HeartRome

My life and times in the eternal city and beyond

Latest Posts

I had plans this year too

I had plans this year.  Big ones. Like many people. My family was set to celebrate a milestone birthday and was planning to holiday together in Italy. I had returned to Rome just 6 weeks before, preparing to kick into rehab to manage the fallout from 8 surgical procedures in an 18 month period.  It felt like I blinked and I was then back on a plane leaving a lockdown

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What Italy in lockdown has already taught the world about humanity

60 million people in lockdown. Italians don’t have a reputation for forming queues. Nor are they a race you’d think would be ok with social distancing. Touching, hugging, kissing, socialising, togetherness. All defining characteristics of the Italian DNA. And yet here we are. 60 million people told to stay at home, go out for essentials and keep a metre distance from one another. No more passeggiata. No more morning coffee

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Dear World, Please don’t abandon us. Love, Italy

Dear World, I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling like I want to take a time out. Even just for a minute. From terms like coronavirus and missiles and forest fires and climate change. Not because any or all of these aren’t matters of importance but because sometimes what we need is a little calm and a whole lot of perspective. And what Italy needs right now is for

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Arrivederci Roma 2019 (from Melbourne)

Call me cheesy. A dreamer. Nostalgic. But when those John Lennon notes of War is Over start hitting the airwaves, a big lump develops in my throat. “And so this is Christmas and what have you done? Another year over, a new one just begun.” Those loaded words – what have you done? They strike a chord. Something so seemingly unimportant as a song lyric and yet here we are.

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Where luxury and the Tuscan sea meet: Argentario Golf Resort and Spa

What if I told you that Tuscany wasn’t just Renaissance art and Florence? Or medieval towns like Sienna and San Gimignano? Or Chianti wine and rolling green hills? (Not that there’s anything wrong with the above.. actually, on the contrary!) But there’s a coastal part of this region that has slowly woven its way into my heart. The Maremma Coast is made up of the Monte Argentario promontory and peninsula,

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When a trattoria just won’t do. 15 contemporary dining spots in Rome

When you’ve had your fill of traditional roman style carbonara and oxtail (coda alla vaccinara), head to one of these outstanding contemporary dining establishments. The city really has taken a more cosmopolitan turn over the last 3-4 years and venues boasting stylish contemporary design coupled with innovative, creative and refreshing menus are on the up. Here are my pics for contemporary dining in Rome. 1) Retrobottega Stylish, creative, sleek and

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Arrivederci Roma 2018 (from Melbourne)

I can’t help but get nostalgic at this time of year. I’m sure I’m not alone. As the years pass and ‘another year older’ starts to set in, I feel this overwhelming sense of melancholy engulf me. Because somehow, some way, I sometimes wish I could make life stand still. Especially during the good moments, the happy ones, the ones where you want to pinch yourself. Christmas and the year’s end

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Christmas (lights) in Rome

I have lived in Rome for 7 years and visited as a tourist for over 20, but I have never spent Christmas in the city. It’s a special time of year reserved for family and so each year I make the voyage – a 20+ hour one – to Melbourne. But each year I get to enjoy the lead up and have been fortunate this time around to have special

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Where to find the best pizza in Rome

From pizza al taglio (by the slice) to the classic roman style to the latest installments of the gourmet type, Rome certainly isn’t short of options if you’re looking to feast on pizza. What you should also know is that there are a few ‘rules’ you should stick to when seated at a pizzeria in the eternal city. As I always say – when you’re on holiday, the main rule

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Drink Kong: Rome’s most exciting bar opening of the year

Rome isn’t London or Tokyo. It’s not New York or even my native Melbourne. Nor does it really want to be. Because Rome is Rome. And that doesn’t mean it can’t count contemporary or cosmopolitan in its nightlife repertoire! And boy has something big landed in this city; something that embodies the style and cool of all those above mentioned cities. Drink Kong is the brainchild of Patrick Pistolesi, locally

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