J.M.W. Turner: The Dogana and Santa Maria della Salute, Venice, 1843

J.M.W. Turner: The Dogana and Santa Maria della Salute, Venice, 1843

If you are going to Venice you must have a room with a view of the canal. You must. While a view of the Grand Canal would be nice, it´s not a necessity. There are other, more modest, yet charming alternatives that have rooms with views, such as the Locanda Ca’ del Console.

The Locanda Ca’ del Console was, in the early nineteenth century, the residence of the Austrian Consul to Venice.  Today it´s a bed and breakfast, but it still retains the feeling of a private home.

We stayed in one of the suites with a canal view called “The Room of the Emperor” :  it has a high ceiling with exposed beams and a crystal chandelier, and it´s furnished with antiques and modern furniture “all´antica.” The bathroom is modern, and when we stayed there it was spotlessly clean.

The Locanda Ca’ del Console has a special atmosphere, it´s romantic,  and affordable. We would absolutely recommend it!

Note: If you travel in low season–we were there in February–the price is especially friendly.

More information and pictures HERE.

More on Venice? Check out the Time Out Venice guide. The Time Out series is my absolute favorite travel guide book. More about that HERE.

Image at top of page: Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775-1851),  now considered Britain’s greatest painter, referred to Italy as “Terra Pictura,” the “the land of all beauty.”  Venice, which he visited repeatedly (1819, 1833, and 1840), had a profound impact on his work.


Hvis du skal til Venezia så må du  ha ett rom med utsikt over kanalen. Du bare må. Utsikt over Canal Grande hadde selvsagt vært fint, men det er ikke nødvendig. Det finnes andre, mere beskjedne, men sjarmerende alternativ som har rom med utsikt, som for eksempel Locanda Ca’ del Console.

Locanda Ca’ del Console var, i det tidlige attende århundre, den østeriske konsulens residens. I dag er det en “bed and breakfast”, men det føles nesten som ett privat hjem.

Vi bodde i en av suitene med utsikt over kanalen, som heter “The Room of the Emperor”:  det er ett høyt og luftig rom, med mørkbeisede bjelker og lysekrone i taket. Møblene er en blanding av antikviteter og nytt “all´antica”, mens badet er moderne og rent.

Locanda Ca’ del Console har en spesiell atmosfære, det er romantisk, og prisen er overkommelig. Vi anbefaler det på det sterkeste!

Hvis du reiser i lavsesong – vi var der i februar – så er prisen ekstra hyggelig.

Mer informasjon  om Locanda Ca’ del Console og bilder av rommene finner du HER.

Mer om Venezia? Se for eksempel VG´s reisereportasje HER.

Enda mer? Hvis du leser engelsk så ta en titt i reisehandboken Time Out Venice. Time Out serien er uten tvil min favoritt reisehandbok. Mer om det HER.

Bilde øverst: Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775-1851), i dag ansett som Englands største maler, omtalte Italia som “Terra Pictura”, “skjønnhetens land”. Venezia, som han besøkte gjentatte ganger (1819, 1833, and 1840), hadde stor innflytelse på hans arbeide.


200.000 Peonies!

by admin on May 9, 2009


Can you imagine: a peony farm with more than 200.000 peonies, of about 600 different varieties? I want to go there NOW! The Centro Botanico Moutan is dedicated to the research, study and cultivation of peonies, and it´s only a few kilometeres away from Rome. Apparently they have the largest collection of peonies in the world. We are in Rome at the moment, and so close that ever since I heard of this farm, a few weeks ago, I´ve been mentioning in practically every other sentence. The peonies are blossoming right now, and I REALLY want to go. 

We recently purchased a house and the garden has been neglected for many years. I think it should be reborn as an English garden, and I want to fill it with peonies and roses. I know next to nothing about gardening, so I need all the help I can get. More importantly, I need inspiration. I need to to revel in all these peonies.

We are trying to arrange a trip there before we leave Rome, and if we make it I will let you know. I think it is going to happen. I want to make it happen. Desperately. 

Here is more information from the Centro Botanico Mouton´s website:  

The initial idea of creating a monothematic garden surrounding a private residence gradually grew into a desire to study the varieties and species of existing Chinese tree peonies; searching for them throughout the most remote regions of Asia, importing them to Europe, gathering them in one place, preserving them, studying them, promoting their diffusion and generally fostering their development.

Today, at the foot of the Cimini mountains to the north of Rome, there is a 15 hectare estate entirely cultivated with Chinese tree peonies: a unique collection with very rare specimens belonging to different botanical species and cultivated, natural hybrids (cultivar) which in many cases cannot be found anywhere else in the world.

Read more HERE

Centro Botanico Moutan
S.S. Ortana, 46 – 01030 Vitorchiano – Viterbo – tel +39.0761.300493








All the images in this post are from the CENTRO BOTANICO MOUTAN promotional brochure, of spring 2009. 


If you want to be in Pompeii, but you are in L.A., why don’t you..

May 6, 2009

Go and see this exhibition:
Pompeii and the Roman Villa: Art and Culture around the Bay of Naples
May 3–October 4, 2009
Pompeii and the Roman Villa focuses on the breadth and richness of cultural and artistic life in this region. The exhibition, organized by the National Gallery, Washington, D.C., includes works of art from the imperial villa at [...]

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Traveling to Rome? Before you go…

May 5, 2009

you should:
1. Buy a good guidebook
and read up. You could easily fill an entire shelf with guidebooks on Rome, but if you are buying only one book, get the Time Out Guide. I´ve used their city guides for years and they never fail. It´s like having a really good friend at hand: a friend [...]

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Risqué Cocktails

May 1, 2009

Hand embroidered on the finest cotton, and exquisitely naughty…

“Womens´ breasts are like Dry Martinis: one is too few and three is one too many,” said Christian Ringnes, Norwegian business man and owner of the Mini Bottle Gallery.  I found the perfect present for him today.
The cocktail napkins I spotted on Rome´s Via Del Babuino reminded me that it is [...]

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Fringe – Bed Sheets

May 1, 2009

I LOVE these bed sheets used the TV-series Fringe. They are on the bed of  the main character Olivia (in the picture), and seen in the last shot of episode 16, “Unleashed,”  Season 1.
I can imagine them i two settings:
- in a mostly white, French Country Style, bedroom, where they would add warmth and character.
- or in [...]

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Italy: Travel Recommendations

May 1, 2009

We´re in Italy at the moment. I´m supposed to be working, while The Papa takes care of our daughter, Leo Longlegs. It´s all fabulous. We´re enjoying Roman life, and I´m getting some work done. My love affair with Rome began more that ten years ago, and I have visited repeatedly ever since. Since we´re in [...]

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Darling, I want a temple in the garden.

April 29, 2009

These days, we are often walking around in Rome´s Borghese garden, and the pictures (see below, also) are from a recent excursion.
Last fall we bought a house in Oslo, with a huge and derelict garden. I´m dreaming of turning it into an English style garden, with big flower beds filled with roses and peonies. I [...]

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La Dolce Vita

April 12, 2009

We are enjoying life in Rome, and we will continue to do just that for another month or so. Posts on Roman delights are forthcoming!
Above: An iconic shot of  Anita Ekberg in the midst of  Rome´s Trevi Fountain, from La Dolce Vita (1960).
Vi nyter livet i Roma, og det kommer vi til å fortsette med [...]

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In the beginning…

April 11, 2009

Dear Reader,
It is lonely and quiet in this blog at the moment, so I´ve invited company. Ganesha is the Lord of Beginnings and the Remover of Obstacles. As the Patron of Letters, he is often invoked at the beginning of writing projects. In order to write productively you need to clear imaginative space. I hope [...]

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