Make Italy Yours

A blog of Italian Culture and Nature

Category: Italian Architecture

From a Tuscan Balcony

Under Western Skies

Recently I posted an article about the historic and picturesque Tuscan town, San Gimignano.

In the article, I described the memorable balcony room we had in the 12th Century Hotel la Cisterna. Sorting through photographs, I missed one The Counselor shot from within the room, looking out over San Gimignano to the surrounding countryside. As much as any photograph from years of seeing the world, I’d choose this one as a representative of the allure, pleasure and — yes — romance of travel. As we know, the days aren’t always so halcyon, the rooms aren’t invariably inviting, sunny and blessed with a balcony view. Sometimes, fortune smiles.

tuscan-balcony-marcy-vincent-001

May all your travels be so providential.

© Brad Nixon 2016. Photograph © Marcy Vincent 2016, used by kind permission.

If you missed the full article and its photos of San Gimignano (with this photo now in place), including the interesting coincidence concerning that balcony room, CLICK HERE

View original post 1 more word

San Gimignano, Tuscan Towers

Under Western Skies

Arguably the most memorable skyline of any city in Italy can’t be claimed by Rome, Milan, Venice or Florence. It belongs to the “Town of Fine Towers,” San Gimignano.

san-gimignano-brad-nixon006

San Gimignano is located approximately halfway between Florence and Siena.

san-gimignano-map-marked

Occupying a prominent hilltop along a major trade and pilgrimage route to Rome, San Gimignano escaped destruction in the 5th Century by Attila the Hun (purportedly thanks to its patron saint and namesake, Saint Germinianus) and prospered through the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The town, with narrow, serpentine streets, is a trove of Romanesque and Gothic architecture.

san-gimignano-brad-nixon007

San Gimignano is most famous for the fortified towers that arose in the 13th and 14th Centuries as warring families took steps to defend themselves during the long conflict between the Guelphs and Ghibellines. The same thing happened in innumerable Italian towns and cities, and at one time there were 72 towers in San Gimignano. While most of the…

View original post 584 more words

The Museum City: magical Venice

Adventures in Wonderland



In reference to the previous post, I’ll start by saying I was wrong about the Etrucsan dwellings in Castellina. I did a bit of research. They weren’t dwellings, they were tombs. No wonder they made me shiver. But not so bad really. Glad to realize the possibility that their homes were warmer and lighter than the dark cold stone rooms we went into.

Don did the research for our hotel in Venice. He found one that had good reviews and was only a short walk from the station. It was fairly expensive but he was really clear that that was the one he wanted. It made it all so simple. We got off the train, walked for about three minutes along the main concourse in front of the station, around the first corner into a narrow alley, or calle as they are called, and there was our hotel. We were given…

View original post 1,490 more words

La Scarzuola: An Umbrian Hub of Mystery & Eccentricity

Rome’s Captivating Castel Sant’Angelo

%d bloggers like this: