When I first moved to Genoa I was really disheartened by the lack of events. Coming from Bologna where culture just happened almost as a matter of course, the absence of events in Genoa was a real shock. Where were all the events? Why was nothing happening?
The problem was that it was August, a time of the year when all the Genoese basically live with their bums buried in the sand of their favorite beach. You see the Genoa people are pretty obsessed with the beaches. In the summer NOTHING must come between them and their bum-in-the-sand time.
Yet now that Autumn has arrived the swimsuits can be retired (can I get an amen?!) and the city is starting to liven up a bit. Believe it or not, there is stuff happening people — really really cool stuff. Whether you’re a tourist just visiting or an expat like me, you don’t want to miss these awesomesauce events this autumn.
What’s on this Autumn in Genoa
Rolli Days (October 15th & 16th)
The “Rolli Palaces” are a group of mansions once owned by prominent and rich Genoese families. For many years the palaces were closed to the public and could rarely be visited but in 2006 the UNESCO gods recognized forty two of the palaces as a World Heritage Site. Shortly after, the city was like “oh hey maybe we should let the public actually see the inside of these places” decided to begin hosting Rolli Days. On these days, selected palaces open their doors to the public and can be visited for free (yay, for free things!). Due to growing popularity (both by tourists and locals), Rolli Days are happening more and more often. You can check out this really cool interactive map to see all the buildings and read a description of Rolli Days in English here.
Genoa Beer Festival (October 21,22,23)
Just imagine royalty meets hipster and that’s what you get at the Genoa Beer Festival. The festival is located inside the stunning Villa Durazzo Bombrini, an old palace-like building with ornate wall moldings, red carpet and elegant chandeliers. It seems kind of wrong to be drinking beer on tap in such a sophisticated atmosphere, but then again that’s the beauty of it. After huge success last year, the Genoa Beer Festival is back with its second edition ready to host 15 craft breweries, 90 different beers on tap and some of the most popular street food vendors in Genoa selling top-notch snacks like bruschetta, pesto pasta and burgers. The breweries also give you pairing advice so you know what to drink with which food (like the Maltus Faber ‘Pesto Beer’) and you can taste up to 10 different beers with one ticket. For more info on the event and tickets, check out the event website.
Do You Warhol? Exhibit (October 21 – February 2017)
Okay, so I’m really excited for this. I know Andy Warhol is American and the exhibit is not particularly Italian, but I think that’s what I love about it. Something different, something that as an American, I can relate to. Plus how many times in your life will you be able to see a Warhol painting (unless you live in New York, of course)? The exhibit will feature the some of best of Warhol’s works and there’s even an interactive part where you can “Warhol” a picture of yourself. Click here for opening times and ticket info.
Villa Durazzo Pallavicini (Open now and hopefully forever)
One of the things that always amazes me about Genoa are the number of hidden gardens, villas and palaces that exist in the city. You might walk past a building and not even know that behind the walls there is some secret beauty waiting to be discovered. Apparently that’s what’s happened with Villa Durazzo Pallavicini in Pegli, a small suburb of Genoa. The villa had been closed for many years and now it’s reopening its doors to show the public its beautiful botanic garden. With its English Romantic design, it looks like something straight out of a fairy tale. Opening times, booking and more info here.
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