Chiavenna – We spent a weekend in the mountains in Italy near the Swiss border. We learned from these stunning hay lofts from a friend. He had bought the land from the local farmers who historically used them as shelter for their goats when they brought the herds up from the valley to a higher altitude in summer. The new owner of the hay lofts rebuilt the tables into to these spectacular lofts.
You should not be afraid of heights and narrow winding streets as the journey to reach the haylofts is quite an adventure. From Switzerland you take the route over Splugen pass….in itself a wonderful and breathtaking area.
You can choose from three different hay lofts, some with a romantic view into the forest or and others overseeing the valley. All of the lofts feature panoramic windows which is unique for this type of rustico buildings which usually come with very small windows.
There is even a spa house, which again comes with panorama window and phenomenal view. Jacuzzi and sauna are heated with wood which means that you need to let the staff know a few hours in advance if you’re planning to take a hot bath….but the unique architecture of the calidarium built all from local natural material makes this a absolutely unforgettable experience.
Each hay loft features its own kitchen so that you can cook your own meals or you can ask for catering service. There is obviously no central heating but the fire places do an awesome job in making you feel cosy and warm. If you are looking for some peace, pure nature and relaxation this place could not be more perfect.
Jacuzzi and sauna
Jacuzzi and sauna
mountain view hay lofts
Milan – Do you know the feeling when you are invited for a family dinner? Now imagine you visit your relatives in Italy. If you like this feeling that your relatives cook you dinner and you just sit in the living room with a lot of different people – then you should go to Trattoria Masuelli. The nonno (granddad in Italian) and owner himself comes to your table to tell you about all the mouthwatering dishes – you will not have a problem to find something you like, but a problem to choose from the temptations.
The restaurant is very traditional and exists since many years in Milan. You can feel and see the history in the rooms with the high ceilings and picture frames on the walls.
I recommend the pasta as a first course and then the veal “Milanesa” (breaded veal chop; some might know it better as “Wiener Schnitzel” but I was told, the Milanesa was created before the Schnitzel) or taste the Saffron Risotto.
Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture from the Milanesa….I had wolfed it down already when I remembered…
We felt great and nicely fed after dinner – I would go again any time when in Milan.
Milan – I got a weekend in Milan for my birthday from the loveliest friends you can have!
After a day full of shopping we were due for some pizza treat. The restaurant – located in the centre of Milan – was full when we arrived at around 8.30 pm. The clientèle is very mixed from the couple from the neighbourhood that just want a quick pizza to the tourist group from Sweden who enjoy the delights of the typical Italian cuisine.
We were treated very friendly and charming as expected from an Italian restaurant. You might not find the most exclusive fine wines or the latest interior design but the food was decent, prices very acceptable and all in all we enjoyed a very relaxed evening.
Chiavenna – We went a weekend in the Haylofts, about 15 minutes from Chiavenna, on top of a quite spectacular one way road.
The restaurant is very cosy and welcoming. You get what you expect: Typically Northern Italian food from various pasta dishes to great meat and desserts. The wine was great as well. They have their own winery where you can buy the wines you just had for dinner.
Asti – Our friend found this lovely small boutique hotel in a former 17th century villa on top of a hill in Piemonte that allows you a spectacular view.
It offers a cosy lounge with a fire place for colder days as well as a beautiful pool and outside terrace for sunny lunches and dinners under the stars.
One funny thing to mention though…..you have to pay for your food with cash…the English landlord Chris Norton will explain to you 🙂
La Villa Hotel
Oviglio/Asti – This November we went for a long weekend to Piemonte in Italy to enjoy the truffle season. We found out that the season was exceptionally good and prices for the truffles therefore not as high as previous years.
Donatella gives the truffle a pride of place on the menu in this special season of the year. The dishes are selected to give the “Tartufo”-scent priority what also delighted our taste buds.
Alba – On our weekend trip we visited the truffle market in Alba. The scent was almost making us high and we could not resist to have some pasta with fresh truffle….fantastic!
Torino – Very authentic and homely restaurant located in a dark street in the outskirts of Torino. Really sensational food, only locals. The food is simple but very good and you feel like at home at „mamma’s“ table. Toilet is outside in the patio.
Via Cenischia 9
Tel: +39 011 385 43 47