In boxes, bags, suitcases and duffels, we made our way uphill in stages this last week, settling into our new place for the next 6 months. Thanks to our friends who spend half their year in Portland, we are renting their wonderful apartment overlooking Genoa.
We are now in the heart of the Castelletto neighborhood, a hillside area which sat outside of Genoa’s city walls until the 1600s. It was occupied by a series of fortresses beginning in the 10th century AD, commanding the Genoese area. Then in the 1800s it became the neighborhood for the workers who supported the wealthy families and merchants in the city and its port. As the city expanded into the surrounding hills, Castelletto became a thriving residential quarter, including the Belvedere (from "beautiful sight" in Italian) viewpoint where we are lucky to be living.
Looking from the historic center below, the buildings of the Belvedere sit perched on a hilltop. This makes for extraordinary views back into the city, and across the full expanse of Genoa:
For us, it also means a new outlook, literally and figuratively. Waking to this view every day makes it clear why Genoa was nicknamed la Superba ("the Superb one") by early European visitors.
We are looking forward to a superb 6 months of living here!