Category Archives: Piedmont region

La Capitale del Cioccolato Torino 2011

Torino (Turin) is currently hosting a major chocolate festival called La Capitale del Cioccolato from 25th March to the 3rd April.

The event is being being held in conjunction with Italy’s 150th Anniversary and celebrates the importance of Torino’s role in the chocolate industry.

The event itself is being held in Torino’s main square Piazza Vittorio Veneto. Here there are loads of marquees set up where you are able to try chocolate from some of the main producers.

Piazza Vittorio has a substantial underground car park that always seems to have spaces available, so traveling to the event by car is easy enough, but for those of you who are a little nervous of driving in such a big city, it might be best to go outside of peak traffic hours.

This is a true paradise for chocolate lovers.

George Clooney in Alba

Alba is fast becoming a popular destination for celebrities as well as those who have an interest in food, culture and wine.

Our lastest visitor was George Clooney who popped down to Alba on his Harley Davidson motorbike and stopped for a spot of lunch at one our local bars in Piazza Savona.

Mr Clooney was kind enough to have his picture taken with three very happy ladies who happened to be in the square at that time.It was not long ago that Brad Pitt was here in the Langhe area looking for a property himself.

Alba is a charming town, full of sophistication and life, and is of course home to the world famous truffle festival in October.
Try to visit if you can.

Italian Music festivals

Please our apologies for lack of posts recently but our work commitments here in the Langhe have been tremendous.

Summer in Piemonte and Italy in general are wonderful for music lovers, the long hot summers are perfect for outdoor festivals and concerts. Monforte d’Alba is currently hosting its annual jazz festival and includes artists such as the Blind Boys of Alabama and the wonderful Patty Pravo. Meanwhile just down the road Steve Hackett from Genesis fame is playing an open air gig at Asti.

This week I’m off to see two of my favorite guitarists Robin Trower at Savona and the very excellent American guitarist Robben Ford. I had the pleasure of talking to Robben a few weeks ago and he said how much he loved it here in Italy.

Many open air music events and festivals are held throughout the whole of Italy during the summer, there’s something for everyone, whatever your tastes, jazz,rock,blues,pop,classical,folk etc. For me life does not get any better than watching a gig outside in Italy with a glass of Italian wine.

Even Boney M are playing just down the road!

I’ll let you know how the gigs went.

Property investment in Italy

Although the world financial crisis is in full swing we still have clients with money to invest and with uncertainties in the financial markets they are seeking alternative investment opportunities.

Property prices In Italy are remaining relatively stable but of course there are some bargains to be had !!

Tourism here in the Piemonte (Piedmont) region of Italy is thriving and while the poor performance of Sterling may affect the British market a little, the number of tourists coming here each year is increasing.

Piemonte offers something for everyone be it sports, food, culture, sea, skiing, wine and access to the wonderful Italian cities of Milan, Turin, and Genoa etc.

More and more tourists visiting the area are seeking self catering type holiday accommodation. Investors looking at properties in Piemonte with holiday rental potential certainly have an interesting investment opportunity……

A typical two bedroom property can fetch in the region of Euro 1000 per week with this figure increasing depending on standard of accommodation and amenities eg if there is a swimming pool.

Tourists are arriving in the Piemonte region all year round – a good return on your investment is for sure a viable proposition.

If you don’t live in Piemonte permanently and you buy a property for holiday rental, you will need someone to manage the rental business for you. There are agencies who will do this for you and there are also local Italian and foreign families that provide this service. Such assistance is very easily arranged.

With careful planning and an effective advertising campaign this is an investment seriously worth considering …….

A day skiing in Prato Nevoso Piemonte (Piedmont)

Prato NevosoOne of the joys of living in The Langhe region of Piemonte is its proximity to some beautiful ski resorts. One such resort is Prato Nevoso. It’s situated in The Cuneo Valley at about 1500 metres above sea level and offers 35 slopes that range from easy to difficult. It caters for cross- country skiing, snowboarding, ice skating and off piste work. There’s something for everyone.

We set off from Alba at about 9.00 am and arrived in just over an hour. Being February the resort was busy with mainly Italian families having a day out. Prato Nevoso really caters well for families, there are safe areas for children to sledge down, quad bikes for the more adventurous, go-karts, a ski school, bars, restaurants, hotels and just about every other thing you might need. Basically if you have young kids and someone to supervise them in the children snow play areas, you can go off to ski without worry. Did I mention sitting on a deck chair in the sun relaxing?

I was amazed to see how accomplished the young Italian children were at skiing and it was a joy to see families having fun together on the slopes. During the day somebody got injured skiing and at this point a policeman on a jet ski attended the injured person and within 15 minutes the Air Ambulance had arrived to ferry the person away. I was very impressed. Top marks for safety. On reflection I must say that we had a great day out with our friends from England, and their six year old son just loved it. The next day we all went to watch David Beckham play in Milan. But that’s another story. Stay tuned… 

Prato Nevoso

Play area for children

The town Prato Nevoso

Air Ambulance in action

Air Ambulance