Cool since a thousand years ago

It’s good to be back from my place-making tour of Italy’s finest cities, and it was great to stroll through some of the most inspiring piazzas, streets and third places in the world.

Here are some of the highlights:

– Venice (Venezia) is a must-see. Not only is the entire historic city on an island (a medieval Manhattan if you will), but there are absolutely no cars. There were dozens upon dozens of piazzas in Venice, and despite freezing temperatures, it still attracted musicians and audiences. I simply can’t imagine what it must be like in the summer when the surrounding restaurants lay out their tables and chairs.

– Sienna is a model of beauty. From the sculptural lampposts to postcard storefronts to the majestic central piazza (Piazza del Campo), the city, like Venice, is a living painting.

– Experiencing Florence (Firenze) begs the question: What if you took the world’s best artists, paid them, fed them, and gave them ideal living and working conditions – all in the same neighborhood? That’s the genesis of the Renaissance, sponsored by the celebrated Medici family. Anyone want to be the next Medicis for their own town?

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