Discover Southern Europe, Issue 6, July 2019

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I S S U E 6 | J U LY 2 019

Top French wines AND WINERIES




F R A N C E ,   S PA I N ,   I TA LY   &   P O R T U G A L

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Contents



J ULY 2 0 1 9


12 Top National Parks in Spain Spain has some of the most varied and striking landscapes in Europe, not least in its national parks. From snow topped mountain ranges to wild beaches and ravishing rivers, we take our pick of some of the best.

28 A Weekend in Matera – European Capital of Culture It may be a cliché, but with its historic ‘sassi’, or stones, Matera up till now has surely been one of Italy’s best kept secrets. Now gaining fame as Europe’s Capital of Culture 2019, discover our top tips on how to spend a weekend in this beautiful but unspoilt town.

16 Ibiza Special In this special look at the sun-drenched isle, we look beyond the parties and find out how best to enjoy the island and which experts can offer the best advice.

46 Top French Wines French wines are famous the world over. In this special feature we take a look at some of the most interesting winemakers and the wines they’re creating.

24 An Interview with Flamenco Superstar Sara Baras


Star of the Flamenco Festival London, internationally acclaimed dancer Sara Baras talks about her new show, dancing the ‘farruca’ – a man’s dance, in trousers – her passion for dancing, and why she believes gender roles are changing in the world of flamenco.


Southern European Style


Design Finds


Films & Books

52 Business 62

Diary Dates

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  3

Discover Southern Europe  |  Editor’s note

Dear Reader,

Discover Southern Europe Issue 6, July 2019

Published by Scan Group

Kiki Deere Steve Flinders Elizabeth Heath Ingrid Opstad Rose Sgueglia Hannah Jane Thompson Katie Turner Claire Webb

Print Uniprint

Cover Photo Sofia Wittert

Executive Editor Thomas Winther

Sales & Key Account Managers Katia Sfihi Rafael Casaleiz Nancy Tapia Mathilde Rineau Carlos Borras

Published 07.2019 ISSN 2632-3397

Creative Director Mads E. Petersen Editor Eddi Fiegel

Graphic Designer Mercedes Moulia

Publisher: Scan Group 15B Bell Yard Mews Bermondsey Street London SE1 3YT United Kingdom

Contributors Anna Bonet Nicola Rachel Colyer

Phone: +44 207 407 1937

Copy-editor Karl Batterbee

© All rights reserved. Material contained in this publication may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without prior permission of Scan Group – a trading name of Scan Magazine Ltd. This magazine contains advertorials/promotional articles.

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This July, as temperatures rise across Southern Europe, we have our own burst of heat, drama and passion in the form of our cover star – contemporary flamenco maestra Sara Baras. As she heads to London with her new show Sombras, I was delighted to chat with her and hear her thoughts on dance, life and the changing approach to gender roles in the world of flamenco. Continuing the Spanish theme, in this month’s issue, we have an Ibiza Special, focusing on the spectacular Mediterranean island and exploring its beauty beyond the Balearic beats. We also take a look at some of Spain’s most stunning national parks: from the volcanic landscape of Tenerife’s Teide and the mountainous drama of the Picos de Europa to the birdwatching paradise of Monfragüe in Extremadura and the archipelagos of the Islas Atlánticas in Galicia. In Italy, meanwhile, we visit this year’s European Capital of Culture – Matera – and discover why this relatively unknown but historic town is such a jewel. Over in France, we explore some of the country’s top wines and wineries as well as taking a look at some of the best ways to enjoy its gorgeous scenery, either at a music festival, in a gÎte or visiting an unusually scenic zoo. Elsewhere, we’ve got our monthly feast of regular features, exploring the best in new fashion, design, films and books as well as business, from Southern Europe. Bon appetit! Eddi Fiegel Editor


RHÔNE e c n e i r e exp


Terres de Syrah by Cave de Tain, dedicated to winetourism Cave de Tain and Terres de Syrah promote sensible drinking.

Discover Southern Europe  |  Southern European Style

It’s all white


As synonymous with the season as sand and sea, head-to-toe white has long been a classic look for summer: but this year, it is firmly on-trend. At once a statement and yet understated, it’s a fast-track to sophisticated style that will keep you cool as the temperature rises.

Keep it simple with wardrobe staples such as these classic white jeans from Italian menswear brand Boggi Milano. A fine-knit cotton jumper pairs well for cooler evenings, while a pale beige blazer adds a subtle layer of colour and elevates the look for a more formal affair. Light-grey cotton jersey como blazer €399, pima cotton round-neck jumper €89, extra slim cotton-bull denim five-pocket trousers €119.

Whether on land or at sea, the Breton tee is a mainstay of the summer wardrobe. A perfect accompaniment to an otherwise all white look, this long sleeve, boat neck style from French heritage brand Petit Bateau carries all the hallmarks of a classic. Men’s iconic stripy breton top, €70

Texture is the key to adding interest to a tonal look and the micro waffle on these antique white shorts from Portuguese brand La Paz sets them apart from the typical offerings. From their home in Porto, the brand works closely with local producers and focuses on quality fabrics combined with enduring design. Maciel antique white shorts, €92.50

The original offering from Italian footwear brand Superga, the Cotu Classic 2750 has remained a firm favourite since its creation in 1925. Timeless yet contemporary, the pared-back design deserves a place in every man’s wardrobe. Try wearing them with a pair of chinos rolled up to the ankle for a fashion-forward finish. Cotu Classic 2750 trainers, €59 (available at

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Southern European Style

This dress by French brand Sessùn is anything but simple with the broderie fabric, voluminous sleeves, ruffled neckline and tieup front, yet the crisp, pure white ensures it exudes an effortless appeal. It’s a dress that you can throw on and be ready to go at a moment’s notice, perfect for holidays and last- minute plans. Sessùn Miranda Fleur de Sel dress €225

From earrings to anklets reminiscent of old holiday finds, shell jewellery is the must-have accessory of the summer, destined to be worn long after the last of the sand has been brushed off your feet. This floral pair with real shell and freshwater pearls is a steal, providing an unapologetically feminine way to tap into the trend. Zara natural pearl flower earrings, €15.95

With all things nineties hitting the catwalk, it was only a matter of time before this icon made its return. Yes, the Baguette is back. The original ‘It bag’, launched in 1997 by luxury Italian designer Fendi, this contemporary incarnation with embossed white leather and gold hardware will make even the most simple of outfits shine. Fendi Baguette white leather bag, € 2,100

The stalwart of a summer wardrobe, a pair of strappy, flat sandals will take you from city to seaside, dawn to dusk. Designed and crafted in St Tropez by familyrun French brand K.Jacques, this fresh take on the classic Tropezienne gladiator sandal will add an air of insouciance to your favourite looks. K.Jacques karnak white odeon leather sandals, €210

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Design

Design Finds


The colour blue is a powerful hue. Blue can add a welcome sense of calm, serenity and peace to both you and your home – the perfect antidote to the stress of daily life. Here are a few of our selections, guaranteed to add a touch of calm. Are you ready to relax?

Add soft, calm touches with these distinctive but cosy cushions inspired by traditional Portuguese tiles (azulejos) from Burel Mountain Originals. Burel Mountain Originals, ‘Azulejo’ cushion, €63.00

Keep your bedroom cool but luxurious with this beautifully tactile bed. Designed by N. Nasrallah & C. Horner and manufactured by Ligne Roset, the Desdemone bed features a sensual blue velvet headboard and surround – the perfect place to retreat and relax. Ligne Roset, ‘Desdemone’ bed (high headboard, 160x200 bed), from €4,242

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Design

Motel a Miio creates unique handmade ceramics produced in Portugal in a fair and environmentally friendly manner. We fell in love with this blue and rose speckled Pinguim decanter that will add a touch of calm to any space. You can use the jug for drinks or as a vase. Motel a Miio, ‘Pinguim’ decanter, €49

Designed by LaSelva for Spanish company Missana, the Cosmo has double blue appeal, with the colour of calm in not one but two-shades. With its simple, pared-down design, it also has retro appeal with hints of mid-century modern. Missana, ‘Cosmo’ sofa, from €3,107

Carry on the contemporary yet retro-inspired feel with this ‘70s-style bubble shaped lamp designed by Italian Ferruccio Laviani. Perfect for hanging low over a dining table or higher as a central focal point in any room, the FL/Y chandelier lamp from Kartell will bring a note of intimacy whilst keeping things calm and blue. Kartell, ‘FL/Y’ lamp, from €232

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Films

Films & Books Our monthly pick of the best films and books either from Southern Europe or featuring Southern European locations.




on-Fiction, or Double Vies as it’s called in France, offers up a slice of literary life in Paris like no other. This is a film of intellectual conversation, sex, books and affairs. Having won the award for Best Director at Cannes and Best Screenplay at the Venice Film Festival, as well as a Golden Globe, expectations are always sky-high for renowned writer-director Olivier Assayas. But Non-Fiction is up there with his best. Long-time gossip author Leonard (Vincent Macaigne) has a new novel, and for the first time, his editor Alain (Guillaume Canet) refuses to publish it. It might have something to do with the fact that Leonard is having an ongoing affair with Alain’s wife, Selena (Juliette Binoche), and the book is a thinly disguised portrait of his love-life. But Alain is not without a mistress either. He’s busy carrying on with Laure (Christa Théret), the publishing house’s head of ‘digital transition’ – all the while mourning what the technology industry is doing to the book world. There’s a lot going on here, but Non-Fiction manages to be a highly perceptive and high-brow take on modern culture and relationships, whilst also being a lot of fun to watch.

Léonard (Vincent Macaigne)

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Selena (Juliette Binoche) and Alain (Guillaume Canet)

Despite all the drama and sophistication, comedy is at the heart of this film. This lightness of touch stops Non-Fiction from being didactic in any way. There are some very funny characters, whose humour is as dry as it is entertaining. As the somewhat disheveled Leonard, Macaigne is particularly brilliant at getting you to laugh, though each lead is just as exquisitely matched to their role. But as well as laughing, Non Fiction will have you questioning where you stand on all aspects of the modern world and today’s pop culture. Are tweets really the new haikus? What place do libraries have in today’s world? And should you go and support your local independent bookshop? Watching this film feels as though you’re there at the dinner table with them, smoking cigarettes and trying to keep up with the conversation. Truly, Non-Fiction is oh so French, and an excellent watch.

Non-Fiction is in UK cinemas from 11 July

Discover Southern Europe  |  Books

The Spanish Promise by Karen Swan is published by Pan Macmillan on 11 July (£7.99)



ritish author Karen Swan likes to set her novels in exotic locations, and her latest book transports the reader to a sizzling Madrid. The Spanish Promise is about a young woman who appears to have it all. Charlotte Fairfax is in possession of good looks, a devoted fiancée and a successful if somewhat unusual career: she’s a wealth counsellor. Apparently being rich isn’t as easy as you might think, so Charlotte spends her days helping billionaires who feel burdened by their hefty bank balances. A week before her wedding day, a private bank flies her to Spain to find out why a dying tycoon wants to give away his fortune to a woman that his family has never heard of. Charlotte suspects that he has skeletons in his closet, and it soon becomes clear that she does, too: she spends the balmy evening drowning painful memories with rosé. Her hangover isn’t helped by a chance meeting with her ex – a dashing history professor – at an exclusive country club. Before Charlotte’s glamorous life gets nauseating, Swan whisks the reader back to 1930s Andalusia, where political tensions are brewing in the years preceding the


Spanish Civil War. She puts us in the shoes of Nene, the feisty daughter of a prosperous bull breeder, who has been forbidden from playing with her best friend Santi – the son of a poor farmer. At this point, you don’t know what this adolescent girl has to do with Charlotte or her ailing mogul, but the vivid descriptions of her family’s sunbaked hacienda, and the simmering conflict between her landowner father and Ronda’s beleaguered peasants, sweep you along.

on a scorching afternoon. This is a book to devour while sunbathing by the pool, or to pass the time when you’re stuck at the airport because your budget flight to Malaga has been delayed. Karen Swan

The present-day and Civil War narratives are neatly interwoven and slowly unravel the mogul’s mysterious family history. When Nene grows up and flees to Madrid, Swan doesn’t shy away from the horrors of war, but tempers them with romance. As for Charlotte, she finds herself boarding a private jet to Andalusia with her buff history professor in tow, and staying in a certain hacienda. There’s a fabulously cheesy chapter where her ex has to come to her rescue, and you can almost feel the heat coming off the pages when they embrace. The Spanish Promise has been written for the beach bag and Swan’s juicy prose slips down as easily as a chilled glass of sangria Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  11


Monfragüe National Park. Photo: Extremadura Tourist Board

Top National Parks in Spain As one of the largest countries in Europe, Spain’s landscape is so varied that travelling from the snow-tipped mountains of the Sierra Nevada to the wild sandy beaches of Galicia’s Islas Atlánticas, you could almost be forgiven for thinking you’d arrived in another country. Add the volcanic scenery of the Canary Islands into the mix and the landscapes become more varied still. Throughout Spain and its islands there are spectacular national parks – perfect for walking, birdwatching, mountain biking and even skiing. Here’s our pick of the best.

drop gorges, lakes and lagoons, as well as neat terraces ablaze with almond trees in the foothills of the Alpujarras, the landscape is as varied as it’s photogenic. It’s also a haven for rare fauna and flora. If you’re a skiing fan, winter is the time to visit.


Montseny, Catalonia

Sierra Nevada, Andalusia Stretching across large swathes of Andalusia, Spain’s largest national park is also one of its most dramatic and spans the provinces of Granada, Almería and Málaga, sprawling over some 200 acres. With rugged mountains (including over 20 snow-tipped peaks over 3,000 metres high), hair-raisingly sheer12  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Montseny, Catalonia. Photo: Catalan Tourist Board

Only 30 miles north of Barcelona, the Montseny national park includes the impressive Montseny massif mountain range. Covering over 120 acres, a trip to Montseny makes for a fantastic day out from the Catalan capital and the park is popular with both walkers and mountain-bikers, who love its mountainous terrain. Whether you fancy a gentle stroll or a more energetic

Discover Southern Europe  |  Top National Parks in Spain

Monfragüe National Park. Photo: Extremadura Tourist Board

hike, there are clearly marked-out walking routes of different lengths, from half hour ambles to circular routes lasting several hours. Famous for its spring waters, there’s also a wide range of both Mediterranean and Alpine flora and fauna.

faces and river gorges, as well as immensely Instagrammable limestone peaks. It’s also home to rare wildlife including wild bears and boars, wolves as well as 100 bird species including golden eagles and griffon vultures.

Picos de Europa, Astrias, Cantabria, Castile & Leon

Another of Spain’s most popular National Parks, Teide’s vast volcanic landscape is also the largest and oldest of the Canary Islands. Rising up majestically in the midst of multi-hued volcanic cones is the epic Mount Teide itself (peaking at around 12,200 feet), but don’t worry about it erupting. The last time it did so was in 1798. Set at around

Nicknamed ‘Spain’s Dolomites’, the Picos de Europa is one of Spain’s most famous and popular national parks. It was also the country’s first, created in 1918. The park is home to a stunning and varied landscape of mountains, meadows and lakes, sheer rock

Teide, Tenerife

Teide. Photo: Turismo de Canarias

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Top National Parks in Spain

Picos de Europa. Photo: Christopher Willan/Greentraveller

6,500 feet above sea level, the best way to see the park is either by car or in the cable car which takes you on a breathtaking ride to the mountain’s peak. It’s well worth

it, not least for the staggering views of the neighbouring islands including La Gomera, La Palma, Gran Canaria and El Hierro.

Monfragüe, Extremadura Originally named by the Romans who called it ‘Mons Fragorum’, or ‘fragmented mountain’, Monfragüe is home to a dramatic combination of rugged mountains, oak forests, reservoirs, rivers, streams and cliffs. It’s also a favourite with both animal lovers – drawn by some 200 animal species – and birdwatchers, with a phenomenal array of birds from owls and Egyptian eagles to vultures and black storks. Colour-coded routes make it perfect for walking.

Timanfaya, Lanzarote

Sierra Nevada. Photo: Consejería de Turismo y Deporte de la Junta de Andalucía

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Lanzarote is full of stark, impressive landscapes but this extraordinary park is surely one of its most striking. Spanning nearly a quarter of the island, the terracotta and slate-toned mountains were originally created by volcanic eruptions in the 18th century, and because the climate is so dry on the island, the landscape has remained little changed ever since.

Discover Southern Europe  |  Top National Parks in Spain

Islas Atlánticas, Galicia Made up of various archipelagos off Galicia’s coast, the most impressive islands are the Cies islands, Ons, Sálvora and Cortegada, off the coast of Pontevedra. Take a boat from nearby Vigo and explore their blissfully wild, white sand beaches and clear azure waters. Rodas beach on the Cies islands is also not to be missed whilst Ons features a series of eerie caves or ‘furnas’ formed by the sea, where legend has it that on stormy nights you can hear the voices of the dead.

Montseny, Catalonia. Photo: Catalan Tourist Board

Islas Atlanticas. Photo: 2019 Turismo de Galicia

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Ibiza Special

Ibiza special Centuries before the Mediterranean island developed a reputation as a clubber’s paradise, Ibiza had been a haven for rovers rather than ravers, drawing bohemians and explorers in droves, not to mention the odd occupying army. TEXT: EDDI FIEGEL  |  PHOTOS: BALEARIC AGENCY FOR TOURISM STRATEGY


oday, this mix of influences, from the Romans and Moors to new age hippies, has left a powerful mark on the island in its architecture, food and style, and Ibiza is now a favourite with everyone from foodies to families and honeymooning couples. Ibiza is often referred to as an island of two halves. There’s the party island side with its 24-hour super-clubs, fashionable bars and boutiques forming the yin, whilst the more

rural, undeveloped tranquil side of the island forms the yang. This latter half is where you’ll find superb locally grown wines and olive oils, unspoilt beaches and spectacular coastal walks, as well as small towns awash with art galleries, excellent restaurants and independent boutiques. Whichever side of the island appeals, there are spectacular sunsets at almost every turn Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  17

Discover Southern Europe  |  Ibiza Special

and it’s perhaps little surprise that Ibiza has proved so popular with those seeking a retreat in some form or other from the stresses of urban city life. In our special Ibiza feature we’ll be discovering where to stay on the island, how to best explore its exceptional coastline (spoiler alert – the answer is by boat) and finding out about the companies who can expertly help you find a dream home, whether you’re looking for a holiday rental or a high end villa.

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Discover Southern Europe  |  Ibiza Special

Luxury properties in Ibiza


Run and owned by Aroa Carayol, Byaroa Properties is an established property agency that aims to take a consultative approach with all clients. “I have a personal relationship with all my clients, assisting them with both buying and renting luxury villas on the island,” explains Carayol. Born and raised in Ibiza, Carayol lives on a traditional ‘finca’, or farmhouse, in Santa Gertrudis, a picturesque foodie town in the heart of the island that is characterised by pretty whitewashed houses. To best serve all of her clients, Carayol also offers other services, including coordinating chauffeurdriven cars, hiring personal chefs and providing auditing services. Her clients come from all corners of the globe, from North America to the Middle East.

With purchase properties ranging from 500,000 to 30 million euros in value, Carayol has a hugely diverse portfolio. “While some clients buy properties in Ibiza to use as a second home, many buy villas as investments. The island’s increasing popularity as a holiday destination means more and more people are looking to rent out properties on a short-term basis. Some villas on the island are rented out for 120,000 euros a week. There are significant profits to be made.”

Photo: Casa Leti

Photo: Villa Amatista

A boat trip to remember Sitting on a yacht, drink in hand, amidst the shimmering Mediterranean: it’s an image that may be associated with the super-rich and famous, but on the sun-soaked island of Ibiza, a specialist boat company has been making glamour affordable. Boats Ibiza has long been the boat company of choice for everyone from visiting A-listers to holidaymakers looking for an experience they’ll remember. “We specialise in affordable luxury,” says Jane Charilaou of Boats Ibiza. “We’ve got around 30 boats on our books so a group of friends can hire a boat either for a sunset trip for half a day or for a full day, and it’s a real treat. Prices start from around 100 pounds per person on one of the smaller boats, and all drinks are included, so it’s a wonderful way to do something special.” The natural beauty of the coast around Ibiza and neighbouring Formentera also make for spectacular scenery. “I originally came here on a holiday in 2003,” continues Charilaou, “and I fell in love with the raw natural beauty of the island both on the sea and on the land with its pristine beach-

Not all of the exclusive properties Carayol manages are listed on her agency’s website. “Some owners do not want to be publicised online. They want to have direct contact with the client. I act as an intermediary, pairing clients with buyers whose properties I think best suit their needs and requirements,” Carayol explains. The success of her company is largely due to the strong client relationships Carayol has built over the years. “Communication and trust are essential. I aim to deliver balanced and honest advice to all my clients.” Facebook: byaroaproperties

Photo: Himmel Mansion


to make everyone who takes one of their boat trips feel like a celebrity. “We want people to feel special on their day,” explains Charilaou, “and our captains understand perfectly how to do that. They treat everyone really well and make them feel like rockstars. We’re very proud of the reviews we get and especially for being awarded TripAdvisor Awards of Excellence for six years running.” Facebook: Boats-Ibiza-92351586938 Twitter: @boatsibiza

es – many of which you can only reach by sea, and pine-covered mountains. It’s just jaw-droppingly beautiful.” Celebrity clients have included Nicole Scherzinger (formerly of Pussycat Dolls) and Alesha Dixon as well as Dizzy Rascal, The Kooks and actors from Coronation Street and Hollyoaks. But the company’s ethos is Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  19

Discover Southern Europe  |  Ibiza Special

Balearic bliss beyond the beats Ibiza may have made a name for itself as a ‘party island’, but more enlightened travellers will know that its appeal goes far beyond parties and house music. TEXT: HANNAH JANE THOMPSON  |  PHOTOS: IBIZA AGENTS


ith an average of 13 hours of sunshine per day in August and a breathtaking landscape, it is increasingly attractive to families, couples seeking romance and groups of friends, who are shunning nightclubs for daytime activities such as mountain trekking, kayaking or enjoying the pristine beaches.

has a different atmosphere, and depending on what the client is looking for, we recommend the best option. Some customers like the southwest, which is closer to the usual tourist sites, sunset beaches and downtown Ibiza, but others prefer the tranquillity and natural surroundings of the north.”

This is where property consultants such as Ibiza Agents come in. With 15 years’ experience of the island’s holiday rental and sales markets, the company starts by assigning a dedicated agent to each enquiry, who will help clients personally through the entire booking or sales process.

The style of the property is also a key consideration. “Right now, there is a trend to renovate or build properties in an Ibizan style embodying the pure design of the island, such as the use of white and natural stone, and big windows – a real combination of old and new. On the other hand, others prefer minimalist-style villas, with modern lines and great views,” says Levy.

Clients can also use a full concierge service to organise day trips, beach club bookings, car or boat rental, or private chefs. Wouldbe-buyers can use this too, and request – for example – a dinner reservation after a long day of house hunting. In each case, the first question is the same: where in the island would suit you best? “This is the first step,” explains Lorena Levy, manager at Ibiza Agents. “Each part of the island 20  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Whichever your preferred style, as a member of professional associations APIBIZA, AVAT and PIMEEF, the company offers a high level of trust and commitment, which other property sites may struggle to match. “Honesty is one of our best features,” explains Levy. “Unlike some online platforms, where sometimes the properties that appear

do not exist in reality, we always prioritise the client’s needs, so they feel at home and in good hands. We ensure that your holiday home is guaranteed.” Properties through Ibiza Agents are on offer all year round, too: yet another sign that the island has moved beyond its reputation for summertime partying. “Ibiza is a good destination at any time of year,” says Levy. “We have clients who enjoy the quiet, and spend the winter here – especially when their own countries are so much colder. Ibiza has been known as a party island – but it is so much more than that.” Facebook: ibizaagentsrealestate Instagram: @ibizaagents Twitter: @IbizaAgents

BRINGING GOURMET FOOD TO YOUR DOOR Petra Mora is a new concept in food – an online gourmet delicatessen, with a selection of the finest cheeses, charcuterie, meat, fish, wine and olive oils. We are passionate about seeking out only the very finest products which combine traditional methods with unparalleled flavour. Our user-friendly, swift purchasing process also means we can bring exceptional food to your table within 24 hours. Petra Mora’s cold storage transportation ensures that the finest products arrive in super fresh condition, instantly ready for use in a barbecue or as gourmet snacks or feasts for yourself or your guests, without the need for forward planning.










Discover Europe  |  IbizaMONTH Special SPAIN   |   Southern HOTEL OF THE

A boho-chic getaway in the heart of Ibiza Located in Ibiza’s foodie capital, Gatzara Suites is a hip, four-star boutique hotel with a boho-chic vibe that oozes pure island living. TEXT: KIKI DEERE  |  PHOTOS: MUCHIGRAPHY


ying at the heart of the island, the small village of Santa Gertrudis is all whitewashed walls and hippy vibes. “Gatzara Suites has a gorgeous location on the town’s main square. It’s ideally located to reach Ibiza’s main points of interest, lying only a 15-minute drive from the white-sand beaches of the south and the same distance from the picture-perfect bays of the north,” explains owner Santi Tur Roig. The airport and Ibiza town are also within striking distance, making it particularly convenient to explore all corners of the island.

Blending tradition and design With its contemporary interiors, Gatzara Suites combines bohemian vibes with a heavy dose of chic. Spanish designer Jordi Carreño, of Ibiza-based architecture firm Estudio Vila 13, is behind the design. An allwhite palette lends an airy Mediterranean 22  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

feel, with hints of tan and brown recalling the different earthy hues of the island. The vertical garden in the lobby, meanwhile, is said to be one of the tallest in the country, with over 2,000 plants of ten botanical species. The adjacent lounge is adorned with geometric cushions and a stylish wicker pod-hanging chair that makes for a perfect spot to sit back and unwind with a book

or a drink in hand. Brightly coloured works of art by local artists add lively splashes of colour to the crisp white walls, while in winter, a contemporary fireplace further contributes to the elegant and sophisticated design scheme. “The hotel brings out the bohemian side of the island, inviting guests to relax and unwind,” continues Santi. “This was once a farmhouse, and then our family home. A few years ago we decided to take the leap and convert the building into an exclusive boutique hotel. We have tried to maintain the style of traditional Ibizan houses, while decorating the interiors with modern design pieces including Tom Dixon and Nelson Sepulveda lamps, and colourful Huguet tiles from Mallorca.” Local stone was used during construction, while decorative clay pieces made by an Ibizan artist feature in the interiors. The lush olive trees, bougainvillea and lavender dotted around are likewise a graceful nod to the hotel’s island location.

Discover Southern Europe  |  Hotel of the Month

is Salinas Mango Gatzara, a refreshing summer blend made with locally distilled vodka, Angostura bitters and fresh mango. The buffet breakfast spread features a range of local products, including locally sourced yoghurts and cheeses, sobrassada (cured sausage), botifarra (a type of sausage that is typical of Catalan cuisine), flaó (cheese tart that is a speciality of the island) and panallets (traditional marzipan sweets).

Sleek and stylish bedrooms With only 20 rooms, the atmosphere is decidedly intimate. Bedrooms vary in size and layout, with four categories of rooms available. With their sleek design, studios feature all white walls and sandy shades, while the suites are a step up, sleeping up to three with mountain or countryside views. “Our guests love the spacious, glass-enclosed shower within the bedroom,” explains Santi. “Couples also tend to like the more spacious Village Suites, with balconies overlooking the village.”

air swimming pool and a stylish bar. “This is one of our guests’ favourite spots,” Santi explains. “It’s perfect to unwind and soak up the panoramic views of the town square and the surrounding hills.” The bar buzzes in the early evenings, when both locals and hotel guests sip on expertly crafted cocktails as the sun sets. Drinks are prepared using fresh seasonal fruits, local herbs and liqueurs. A longstanding favourite

Open throughout the day, the bright and airy Musset Restaurant on the ground floor of the building serves healthy Mediterranean cuisine in an informal, convivial setting. “The town has over 20 superb restaurants, many family-run, serving exceptional local cuisine. Our guests love heading out to try new places every day.” As well as restaurants, the town has about two-dozen shops, from pricey boutiques to more laidback clothing stores that suit all budgets. “The aim of Gatzara Suites,” says Santi, “is to create a calm haven where guests can relax and unwind in chic yet laidback surrounds while fully immersing themselves in island life.” Facebook: gatzarasuitessantagertrudis Instagram: @hotelgatzaraibiza

The Loft Suites, with their smart white wood features, are set over two floors. “They have sofa beds and fully equipped kitchenettes, making them ideal for self-caterers and families with small children.” With its laidback vibe and convivial feel, the town of Santa Gertrudis is the perfect destination for families. “There’s also a playground just steps away from the hotel,” says Santi. Rooms are named after the island’s natural sources of water. “Houses were traditionally built next to springs or wells as water was essential in agriculture and farming. The hotel is named after Gatzara Well, located in the centre of the island,” continues Santi.

Hand-crafted cocktails On a hot summer’s day, guests can cool off on the rooftop terrace, complete with openIssue 6  |  July 2019  |  23


Photo: Juliette Valtiendas

24  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Discover Southern Europe  |  Interview: Sara Baras

Sara Baras Dancer Sara Baras has become the flamenco superstar of her generation, performing on the world’s most prestigious stages from London and Paris to New York and Tokyo. Renowned for breaking the rules and doing things her own way, she talks dance, life and gender politics on the eve of her headline show at the Flamenco Festival London. TEXT: EDDI FIEGEL


or Sara Baras, dancing is in her blood. She has been dancing since she was five years’ old, trained as a child by her mother – a respected flamenco teacher in Cádiz, Andalusia – and she first made her name as a young dancer over 20 years ago. She immediately stood out thanks to her striking combination of grace, beauty and technical virtuosity combined with the passion which is the lifeblood of flamenco. She also made her name early on by dancing the ‘farruca’ – a dance traditionally only danced by men, characterised by its intense, rapid-fire footwork and high drama turns and poses. Despite the fact that it was a man’s dance and had to be danced in trousers rather than

the voluminous dresses historically worn by female dancers, she saw no reason not to make it her own. In fact, it was the dance’s very masculinity which paradoxically gave Baras the courage to tackle it and, in fact, made her feel more feminine, she says. “I feel more naked when dancing la farruca,” she tells me in her Andalusian accented Spanish down the phone from Seville where she has been touring, “and your body is somehow more present. When you put on a dress, your hips, your legs, your whole body handles it in a delicate way so that it doesn’t disrupt the beautiful silhouette it gives your body. For me, the trousers make you feel more exposed, more naked and that makes you feel more feminine. For me, at least.”

So what was it, I ask her, that inspired her to take on the dance? “Originally [in flamenco],” she explains, “there was one style of movement for men and another for women. Nowadays, we have the same movements and it’s only the interpretation which is important. A man can move his hips but he moves them like a man, not like a woman. A woman can ‘zapatear’ (stamp in the flamenco style), but a woman does so with femininity, not like a man. So I thought I can dance a farruca because I won’t be dancing it like a man. What’s more, I feel more feminine dancing a farruca than other styles which are probably more traditionally associated with women.” Despite having been considered a man’s dance, la farruca had in fact been taken on previously by the great gypsy flamenco star of the 1920s and ‘30s, Carmen Amaya, kitted out in a dapper white suit, but it still nevertheless made waves when Baras took it on “At first, it caused a bit of a stir that I was dancing a man’s dance,” she explains, “and wearing men’s clothes, but people were also Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  25

Discover Southern Europe  |  Interview: Sara Baras

which she explains celebrates the ‘shadows’ of the people who have been important to her at the various stages of her career. “I wanted to celebrate the fact that my company has now been together for 20 years and I wanted to pay homage to the shadows and ghosts of people who have accompanied us during our years together, and also those moments which help you remember that what you do today is based on everything you’ve learnt in the past. It’s a way of honouring the past without repeating choreography, but giving it a new reading.” Her new interpretation of la farruca is a key part of the show, an acknowledgement of its importance in her career, albeit in a new guise. “I was 25 years younger when I first danced it,” she tells me, “but it was something that has defined me and I’m still here and I’m even braver now because now I can do it with a violin and a saxophone or whatever I want. And that fusion gives me security and it’s a very important moment for me artistically, and something that helps me grow and to have something to say.”

Photo: Santana de Yepes

very supportive to me. There were some, who people mistakenly call purists, who didn’t want me to progress things, but they were very few. The flamenco world itself wasn’t against it, and now nobody asks anymore why a woman shouldn’t dance the farruca. “When Carmen Amaya stood in front of a man,” she continues, “she seemed stronger than the man, and why not? In the past, there was a rule which said that women were soft and sweet and moved their arms while men were strong and moved their feet. But that was a very long time ago. So in my case, I think I came from a generation where we became more equal and were given more opportunities to do that.” In fact, whilst aspects of flamenco may have been more associated with a certain machismo, the culture of the dance’s homeland 26  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

of Andalucia also bears a tradition of strong women. Consequently, although the traditional image of the flamenco world is one of tightly defined gender roles and a staunch masculinity which might not seem the obvious place for a more enlightened approach to equality of the sexes, the reality has not necessarily been so straightforward. “There’s a tradition,” says Baras, “which seems like it never changes, but the fact is that the flamenco world moves on, just like life. Nowadays, we as women play a different role in the world generally and we’re still fighting to get more equality – and that’s the same in the world of flamenco. And I think it’s the same for the public.” This year, Baras celebrates 20 years with her own dance company and she is currently touring Sombras (Shadows) – the show

Baras is clearly committed to bringing flamenco firmly into the 21st century, and aside from la farruca, the dresses she wears in the rest of Sombras, may feature the odd frill and some flowing, billowing skirts but these are often more reminiscent of contemporary ballet than the polka dotted frills of postcards and the strictly-for-tourists flamenco displays. For her, however, this approach is simply something that goes in tandem with life as, for her, the two are inextricably intertwined. Did she ever think of doing anything else, I ask her. “No,” she laughs. “I grew up knowing that dancing was what I wanted to do. It was just a part of me. This isn’t like a job that you do from nine to five. It’s my means of expression, my way of feeling. For me, dancing is my life.”

Sara Baras will be performing Sombras with Ballet Flamenco Sara Baras at Sadler’s Wells, London, from 2 to 7 July

Discover Southern Europe  |  Interview: Sara Baras

Photo: Juliette Valtiendas

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  27




n earlier days Matera was famous for being the ‘shame of Italy’. Its desperately poor citizens resided in caves without running water until the 1950s, when they were forced to relocate and abandon their troglodyte homes. 60 years on, the town has been reborn and its notorious cave-dwelling district, the ‘sassi’, is a UNESCO World Heritage site and its warren of subterranean houses have been converted into sleek hotels, chic restaurants (both offering fantastic value compared to better-known parts of Italy) and atmospheric galleries. 28  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

This summer the spotlight is on Matera, as it’s been crowned European Capital of Culture, and there are art exhibitions and concerts happening throughout the year. Set aside at least two days to explore the sassi’s labyrinthine lanes, underground sights and wholesome Mediterranean diet.

Day One Start your weekend with a mooch around the market that takes place every day in the square at the heart of the old town, Piazza Vittorio Veneto. Vendors holler their prices as locals stock up on fresh fruit, cold cuts, ricotta and warm loaves of Matera’s bread, which is prized for its thick crust and soft golden crumb. The yawning hole in the piazza is the mouth of Palombaro Lungo, a giant cistern that used to supply the city’s water. This ingen-


Whilst crowds may swarm on Venice and Florence, Matera, the southern town in the region of Basilicata – the instep of Italy’s ‘boot’ – is still relatively quiet, despite being rapidly recognised as one of Italy’s most enchanting destinations.

Discover Southern Europe  |  A Weekend in Matera

ious feat of engineering was sealed up and forgotten about for decades. Book a place on one of the English-language tours to marvel at its temple-like carved arches and learn about its conception. Peckish? Forget about pizza; it’s all about the focaccia in Matera and every bakery serves their own version of the springy, olive oil-enriched flatbread topped with zingy tomato sauce and fat olives, or slivers of artichoke and courgette. Join the queue outside Panificio Paolucci, just off the main piazza, and order a slab of their melt-in-themouth potato focaccia (22 Via del Corso).

Afterwards, descend Caveoso’s twisting alleys to the bottom of the ravine where a craggy lump of rock with an iron crucifix towers over the little stone houses. If you climb the steps, you’ll find a door that leads to two rock churches: Santa Maria de Idris and San Giovanni decorated with medieval frescoes.

The sassi is honeycombed with over 150 churches and many were used as houses, wine cellars or storerooms in the 1800s. At 7pm, join the families strolling arm-inarm through the piazzas and gossiping over aperitifs in cafes. Finish the day by explor-

Walk it off with a stroll through the old town to Palazzo Lanfranchi on Piazzetta Pascoli, a grand 17th-century seminary that now houses modern and medieval art (www. As part of the year-long Capital of Culture programme, there’s a fantastic exhibition on the Renaissance, while the permanent collection includes left-wing artist Carlo Levi’s harrowing portrait of the poverty-stricken residents of the Sassi, Lucania 61. The viewpoint next to the palazzo has superb views over Sasso Caveoso – the southern part of the sassi, which is burrowed into a steep limestone gorge.

Also worth seeing in Basilicata

would have had water gushing from their lolling

mountain range. Europe’s longest zipline – the

Sandwiched between Campania and Puglia to

tongues when they decorated the temple.

aptly named ‘Flight of the Angel’ – hurtles from

the north and Calabria to the south, Basilicata

the village to neighbouring Pietrapertosa, allowing

stretches from the Ionian coast’s powder-soft

Dine in Francis Ford Coppola’s palazzo

beaches to the plunging peaks of the Tyrrhenian

The US film director has sumptuously revamped

miles per hour. There are also breathtaking views

coastline. Matera is only a 45 minute drive from

a 19th-century palazzo in his grandfather’s

from the castle ruins that keep guard over both

the former, and an hour and a half from the hilltop

sleepy village, Bernalda, which is eight miles from

villages. (

villages of the Lucanian Dolomites.

Metaponto. When the Coppolas aren’t staying,

Admire an Ancient Greek Temple

candlelit dinners in the shady garden, stretch

The lush countryside that surrounds Matera is

2,600 years ago, the Greeks ruled over Southern

out by the secluded pool and learn how to make

dotted with farm restaurants where you can feast on ‘cucina povera’, the peasant cooking

it’s a boutique hotel and guests can linger over

thrill-seekers to soar high above the woods at 70

Feast on peasant food

Italy, and Basilicata’s Ionian coast is littered

pasta in the kitchen (doubles from €250/£223).

with ancient ruins. The most impressive are the

There’s no need to stay there to enjoy a coffee or

of Southern Italy. One of the best ‘agriturismo’ is

towering columns of Tavole Paladine, a temple

dinner in the bar, which is furnished with a '70s

La Dimora dei Cavalieri, which serves traditional

dedicated to the goddess Hera which stands,

jukebox and black and white photos of film stars.

Lucanian dishes fit for a king. The pasta flour,

rather incongruously next to a busy highway


cheese and lamb are all produced on the farm

people come here for the white-sand beaches

Fly over the Lucanian Dolomites

meals – locals come from miles around for the

and azure sea, but Metaponto’s archaeological



creamy chickpea pasta. It’s also a guesthouse

museum is well worth a visit, too. Its treasures

Castelmezzano, a village that clings to a hillside

with a pool (B&B from €33/£29 per person).

include painted terracotta lions’ heads that

in the Lucanian Dolomites, Basilicata’s rugged


north of the seaside town of Metaponto. Most




and lovingly crafted into delicious, no-frills

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  29

Discover Southern Europe  |  A Weekend in Matera

ing Basilicata’s rustic cuisine at Agristories, a cavernous restaurant on Via Sette Dolori ( The tasting menu showcases local ingredients and the staff are only too happy to tell you about their provenance. Be sure to try the silken ricotta and ‘cruschi’ – crispy red peppers unique to the region.

For lunch, book a table at Il Cantuccio: a snug, old-school trattoria tucked away on Via della Beccherie. Try the velvety broadbean and chicory purée – a southern Italian favourite – and a glass of punchy Aglianco del Vulture. Aglianco is Basilicata’s Barolo, and Vulture is a volcano in the north of the region.

Day Two

No trip to Matera is complete without a pilgrimage to its Romanesque cathedral, which presides over the old town and has been restored to its former glory. The magnificent interior is adorned with a 13thcentury Byzantine painting. It’s worth climbing the steep steps up to the cathedral twice: in the daylight and at night, when the old town is mapped out in lights.

On Sunday, start the day by stepping back in time. Casa Grotta di Vico Solitario shows what life would have been like in the 1930s and 40s, when the Sassi was a slum and 16,000 people lived on top of each other. The cave house is sparsely furnished as theirs would have been and has a space for livestock (

30  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Discover Southern Europe  |  A Weekend in Matera

How to get there: It’s just under three hours to Bari airport from the UK; then around a one-hour drive or 90-minute train to Matera. British Airways flies from London Gatwick from £41





Gatwick and Manchester from £19.99 one-way; Ryanair from London Stansted, London Luton and Liverpool from £19.99 one-way; and Wizz Air from London Luton £35.99. Brindisi airport is about a two-hour drive from Matera. easyJet flies there from London Gatwick and Bristol from £20.99; Ryanair





Manchester from £24.99 one-way.

Where to stay: Hotel Sassi’s rustic rooms are tucked away down quiet cobbled alleys and stone staircases, and there are glorious views of the old quarter from the terraces. Doubles from €98 (£87), B&B. Corte San Pietro is a boutique hotel with stylish rooms, a romantic courtyard and an eerie art installation in the ancient subterranean cisterns. Doubles from €130 (£116), B&B. The Rock Hostel is a budget-friendly option in a converted limestone farmhouse two minutes’ walk from the sassi. There are single-sex and mixed dormitories and a shared kitchen and common area. Beds from €20 (£18).

How to get around: Most of the sassi’s vertiginous lanes and piazzas are off-limits to vehicles, but the sights are walkable. If heading further afield, renting a car is advisable, as bus services are limited.

Find out more: For more information on Matera and the region, go to You can check out the European Capital of Culture programme at

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  31

Discover Southern Europe  |  Top Accommodation in Matera / Discovering People in Italy

The hotel at the historic heart of Matera At the heart of the ancient city centre in Matera, considered by many to be the ‘sleeping beauty’ of Italy and one of Europe’s best kept secrets, lies the Hotel in Pietra – named after the historic local stones. TEXT: ROSE SGUEGLIA  |  PHOTOS: ANTONELLO DI GENNARO

Housed in a converted 13th-century church, San Giovanni Vecchio, this historic boutique hotel is just 200 yards from Matera’s main square, Piazza del Duomo, and the city centre. The six rooms and three suites – which come complete with Jacuzzis – feature an eclectic décor mixing contemporary chic with traditional styling, markedly different from the more straightforwardly traditional approach of other nearby hotels but still very much in harmony with the character of the building. “I have been lucky to find these locations,” says Roberto Cristallo, hotel manager and owner of the Hotel in Pietra. “In particular, this converted church which houses the hall, the breakfast room and the bar. Everything else, such as the buildings which stand next to the church, has been carved

directly into the stones, adding a special charm to their character.” “I have always been interested in the tourism sector,” he continues. “It’s a passion of mine which was born after spending several years working with my father Raffaele in my family hotel,”

“We have worked tirelessly to make the hotel as comfortable as possible. We wanted our customers to come to our hotel, relax and enjoy their stay in Matera, and that is why we have added the Jacuzzis and soon we will be adding a sauna room.” The hotel also offers an excellent breakfast buffet designed to set guests up for a day of exploring in Matera. Facebook: hotelinpietra Instagram: @hotelinpietra

Top wine tips, tours and tastings in Piedmont Most wine lovers like nothing more than getting the inside track on wines and wineries, and gregarious tour guide Ornella Bonifacio is an expert at providing exactly that, guiding visitors around Italy’s premier wine region. “I specialise in custom-designed holidays around Alba, a historic town located in the heart of Piedmont’s wine region,” explains Ornella. “I work with a wide range of producers, carefully selecting the best wineries to suit the tastes of each and every client.” Having conducted wine tastings in a local family-run winery for a number of years, Ornella eventually decided to set up her own business leading wine tours in the region. Over the years, her business has greatly evolved, and today, Ornella is also involved in various other projects. “Many of my clients come to Piedmont to explore the region’s exceptional food and wine scene, although a number are more interested in shopping, art or even literature. Some are even on the hunt for a second home,” explains Ornella. Over the years, Ornella has built close relationships with a plethora of businesses in 32  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

the area, from local seamstresses to niche bookshops and real estate agents, providing her with the expertise, knowledge and local contacts to create bespoke itineraries to suit her varied clientele, who come from as far as South Korea and Japan. “Most visitors inevitably visit this area to learn more about Piedmont’s fine wines, not least its exceptional Barolos and Barbarescos. As Charles Baudelaire said, ‘A man who

Photo: Ornella Bonifacio


drinks only water has a secret to hide from his fellow men’,” she laughs, quoting her favourite French poet. Ornella teaches clients about every aspect of the local wine industry, from viticulture to wine tasting. “There is much, much more to Piedmont than fine wines. I offer my clients a diverse range of experiences for them to really delve into the heart of Piedmont’s culture and traditions.” Telephone: +39 335 682 6852 E-mail: Facebook: ornella.bonifacio.3

Photo: Ornella Bonifacio

Web: Facebook: ilnutino Borgo S. Lorenzo, 39R, 50123 Firenze FI

Web: www. Facebook: cappellemedicee Via del Canto dei Nelli, 30, 50123 Firenze FI

Discover Southern Europe  |  A New Outdoor Concept

Venice gets a taste of Danish hygge Venice, Italy is one of the world’s most magnificent cities. Its iconic bridges, Byzantine-influenced cathedral, romantic, gondola-filled canals, and narrow, characteristic streets have enchanted visitors for centuries. But it’s also a victim of its own success, as seen in well-publicised reports of the city straining under the effects of over-tourism. So while travellers keep visiting Venice, they’ve come to expect that they will encounter stifling crowds, overpriced hotels and restaurants, and generally a scene that’s more taxing than it is relaxing. TEXT: ELIZABETH HEATH  |  PHOTOS: PROCIDA CAMP RESORT


ut what if there were a different way to experience Venice – to escape the crowds, leave less of a footprint and spend the night, not in a claustrophobically small hotel room, but under a starry sky, with the sound of waves lulling you into a restful sleep? That’s the premise – and the promise – of Nordisk Village Venice, a luxury glamping 34  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

experience on Ca’ Savio, a peninsula that shelters the Venetian Lagoon from the Adriatic Sea. The seasonal village is nestled in a full-service beachfront campground with pools and snack bars, but, like Venice, is an island unto itself. Composed of ten Scandinavian-style cotton tents, Nordisk Village is miles away from the typical camping experience – and it’s certainly worlds apart from the hectic pace of Venice.

“We wanted to create an out-of-the-ordinary experience for travellers to Venice,” says Erik Johannes Møller, CEO of Nordisk, which also has vacation villages near Naples, Paris, and on the Goto Islands of Japan. “We wanted the Doges (the historic rulers of Venice) to meet the Vikings, for those two incredible cultures to encounter one another in our village.”

Discover Southern Europe  |  A New Outdoor Concept

Nordisk originally produced high-quality outdoor equipment, including tents, before it got into the holiday accommodation business. “The concept initially grew,” says Mr. Møller, “out of interest from the company’s Asian market. There, people are keen to escape crowded cities and get out into the countryside for their vacations or weekend breaks. Those same clients who used Nordisk tents started asking how they could visit Europe yet still stay close to nature – and the first Nordisk Village was born. “We figured that if we started pitching nice tents for nice people in nice places, we could offer them something really original, and a different way to experience their vacation.”

Hygge time What attracts people to Nordisk Village is the Scandinavian way of embracing quali-

ty down time – often referred to as ‘hygge’ (pronounced ‘hoo-gah’). “Danes believe that there’s more to life than work, and that your time off should be carefree and easy,” says Mr. Møller. “You should be able to revel in breathing clean air, sitting under the stars, cooking and eating a good meal, having a beer with your neighbours. That’s what we’ve brought to Venice.” At Nordisk Village Venice, guests stay on two- or four-person glamping tents with raised wooden floors, comfortable beds – no sleeping bags in sight – mini-fridges, sofas, outdoor dining areas and shared bathrooms. The tents are set in a shady area, and their breathable cotton construction ensures that they stay cool, even in peak summer. Within the Nordisk compound, a well-equipped communal kitchen invites guests to prepare Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  35

Discover Southern Europe  |  A New Outdoor Concept

their own meals, with herbs picked fresh from the on-site garden. A wide sandy beach is just yards away, and guests can avail themselves of the campground amenities as well. “We wanted the experience to be luxury, but not excessively so,” explains Mr. Møller. “You’re staying in a nice tent that’s as nice as a hotel room, except it has cotton walls that let the fresh air in. You’ve got wine glasses, a space to relax. You’re outdoors without sacrificing comfort.” Since there are no permanent concrete structures in the village, which is open May to October, guests at Nordisk Village holiday in a more sustainable manner – something Venice is sorely in need of.

Sustainability amidst nature Sustainability is also a requisite for many Nordisk Village guests. “Our guests are seasoned travellers, not typical Saturday campers,” says Mr. Møller. “They want to visit Venice, but they don’t want a typical experience, and they also want to know that their choices are eco-conscious. They might be the kind of people who would look for a boutique hotel. Instead, we’ve offered them a boutique glamping experience.” Today’s travellers, he explains, are also interested in engaging with fellow travellers. And that’s a lot more likely to happen at Nordisk Village than at a hotel. “Here,” he says, “you can share a meal if you want. You can pick some herbs 36  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Discover Southern Europe  |  A New Outdoor Concept

for your gin and tonic, talk with other guests, then go back to the comfort of your tent. A hotel,” he adds, “can’t offer that sense of community and that good feeling – that hygge – of being outdoors and enjoying nature.” Plus, it’s all a 35-minute boat ride from Piazza San Marco, the landmark square and site of Venice’s iconic Basilica di San Marco. The easy proximity allows Nordisk Village guests to make day trips to Venice to see the city’s marvellous churches and art museums and soak up its one-of-a-kind ambiance. Then they return to the tranquillity of their luxury tent, natural surroundings and relaxed community. There’s not an experience like it anywhere in Venice – and that’s just what Mr. Møller and his team aim for. “We offer a completely out of the ordinary, sustainable way to spend your holiday in Venice,” he says. Facebook: NordiskOutdoor Instagram: #nordiskvillage

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  37


Producteurs et distillateurs depuis 1890 engagés pour une agriculture éco-responsable à 1100m d’altitude pour une lavande rare et précieuse. Fondateur du Musée de la Lavande en 1991 au coeur du Luberon. Véritable conservatoire du patrimoine Lavandicole & Savoir-faire des lavandiculteurs du XVIe siècle à nos jours. Pionniers dans les soins à la lavande de Haute Provence. Nouveautés 2019 visites thématiques et ateliers Programme des animations et évènements Dive straight into Provence Lavender Family-owned company since 1890 and Founder of the Lavender Museum in 1991, with the largest collection of genuine lavender stills. Tours with specialized guides and activities all year long. High-end organic cosmetic brand 100% pure and natural, PDO fine lavender essential oil Musée & boutique

ouverts 7/7 du 1er février au 31 décembre.

Museum & Boutique

open 7 days a week from 1st february to 31st december



Photo: Auvergne Rhone Alpes Tourisme

Outdoor France Summer is the perfect time to enjoy the great outdoors and, with its wide variety of landscapes, where better than France?

Photo: Auvergne Rhone Alpes Tourisme


rom the lavender fields of Provence to the vineyards of the Rhône valley, the countryside awaits, whether it’s for a

picnic ‘en plein air’ with exceptional cheeses and a bottle of French wine, a weekend festival or for a holiday in a gÎte. Allez-y! Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  39

Discover Southern Europe  |  Outdoor France

The Gîtes de France label is a historic, respected stamp of quality and friendliness, offering the chance to securely book a wide variety of accommodation across the country.

A Rhône with a view Underpinned by history and service, Gîtes de France du Rhône allows guests to stay in the heart of Beaujolais country, a stone's throw from bustling Lyon. TEXT: HANNAH JANE THOMPSON  |  PHOTOS: GÎTES DE FRANCE RHÔNE MÉTROPOLE


n today’s ‘gig economy’, in which startups claim to be ‘disrupting’ traditional hospitality every five minutes, it is reassuring to know that historic labels such as Gîtes de France remain strong.

As Dominique Legrand, director at Gîtes de France Rhône Lyon Métropole, explains: “We offer quality accommodation with owners who welcome the clients with local knowledge.”

Founded in 1955, Gîtes de France offers a 70,000-strong network of certified guesthouses (gîtes) and rooms (chambres d’hôtes), all of which can now be searched, contacted and booked online. Gites are ranked using the ‘ears of wheat (épis)’ system, allowing guests to match expectations with budgets.

Visitors can search by category, finding accommodation tailored to their desires whether it be cycling, hiking, a stay on a farm, or group trips.

Staff visit each site in person, checking everything from the comfort, the facilities and warmth of the welcome to cleanliness and decoration, and for the chambres d’hôtes specifically, the quality of the linen, and the breakfast selection. More than 500 accommodation sites with the label Gîtes de France are available to book in the Rhône Lyonnais Beaujolais and the Métropole de Lyon region. 40  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

For wine lovers, almost 100 sites are located on vineyards themselves – a great way to discover the ten grand crus of the Beaujolais region, the Lyonnais hills, or the Côtes du Rhône. With properties in the heart of Lyon, guests can discover this city – which was made a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1998 – and its four historic neighborhoods spanning 1,235 acres, allowing visitors to travel from ancient times to the present day. The Gîtes de France advantages do not end with accommodation: in the Rhône, a ‘Carte

Avantages’ card offers guests exclusive, discounted access to Lyon and Rhône attractions, including animal parks, wine tastings, and museums. But it is the personal touch that truly sets Gîtes de France Rhône Lyon Métropole apart. “We guarantee friendliness,” explains Dominique Legrand. “When the client arrives, they know they will be welcomed by real people – not an anonymous key code box. “Today, when people travel, they want to discover how other people actually live. We were the first network to offer tourism as a ‘home from home’.” Facebook: gitesdefrancerhone

Discover Southern Europe  |  Outdoor France

A zoo with a difference in the heart of Provence The Mediterranean landscape of Provence may not be the first place you’d expect to find safari animals such as lions, rhinos and elephants, but the Zoo de la Barben is home to all these and many more. TEXT: EDDI FIEGEL  |  PHOTOS: ZOO BARBEN

Set amidst 750 acres of lush Provençal countryside, high on a plateau midway between Marseilles and Avignon, the Zoo de la Barben features some 650 animals and 130 different species. It is also one of the only zoos in Southern France to include ‘the big five’ as they are known in Africa – namely lions, leopards, elephants, rhinos and buffalos. Other animals include bears, meerkats, panthers, primates, crocodiles, vultures and reptiles, the last of whom are housed in what

was originally a sheep pen dating back to the 12th century. With its vast parklands filled with the scent of Mediterranean flora, the Zoo de la Barben has much more to see and do than merely visit the animals. An extensive playground is guaranteed to keep children happy, as is the ‘petit train’ or ‘little train’, which can save weary limbs from trekking too far across the grounds. The train is also ideal for tired parents or older visitors.

With stretches of rolling parkland alongside a chateau, and over five and a half miles of footpaths through woods, visitors can enjoy a leisurely day out, either savouring a picnic in the park, or alternatively the Zoo also has its own bistro for lunch. There is also an open-air amphitheatre for bird displays including birds of prey. The zoo is family-run and keenly aware of protecting its animals. The management are committed to preserving endangered species and also similarly aware of protecting the environment with a zero plastic policy on site. The Zoo also offers electric scooters for visitors with impaired mobility.

Discover Southern Europe  |  Outdoor France

Big skies, big music, big names


Three days of fantastic music, in the middle of the countryside. Quite literally ‘The Green Escape’: which is what this country, rock and folk festival deep in France’s Auvergne region is all about. The 2019 line-up is impressive; Beth Hart, Kiefer Sutherland, Wade Bowen, Derek Ryan along with Elliott Murphy and Kris Barras. “We get big names. It’s 32 years since we started and we have great relationships with people in the industry, especially around Nashville,” says organiser Delphine Magaud. “The artists say this part of France reminds them of Wyoming or Montana, we’re all about the big sky.” The Green Escape Festival is almost entirely run by local volunteers in Craponne:

population 2,000. Over three days at the end of July that number swells to 13,000. “Everyone gets stuck in. We source all the food locally and the guys who build the stages come from just down the road. You can feel that community vibe.” There’s a 500-pitch campsite and visiting has become a festival ritual for Magaud; “I make sure I take a wander among the tents every year. There’s a brilliant atmosphere, people bring their instruments and just jam.” Festival-goers come from all over Europe and

A midsummer night’s dream

42  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

video projections onto the castle at the centre of the arboretum, dancers and fire-eaters. You’ll also be able to join numerous workshops including massage, music and art. As for the logistics: “The cows have been cleared,” laughs Margot. “There’s room for everyone to camp, with toilet facilities and showers on site. As well as plenty of parking.”

Photo: Benjamin Vallet Facebook: TheGreenEscapeFestival Instagram: @thegreenescapeofficiel


‘Leave real life behind and come into our world’, is the call to festival-goers in Eastern France from 25 to 28 July. The Château Perché Festival - a lavish fourday event with music, DJs, theatre and light shows, is now heading into its sixth incarnation and organisers are expecting 10,000 people amidst France’s oldest private arboretum. It will be a trip to fantasyland for festivalgoers, with the backdrop of an earthly paradise. “The perfect location is very much what we’re about,” says organiser Margot Giraudon, “and the Arboretum de Balaine really is one of the jewels in France’s heritage crown.” You’ll be keeping cool under the trees during the day and enjoying complete freedom in nature at night. “In the broadest sense, our theme is ‘Create Your Paradise’,” Margot elaborates. “While you’re here, you’ll be free to live out whatever fantasy our theme conjures up for you.” Across 11 stages with 300 artists, you’ll find DJs playing house, techno and ambient, alongside rock, punk and jazz. This year, South America also features heavily in the musical line-up. There’s theatre, light shows,

many have fallen in love with the surrounding area. “Our visitors tend to make a holiday of it, there’s plenty to do, just down the road is Le Puy-en-Velay which is a UNESCO World Heritage site,” Magaud elaborates. “Country music is having a major revival and everyone is glued to American series, so we’re getting more visitors than ever.” So far. So wonderful. Any downsides? “We’re at 1,000 metres of altitude and it can get chilly at night, even in summer,” she says laughing, “So don’t forget a jumper!”

Costumes are expected and very much welcomed, this year’s day-by-day themes are: ‘The Surge of Insects’, ‘The Ephemeral Togas of Paradise’ and ‘And the Firefly Shined’. “All wide open to interpretation,” says Margot. “We’re simply the guides on this journey, we’d just like everyone to give the best of themselves, whatever that may be.” Facebook: ChateauPercheFestival Instagram: @chateauperchefestival

Photo: Eugénie Flochel

PANORAMIC CABINS AND SPAS IN THE WOODS Amidst nearly 20 acres of forestland in the south of Bordeaux, the Landines offer a unique opportunity to stay surrounded by nature. With contemporary cabins featuring top quality linens and stylish furnishings, the aim is to bring creature comforts whilst feeling at one with nature. With this in mind, each of the lodges features unique floor-to-ceiling glass picture windows bringing the ferns and century-old oaks of the forests so close you can almost touch them. Luxuriate in our hot spas amidst the woods and soak up the panoramic views – the perfect retreat from the stress of urban life.

6 Jeantic, 33113 Origne. Gironde, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France | | +33 (0)6 95 05 30 18 |


Le Casin © Christophe Brachet

L’Exèdre © VIlle de Yerres

Experiencing the daily life of a great Impressionist “He was a shooting star. Burning very brightly but dying at the relatively young age of 45. He lived a full and magical life,” says Valérie Dupont-Aignan, the director of the Propriété Caillebotte and mayoral official in Yerres, half an hour south of Paris. Her ‘shooting star’ is Gustave Caillebotte, one of the best-known artists and patrons of the Impressionist movement, and the painter of such masterpieces as The Floor Planers which is now on display at Paris’ Musée d’Orsay.

“You can’t underestimate the effect the estate had on him. He hadn’t had that much exposure to ‘real life’ and how people lived and worked if they didn’t have money,” explains the property’s director. At the Propriété Caillebotte he would have been surrounded by workers keeping the house and grounds in order, and what better backdrop for his work?



alérie Dupont-Aignan runs the artist’s former home and certainly knows 19th-century French art. “I’d recommend visiting the Musée d’Orsay in the morning to get a feel for the Impressionists. Then get the train out here for the afternoon. You’ll get a real sense of the period and Gustave Caillebotte’s pivotal role in it.” Caillebotte was born into a wealthy upperclass French family and had no need to work, but was highly educated and took an interest in art, photography and gardening, as well as being a prolific collector of stamps. The family moved to the property 44  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

in 1860, when Gustave was 12 years old. It would have been the perfect counterpoint to life in Paris, which was in the throes of being developed by Georges-Eugene Haussmann and would have been dirty and chaotic.

Le Casin © Ville de Yerres

“You can take a trip around the world just walking in these gardens,” says Valérie Dupont-Aignan. “From the semi-circular portico featuring figures from Greek mythology, to the Palladian front of the main house which conjures up visions of Italy, the pavilion evoking the Silk Road and our covered bench where one could imagine Japanese

Discover Southern Europe  |  Museum of the Month

reflecting Caillebotte’s experiences, and exhibiting contemporary artists, “Bringing exhibitions right up to date is how we stay close to Caillebotte and his vision of promoting the work of his own time. He was such an important patron for the Impressionists, who weren’t always admired as they are today,” explains Valérie Dupont-Aignan. This year, visitors can discover several of Caillebotte’s own works at the Artist’s Studio in the 19th Century exhibition, which runs until the end of October. “He painted a lot in nature, especially in these gardens, as many of the Impressionists did. But lots of the detail was added here in the very studio where we’re exhibiting the works. It’s very exciting.” All the information accompanying exhibitions, as well as the house and gardens, is available in English. You can pick up an iPad on arrival and take a tour on that, or download the app before you get here for an augmented reality experience. tea ceremonies taking place: it’s all here in the 27 acres surrounding the house.” The property’s vegetable patch, painted several times by Caillebotte, is another jewel to discover. It’s still in use today as it would have been when he lived here. Volunteer gardeners plant and nurture a variety of fruit and vegetables on the plot as well as showing visitors around.

Restoring the property

house, was up for sale. It would have been an immense loss, because when you see it up on the first floor it takes your breath away. It’s now listed and can’t leave France,” says Valérie Dupont-Aignan proudly.

Exhibitions There are numerous exhibitions on the site, including in the gardens, which are the perfect setting for displaying sculptures. The philosophy of those managing the estate is to rotate between art from the 19th century,

“We want to make sure visitors come back,” says the Propriété Caillebotte’s director, “We want people to get out of Paris and come and enjoy art and artists in this little corner of paradise.” Facebook: laproprietecaillebotte Instagram: @proprietecaillebotte App available for Android and iPhone: Maison Caillebotte

The property’s director has been involved with the estate since 1995, after coming to Yerres when her husband was elected mayor. “The first time I saw this house it was completely derelict, rainwater was leaking through the roof and windows were smashed. The place had been looted. It was heartbreaking,” she remembers. After a painstaking 20-year renovation, the house reopened in 2017. Restoring the property to its former glory has been a labour of love. The French government supported the project and even intervened to protect some treasures which would otherwise have been sold at auction. “In September 2016, I came back from holiday to an email saying some Empire bedroom furniture, which was totally in keeping with the

Le Kiosque © VIlle de Yerres

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  45


Domaine de la Noblaie Wine Estate, Loire Valley.

Top French wines French wines have long had a reputation as second to none the world over. Whether it’s a glass of Bordeaux, Champagne, Pinot Noir or Sancerre, French grape varieties and wine styles have set the standard internationally for the very best that wine can offer.



istorians believe it was the Etruscans of central Italy who originally brought wine to France, having learnt the technique from the Phoenicians in what is now modern day Lebanon. The French quickly began planting their own vineyards and wine was probably used as both a medicinal agent to treat ailments and aches and pains, as well as forming a part of religious ceremonies due to its mind-altering properties. Over the centuries, the tradition spread across France as wine-growers perfected their art and, with its vast variety of climates, terroirs and grape varieties, the industry grew and grew.

Chateau de Valmer Vineyards, Loire Valley.

46  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

France is now the world's largest wine exporting country and over the following pages we’ll be looking at some of its most fascinating and forward thinking wineries and winemakers. À votre santé!

Discover Southern Europe  |  Top French Wines

A winemaker combining vision with tradition The vision of Château Tour Saint Christophe’s owner, Peter Kwok, is clear. Drawing inspiration from an archive photo of the rolling landscape surrounding the winery, he wants to return the estate to its 19th-century roots. His aim is to return to the traditional – and best – way of producing some of the most important wines the Bordeaux region has to offer.

vintages among the rolling vines. For those wanting the full Château Tour Saint Christophe experience, there’s also an apartment for six people available inside the château itself. With glorious views across the 49.5 acre estate, it can be rented year-round.



is painstaking restoration of Château Tour Saint Christophe’s vineyards has earned the respect of the region’s locals. In keeping with the history of the terroir (land) and hand-built by a specialist team from Valencia in Spain, the unique terraces maximise the rich clay-limestone soil. A richness which eventually ends up bottled as a full-bodied Saint-Emilion Grand Cru. Mr Kwok is a frequent visitor to the estate and has nurtured world-class wine for more than two decades from his base in Hong Kong. He’s put in place a team of the most knowledgeable people in the industry who are on site daily, preparing for the perfect timing of the grape harvest.

and the barrels filled. In the cellars, you’ll find vast state-of-the-art storage facilities. Then, in the final stage of the process, renowned wine consultant Michel Rolland works his magic on the blending before bottles are exported across the globe. If you’re looking for wine-tasting, foodpairing or even creating your own blend, the on-site team can help. They’ll give you a tour of the estate and talk you through their

Wine-making is very much a family concern with Mr Kwok’s three children, Karen, Elaine and Howard, all fluent in French and involved not only in the running of Château Tour Saint Christophe, but also several other wineries in the area. As a result of one man’s passion, with careful and painstaking restoration, the future of this timeless vineyard has been assured.

In September and October, the serenity and harmony of the estate gives way to speed and efficiency, as the grapes are harvested Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  47

A family love affair with fine wines “Wine was like forbidden fruit for me growing up,” reminisces Julien Fournier, manager of the estate at the Domaine FL vineyard. “My grandfather wouldn’t let me go down into his cellar. When the bottles were brought up I was allowed to smell, but never to taste. I think my passion was born from that.” The name of the estate itself – ‘Domaine FL’, is a nod to Julien’s paternal grandparents; Fournier and Longchamps.

An easy hour and a half on the train from Paris, Domaine FL is just south of Angers against the stunning backdrop of France’s Loire Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage site filled with fairy-tale castles and steeped in history. The River Loire itself cuts through part of the estate’s land.



t’s a father to son thing. My grandfather loved wine, my father loves wine and that’s why I’m here running the vineyard,” he continues. The current generation of the Fournier family have all made their mark on the estate. Julien’s mother is an artist, and she and his brother – an architect – both took a hand in the conception and finish of the winery and tasting room, complete with roof terrace overlooking their 89 acres of vines. 48  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Winemaking here dates back to the 12th century. The first vines were planted in 1130 and monks from the Abbey of SaintNicolas d'Angers cultivated the vines to make communion wine used in local churches. Recalling those humble beginnings, one of the estate’s highly-rated vintages is still called Roche aux Moines Rock of the Monks. The unique soil and topography in the Anjou region play heavily into the Domaine

Discover Southern Europe  |  Top French Wines

FL winemaking, “It’s all about the land,” continues Julien. “That’s what you can taste through the grape and, of course, in the end product.” There are several bright and minerally white wines from the Chenin Blanc grape, among them, the Savennières Roche aux Moines and the Quarts de Chaume Grand Cru. There’s also a fruity red, Le Cochet, produced from the Cabernet Franc variety. While times have obviously moved on, Julien wants to stay true to traditional methods of production. “We do everything by hand,” he says. “If all the grapes ripen over a short period, up to 90 people descend to harvest the grapes. That’s a big increase on our usual team of 12!” The estate produces both organic and biodynamic wines, although it’s not an obsession; it’s the cornerstone of Julien’s winemaking philosophy. “It’s not the first thing I think about, but I want to respect the lifecycle of the vines and produce good vintages. That’s the way we’ve decided to do it and I believe it’s the right way,” he explains. Julien fleshes out his vision: “The environment is really important to me. I’ve got a strategy and I want it to stay coherent in the long term. Our cellar is a good example. It’s quite common to use air conditioning to keep barrels at the right temperature, but I went for a geothermal system. I think that’s really in keeping with the traditional methods of wine production and it’s a win-win situa-

tion because it has less environmental impact both now and in the future.”

blending sessions, in French and English. You can take cookery lessons with a local chef or be guided in the pairing of wine with food.

Behind every successful boss there is, of course, a team making it all run smoothly day-to-day. There’s lots to do – not just in the production of the wine. There’s the storage of the vintages and all the logistics that go with running a business. “I’m running the business in start-up mode, we’re developing fast. I want to try and stay dynamic and bring new things to the table,” Julien says.

Groups can book meals at the ‘table d'hôte’, which takes you through a menu using the best seasonal and local ingredients. It’s also a wonderful location for company meetings or away-days; the spaces are large but homely and the views across the vineyards second to none – the perfect antidote to the office.

Winery Visits and Classes

“Conviviality, sharing and pleasure are really the hallmarks of any good winery,” says Julien. “Exactly the same as any good wine.”

The winery isn’t just for the Fournier family to enjoy – members of the public are very welcome. To that end, they have dedicated staff members for all that relates to wine tourism, including guided tours, tastings and even Facebook: domainefloenotourisme Instagram: @domainefl_oenotourisme

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  49

Spread across seven distinct châteaux near Bordeaux, the Vignobles Invindia group describes its common goal as quality, pleasure and respect for its different grapes

Drinking with desire How a collection of boutique Bordeaux vineyards mixes work with pleasure to create an award-winning variety of wine. TEXT: HANNAH JANE THOMPSON  |  PHOTOS: VIGNOBLES INVINDIA


human story of grapes, earth and desire’ is how the Vignobles Invindia group describes itself, with its very title an evocative play on the Latin word ‘invidia’ – meaning envy or desire – and the French word for wine – ‘vin’. This focus on desire is key: despite being spread across seven different châteaux within 45 minutes’ drive of Bordeaux, the company has one main goal – to make high-quality wine that is a pleasure to taste. Seven properties mean seven distinct ‘terroirs’ – the non-translatable French word that denotes geography, climate, ground, age of the vines, and more – and varieties produced across three key appellations: Saint-Emilion Grand Cru; Fronsac; and Entre-Deux-Mers. Yet, throughout the business, quality takes precedence over quantity, meaning that even in a region as over-saturated and well-known as Bordeaux, these vintages still stand out. Recent examples include wines from Château Aurore and Château Haut-Meyrau, 50  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

both of which picked up gold medals in recent national competitions. Hugues Laborde, technical director at Invindia, describes this attention to detail as the common thread running through the fabric of all seven sites. “We prefer to pick fewer grapes, but have the best quality possible,” he explains. “We produce less than the vines could give us, which allows us to have very concentrated, sweet and aromatic grapes, so the wine is tasty and rich.” Vintages from the 11-acre Château Aurore estate, he explains, have attracted well-deserved praise due to the site’s distinctive terroir: an exposed landscape between the Dordogne and Garonne, with historic deeproot vines more than 60 years old. But the group’s two Saint-Emilion properties are also ready to shine, as the company is launching a new tourist offer in time for summer at both Château Le Conte and Château Touzinat. Brand new ensuite guest bed-

rooms will accommodate visits for up to 12 to 15 people, including an in-depth tour of the site and winemaking process, followed by guided tastings. Each of the châteaux already offers group visits, including half-day and full-day tours, presenting an honest account of the hard work that goes into producing such quality bottles. “Today, people want to know where their food and drink comes from,” explains Laborde. “We have nothing to hide, and are proud of what we do. It is about respect: of the terroir, and each grape.” “We do not print labels for the sake of it,” he says. “We are winemakers above all.” Facebook: Vignobles-Invindia Instagram: @vignoblesinvindia

Discover Southern Europe  |  Top French Wines

Two wine worlds collide in the Loire Valley Franco-South African couple, Vincent and Tania Carême, are starting something very special in the wine world. Not only are the couple spearheading the revival of France’s Chenin Blanc grape variety, but they are also passing on their passion for wine to a second generation. TEXT: KATIE TURNER  |  PHOTOS: DOMAINE VINCENT CARÊME


heir sons, aged eleven and eight, have already produced and sold their own vintage. “I tell them they don’t have to get into this, they can do their own thing,” laughs Tania. “But they are already so passionate about tending the vines!”

South Africa. ‘It’s so exciting making wine from the same grape, in Vouvray and the Swartland. It produces wines that pair well with so many foods. Sommeliers in places as far away as New York and Stockholm have started stocking Domaine Vincent Carême,” says Tania.

Vincent, who runs the farm and winery with South African-born Tania, made his first bottle of Vouvray, aged 14, under the watchful eye of his grandfather, who started the farm and winery in 1999. Wine was equally important for Tania as a child too. “There was always wine on the table at home,” she explains. “When I went to university, I chose Stellenbosch, in the winelands, and ended up president of the wine society. It’s my passion.”

Their French estate in Vouvray gained organic certification in 2007. “That stamp isn’t the be-all and end-all,” says Tania. “It’s also about using traditional methods to nurture the vines. We still have horses working the land where it’s too steep for tractors and we chose to go down this route because you have to drink wines that you love, produced in the right way. That’s the bottom line for Vincent.”

The South African connection is important: the couple also make their own wine called ‘Terre Brûlée’, in the Swartland region of the Western Cape. While the Chenin Blanc grape originated in France’s Loire Valley, it is in fact the most widely-planted variety in

The husband and wife team are two of the Loire’s most respected winemakers and Vincent is also a mentor to many up-andcoming local producers. “He wants people to travel and experience winemaking in other parts of the world,” says Tania. “It means

you come back to France full of new ideas and see the wonderful land here with fresh eyes and inspiration.” “We want to keep it simple,” she explains. “Let’s do what we love: make great wine, both here and in South Africa.” Facebook: domainecareme Instagram: @vincentcareme

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  51


Banish work-life balance from your life ‘Work-life balance’ is such a daft expression, and yet it will not lie down. I find the suggestion of a simple polarity (or bipolarity?) between work and life really depressing. TEXT & PHOTO: STEVE FLINDERS

We need a more balanced and nuanced approach to the business of living; and we need to put work into a better perspective. Some coaches use a life wheel to encourage their clients to do this. Draw a circle and divide it into eight segments. Now you can think about more areas that are important in your life. Work will probably be one of them, and career is another candidate. Many working people do not think enough about their own professional and career development, and what is in it for them. There is family, and friends – you might want to separate these or put them together. And health: if we are not looking after our physical and mental wellbeing, then we

are doing ourselves and possibly the wider society a disservice. Fun is important: maybe both hobbies and leisure pursuits – two more segments for some. Our spiritual side is central for some, for others not. I hope everyone would think about their role in the community and the importance of giving something back. Finally, there is a stunningly simple idea from Nick Bate, a great trainer and business thinker: finance. We work for money, but if we do not spend time making our money work for us, we might as well burn the stuff. This is definitely in my life wheel. After labelling your segments, shade in the proportion of each to show how satisfied you are with the balance there. Then

think about what you see. Then make some decisions. Your list may be very different from the one I just brainstormed with myself. The main thing is to throw out the notion of ‘work-life balance’. Would not simply ‘life balance’ be better for everyone?

Steve Flinders is a freelance trainer, writer and coach, based in Malta, who helps people develop their communication and leadership skills for working internationally:

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VISIT US ON OPEN HOUSE DAY SEPTEMBER 7, 2019 Comillas Pontifical University Alberto Aguilera 23, Madrid, 28015 (+34) 91 542 28 00

Discover Southern Europe  |  Business

Galicia’s centre for academic excellence and world-class research Spain is home to some of the oldest and most historic universities in Europe, but in recent years, a younger addition to the country’s academic institutions – the University of Vigo – has been forging an impressive reputation, both nationally and internationally.

or intersexual. The university has also scored highly within the top 20 Spanish universities in the Dinamic Transparency Index for embracing values of transparency.


The University of Vigo has likewise been widely recognised in numerous other international ranking systems, including the prestigious CWTS Leiden Ranking which rates universities around the world based on the number of academic papers published as well as scientific and industry collaborations.


stablished in 1990, the University of Vigo now ranks high in the Times Higher Education’s ratings for top universities regarding sciences as well as arts and humanities, engineering and technology. Widely considered one of Spain’s most distinguished universities, the University of Vigo is spread across three campuses in southern Galicia, in the cities of Vigo, Ourense and Pontevedra. More than 20,000 students are enrolled in over 150 courses, including Bachelor's degrees, Master’s and PhD courses, and the University is also renowned for its international research centres with more than 1,700 researchers currently working in them. In 2018, the University attracted more than 20 million euros in funding for its research programmes and the three campuses feature no less than 30 research and training centres as well as sports and leisure facilities and an ongoing programme of cultural events.

There are three major research centres focusing on Marine Research, IT and Communications, and Biomedical research. The latter is the CINBIO (Centro de investigacións Biomédicas), a world-class centre in which professors, doctors and PhD students work closely with hospitals in the region, local governments and other universities. Similarly, the University also leads the Campus of International Excellence programme, aka Campus do Mar, bringing together socio-economic agents and 3,000 researchers in the marine field from the Galicia-Northern Portugal Euroregion

The University of Vigo is also considered amongst the top 12 Spanish universities by the Fundación CYD, for its contribution to research and development. Facebook: uvigo Instagram: @universidadedevigo Twitter: @uvigo LinkedIn: uvigo

The University of Vigo prides itself on deeply held, positive values, based on transparency and good management, integration, equality, diversity and respect for the environment. In 2018, the University of Vigo was the first in Galicia to sign up to a charter specifically focused on the acceptance of name changes for people who are transgender, transexual Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  53

Discover Southern Europe  |  Business

Luxury residences on the coast of Granada Located in a protected marine reserve in Punta de la Mona in the Province of Granada, the residential complex of Icon Marina comprises 87 two- and three-bed apartments commanding sweeping vistas of the largely untouched coastline. The apartments offer direct access to Marina del Este, a pretty marina in a picturesque cove in the seaside town of La Herradura. TEXT: KIKI DEERE  |  PHOTOS: TOP GESTIÓN


s well as having an enviable seafront location, Icon Marina is perfectly situated to reach the region’s major points of interest,” explains director general María Emilia Alarcón. “The apartments are 50 minutes from Malaga Airport and the Moorish city of Granada, with high-speed AVE rail connections to cities throughout Spain, and it’s only an additional 35 minutes from Granada to the ski resorts of Sierra Nevada.”

Offering diverse landscapes, the Province of Granada in the south of the Iberian peninsula has some of the mildest climates in Europe, with over 300 days of sunshine a year and an average annual temperature of 19 degrees. It’s home to a variety of landscapes from gorgeous beaches to sweeping plains as well as the snowy mountains that form part of the Sierra Nevada, the highest mountain range in the Iberian peninsula. In summer, there are water sports aplenty, including kite surfing, diving, and paragliding, while in winter, Sierra Nevada offers some of the country’s best skiing. In spring, when the snow begins to melt and the days become longer, you can nip off for a morning of skiing and enjoy a swim in the sea in the afternoon, with both easily reachable from Icon Marina. Spread out over four buildings, the complex blends in with the surrounding landscape. Interiors are breezy and well lit, with plen-

54  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

ty of natural light flooding in through large windows, while the spacious terraces are the perfect spot to sit back and soak up the vistas of the glistening Mediterranean Sea. Carefully designed to take advantage of the wonderful sea views, the apartments have spacious interiors: two-bedroom apartments with an average floor area of 80 square metres, while the three-beds measure 95 metres. Architecture studio A-CERO is behind the contemporary design. “Led by renowned architects Joaquín Torres and Rafael Llamazares, A-CERO is one of Spain’s most renowned architecture firms designing properties for the high-end residential development market,” explains CEO Óscar Presa. With their stylish interiors and enviable beachfront location, the apartments at Icon Marina are ideally suited either as a principal residence or a second home, offering peaceful seclusion and easy access to the province’s wealth of attractions throughout the year. Facebook: TopGestionMadrid Instagram: @topgestion Twitter: @top_gestion LinkedIn: topgestionmadrid

Discover Southern Europe  |  Business

Living the real estate dream in Marbella Whether it’s for a chic seaside home or a snazzy holiday residence to unwind in the Spanish sun, The List Homes on the Costa del Sol may well be the ultimate dream for house hunters. TEXT: KIKI DEERE  |  PHOTOS: TOP GESTIÓN


ust a stone’s throw from Marbella on Spain’s renowned Costa del Sol lies The List Homes – a contemporary luxury complex comprising 27 semi-detached villas. Thanks to the development’s location on a gentle slope, each villa commands fantastic sea views. “From the very beginning we knew that this project required a truly unique location,” explains CEO Óscar Presa, “immersed in greenery where we could make the sea and mountain views speak for themselves. This allows clients to take advantage of the region’s sunny climes while enjoying exclusive services at their fingertips.” With the Sierra Blanca Mountains serving as a backdrop, the coastal resort of Marbella is one of the country’s most exclusive destinations, home to prestigious coastal estates, exclusive nightclubs, upmarket boutiques and luxury yachts lining the town’s attractive marina. The List Homes comprises four- and five-bedroom semi-detached villas, spread

out across four floors. As well as a basement, first and second floor, each villa has a large terrace with private swimming pool offering panoramic sea views. Immersed in leafy grounds, the development also has a communal outdoor swimming pool, large gardens and a fitness area with steam room, sauna and massage room. Communal bathrooms and changing rooms are fully equipped for guests with disabilities.

ing in Marbella is a true luxury and privilege, providing access to the best things in life: unique experiences, a sunny climate virtually year-round, superb gastronomy and a range of thrilling sports to suit all tastes. What more could one want?” Facebook: TopGestionMadrid Instagram: @topgestion Twitter: @top_gestion LinkedIn: topgestionmadrid

Private vehicles entering the complex can access the underground car park directly from the public road, which means that there is virtually no traffic within the complex’s grounds. To ensure maximum privacy and security, the complex is manned around the clock, and fitted with alarms and perimeter surveillance cameras. “When trying to build our ideal lifestyle, we tend to look for a destination that offers services that match our needs,” explains director general María Emilia Alarcón. “LivIssue 6  |  July 2019  |  55

Discover Southern Europe  |  Business

Style and Luxury in Andalusia It is said that people today ‘no longer collect things, but seek experiences’ – and Q Hotels has this idea at its heart. TEXT: HANNAH JANE THOMPSON  |  PHOTOS: Q HOTELS


ith three high-end hotels and a collection of apartments and villas in the southernmost region of Spain, the company specialises in ensuring that guests have much more than just a place to sleep Creativity is key, and decor is mixed with art. Every space has its own personality and is characterised by its lightness and warmth in a bid to “honour every corner of Andalusia”. “We want our guests to enjoy our privileged location,” explains Raquel Chabrera, Q Hotels CEO. “They do not come to simply stay ‘at a hotel’; we want them to have a unique experience; to live in the hotel in a way that is different from what they have experienced before.” Flagship property the Cortijo de Zahara perfectly demonstrates this approach. Located at the Playa de Zahara de los Atunes in Tarifa, it is a one hour drive from the city of Cádiz. 56  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Now a four-star hotel, it has rightly retained the name ‘cortijo’ – a Spanish word meaning a traditional Andalusian farmhouse – as a demonstration of the deep history that runs through its halls. The hotel mixes traditional-style architecture with modern materials and the stunning natural landscape to create a truly luxurious setting. Whitewashed walls and terracotta tiles recall the history of the building, whilst swimming pools and lounging areas are designed to offer incredible views of the sea.

The region of Tarifa is at the southernmost tip of continental Europe: only Malta, Cyprus and some Greek islands lie further south. LIke much of Southern Europe, the town has influences from many cultures, including the Romans, and later the Islamic conquest. The decor hints at this varied and exciting past, including touches of different cultural design in the furniture, fabrics and deep colour palettes. “This is a way of improving the customer experience. It is not simply 'accommodation', it is an experience for all the senses,” explains Chabrera. “The hotel has its own identity. We try to make it almost like an exhibition of artisan art, and the culture that is here. It is in such a privileged landscape. We try to ensure that everything complements that, and we can share that history with the guests.”

Hotel Tarifa Lances and Zahara Beach & Spa The four-star Hotel Tarifa Lances, located at the Playa de Los Lances, also in Tarifa, similarly showcases this illustrious past, albeit in a slightly more modern style. Decor here is still artistic, varied and traditional, but the

Discover Southern Europe  |  Business

offbeat bedroom design and super-modern roof terrace and pool area offer a sleeker, high-end atmosphere. From this autumn, all Q Hotels guests will be able to book ‘Q Experiences’, which will offer local excursions and “special moments”.”Again, there is that focus on guest experience. The idea is to give the client even more, so they can also go beyond the hotel,” explains Chabrera. The five-star Zahara Beach & Spa – also at Playa de Zahara de los Atunes – places even more emphasis on wellbeing and relaxation. Open only to adults aged 18 and over, its design focuses on white, natural materials and neutral tones, for a superchilled-out ambiance. “In all of the hotels, we have a wellness area, with massage treatments and pools, and sometimes saunas and Turkish baths,” explains Chabrera. “Some have outdoor Jacuzzis, so guests can feel surrounded by nature while also being private. We also have a lot of rooms for spa treatments, so it feels peaceful and guests can escape.”

Zahara Sol Villas & Apartments Finally, the Zahara Sol villas and apartments provide a real home-from-home feel in an unmistakably Spanish style alongside Balinese details. Built in Andalusian shapes

in traditional pastel colours, they subtly complement the huge, private pool; the deep blue of the sky; the ocean view; and the beach which lies just a few yards away. And for all their privacy and personal feel, the apartments and villas also have the signature Q Hotels flair. Rustic furniture, colourful fabrics, creative light fittings and bright artwork contrast with sleek modern kitchens and bathrooms for a comfortable, upmarket atmosphere. Facebook: thetarifalances THeCortijodeZahara Hotelzaharabeach Instagram: @thecortijozahara @thetarifalances @Hotelzaharabeach

Q Hotels also has a wide range of options for meetings and conference events, when it comes to both accommodation and room capacities, and can even close the hotels exclusively for large events. Across all the hotels, gastronomy and food are key features – as guests would rightly expect from four- and five-star establishments. Food here reflects the local region, but in a sensitive way, and the variety means that the “guest will never need to ask for anything else”. “Lots of companies say that they offer something 'different', but we really try to show that. We talk about difference, and we truly mean it,” explains Chabrera. “When our clients arrive here, they are not coming to just any old hotel. Here, they can really experience something new.” Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  57

Discover Southern Europe  |  Business

Equipping students for the future Founded in 1989, the University of A Coruña is a modern and dynamic centre for higher education with a growing and thriving body of students. Its campuses are located in two of the most dynamic places in Galicia, namely the coastal cities of Coruña and Ferrol. TEXT: KIKI DEERE  |  PHOTOS: UDC


ver the last 30years, the University has greatly expanded in both size and quality, adapting its academic offer and its facilities to the demands of its students,” explains vice-president for internationalisation and cooperation, Pilar García. The University offers over 40 degree courses, including Bachelor’s and combined degrees, with some featuring lectures and classes in English. “Our strength and success are the result of the University’s high-quality teaching. Student satisfaction levels remain high, with 90 per cent of graduates saying they would study at UDC again,” Garcia continues. Many students are attracted by the wide range of courses on offer, with a number of degree courses focusing on niche subjects, such as Industrial Fashion Management and Electronic Engineering. Degrees have been specifically designed to satisfy the demands of today’s creative and digital society, with degree subjects including Data Science and Engineering; Digital Creation, Animation and 58  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Videogames; and Information and Digital Documentation. The University seeks to prepare students for the workplace thanks to its strong ties with the business sector. “We have close relationships with multinationals such as Spanish fashion retail company Inditex, state-owned shipbuilding company Navantia, and Spanish brewery Hijos de Rivera, among others,” explains Garcia. The University’s increasingly popular Summer School attracts students and professors from over 40 countries, offering intensive courses taught in English by an international body of professors. Recognised by many foreign universities as credits for their own degrees, the courses cover a wide variety of topics ranging from law to technology. The University is committed to achieving inclusion and equality for students of all races, backgrounds and religions. “We value and respect diversity, integrity and inclusiveness,

and we make every effort to assist students with disabilities,” says Garcia. The university can also help with funding, where necessary. “We strongly believe education is a right,” she continues. “We offer a number of scholarships, grants and bursary schemes of over two million euros, targeted at students who are most in need of financial help.” The University also fosters equality of opportunity in all its spheres, from the classroom to the sports field. “The University promotes a positive environment, with care for the environment, healthy living, sports and culture forming an integral part of all of our courses.” Facebook: Instagram: @udc_oficial Twitter: @udc_gal

THE COMBINATION OF OLD AND NEW IN THE HEART OF SALAMANCA San Pablo 80-82 Salamanca, 37008 Castilla y Leรณn - Spain | +34 923 217015 |

Discover Southern Europe  |  Real Estate

Panoramic views and curved, modern design set this super-luxurious development rightfully in the golfing heart of the Nueva Andalusia landscape.

La Costa del Luxury A balcony is a must-have for any house in the sun, but in the case of super-high-end new build The View Marbella, the entire mountainside is one natural, glorious terrace. TEXT: HANNAH JANE THOMPSON  |  PHOTOS: THE VIEW MARBELLA


ith panoramic views to the Mediterranean Sea across the sun-soaked Costa del Sol, this 50,000-square-metre development is just 30 minutes’ easy drive away from Málaga airport. Perched above the prestigious ‘Golf Valley’ courses of Los Naranjos, La Quinta, Las Brisas and Aloha, the super-sleek build offers unparalleled luxury in this up-andcoming region of ‘Nueva Andalucía’. A new road will give direct access to these famous courses, as well as to nearby bar hotspot, Puerto Banús. Indeed, the spacious 49 two-, three- and four-bedroom apartments are fitted out with the style and service that one might usually see in a five to twenty million euros private villa, for prices starting at a far more modest 549,000 euros (up to 2.5 million for the 60  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

largest, four-bed, 285-square-metre homes plus terraces). This ‘villa feel’, without the inconvenience of maintaining an entire house, is exactly what the creators of The View Marbella are aiming for. “A lot of our owners are villa owners, but they want to change their lifestyle to ease the burden of keeping a villa going,” explains Simon B. Boxus, sales and marketing director at The View Marbella.

“But you wouldn't move from a luxury seven-bedroom villa with live-in staff, to a normal apartment, so we provide a portfolio with all the services that you would expect to find in a five-star hotel.” This brings all the service of a high-end trip away – with the privacy, ease, and calm of your own home. A fully dedicated concierge service can provide help with everything from booking flights to reserving restaurants, setting a tee time at the golf course, and even stocking the fridge ready for arrival, or entertaining your guests with cooking by a private chef. The full concierge package even provides regular cleaning and upkeep of the property in between stays.

Healthy Living An emphasis on healthy living is found throughout: an on-site gym features world-standard Technogym equipment, and a dedicated children’s space can be supervised from across the fitness suite, ensuring that parents can work out while the kids play.

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A full spa is also included – for which the concierge can order massages and other personal treatments – while the lush grounds also include a meditation and yoga space. A 25-metre indoor/outdoor swimming pool completes the appeal. “People are more and more concerned with their fitness today,” explains Boxus. “But most properties around the coast have a funny-shaped pool that you cannot really use for exercise. For us, it was important that people would actually be able to use the pool.” This attention to detail is paying off: sales are already being made, with the first apartments scheduled to be ready by spring 2021. And a key advantage of buying in advance is the ability to personalise the design ahead of time. Owners can change details such as flooring, the designs of bathroom and kitchen, and those with roof terraces can even opt for a summer outdoor kitchen, or a private plunge pool.

es. But for us, it is about respect for the environment that we are in. “We are just near the hills of Andalusia, so we wanted something that would not appear as harsh or as shocking.”

A fully-customisable in-house technology system will also be installed, managing everything from the levels for the underfloor heating to the air conditioning throughout.

In the same way, landscapers will also ensure that the gardens complement the building’s style, and work to position The View comfortably within its own surroundings.

The overall design is sleek but soft, focusing on curves and natural shapes – rather than the severe, straight lines and faceless glass sometimes seen elsewhere.

“Sometimes developers will buy land, build as much as they can, and plant some trees as ‘green space’,” explains Boxus. “But we pay a lot of attention to the gardens, and use local plants – such as olive trees and blue palm trees – rather than trying to force a Caribbean garden into the foothills of Andalucía.”

“In the last few years, the trend has been for modern architecture,” Boxus says. “So everyone started to build very straight box-

Similarly, constructors use ecologicallyfriendly methods, and the finished apartments are on course to have Energy A+++ rating certificates. Inside and out, The View Marbella has redefined destination living. “At the moment, between Benalmádena and Sotogrande, there are more than 250 developments for sale, each of which describes itself as luxurious,” says Boxus. “But when you look closer, they are maybe only ‘well-presented’. Luxury for us starts with the natural environment, views and location, and we have been sure to design a project you can call ‘luxury’ in every single detail.” Facebook: theviewmarbella Instagram: @theviewmarbella1 Twitter: @ViewMarbella

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  61

Discover Southern Europe  |  Editorial Feature

AgitÁgueda. Photo: © Mario Abreu

Diary Dates


Our round-up of the best Southern European festivals, exhibitions, concerts and events happening in Italy, Spain, France, Portugal and Britain this month

AgitÁgueda. Photo: © Mario Abreu

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The Dream of the Indianos Spanish Garden, RHS Hampton Court Flower Show, London 2 – 7 July This year’s RHS Hampton Court Flower Show will feature a garden specially commissioned by the Spanish Tourist Office and Turismo de Galicia illustrating the story of the 19th-century Spaniards known as ‘Los Indianos’ who travelled to the West Indies. Many of them returned having made their fortunes and built grand, colonial homes and gardens, influenced by the Caribbean colonial style: and this year’s Flower Show will

feature a recreation of one of these, complete with palms, traditional Galician plants, camellias and mophead hydrangeas.

Delta Festival, Marseilles, France 2, 5, 6, 7 July After a hugely successful event last year, the Delta Festival returns to the beach in Marseille for four days of water sports and top electronic music acts. Gear up for beach volleyball, obstacle courses and water

Discover Southern Europe  |  Diary Dates

Cannes Pyrotechnics Festival. Photo:

sports of every kind, as well as a huge range of food tents. For music lovers, the festival also features a massive line-up on 6 and 7 July, with headliners including Mandragora, Fritz Kalkbrenner, Blastoyz, Bob Sinclar and Fatal Bazooka. Last year’s festival drew some 50,000 party goers and this year’s festival looks set to be bigger still. Flamenco Festival Sadlers Wells. Photo: Paco Villalta

Flamenco Festival London, Sadler’s Wells and other venues 2 – 14 July The largest flamenco festival outside Spain returns to London for the 16th year. Superstar flamenco dancer Sara Baras will be performing six nights at Sadler’s Wells whilst star singer Miguel Poveda also plays his first show in London since 2014. For the first time, some

performances will be staged at The Cervantes Theatre and East London’s Rich Mix. Other major stars performing include Rocio Molina, Olga Pericet and Patricia Guerrero.

La Notte Rosa (pink night), Adriatic coast of Emilia Romagna and Marche, Italy 5 July For one night in July, an entire stretch of the Riviera coast in Italy’s Romagna and Marche region turns pink. From the Lidos of Comacchio to Senigallia, towns such as Ferrara, Ravenna and Rimini stage lavish festivities with street parades, outdoor concerts, theatre shows and film shows. The event draws thousands of Italians to the Adriatic coast and is fast becoming an international attraction.

Running of the Bulls aka Fiesta de San Fermín, Pamplona, Spain 6 – 14 July Bag your balcony seat (and your hotel room in advance) to watch Pamplona’s famous Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  63

Discover Southern Europe  |  Diary Dates

bull-run. Every day throughout the festival, at 8am in the morning, some 2,000 people run the half-mile route through the narrow streets of Pamplona’s Old Town in front of the bulls. Otherwise, if you’re in Pamplona and you can’t get a good balcony seat, you can watch the run from the bull ring.

AgitÁgueda, Agueda, Portugal 6 – 28 July This major event in the Portuguese city of Agueda is part music festival – with a particular emphasis on new and upcoming acts – and part street art festival. Held around the Praça 1º de Maio square by the city’s river, this year’s festival will include 35 concerts as well as ‘the Umbrella Sky Project’: a vast installation which sees thousands of brightly coloured umbrellas suspended like a canopy above the streets. Elsewhere, the street art festival features rainbow coloured park benches and giant murals.

Festival of Pyrotechnics, Cannes, France 14 July – 24 August More than 700,000 visitors are due to gather along Cannes’ Croisette promenade this year to watch a fireworks battle like no other. Countries including Italy, Austria, France, Germany, the United States and Sweden will be taking part in the battle with each country competing to offer the most spectacular display. Expect six nights of extraordinary music, sound and light spectacle above the bay in Cannes, with the fireworks reflected in the water below.

Nice Jazz Festival 16 – 20 July Originally started in 1948, the Nice Jazz Festival is one of Europe’s longest running jazz festivals. However, these days, the names are not just from the jazz world. With two stages, one in the grand Place Massena, this year’s line-up features international stars such as Black Eyed Peas, Nile Rodgers & Chic as well as French names including Angèle and The Blaze, Bigflo and Oli and Hocus Pocus. 64  |  Issue 6  |  July 2019

Palais Longchamp Marseilles. Photo: Whatsa Productions

Discover Southern Europe  |  Diary Dates

Issue 6  |  July 2019  |  65

Discover Southern Europe  |  Diary Dates

Jazz stars, meanwhile, include Ibrahim Maalouf with the Haïdouti Orkestar, master violinist Jean-Luc Ponty, singer Sarah McKenzie and The Jazz Messengers Legacy who will pay tribute to legendary jazz drummer Art Blakey.

The Dream of The Indianos. Illustration: © Rose McMonigall

Marseilles Delta Festival. Photo: Tom Laurenzati

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Festival Internacional de Benicàssim, Valencia, Spain 18 – 21 July Imagine Glastonbury, but with guaranteed sunshine, and you’re probably not far off Benicàssim – one of Spain’s biggest music festivals. An impressive line-up of acts this year includes Fat Boy Slim, Lana Del Rey, Kings of Leon, Franz Ferdinand, The 1975, George Ezra and Black Lips. Make sure to stay awake, however, as headline acts don’t go onstage till the small hours.

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