Tag Archives: Amalfi

life: the ap. holiday day 4.

30 Sep

Well, the last day is always a bummer.  Luckily our flight was at 10:30pm so we had a full day, and thankfully as it was our second trip to Amalfi this year we didn’t feel the tourist pressures to get out and see more before we left.

So with that in mind we took the opportunity to relax and chill on the beach here’s some photos of Chip and I hanging on the beach, and the rock pool that we went diving into for shrimps . . .

After we had finished sunbaking ourselves on we caught the boat over to a samll fish restaurant at the bottom of the cove which you can just make out with the white roof in the photo below.  A perfect way to end a perfect few days in Amalfi.  Phew.  Now back to rainy cold London . . .


life: the ap. holiday day 3.

29 Sep

Another sunrise over the crystal blue waters of the Mediterranean sent Chip and I scurrying to the local port and onto a boat for the millionaires playground of Capri.

Capri has long been famous as the pinnacle of the famous ‘grand tours’ undertaken by ‘society’, aristocracy, and royalty for centuries.  Even so beloved by the Roman emperor Tiberius that he built a palatial villa here and kept it for use as a Summer residence to entertain the male and female lovers he had, though rumour suggests that once he was finished with them he would have them taken to the bottom of the villa’s grounds and thrown from the cliffs high above Capri onto the rocks below, thankfully no such fate awaited Chip and I as we sped towards the blissful isle . . .

Of course the best part about visiting a millionaires playground is that it has some familiar stores that made us feel at home right away, and well once we saw the Prada boutique I just had to pop in and grab this jumper . . .

Of course we weren’t there just for shopping, Chip had been bugging me for months, literally months to visit the famous blue grotto, so grudgingly I relented and left the relative safety (relative only because it’s dangerous for my bank manager!) and deep pile carpets of Prada and headed back to the harbour for a tour of the grotto, a short boat trip along the sheer cliff walls of Capri and we arrived at the entrance to the blue grotto.  We had to transfer into a tiny rowing boat and lay flat on the deck to fit through the mouth to the cave as you can just about make out in the photo below – and then as you can see in the photo underneath once inside the wait was worth it.  So laying flat on my back squeezing through the tiny rock formation we entered a pitch black cave where ahead I could see nothing but the empty space that a black void usually fills – it wasn’t until the gondolier told us to sit up and turn around that you witness the dazzling effect the light has on the water.  Where the suns rays peek through the gap just enough to illuminate the water and sparkle like a thousand Sapphire’s we had barely managed to get our eyes to focus and take it all in before we knew what was happening we were at the mouth of the cave, pushed to the deck, and back out squinting into the blistering afternoon sun . . .

We arrived back at port and hopped back onto the jet to Amalfi, straight into a car and onto our hotel.  Tonight was all about dinner at Italy’s top restaurant, Don Alfonso 1890, situated in a quiet monastery town Sant Agata this is no ordinary place.  Run by the Alfonso family who not only cook for you but also host in the dining room, they grow, cook and catch everything they serve either on their own farm, or from the local area, the food is nothing short of spectacular and the service is like nothing I’ve ever received anywhere else on earth – and as it is my second visit this year the 14 course meal more than made up for the time away, and it’s certainly deserving of the three michelin stars awarded.  Of course no meal here is complete without a chilled limoncello served in the garden and a tour of the 6th century BC wine cellar and well, where they mature the cheese they make on their own farm, yes, indeed this place is truly special . . .

Again, drunk and sleepy we headed back to the hotel to bed . . .


life: the ap. holiday day 2.

28 Sep

So if there is one thing AP. loves to do on holiday its wake up early.  Poor Chip on the other hand cannot stand it, there is something so peaceful about catching the sunrise, those first few seconds of morning that make the world seem like a perfect place, the snap above was taken on the second morning in Amalfi and what a sunrise.  With soft cotton candy cloud’s falling down the mountain and evaporating where they touch the sea, and the fiery red of the sun rises from the water like a serpent from a monster movie.

Thankfully the sea stayed calm as we were off on a boat trip today – once Chip had woken up, and after gorging ourselves at the breakfast on the terrace we made our we to to beach where we had hired our very own boat for the day for just the 2 of us.  You can see some snaps we took of our hotel from the water, the beautiful and picture perfect Mediterranean town of Positano, Amalfi from the coast and AP. chillin out on the sun deck . . .

After a tiring day riding the waves, playing at being captain and catching the sun we made our way into Amalfi town to look around the stunning cathederal (below) and for a quiet glass of pinot grigio and a pizza (well, it is Italy after all . . . )


life: the ap. holiday day 1.

27 Sep

It was an early morning flight to Naples for Chip and I on our Autumn sojourn to Amalfi, and an early morning means two very grumpy boys, but after sulking through customs and into airport shopping, grabbing a new pair of brogues, some much needed bits from Jo Malone, magazines books n stuff we felt much better.

We made it to Naples airport in one piece and without international incident and readied ourselves for the 2hr car journey to the Amalfi coast.  Amalfi is one of our favourite places to visit on holiday – and from the pictures you can see why the locals call it paradise.  Passing along the Sorrentine peninsular and up into the mountains the landscape is something reminiscent of Asia with steeped slopes and terraces cut into rock covered with Olive and Lemon tree’s – the road snakes like a draped necklace up into the mountain rising up before dropping back on itself with many a hairpin bend – it takes nerves of steel to look out over the edge at the sheer drop, but before we knew it we were through the tunnel at the top that cuts out the very peak of the mountain range and through onto the other side with a view across the Gulf of Salerno, and the view is nothing short of spectacular – you can see why the Greeks believed this land was the place of gods . . .

We stayed at the magnificent Il Saraceno grand hotel an old Moorish fortress cut into the rock, we stopped there first to drop off our bags and to hit the beach after a light lunch. As much of the Amalfi coast is balanced on the side of a mountain there aren’t many hotels with access to a beach, or even have a pool which with the unforgiving Mediterranean heat can be unbearable, luckily our hotle had a pool and it’s own private beach . . .

After soaking up one or two of the hot Italian suns rays we got ourselves ready and off to the mountain top town of Ravello and to the stunning Hotel Caruso one of the Orient express hotels to hang by the pool and for dinner – and as you’ll see from the picture of the infinity pool above nestled along a wall of the Norman fortress which previously occupied the site, the hotel is truly something to take your breath away . . . well of course after a few too many glasses of champagne, drunk, tired and tan Chip and I slumped ourselves into the back of the cab, ready to snake the way along the perilous roads to slink into bed and ready ourselves for day 2 . . .


life: 7 days, 1 week.

12 Sep

Just in from a wonderful meal overlooking the sleepy village green on London’s picturesque Blackheath village and realising that as Saturday night is slowly giving way to Sunday morning that another week has passed us by.  (for those of us in the UK, we start a new week with a day of rest, unlike the rest of the world, who start it on a Monday with a day at work!!!) Anyway, to mark the passing of 7 days, I thought I’d share 7 things that have been occupying my brain this week . . .

1. Walt Disney World

After booking our holiday there for next May, my partner Chip and I have been researching it like mad.  Now I’ve been before, but the key is to plan, plan, plan.  Hmmm why is it exactly that people return from Orlando saying they need another vacation?  The holiday is even more prominent this week, after learning that 2 of my best friends are going to fly out and join us for a few days of fun in the magic kingdom . . . May here we come.

2. gym at canary riverside

As part of my on-going search for that illusive perfect body, Chip and I have been spending lots of time at our gym.  Now it isn’t all as bad as it sounds, the gym is part of the four seasons hotel complex, and is right on the river so while we work out we get one of the best views across the river thames and the london skyline, then afterwards we get to chill in the infinity pool that looks right across London, aaaaaaaaah relaxy taxi!!!!  As for that beach perfect body.  I’m still looking . . .

3. hummingbird cupcakes

Whats the best thing about finishing work?  Hmmm, well beside the obvious of course.  Chip surprised me this week waiting to pick me up from the office with a box full of brightly coloured sugary coated cupcakes from London’s finest bakery, it isn’t for nothing that Jennifer Lopez is counted amongst one of their biggest fans!

4. Amalfi

Well, ok, the Il Saraceno Grand hotel in Amalfi.  I was there earlier this year and fell in love, literally, fell in love with the hotel and the area itself.  There is nowhere on earth quite like it, with good reason the locals call it paradise.  Chip and I have just booked a small trip back there at the end of September, and I cannot wait get back into the clear blue water of the mediterranean sea, oh man, not long now!!!

5. Cecconis

Next to the Wolseley, this is our favourite London breakfast spot, and although technically part of the next 7 days, Chip and I are heading there tomorrow for breakfast, I’m thinking about the sausages already . . .

6. Home house club

it’s our favourite hang out place at te moment, enjoying something of a social renaissance, made all the more fun now that 2 of our best friends are joining the membership too.  Winter drinks cuddled up on the sofa, you bet!

7. New York fashion week.

As the first of the big 4 kicks off – it’s practically all I’ll live, eat, and breathe for the next 4 weeks.  We can hardly contain ourselves . . . but we’ll try!!!

So that just about rounds up 7 days and 1 week.  I gotta hit the hay, theres a busy morning breakfasting in Mayfair, followed by Autumn spotting in the Royal parks, and the Raphael tapestries at the V&A . . .

Until tomorrow trend watchers.


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