Olive oil facial and mint foot cream...
The sun in Italy was intense this summer so another morning I chose an olive oil facial to cleanse, nourish and rehydrate my skin. At the same time, I received a bonus foot treatment designed to cool and ease a "tourist's tired tootsies." A mint and eucalyptus cream was massaged into my feet and then they were covered in tinfoil.
"H-m-m-m-m," I thought. "Wonder what this is all about?"
While the esthetician worked wonders on my face, I could feel my fatigued feet begin to tingle and their temperature begin to drop and drop and drop. By the time my facial was complete both my face and my feet felt wonderfully cool and rejuvenated. How's that for Italian spa magic?
Food, food, food...
All meals were included in the hotel plan I chose. Think gorgeous, freshly prepared Italian food and lovely Italian wines that compliment the menu. Imagine a formal dining room - crystal chandeliers, red velvet drapes, pristine white tablecloths and red upholstered chairs. Each meal was an occasion.
Like all the other guests, I was assigned a table and the same male server for the duration of my stay. Dressed in formal black jacket, this lovely man must have been an Italian mama in another life. When I refused just one of the four or five courses he brought for me to taste, he'd moan, "Eat Signora - you will become too skinny." He made it hard not to "just try" mouth-watering choices like spaghetti with clams, veal parmesan, prosciutto and melon, lasagna, chicken cacciatore, salmon steak, prawns in tomato olive sauce and on and on and on.
Lunches and dinners began with an antipasta table that stretched the length of the dining room. They ended with a buffet feast containing over thirty different goodies including fresh fruit, yogurt, gelato, pecan pie, and tiramisu, a specialty of the Veneto region. If you still wanted more, a cheese and special dessert trolley was available. Groan!
I ate very well and played very hard leaving Hotel Trieste and Victoria the same weight as when I arrived. However, those women who would like to diet can enjoy many fresh salad choices and delicious low fat entrees planned to please the pickiest of calorie counters. It won't even be a hardship to watch your intake. But promise me you'll cheat just a tiny bit - you must try the chef's Saint Antonio Pound Cake and his fabulous chocolate profiteroles. You won't regret it!
Out and about in town...
I loved the ambiance of Abano Terme. It is first and foremost a small Italian town with its spa resort identity coming second. That means that rather than offering many glitzy shops and bright lights to attract tourists, this community emphasizes Italian family life and Italian culture. It's great fun to observe.
For further information...
P.S. I was not the only English speaking person at the hotel. Many other visitors hailed from England, Canada, United States and even Australia. Very many, I learned, were regular devotees who visited Hotel Trieste and Victoria at least once a year.
This article has been independently researched by Journeywoman Online. We thank the Italian Government Tourist Board, Rail Europe and Alitalia for sponsoring this female-friendly information. Together it is our aim to inspire women to visit Italy and to travel safely and well.
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