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Tombs churches & opera

The many reasons I love Italy are reflected in this hotel: there is the connection and pride in Italy’s classical antiquity.

On the bed the turn-down service had left a booklet on the tombs of the ruling Scala family which we visited first thing and very fine sepulchres these were too.

Second, there is the coffee. This served in a pot over breakfast had so much more flavour than the concoctions we are offered back home.

Third, the hotel has frescoes on its walls and open art books everywhere, not the silly things like crayons you get in boutique hotels.

After visiting the Scala tombs of Candgrande – literally ‘big dog ‘ who in early medieval times set up an impressive empire based in Verona – we proceeded to the Fermo church built by the Franciscan order.

This is on one level Gothic below Romano.

I passed on the afternoon church visit for my siesta necessary as it was now well into the 30s and brutally hot.

We had dinner in one of Verona’s most famous restaurants – 12 Apostles – owned by the same family since 1920 and a restaurant many centuries before that.

They discovered beneath their foundations archaeological remains which the owner showed us.

His food though I found pretentious but let Daffers be the critic of that.

Onwards we went to the arena to see Carmen.

The arena itself is impressive.

It was pure delight to sit in the warm night air to see the production of Carmen.

This was a spectacle of lighting, costume and the visuals created of the bullring.

Carmen is sometimes derided by opera buffs as more musical than serious opera but whilst more Cecil Be d Mille than Covent Garden, for me it worked well in this arena.

About Michael Stuart

After university, Michael spent twelve years working for MELODY MAKER before going freelance. He claims to keep doing it because it is all he knows. More Posts