Pizzo Vacation Rental Summer 2018

Coffe on the roof top terrace, Dependance delle Grazie (photo credit: lovely guest Steve B., April 2018)

Coffe on the roof top terrace, Dependance delle Grazie (photo credit: lovely guest Steve B., April 2018)

Did you enjoy your weekend? Summer feelings are all over Europe! Where do you plan to go this summer? 

Come to the sea! Come to the Costa degli Dei (the coast of gods) in Calabria, Southern Italy! Come to Pizzo! Pizzo is the best place to explore this beautiful coast and the hinterland of Calabria, and its spicy food and Ciro wines.

We at Palazzo Pizzo have the following apartments still available now until the end of summer 2018 (updated May 20, 2018): 

Palazzo Pizzo Residence (sleeps 2) for 110 Euro per night :

May 23 - May 31,  July 3 - July 10,  and September 12 - September 21

Dependence Delle Grazie (sleeps 2-4) for 140 Euro per night * :

June 10 - June 29,  August 4 - August 12,  August 20 - August 27,  and September 7 - September 30

*) rates are for 2 persons per apartment, additional guest pay 20 Euro per person. Our self-catered apartments come with free wifi and free secured parking. Minimum stay is 7 nights (or as indicated).

Please contact us directly if you are interested.

You can also find us on airbnb, homeaway (fewo, abritel) and tripadvisor (holidayletting). There you can check our availability also for autumn 2018 and read our 5 star guests' reviews. We are proud superhost on airbnb.

We are looking forward to welcome you in Pizzo!

Warm regards, saluti cordiali

Susan & Palazzo Pizzo Team

(photo source: great shot by lovely guest Steve B., April 2018)

Read also my posts about direct flights to Lamezia and what to do in Pizzo.

 

Busy furnishing and decorating in April

This April 2016 in Pizzo was not meant for us to be a leisure holiday. Our destination was not the Calabrian sea or mountains but all hardware-stores, furniture-shops and casalinga-suppliers in the region.

42 punti luce!  Translated this means that our inseparable pair of electricians, Alfonso & Ciccio, had managed to install forty two light sources that needed to be covered with lamps, mainly wall lamps as pendants, I was told, non si fa piu. Not easy in Calabria where not one store had more than three lights of the same sort in stock. Of course you can always order! 

Thinking to find two queen size beds, buy them, get them delivered and done, was also an illusion of mine. That's one of the reasons we are not ready in May with our new vacation rentals. - Vabbè! - We will be ready mid July! And we had a great time! As usual! We are addicted house-decorators, and here are some visual impressions:

 
my husband's famous red sofa finds a new home :-)

my husband's famous red sofa finds a new home :-)

 

The photo above is actually from my last day. I stood 8 days longer than my husband and son because there was so much work to do ... or should I say work to "coordinate"? On my last day, a windy Sunday, the local artist Antonio La Gamba came by with some of his pieces to advise on how to display them best in the house. It came in handy that he was there when we arrived with that red sofa on top of the roof of Angelo's car. That sofa has seen already a few different flats before and is over 20 years old and still beaming. It now has found a new home in the small bedroom upstairs in our "Dependance" where guest can sit and enjoy the seaview.

 
charming late night art delivery and hanging test

charming late night art delivery and hanging test

 

Talking artist, above is one of my favorite shots. I didn't give up waiting for the framing and was rewarded with a charming late night delivery and a hanging test by talented local photographer Francesca Procopio and her charming husband Gianpaolo. I took the photo and Angelo did the hanging first thing the next morning.

 
the result - matching even perfectly the red and the blue in the Vietri floor tiles

the result - matching even perfectly the red and the blue in the Vietri floor tiles

 

The photographs above are modern interpretations of old masters by photographer Francesca Procopio. 

 
professional support

professional support

 

There were only a few exceptions when Angelo needed professional support. This pendant has three light bulbs and each bulb can be controlled by one single light switch directly. Press one, all three lights on, press two, one light out, press three, two lights out, press four, all lights out, ... and press one too often -> repeat.

 
the new kitchen is nicer than mine!

the new kitchen is nicer than mine!

 

The kitchen was delivered already but because of its unusual counter top shape we were recommended to get a customized natural stone top, which we did. Our marmista in Filadelfia (in Calabria, on the hills!) had this beautiful marble from Carrara (which we had visited before and like the lardo speck as well). So now, here it is, our marble kitchen top, delivered and fitted with the help of Angelo and Lidia, my in-laws!

 
short break to discuss Furniture arrangement

short break to discuss Furniture arrangement

 

If this looks like sitting around, no way! We just had carried the sofa from the other side and moved the heavy arm chairs to the opposite wall and are discussing the new arrangement and also trying the effect. Lidia is wearing a working sweater from Angelo (it can be cold in April) and cool shoes. On the table are a few wall lamps ready for mounting.

 
re-arranging furniture IN BETWEEN apaRtments

re-arranging furniture IN BETWEEN apaRtments

 

Just a few minutes later, we are walking up and down again. Bringing furniture and stuff from the Dependance (upper entrance) to the Studio (ground floor entrance). Sets of plates for downstairs, sets of plates for upstairs, sets of wine glasses, prosecco glasses (important!) upstairs and downstairs, knives, scissors, pans & pots, towels, bed sheets & curtains, espresso machine ... and more ... all you need for your perfect holiday we unpacked, washed, ironed, prepared, sewed, trimmed and distributed into the right drawers and shelves. While Angelo was still drilling to hang lamps and pictures, and I assisted with the vacuum cleaner, at least I tried to be as fast as him.

Browsing the local weekend markets

Browsing the local weekend markets

Shopping with Lidia is fun. She has the right "eye" to spot things. On Saturday, at the market in Vibo Valentia, we found the handmade baskets and typical Calabrian green and white household ceramics. On Monday, at the market in Vibo Marina, we bought all the right fabrics for curtains and Lidia spotted the unusual mirror from Germany (!) (photo above left).

 
we can't wait to see our fabrics from the market on these windows

we can't wait to see our fabrics from the market on these windows

 
different kind of curtains (tende) where made by talented Lidia

different kind of curtains (tende) where made by talented Lidia

Although we worked hard, the Italian structure of the day was duly followed: lunch breaks started not later than 1.30pm and we often went for an aperitivo in the evenings, and some espresso breaks at the bars in the piazza. We even got a phone call and our coffee orders were taken by surprise visitors which led to a cleared and representable / photogenic dining table and our first Kaffeeklatsch at home!

 
First visitors from near and far (new york city!) and first Kaffeklatsch at home

First visitors from near and far (new york city!) and first Kaffeklatsch at home

 

We had some welcoming interruptions from work when neighbours, friends and even actual guest from the residence stopped by to see our progress. They all liked the place, and that is widely understated. They all loved the Dependance. Some said they even prefer it over the palazzo. (Mainly because of the clean white walls ... he he he... I begged Angelo to not use any colours this time).

 
first staged photo with real guest And tab water ...

first staged photo with real guest And tab water ...

 

Best advertising ever! Gianni and Nada spontaneously staged a holidayer scene with our new wine glasses (Lidia poured them quickly tap water...). Imagine Aperol in the glasses and that is your view! Whatever balcony you choose, we have four facing this dream scenery, come to Pizzo!

 
Deciding on where to hang the large painting

Deciding on where to hang the large painting

 
Deciding on how to hang pictures

Deciding on how to hang pictures

Decision making processes on where to hang paintings and how to arrange the hanging of them. Quite easy when you have some good advisers and can take a step back to look at it.

 
Very happy about how our kitchen turned out!

Very happy about how our kitchen turned out!

 

The kitchen above was custom built around the vaulted staircase underneath and I think, we are very happy how it turned out. The colourful backsplash band of ceramic tiles is an artwork of local maestro di ceramica Antonio Montesanti and tells a bit the story of Pizzo. And of course I love my retro azzurro SMEG fridge! 

Coming back to my last day in Pizzo, Antonio La Gamba is taking a photo (photo below) of the kitchen wall we want to hang one of his sculptures. We agreed to look for a smaller fish of a smoother material. It's another item on my to do list in my mind.

 
placing art by Antonio La Gamba

placing art by Antonio La Gamba

 

Although we were working on many details allover the house and lots of tools and packaging was laying around, I tried my best to take some decent photos that show potential travellers the new apartments in the best way possible for now. Please see the photos and more details about the Dependance delle Grazie and the Studio Bellavista on our website. An overview of all three vacation rentals can be found here. We are looking forward hearing from you, please contact us if you have any questions.  

The work continues in the following weeks and we are looking forward to greet our first guests this summer!!

I say ciao for now, and greet you with that stunning sunset and Stromboli view from the church square just next to the Dependance & Studio!

 
natural beauty cannot be kitsch

natural beauty cannot be kitsch

 

Dear Reader,

if you've got mail from Palazzo Pizzo, then because you may have subscribed to the blog (RSS feed) to receive every new blog post at your favorite destination. If you signed up to our newsletter (below), are our guest or friend, you will receive special offers of Palazzo Pizzo vacation rentals and travel information about Calabria 2-3 times per year via email. 

Grazie ed a presto

Susan

Work Progress in Pizzo

The street pavement in the heart of Pizzo's historic center - that had initiated some three years ago (Rome also wasn't built in a day) - seems finally to come to an end with some last alleys getting paved (photo below: Via Roma).

The garage with the two "No Parking" signs is ours and can be used by our guest on request and availability.  

The garage with the two "No Parking" signs is ours and can be used by our guest on request and availability.  

Monday evening break.  Via Roma, Pizzo.

Monday evening break.  Via Roma, Pizzo.

Although things take time in the South, Monday was a busy day in Pizzo. We can also report about some other progress of our project, just a few steps away:

Alindar from Maida delivers the kitchens

Alindar from Maida delivers the kitchens

Kitchen planning started in August last year, and went smooth. But the more time we had, the more changes I made ... and now our custom made kitchens are delivered! 

Delivery through the garage makes the studio comes first. 

Delivery through the garage makes the studio comes first. 

We always favored local products. And I am glad and proud to support Calabrian businesses. If you need a new kitchen, we definitely can recommend Alindar from Maidar. Great customer service, very good quality, fair prices. If you buy an IKEA kitchen, you pay probably the same and have to mount it by yourself. Check out Alindar, they even have customers in Switzerland.  

Kitchen in the studio's entrance area. 

Kitchen in the studio's entrance area. 

I am glad, I changed from a red kitchen to a white kitchen at the last minute. I really prefer to have this modern red and white interpretation of a classic Vietri floor tile pattern instead of a bold red kitchen. The area is too small for a red kitchen - like we have it at the residence.

BTW, we never agreed on white wall tiles here (photo above). We said we will use waterproofed paint and decide on the colour later. But in the meantime I am used to Angelo who goes ahead when he has his own ideas. Sometimes, the result is not too bad actually. And after three projects of 'long-distance' renovations, I am way more cool and relaxed than in the beginning. - And what is that stripe on the wall below the ceiling in the other kitchen (photo below)?? - Angelo assured me, if I do not like it, we can take it down, or overpaint it. It's a decorative paper border. I guess, since he is not 'allowed' to paint the walls other than white (see his previous colourful folly), his creativity needs to burst somewhere ...

Our special customised kitchen for the Dependance! - LIKE it ! 

Our special customised kitchen for the Dependance! - LIKE it ! 

So far it looks all good. Grazie Angelo, for the photos. I hope the hoot is not misused as hairdryer by the cook...  

For the kitchen counter top we need to look for a matching natural stone as the layout is a bit unique. What seems like a built in oven in the corner is the vaulted ceiling of the stairways below. We built the kitchen around it to optimise the space in that room. When you turn around and look through the windows, you have sea view! Absolutely stunning sea view, and castello view!

What can't be seen in the photo (above) properly yet - details will be published later - is the beautiful ceramic artwork by Antonio Montesanti. He made for us a band of Pizzo's history. The history and stories of Pizzo in ceramic tiles (photo below), which are now stretching along the kitchen counter.

History of Pizzo told in ceramic tiles by Antonio Montesanti ... Here in the making, now in our kitchen! 

History of Pizzo told in ceramic tiles by Antonio Montesanti ... Here in the making, now in our kitchen! 

Of course the very popular retro fridge by Smeg is not going to be missed! One light blue fridge - as our guest already know from the residence - is ordered for the larger kitchen at the Dependance. And a red version is ordered for the Studio downstairs. 

 
Retro fridges by Smeg - L means hinges are left, and R means Hinges are Right ... important details!

Retro fridges by Smeg - L means hinges are left, and R means Hinges are Right ... important details!

 

What I have not yet posted, but received from Angelo, are report photos of the bathrooms. All bathrooms are tiled and mainly done. However, the photos don't do justice yet. Again, we bought local. All products, sanitary equipment and tiles, were ordered and delivered via the local company Callipo in Vibo Valentia. We used them also for our previous project and are very satisfied. Mirrors, shower boxes, hooks, shelves and other accessories and details are next! That's why we are going to be on site soon! - So far, mille grazie Angelo

Creating Postcards

Creative morning! Woke up with the idea to must do a new postcard for our guests this sumeer. Since we are going to have the new vacation rentals in a different house in Pizzo's centro storico, we need neutral cards. 

 
Palazzo Pizzo's new guest postcard  

Palazzo Pizzo's new guest postcard  

 

I used different tools. On my smart phone I used the app 'Pic Collage' but then turned to my computer where I have better resolution photos and used 'Publisher'. Funnily, I then emailed the result in JPEG format to myself, opened it on my phone and edited (exposure, contrast, and crop to a postcard format). For my previous postcards I have used also the free software 'PicMonkey' at PicMonkey.com.  

 
Playing with style and layout ... 

Playing with style and layout ... 

 
 
maybe we need business cards as well

maybe we need business cards as well

 

I don't think our guests will use these postcards, write on the back and mail them. But maybe someone use one as a bookmark or just take one or two home as a souvenir. Maybe they stick them in their photo album, or share it with their friends. Then my mission would be accomplished :-)

BTW, my new postcard is based on my oil painting which is based on a photograph of a beach, most likely between Pizzo and Tropea. 

Update: Photos from our project

The new year has just started and it's already February! While Angelo works on our project in Pizzo - the wooden and tile flooring now is all done - I am sitting at my desk in Bangkok searching online for some decent outdoor furniture. Calabria has not yet been discovered by IKEA & co and so it is not easy to find cool stuff. Beside having done some shopping in Northern Italy lately, ordering online seems a good solution to save time, but not being able to see and touch what you get and shipping cost to the most distant region of the Italian mainland are the downside. And while we are working on getting the apartments furnished before early summer, I get already many booking enquiries. I am really delighted to see that we get credits for our 5 star rated hospitality. But of course, our potential guests want to see photos! - Photos? But it's not furnished! - However, Angelo sends us on our what's app group (yes, that's how we manage another long distance project) almost daily updates. Although these are not for advertisement, I am posting them today as an update from the project side. And I promise the furnishing will be as nice as in our residence: a mix of old and new decorated with local art. Expect nice shots mid April. For now, please accept that we are at this state:

Dependance: entrance area from the street with view into second bedroom

Dependance: entrance area from the street with view into second bedroom

Dependance: The second bedroom with small balcony facing the sea and restored stone wall 

Dependance: The second bedroom with small balcony facing the sea and restored stone wall 

Dependance: living room with passage to the kitchen and restored original stone wall

Dependance: living room with passage to the kitchen and restored original stone wall

Dependance: living room and restored original stone wall - I am curious myself how the staircase leading to the attic will look like ...

Dependance: living room and restored original stone wall - I am curious myself how the staircase leading to the attic will look like ...

Dependance: restored wooden ceiling

Dependance: restored wooden ceiling

Dependance: roof terrace detail (wrought iron railing still coming)

Dependance: roof terrace detail (wrought iron railing still coming)

Dependance: roof terrace stone bench (wrought iron railing still coming)

Dependance: roof terrace stone bench (wrought iron railing still coming)

Dependance: kitchen not yet delivered but floor tiles look great!

Dependance: kitchen not yet delivered but floor tiles look great!

Dependance: open window in the kitchen with a view

Dependance: open window in the kitchen with a view

Dependance: kitchen will be on the left, passage to living room, kitchen balcony

Dependance: kitchen will be on the left, passage to living room, kitchen balcony

Dependance: master bedroom with original stone wall and small balcony 

Dependance: master bedroom with original stone wall and small balcony 

The house: Studio Bellavista entrance below left, Dependance entrance upstairs   

The house: Studio Bellavista entrance below left, Dependance entrance upstairs

 

Studio: entrance and kitchen area

Studio: entrance and kitchen area

Studio Bellavista: The bedroom with a small balcony facing the sea

Studio Bellavista: The bedroom with a small balcony facing the sea

Studio Bellavista: living room with 2 windows facing the sea

Studio Bellavista: living room with 2 windows facing the sea

Studio: balcony of bedroom facing the sea 

Studio: balcony of bedroom facing the sea 

All photos by Angelo, shot with his phone and sent via what's app group. Please expect big progress in April and more photos on the way.