As the summer comes to an end and with the arrival of autumn, the climate in Genoa gets cooler and becomes very pleasant indeed, perfect for a holiday. During the same period, cultural life in the city comes to life with new events. After all, Genoa is a magnet that has always attracted travellers, artists, literati, philosophers and poets, inspired by its neverendingly stunning wealth of beauty. And the Bristol Palace, located right in the heart of the city, is the ideal base to discover it.
A journey that sets out from the Bristol
Before soaking up all the culture the city has to offer, it’s worth stopping to say a few words about the hotel itself. The Bristol, which has always been a home from home for artists and writers
, holds many surprises in store. They include its monumental staircase
, its wealth of Art Nouveau
features and spaces – in the Sala Michelangelo, for example – and an exceptional document, signed by the Queen Mother
, Margherita of Savoy, granting the hotel the honour of bearing the coat-of-arms of the Royal Household.
Art and history are at home at the Bristol. Within walking distance of the most interesting monuments and palazzi, the building is the gateway to the heart of Genoa
. From here it is possible to set out to discover the old city centre, the sea front, fishing villages, parks and forts, arranged like sentries guarding over the city, and all the wonders of the Riviera
, which can also be reached comfortably by boat.
Exhibitions: what to see in autumn
One of the best reasons to visit Genoa is its exhibitions
, starting with the ones organised at Palazzo Ducale
. On show at the former Doge’s residence until October 10 will be “L’Italia di Magnum”
, an exhibition of the pictures shot in Italy by the finest photographers of the Magnum agency: the likes of Robert Capa, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Elliot Erwitt, Renè Burri, Ferdinando Scianna and many more, including the more recent Paolo Pellegrin and Mark Power. At Palazzo Ducale it will also be possible to visit the largest and most comprehensive anthological exhibition of the engravings and graphics works of Maurits Cornelis Escher
, the Dutch genius who has inspired generations of creative artists.
Redesigned by “archistar” Renzo Piano, the Porto Antico
, the old port, is a venue not to be missed. A berth for private boats, it is a meeting place and a huge seafront piazza all rolled into one. It is home to the Lanterna, a mediaeval lighthouse that has guarded it since 1128, the Aquarium, one of the most important in Europe with 600 different species, and the Galata Museo del Mare, a museum that tells the story of navigation. In the exhibition spaces at nearby Porta Siberia it is possible to admire the works – a hundred or so cartoons and studies – by “master of comics” Milo Manara
Not far from the centre, it’s possible to stroll in the Nervi parks
, a botanic paradise scented with Mediterranean and exotic plants, among monumental trees and rose gardens
. Inside, in the Villa Saluzzo Serra, the Galleria d'Arte Moderna
will be displaying the works of Marino Marini
, one of the most important and significant artists of the last century, in an exhibition that will continue until November 14. The Nervi parks are the point of departure for one of the most pleasant walks along the seafront. Named after Anita Garibaldi, it is partly hewn out of the rock and affords views of coves and villas and the surrounding scenery.