WHAT IS JAMES WEARING? Rotating Header Image

A SUBLIME SICILIAN ADVENTURE – AGRIGENTO AND BEYOND

James Andrew, Temple of Concord, Agrigento

James Andrew, Temple of Concord, Agrigento

Agrigento was a most breathtaking drive from Palermo, particularly because our scenic route was laid out by Maria Carolina Castellucci who was invaluable in organizing so much of our trip!

Our hotel, Villa Athena, is located right at the Valle dei Templi park, giving it tremendous views any time, day or night. The Hotel is an old manor house and could be rather fab with a proper refurbishment – I immediately had the room emptied of most of its furniture and was much happier with less clutter. The cuisine was so sublime and the staff very helpful!

Relatively contemporary sculpture by Igor Mitoraj compliment the ruins at Agrigento.

Relatively contemporary sculpture by Igor Mitoraj compliment the ruins at Agrigento.

Hotel Villa Athena was the perfect spot from which to explore Valle dei Temple. We really took our time to explore every inch of these ravishing ruins. The 5th and 6th century BC temples here were dedicated to Olympian Zeus, Heracles, Concord and Hera. Needless to say, it is quite something to be amidst so much history.

The proximity of the hotel made it an easy thing to have a leisurely breakfast, explore the ruins, come back for a relaxing lunch and head out again. Dinner provided views of the Temple of Concord all lit up at night after the most sensational sunset.

The next day we were off at dawn – en route to Noto with a few stops along the way. Our impossibly chic friend Antonio Sersale recommended that we visit Piazza Armerina and particularly the 4th century Villa del Casale. Every room of the estate is decorated with magnificent mosaic floors. A flood in the 12th century buried the villa in mud, preserving the mosaic floors until they were rediscovered seven centuries later.

Villa del Casale- mosaic detail

Villa del Casale- mosaic detail

While we visited with the Marchesa di Spedalotto she suggested we stop in on her son Vincenzo Paterno di Spedalotto who has an olive grove, Domus Olivae. We are so thrilled we did! We had a delightful time with Vincenzo and his wife and were given a tour of the manor house they have restored so perfectly. His award winning virgin olive oil, Tondo Olive Oil, is certainly the most delicious I have ever tasted. We can’t wait to return.

Vincenzo Paterno di Spedalotto's Domus Olivae

Vincenzo Paterno di Spedalotto’s Domus Olivae


* * *

Next stop: the Jacques Garcia Resort, Noto.

For my exploration of Valle del Templi I am sporting my Lock & Co straw panama hat, Tom Ford era Yves Saint Laurent black cotton poplin banded collar safari shirt, white cotton shorts, a Kiel James Patrick belt, vintage Rolex, Louboutin sandal espadrilles and my fragrance is Tom Ford Neroli Portofino.

4 Comments

  1. OMIGOD!!! That is the funniest thing! “I immediately had my room emptied of most of its furniture”!!!
    Adam about died laughing……I used to say before the door was opened into our hotel room……”at least the lamps are going into the closet…..I am not sure about the rest!” Poor Adam! Anyway…..kindred souls!
    Did the help remove most of the contents?
    That is my favorite post ever!
    I also have a very, very funny story about my new gardener and you!

  2. LA CONTESSA says:

    WELL< MY COMMENT was EXACTLY what PENELOPE's comment was about!
    I wish I could have been a fly on the wall……………….
    I lived in ITALY for three years……..TASTE isNOT found that OFTEN!
    XX

  3. James Andrew says:

    Darling Penelope Bianchi,

    Mr McB just gave me the side eye- I attempted to get a better room- but the hotel was fully booked- so then I demanded they send someone up to remove have of the furniture- hideous chairs and tables – and had them bring me 2 luggage racks instead- the closet was the size of a glove compartment.

    But it made our stay there more pleasant!

    We are indeed kindred spirits!

    Hope to see you soon- and stay tuned for much more!

    Much Love

    JA

  4. James Andrew says:

    My Dear Lola

    Yes – there is an odd quirky sensibility there- sometimes it works but at other times not.

    Despite it all we certainly had a lovely time!

    Much Love

    JA

Leave a Reply