cittaslow Italy,” said Laura Pernazza, Mayor of Amelia and newly elected Coordinator of Cittaslow Italy.   "This proposal is also supported by a large number of associations, as well as by the signatures of over 10 thousand citizens" – added the Mayor of Amalfi Cittaslow, Daniele Milano. For information: www.cittaslow.it

Published in Cities & Regions

Ita Airways has announced it will drop out of Milan’s Malpensa Airport in January 2024. 

There is strong competition on the New York-Milan route

On 8 January 2024 the last ItA Airways flaghts, AZ605 from New York JFK, will touch down in Malpensa, marking the end of an era. The cutback is due to the strong competition on the New York-Milan long-haul market which is covered by leading US carriers as well as La Compagnie and Emirates Airlines.

ITA Airways will focus on Milan’s Linate city airport

Ita Airways says it will remain focused on its feeder role into Milan’s Linate Airport from European destinations. Linate in a city airport which handles medium and short-haul fights. 

Published in Transportation
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