A Luxury Country Inn - Umbria

Renoir’s “Onions”

Knowing about my art history background, one of the most common questions guests ask me is “what is your favorite painting?”  They are clearly expecting me to name one of the great Italian masters, perhaps a Botticelli or Leonardo or Raphael.  I have always answered that I loved too many to simply name just one.  Last year, a guest insisted, …


It’s Time to Pause…continued – Part 2

 …to reminisce, to indulge more fully than was possible at the time, in the delicious afterglow of so many happy memories of 2017. More than making New Year resolutions, I like to take a look back on the past year to remember, to put in perspective, to fully understand, to appreciate, to reflect…and to be grateful!  I especially like to …


May 2016 View from Genius Loci Country Inn

10th Anniversary Celebration

As Genius Loci celebrates its 10th season, I have enjoyed pouring through old photographs and am so very pleased to share visual moments of and some thoughts from this amazing adventure. Even with our clear vision for an inviting inn, anchored in but not limited to, Umbrian tradition (its rural setting,  antique building materials, architectural details, no-fuss furnishings, and colors), reaching our …


The Island of Ponza – Final Part 3 – Food and Return to Formia

Driving around the island at different times of day, the light was very different, offering spectacular sights and varying colors of the crystal clear waters. the sights, amusing or stunningly gorgeous, never ceased to amaze.  Each evening we ended our blissful days with a late dinner at Punta Incenso Restaurant, a family run, informal place that served dinner only.  Several …


The Island of Ponza – Part 2

leaving Ponza port for a full day boat excursion, from 9 AM – 6 PM with six leisurely stops for swimming  on the private charter boat “Orca” with just 12 passengers We circled the entire island of Ponza and the island of Palmarola, mesmerized by its turquoise, cobalt blue, and emerald green waters and the few sandy beaches. The warm …


The Delights of Modena – Part 2 – Mercato Albinelli

“You don’t need a silver fork to eat good food.” – Paul Prudhomme Nowhere does that ring any truer than in Italy or is any more apparent than at Italy’s magnificent food markets.  Visiting the markets wherever we happen to be visiting is always at the top of our To Do list!  Those in Bolzano, Verona, Venice, Bologna, and Florence stand …


Finally… An Authentic Italian Cookbook

 Letizia Mattiacci, author of A Kitchen With A View at Genius Loci  Letizia’s cheerful book cover “Can you recommend a good cookbook, Mary?” guests ask during our Cooking Classes or our Gourmet Tastings at Genius Loci.  Just as invariable as the question –  was my disappointing answer: “No, I really can’t”.  Never had I found a general cookbook that fully understood …


Isn’t Variety the Spice of Life?

To those of you kind enough to follow my blog, I apologize for seemingly having disappeared from the face of the earth.  I spent the month of February with my daughter in State College, PA.  For many reasons…it was indeed a trip to remember!:  weather-related canceled flights, Arctic temperatures, frostbite and a bout of bronchitis.  ”Why in the world would …


A March favorite

  Early to mid-March is the much-anticipated beginning of artichoke season – the “mamme” as they are called in Tuscany or the”cimaroli” as they are called in Umbria:  the  very first, central, round-with-no-choke artichoke of the plants. While there are many delicious ways to cook these delicacies, one of our favorites is a simple version, taking advantage of the super-sweet …