Tag Archives: Umbria

Umbria, Italy: Perugia, Art Studio, Mansions and Fine Arts

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Studio Moretti Caselli

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Refinement and authenticity

Arrived the night before from the little town of Norcia, on our first day of real discovery of Perugia, a city of arts, we follow the PAAST route (Percorsi Arte Artigianato Storia Tradizione: Path Art Crafts History Tradition) that leads us to studio and mansions of noble families.

First visit to the Studio Moretti Caseli Museo, “artistic stained glass”, see the photomontage above: on the first photo, Maddalena Forenza is the fifth generation of this family of stained glass artists. His grandfather Francesco Moretti initiated this activity in 1859.

Beautiful studio with giant drawings made by hand (I am a fan of blavk and white pencil drawings), where dominates classical art in a very old architecture. And you travel in time with taste, refinement and authenticity.

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Nobile Collegio della Mercanzia

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Wealth and Power 

When I enter in the Nobile Collegio della Mercanzia (Noble College of Goods), I am impressed with wooden decorative panels covering walls and high vaulted ceilings. 

In 1342, the Noble College of Goods was the most important company of the city, but had not a specific location until 1390, “when the city, in settlement of a debt of 1400 guilders, granted the guild of merchants” a warehouse on the ground floor of the Palazzo dei Priori, Corso Vannucci (source Wikipedia).

On the first picture: one of four figures representing Prudenza, Fortezza, Giustizia, Temperanza (Prudence, Strength, Justice, Temperance). Photo below: San Lorenzo Cathedral.

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Casa Museo Sorbello

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Near San Lorenzo Cathedral

For our third visit, we discover the mansion Marchesi di Sorbello Bourbon (Marquis of Sorbello Bourbon), a 17th century palazzo with a collection of paintings, porcelain, books, manuscripts and embroidery, as well as furniture and chandeliers of the 18th century. I am not fond of decorative arts of the 18th, too mannerist for me. 

By cons I really liked the will and action of the entrepreneur woman, the Marchesa Romeyne Robert Ranieri di Sorbello to socially empower women by the embroidery, in the early twentieth century. This work allowed them to acquire a financial autonomy and have a better social position.

From the palace terrace, the panoramic views of Perugia and Assisi valley are gorgeous.

              Umbria-Italy-Perugia-In-Front-of-Casa-Museo-Sorbello-1-Photo ©Mademoiselle Le K  Umbria-Italy-Perugia-In-Front-of-Casa-Museo-Sorbello-2-Photo ©Mademoiselle Le K

Casa Museo degli Oddi Marini Clarelli

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In Porta Santa Susanna Neighborhood

The Palazzo degli Oddi (one of the oldest and most powerful noble families of Perugia) was built in the 16th century. On the first picture of the photo montage above, the beautiful painted wooden ceiling from the early 17th century, of one of the rooms on the ground floor.

Time flies and we head towards the Museo dell’Accademia di Belle Arti (Museum of Fine Arts).

              Umbria-Italy-Perugia-Near-Casa-Museo-degli-Oddi-Marini-Clarelli-Photo ©Mademoiselle Le K  Umbria-Italy-Perugia-Around-Museo-dell'Accademia-di-Belle-Arti-Photo ©Mademoiselle Le K

Museo dell’Accademia di Belle Arti

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In the Academy of Fine Arts

founded in 1573: the museum presents in its main gallery, the plasters of famous artists such as Michell’Angelo and in the two other galleries, paintings, drawings and prints.

I lingered long among the plasters (some with giant proportions). The inspiring nice space also boasts a lovely natural light.

Déjeuner à l’Umbrò

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At the beginning of the afternoon I am happy to finally sit down and have lunch at the Umbrò, a friendly modern place, both fast food and fine grocery of Italian products. To be continued …

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés


Regione Umbria, PAAST route and Alitalia


Many thanks for this beautiful invitation to Regione Umbria et Alitalia. As always these opinions are my own.

Umbria, Italy: Towards Amelia and Perugia

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A Benedictine Abbey

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This morning we leave Norcia

and the elegant Palazzo Seneca (déjà!) to Perugia. On the road, we stopped at the Abbazia di San Pietro in Valle, a Benedictine abbey dating back to the eighth century, on the Mount Solemn.

Surrounded by unspoilt landscape with tall cypress (my favorite trees), the place lends itself to introspection and quiet. Beautiful autumn light, soothing silence and superb frescoes of the small church dating from different eras.

The legend says two hermits from Syria, John and Lazarus built a hermitage that became a place of worship for local populations. Later Faraldo II, Duke of Spoleto, had a vision in a dream. St. Peter ordered him to build a church in his honor. During a hunt, the Duke spotted the little oratory of John and Lazarus and decided to built there the church dedicated to St. Peter and the monastery.

Next stop: the Cascata delle Marmore Marmore waterfalls). Road trip …..

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Cascata delle Marmore (Marmore Waterfalls)

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It rains

when we come to the Cascata delle Marmore, the highest artificial waterfall in the world, with a height of 165 m! Water makes a deafening noise: first impression of power (above photo montage)! I feel like a lilliput.

The three levels waterfall (the biggest level measures 83 m), was created by the Roman consul Curio Dentato (in 271 BC) to drain standing water. You can borrow several paths to reach the different levels. The two most beautiful points of views are the Balcone degli Specola and Innamorati (Lovers Balcony).

On a trail, we come across Gnefro (or rather the opposite, lol!), the mascot of the falls (a kind of green goblin), played by an actor who tells the children the legend of Velino.

One day the shepherd Velino saw from the top of a cliff nymphs. Surprised, they fled, except Nera, the most beautiful. Nera and Velino madly fell in love and get married which put the gods angry. They transformed Nera in river. Inconsolable Velino threw himself into the river. But before he reached the water, he was transformed in cascade by Jupiter.  

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Umbria-Italy-Amelia-Museo-Archeologico-Photo ©Mademoiselle Le K

The Archaeological Museum  

After a late lunch in Amelia, one of the oldest cities of Italy (built previous centuries before Rome) and probably the oldest settlement in Umbria: I visit the Archaeological Museum. I like the austere architecture of the cloister (pictures above).

The museum’s centerpiece is a bronze statue of Germanicus (Germanicus Nero Claudius Drusus), born in Rome in 15 BC and son of Senior General Drusus, brother of the future emperor Tiberius (picture 4 on the photo montage above).

Germanicus had a brilliant political and military career. He died at 34 years old of an unknown illness. Suspicion felt on his uncle and adopted father, Tiberius who didn’t like his growing popularity.

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The Teatro Sociale and Cisterne Romane

I follow Michela, our guide, in a maze of small streets in the top of the old town. Colorful facades and beautiful panoramic views of the valley (see the first picture in this article).

At the corner of a flourish narrow street, the bright yellow façade of the Teatro Sociale (Rosita Bassini), built in 1782 by architect Stefano Consacchi. With a capacity of 200 seats, his stage mechanisms are still used for concerts and plays. On the above photo montage, a picture of the balconies and ceiling. 

Then we head towards the Cisterne Romane (Roman Cisterns). While we choose our helmets, the excitement grows. These ten cisterns built when Amelia became a Roman municipality, remain intact. Rain water was stored there and inhabitants could use this water freely.

On the photo montage above: the steep stairs, one of the tanks, the main entrance and one of the exits to move from one tank to another. A must “visit” for all lovers of ancient history!

Dinner in Perugia

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Hi Perugia! It’s 8 p.m. when we arrive in the historic center of Perugia. Dinner at Ristorante del Sole with excellent truffle risotto (1), breaded turkey filets and a panoramic view over Umbria. Too bad it’s already dark …

The medieval center of the city is gorgeous … and crowded! Perugia is a student city with a vibrant lively atmosphere. Good vibe! In dessert, a biological icecream at the Gelateria Artigianale Biologica (Corso Vannucci 93), highly recommended by Francesca, a proud native and resident of Perugia : )) Buonasera ai tutti!

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés


Regione Umbria et Alitalia


Many thanks for this beautiful invitation to Regione Umbria et Alitalia. As always these opinions are my own.

The Elegant Palazzo Seneca in Norcia

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The Room

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What A Lovely Surprise

discovering my vast room! Nice volumes and light wood, with long windows and high ceilings, few items: the set has style (photos above). The interior decoration of this small palazzo of the sixteenth century, owned by the Bianconi family in Norcia, is both classic and contemporary.

A fullness feeling by opening windows in the early morning, the eyes focused over the tops of mountains, like floating islands among the clouds … beyond the traditional tiled roofs (photos 1 and 2). The day looks promising.  

The bedding is spotless as soundproofing and bathroom. I particularly liked the minimal functional layout in the bathroom too. Before falling asleep, I had a look at the article of the black truffle from Norcia (the local specialty) in the Gazetta Seneca, edited by the hotel (photos below).

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The Hotel

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Italian Lifestyle    

I go down for breakfast, unable to swallow anything. The night before, I ate a lot (too much!) at Ristorante Granaro del Monte. Dinner of black truffles.

The buffet is varied and nicely presented with local products (including the famous norcineria) and the added bonus of beautiful views to the countryside and mountains, and also to the small inner garden of the hotel.

I could spend hours in the beautiful library and different lounges with comfortable English clubs. The clear spaces are dotted with works of art and offer some privacy.

I don’t have enough time to test the spa or cooking classes. It will be for a next time! This 24 suites Relais et Chateaux, is a gem where you want to return for sure. And it is conveniently located in the historic center of Norcia.

Umbria-Italy-Norcia-Hotel-Palazzo-Seneca-1-Photo ©Mademoiselle Le K

Photos : © Mademoiselle Le K – Tous droits réservés


Regione UmbriaAlitaliaPalazzo Seneca


Many thanks for this beautiful invitation to Regione Umbria et Alitalia. Thanks to Vincenzo Bianconi & his team at the Palazzo Senecca too. As always these opinions are my own.