San Remo, Italy

Nicknamed Città dei Flora (City of Flowers), San Remo is located along Italy’s western Mediterranean coastline about a half hour from Monte Carlo. Its meandering cobblestone paths are perfectly designed for wandering and aimless enjoyment.

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1 Picturesque Harbor View of San Remo, Italy

San Remo is the first major town along the western edge of the Italian Rivera on the Mediterranean coast. This resort town of about 60,000 is famous for its moderate, year-round climate, its production of extra virgin olive oil and its flowers, which gave it the nickname Città dei Flora. Its picturesque harbors called Porto Antico and Portosole overlook the Rivera dei Flora.

Piazza Castello, 1, 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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2 Giardini Regina Elena Gargoyle in San Remo, Italy

At the top of a hill overlooking the Old Town of San Remo is the park dedicated to Queen Helen called Giardini Regina Elena. It was formed in 1890 after a medieval castle was destroyed during a rebellion in 1753 and a devastating earthquake partially destroyed the city in 1887. A series of ledges were then built as scenic summits. Their thick walls are connected by staircases with stone balusters. They use these garish gargoyles to drain the water.

Piazza S. Costanzo 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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3 La Pigna Narrow Cobblestone Walkway in San Remo, Italy

The old town of San Remo, Italy, dates back to the year 1000 and is called La Pigna. It’s a labyrinth of narrow, warn cobblestone alleys that start at the 14th century St. Stephen’s Gate. It then winds uphill among brightly colored homes, archways, gardens and medieval buildings. Also called the pinecone, it is a charming but sometimes exhausting stroll through history.

Piazza dei Dolori, 18038 San Remo IM, Italy
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4 Casino Municipale di Sanremo in San Remo, Italy

Since it opened in 1905, the Municipal Casino in San Remo, Italy, has become famous for its prestigious and refined gambling plus its origin of the stud poker game called Telesina. Interesting, in 1924, the dictator Mussolini closed every Italian gambling facility, except this one. Also behind this Liberty style façade is the Ariston Theater which offers concerts, plays and opera performances.

Corso Imperatrice, 15 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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Bicycle Tire, Tennis Racket and Rake Art in San Remo, Italy

Art museums are great, but sometimes the most delightful art is found in unexpected places like this windowsill along a street in San Remo, Italy. The artist made an imaginative collage by animating an old bicycle tire, tennis racket and rake. It is a very creative way to conceal the security bars over the window.

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5 Hotel de Paris in San Remo, Italy

The Hotel de Paris was designed by local architect Pietro Agosti and opened in 1897 to serve the elite who visited San Remo as a resort community. One of those was Maria Alexandrovna, the wife of a Russian tsar. The promenade in front of the four-star hotel is named after her. It was closed for twenty years but its Liberty architecture has been renovated to its previous glory including, according to its website, the original white antique ivory color and Nouveau decorations. Each room is named after a local, historic artist.

Corso Imperatrice, 66, Sanremo, 18038 IM, Italy
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Hanging Laundry in Old Town of San Remo, Italy

Many resort towns feel like they are designed and operated just for tourists but not San Remo. This gem along the Italian northwest coast, particularly its old town called La Pigna, is conducive to tourism. However, the people in these brightly colored homes between narrow walkways seem to be quietly living their lives like their ancestors did in medieval times. That means if it is laundry day, you just hang the wet clothes out the window to dry.

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6 Lolli Palace Hotel in San Remo, Italy

I have always appreciated fine architecture when I travel, and the resort town of San Remo, Italy, has several wonderful buildings, some which date back centuries. One example is this art nouveau villa style that is now home to the Lolli Palace Hotel. It is located on the Promenade Imperatrice a short distance from the sea.

Corso Imperatrice, 70, 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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7 Russian Orthodox Church Onion Domes in San Remo, Italy

In the late 19th century, the wife of Russian tsar Alexander II began spending the winter in the mild climate of San Remo, Italy. Soon, other Russian aristocrats and those suffering from tuberculosis did the same. So, in 1912, Nicholas II raised money in Russia and the following year the La Chiesa Russa Ortodossa was consecrated. Its design with onion domes is similar to Saint Basil’s Cathedral in Moscow.

Via Nuvoloni, 2, 18038 San Remo IM, Italy
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8 Russian Orthodox Church Entrance Façade in San Remo, Italy

The decorative details on the front entrance of the Christ the Savior Russian Orthodox Church are colorful and stunning. It was designed by Russian architect Alexey Shchusev who also built Lenin’s Mausoleum in Moscow. However, it was built by a local Italian engineer named Pietro Agosti. In the early 20th century, he was also responsible for building or renovating several major landmarks in San Remo plus was the town’s mayor for three years. A street was named in his honor after his death.

Via Nuvoloni, 2, 18038 San Remo IM, Italy
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9 Russian Orthodox Church Dome Painting of Christ in San Remo, Italy

In 1913, the La Chiesa Russa Ortodossa, better known as the Russian Orthodox Church in San Remo, Italy, was dedicated to Christ the Savior. So, it seems appropriate that this beautiful image was painted in the oculi at the apex of the dome. The church was also consecrated to Saint Catherine and Saint Serafim of Sarov.

Via Nuvoloni, 2, 18038 San Remo IM, Italy
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10 Madonna Della Costa Uphill Path in San Remo, Italy

This stone pathway leading to Madonna Della Costa is the last few steps of a very long and uphill climb through the narrow alleys of San Remo’s old town, through a park called Giardini Regina Elena and then, for good measure, a series of steep stairs. But the panoramic views of the city below are breathtaking … once you can catch your breath from the walk up.

Piazzale Santuario Assunta, 14 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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11 Madonna Della Costa Sanctuarium Crest in San Remo, Italy

Perched on the highest hill of San Remo, Italy is the Madonna della Costa. Also called Our Lady of the Coast, the sanctuary was built in the 17th century. It can be seen throughout the resort town below and is so prominent that returning sailors used it as a visual guide when sailing back into port. This close up of the façade shows the Sanctuarium crest flanked by two bell towers with copper domes.

Piazzale Santuario Assunta, 14 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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12 Madonna Della Costa Painting in San Remo, Italy

Inside the Madonna della Costa Sanctuarium in San Remo, Italy, are many wonderful statues, sculptures, frescos and paintings. The most famous is the “Virgin Mary with Child” that was painted by Nicolò da Voltri. However, my favorite is this one. Unfortunately, I could not find any details about this beautiful work of art.

Piazzale Santuario Assunta, 14 18038 Sanremo IM, Italy
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