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See the full Special Report: Palermo in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy

Sarah Murdoch, who wrote and edited our March 2019 Special Report on Palermo, is a tour guide, travel writer, artist, former architect and packing expert. She has worked for Rick Steves for 19 years as a tour guide and guidebook researcher, recently coauthoring Rick Steves’ Sicilyalong with colleague Alfio Di Mauro (who helped with these articles).

Her website, adventureswithsarah.net, chronicles her travels around the world and her passion for the perfectly packed bag. She also creates and leads her own tours of Asia, Africa, and Europe, working with Imprint Tours and Savor the Experience Tours.

She calls Seattle home, along with her favorite travel partners, her sons Lucca and Nicola. You can follow her adventures on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

The post Meet the Guest Editor of Our Palermo Special Report (March 2019) appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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Dream of Italy by Danielle Abbazia - 3d ago

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Only a few years ago, the options for accommodations in Palermo were limited, but now there are new hotels, B&Bs and hostels opening every day. The city can be noisy and a bit intimidating on a first visit, so it’s a fine idea to spend a little…

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The post Perfect Places to Stay in Palermo appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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Dream of Italy by Danielle Abbazia - 3d ago

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Palermo, the capital of Sicily, is one of the oldest and most complex cities in Italy. Sitting on the northwest coast of Italy’s largest island, it has a history dating back to the 8th century BC. Unfortunately, for many it has become infamous in the past century…

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The post Enjoying Old and New Palermo appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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Dream of Italy by Danielle Abbazia - 3d ago

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Food is more than just a way to survive in Sicily, it’s more like a religion. Almost every conversation, no matter if it is politics or religion, eventually turns to the subject of food. Sicilians can debate at great length which recipe makes the best pasta sauce…

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The post Five Foods to Eat in Palermo appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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Dream of Italy by Danielle Abbazia - 3d ago

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Palermo was ruled for centuries by a noble class. A stroll around the city reveals palace after palace, as wealthy landowners built elaborate city homes here for generations. The unification of Italy in the 19th century began the slow decline of the aristocracy, which was documented in the…

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The post A Moment with the Contessa appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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Our writer and guest editor for this Special Report is Sarah Murdoch, a tour guide, travel writer, artist, former architect and packing expert. She has worked for Rick Steves for 19 years as a tour guide and guidebook researcher, recently coauthoring Rick Steves’ Sicilyalong with colleague Alfio Di Mauro(who helped with these articles). She calls Seattle home, along with her favorite travel partners, her sons Lucca and Nicola.

Enjoying Old and New Palermo
Palermo has a long and complicated history reaching back to before the rise of Rome. The city has been under control of the Arabs, Normans, Germans, French and Spanish forces over the centuries and has a heavy North African influence on the palermitano architecture, food and culture. Today the city is ever-changing, but will remain forever one-of-a-kind.

Five Foods to Eat in Palermo
Food in Sicily is treated like a religion and can spark the fiercest of debates. You’ll want to taste everything from fresh-boiled octopus to ricotta–filled cannoli in Palermo. Sarah, shares her top five must-try foods when visiting Sicily’s largest city.

Perfect Places to Stay in Palermo
The architecture of Palermo is as diverse as its beautiful hotels. Sarah shares her tips on the best spots to rest your head in and around the city of Palermo.

A Moment with the Contessa
A racecar driver and an Austrian opera singer, champion swimmer and teacher are the couple better known as Conte and Contessa Federico. With their two sons, they are the legacy of one of Palermo’s historic families. Sarah gets us the inside scoop on what life is like for them inside their home, which is a national monument, in the heart of today’s Palermo.

Members only have immediate access to this new issue and 160 back issues.  Join now – and also receive exclusive Italy travel discounts!

The post March 2019 – Special Report: Palermo appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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We’re bringing Dream of Italy, the travel publication and PBS series, LIVE to a venue near you.

Join us April 3rd in NJ for an evening with Frances Mayes.

In Washington, DC, Frances joins us for a wine dinner March 28th and a reception March 29th. Both of these events are sold out but you can call Via Umbria to be added to the waitlist.

The post Introducing Dream of Italy LIVE Events appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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This article originally appeared in the June/July 2018 issue of Dream of Italy. Find the main article and all the places to stay here. We are thrilled that La Corte dei Papi is one of the sponsors for our upcoming PBS Tuscan Sun Special with Frances Mayes. 

Cortona is famous for its Etruscan heritage, but its more recent claim to fame is as the home of Bramasole, the villa author Frances Mayes fixed up and the subject of her ultra-famous book, Under the Tuscan Sun.

Relais La Corte dei Papi, in the hills just a few miles from the center of Cortona, is an oasis of serenity. In my opinion, the most essential feature of this hotel is the owner and general manager, David Papi. La Corte Dei Papi has been in his family since the 17th century and they are tirelessly dedicated to thoughtfully expanding this exclusive hotel.

David greets each guest personally, and his enthusiasm for life, along with his passion for hospitality, quickly turns his guests into lifelong friends. This vintage home, steeped in tradition and heritage, is run by a family who is always on hand to welcome their guests and feels no request is too small.

What originally began as a farmhouse has since been converted into a boutique hotel, now about 12 years old. With only 15 rooms and suites, a stay here is an intimate one. The standout accommodations are the Spa Suites where the decor combines traditional Tuscan design with the modern concept of well-being. In these elegant and spacious suites you will find a luxury private spa equipped with Turkish bath and complete with multi-sensory showers, aromatherapy, chromotherapy and music along with an incredibly large Jacuzzi.

Nearby, guests can discover some of the most beautiful towns in Tuscany and Umbria with Florence, San Gimignano and Siena just an hour away by car, or train and historic towns such as Perugia, Assisi and Spello only 30 miles away.

There is a gorgeous pool, a gourmet restaurant (often with live music) and so many activities on property such as cooking classes, wine cellar tour and tasting, wellness in the spa, that this property is quickly becoming a favorite. It is an ideal option to consider taking over privately for a wedding or a special event. At Relais La Corte dei Papi you will truly feel like you have come to your Tuscan home!

Relais La Corte dei Papi
Località Pergo Dogana, 12
Pergo di Cortona
(39) 0575 614109
www.lacortedeipapi.com
Rates: Start at 200€ per night for a deluxe room and 485€ for a deluxe cottage or spa suite. All include breakfast.

–Kelly Millington

The post Under the Tuscan Spell: Relais La Corte dei Papi in Cortona appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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This article originally appeared in the February 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Steeped in true Tuscan culture and history, the Chianti wine road is nestled within the rustic and beautiful countryside between Florence and Siena and the only place where Chianti and Chianti Classico wines are produced. Along with some of the most incredible wines, you’ll discover local farmers and…

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The post Who To Meet Along the Chianti Wine Road appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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Dream of Italy by Danielle Abbazia - 3w ago

This article originally appeared in the February 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. “Slowed to a speed for observing, Jacoby’s first hard look at Italy excited him so profoundly his teeth began to chatter. It seemed surreal — so casually spectacular.” – Cucina Tipica: An Italian Adventure by Andrew Cotto (that’s me!!) This is the reaction the protagonist in my latest…

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The post Surprising Bagno a Ripoli appeared first on Dream of Italy.

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