Are you a fountain of knowledge about weekends in Italy? Or more of a freshman when it comes to booking Italian breaks?
Either way, you can’t fail to fall in love with the university town of Bologna after a stay at L8 Boutique Apartments.
Bologna is home to the oldest university in the world, so what better place to study the Italian way of life, complete with endless aperitivos and romantic porticos, than a weekend in the capital of rural Emilia-Romagna.
And from parmesan cheese to proper pasta, the Bologna area is the birthplace of some famous Italian flavours. The city makes an ideal base for excursions to nearby food-producing towns – the Romanesque city of Parma is under an hour away, as is the balsamic mecca of Modena.
Bologna is also a record-breaker for being home to the tallest tower in Italy (Pisa eat your heart out) and boasts an unparalleled 40km of porticos – the delightful arch-covered walkways that line the city streets.
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• TOWER RECORDS • This is the view of Bologna from the top of the Asinelli Tower, one of the most famous symbols of the city. This amazing feat of 12th century engineering has 498 steps leading up to the viewing platform, making it not only the tallest tower standing in Bologna but also, at 97m, almost twice the height of the leaning tower of Pisa.
If you’re looking for an Italian short break, and want to combine a stunning yet laid-back metropolis with beautiful surrounding scenery and exceptional eats, Bologna is the place to be.
Living Like A Local In Bologna at L8 Design Apartments
The pick of the crop of luxury apartments in Bologna right now is L8 Boutique Apartments.and with so much wonderful fresh produce on your doorstep, this is a far better option than a Bologna hotel or B&B. As the name suggests this is a collection of 8 newly-refurbished hideaways, all set within the same historic townhouse, in a quiet street in the midst of the city.
Despite being moments away from the youthful energy of the centre of town, the L8 apartments remain completely peaceful and private, giving you the best of both worlds.
The building has been passed down through the generations before being sensitively transformed by cousins Francesca and Federica into a set of unique design-led spaces, all of which marry high-spec modern functionality with quaint touches and an antique charm. There’s something delightful about retiring to your own little slice of the city after a few hours sightseeing; joining the ranks of the Bologna locals as you unlock your own front door while the sun goes down makes a stay at L8 feel like you’ve been let in on a secret.
Apartment living in Bologna is all about character-packed ancient buildings, blessed with higgledy-piggledy terracotta roof terraces, on which you can enjoy your morning espresso. So rather than rushing to breakfast as you would in a hotel, you can unwind and adjust to an Italian schedule – meaning there’s always time for one more coffee before exploring.
Each spacious unit is decorated completely differently, but all have a true home from home vibe, complete with dining table, comfy sofa and Netflix.
After an alfresco evening aperitivo you can venture back onto the streets for dinner, drinks and gelato as the mood strikes; the area around the apartments is buzzing with activity late into the night.
The attention to detail at L8 means that everything from looks lovely but doesn’t sacrifice function for form. Beds are comfy and firm, the showers spotless and powerful.
Italy is Eataly, Especially in Bologna
With so much incredible fresh produce on offer in Bologna’s shops and food markets you’ll want to cook up a feast; the city’s fabulous foodie reputation means having your own apartment, complete with a kitchen, is an absolute must here. The setup at L8 is fully-equipped for proper cooking, and while this isn’t a B&B you’ll find a few little snacks to welcome you, and all the essentials to help you prepare breakfast, lunch or dinner. As the birthplace of tortellini and tagliatelle al ragù – known outside Italy as Spaghetti Bolognese – Bologna is a brilliant place for foodies to cook simple dishes using fresh, flavourful ingredients.
Along with Mercato delle Erbe and the countless age-old shops selling artisan ingredients you can food shop ‘til you drop at Eataly World. Called FICO, it’s billed as the world’s largest agri-food park; this is Disneyland for foodies – just like the whole of Bologna. And if you don’t rate your cooking skills before arrival, L8’s location directly opposite the Culinary Institute of Bologna could change that, as they offer classes in creating classic local dishes.
So, if you want to graduate from Bologna tourist to in-the-know local in only one lesson, sign up for a stay at L8.
For more information visit their website L8 Boutique Apartments.
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• JUST EAT • I just had the most indulgent 4-day break in Bologna ☺️ I decided right off the bat that this trip would be different: no plans, no pressure, no need to see or do specific things – just a ton of eating, drinking, meandering and relaxing. That’s what I call a holiday 🙊 Staying in an apartment at @l8boutique instead of a hotel, and travelling with my own chef, @canadianchefabroad, meant we could shop at Bologna’s famous food markets and cook up a storm with the fabulous local ingredients, but we still went out for gelato, of course 🍦👌
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