Italy Part 1: Ravello

IMG_3087Our recent trip to Italy took us to 3 towns along the Amalfi Coast (Ravello, Capri and Positano).  There is so much to share about each location, so I thought it best to dedicate a post to each town.

Ravello is a 12th century gem, perched high above the Mediterranean, giving you a birds eye view of the Amalfi Coast. As it was the most quiet of our 3 stops, it was the perfect place to start our journey, as we adjusted to the time change. If you are wanting a place to escape the crowds, this is your spot. Known for it’s lush gardens, architectural villas and breathtaking vistas, it is an oasis best enjoyed at a cliffside restaurant or ambling down cobblestone paths. One thing that really sticks out in my mind is the incredible fragrance of honeysuckle, apricots and lemons. They were EVERYWHERE and the air was thick with their scent. Heavenly!

We stayed at the Belmond Caruso, known for its sky level infinity pool and impeccable service. It was a dreamy hotel, which may explain why there was a wedding held there both days we were there. Next door is the equally divine Palazzo Avino, where we enjoyed their Lobster & Martini Bar.DSC_0267IMG_3091DSC_0289DSC_0268IMG_3097IMG_3105IMG_3187IMG_3188IMG_3098IMG_3080Two of the most well known gardens in Italy are Villa Ruffalo (right in town) and Villa Cimbrone (about a 15 minute walk uphill). They are worth visiting not only for the gardens, but for their stunning views.DSC_0303 DSC_0304 DSC_0294DSC_0323 DSC_0324 DSC_0318If you are visiting for the day, enjoy a marvelous lunch by the pool at the Belmond Caruso. Even the pizza was better than any I’ve ever tasted. And, they had the most delicious  & refreshing drink that was a combination of processo, soda, lemon and orange slices and fresh herbs. Ahhhh….Italian style!IMG_3156Ravello is quaint and quiet and I’m so glad I didn’t miss it! From there, we drove down to Amalfi (bustling and busy) and took a boat to Capri. More on that on Friday!

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Sneak Peek of Ravello

DSC_0267Back to reality….we arrived home late last night from our Italian adventure.

I want to gather my photos and thoughts into useful posts, which will include tips and helpful information for anyone contemplating a trip to the Amalfi Coast. In the meantime, here are a few things that caught my eye in Ravello.DSC_0272DSC_0271DSC_0283DSC_0286DSC_0318I’ll be back with much more!!

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Italian Style – Giambattista Valli

After spending time in both Florence and Rome this summer, I came away with a renewed appreciation and adoration for all things Italian! So, on this Columbus Day, I’d like to pay homage to an Italian who has forged his own path in fashion, Giambattista Valli. 

Do you recall a certain fabulous dress he designed for the new Mrs. Clooney? 

Well, his divine designs were sashaying at the Duke Mansion in Charlotte, at the invitation of Capitol, a month before his dress debuted on Amal in Venice. That doesn’t surprise me as Laura Vinroot Poole and the ladies of Capitol are ALWAYS ahead of the fashion curve.

Italian design + Southern hospitality = one amazing fashion show. Enjoy!

Like a box of macaroons, these dresses are pretty and fluffy but not too sweet. What I would give to have a cinderella moment in one of these!

Here’s to Italian design and an extra vacation day!

images: capitol, hollywood reporter