The view from my kitchen window

easter egg

I’m back Blogging

So happy to be back writing at my kitchen window

Goodness, have you missed me?  I have certainly missed you. It has been a very long time since I sat down to my computer and spoke to you all.

It has taken a new website.  (Do you like it? please let me know by leaving a comment), to allow me to blog again.  The old website was like a plate of spaghetti, a tangled mess of coding.  You know, those below desk computer cables that become one almighty mess and you resort to scissors and tape to make t he thing work.  Well that was my old website.  Now thanks to Geert and Lissa and their team I’m back again, and it does feel good.  Yes, it’s a new programme I’m having to learn my way around, so please forgive me if my first posts are amateurish and clumsy.  I promise as I begin to understand and explore the editing suite posts will become more adventurous and smarter .

We threw open our doors for the 2022 Bellaugello Season on Thursday last and welcomed guys from Italy and Germany for our Easter Weekend.  Today is “Pasquetta” the Monday after Easter Sunday. It is a day of little food, for we ate hugely over the weekend.  The sun is hot, but the wind is blowing from the Russian Steppes and is cold.

Our local town of Gubbio was so happy as for the first time in three years the “Processione di Cristo Morto” again took place in the centro storico.  The chanting, costumes, tradition, candles, singing, and the two biers on which are carried shoulder high, the dead Christ and the Madonna processed slowly through the narrow streets. Huge bonfires were lit and blazed, restaurants were full and the town had a great feel.

easter egg

After breakfast served at Bellaugello, the table laden with Colomba, crescia di pasqua, local meats and cheeses, home made breads and cakes and yoghurts, fragrant Taylors of Harrogate teas and excellent coffee the guys set about decorating their eggs which we took to a neighbouring farm to join in their traditional Easter Sunday Lunch.  Guys brought food from their home regions to share.  From Germany we had delicate white asparagus, a vegetable not seen in these parts.  We climbed a small hill and threw our painted eggs.  Our host declaring the rules and consequences which to me seem to change year by year, led to some humorous discussions.  We lunched on amazing home produce, and an array of Italian wines, that the evening was by need lazy and involved sweating in the sauna, with the hardy guys jumping into the pool.

So, it is time to sign off my first blog post of 2022

I hope you have enjoyed this snapshot into the past 48 hours here at Bellaugello.

I already have the next post  lining up with submitted photographs to add to my “Bellaugello Butts” Collection.  Do feel free to send me your butt pic – in the Bellaugello infinity pool. by email or Signal or WhatsApp, the links are on the website   oh, and do let me know if there are other topics you wish me to write about.  You will also read about life here in rural Umbria, the joys and tribulations, the fun and craziness, our gardening, cooking, outings, team and local places to see and visit, not forgetting the occasional rant!

vai gli sposi…

Huge celebration today as one of my neighbours and good friend Marco married Laura in the regal setting of the town hall in our local town of Gubbio under hot Italian sunshine.  Here are the happy couple descending the stairs moments before the traditional rice is thrown.


Dawn breaks into sun..

How strange the weather can be, one moment hot hot sunshine and the next magical mist.  Here at Bellaugello Gay Country House we live in the most breath-takingly beautiful of valleys.  We look south commanding a huge view over the river Chiascio which meanders its way lazily towards the confluence with the river Tiber.

Our valley is peaceful, unspoilt, indeed so many of our guests return again and again to revel in the tranquillity and peace, they find a haven far away from the ‘madding crowd’.  Although not this morning I attach a photo taken recently as the mist which early morning dives low and then magically drifts skywards, a dawn of a new day bringing ever new surprises and joys, you can make out our infinity edge swimming pool already a brilliant azure in the morning light.

Sunlight filtering through the trees at Bellaugello Gay Country House in Umbria, Italy. #Bellaugello

Of course our infinity swimming pool enjoys the best of views,

Readying the pool - early morning at Bellaugello Gay Guest House in Umbria, Italy we swim overlooking the valley and way in the far far distance the Monte Sibylline the national park that is in the southern corner of Umbria and which borders the neighbouring region of Abruzzo,

Over the infinity pool at Bellaugello Gay Guest House in Umbria, looking towards the Monte Sibylline national parkthe national park is home to the famous Piano Grande that every July so generously gives of its tapestry of wild flowers

Piano Grande, Umbria, #Bellaugelloa trip well worth making in you can bear to tear yourselves away from the glorious poolside at Bellaugello 🙂


Fruit and more fruit

Michael has been busy collecting cherries, he has combed the lanes round Bellaugello Gay Country House selecting the ripest and juiciest cherries which he plucked.   Bags and bags of cherries have appeared in the kitchen we serve them for breakfasts and yesterday afternoon he was busy in the kitchen making cherry marmalade and a spicy cherry sauce, the latter from a recipe given to him by his grandmother.

Today the cherry jam was served on our homemade breads, and many compliments ensued.  I found myself in the garden cutting grass, it seems a never-ending task at the moment, the warmth and occasional shower rapidly brings on the growth.  Skirting around our fruit trees, I notice the figs are not far off being ripe and we have a decent crop of peaches, they may be small but they are looking really good.

Recent guests wrote and asked for my recipe for our home-made limoncello, so I sent it to them and feel now inclined to share the recipe with you.  This year’s limoncello is still not quite ready, we will have to wait until the middle of next month to sample its heady delight and fragrant perfume.  We now have cherries basking in the sunlight, slowly turning alcoholic, and are wondering what fruit will be next.

So here is my recipe for Limoncello.  You need to use the finest unwaxed lemons, I use the large knobbly ones from Amalfi, and of course you need time!

10 lemons – unwaxed preferably from Amalfi
1.2 kg sugar
1 & 1/2 litres of water
1 litre of plain alcohol we use 95% proof
Wash the lemons and remove the rind being extra careful not to cut into the white pith, chop the rind into small pieces.
Place into a clean preserving jar together with .75 l of the alcohol and leave in a cool dark place for 1 month, turn occasionally, I turn the jars when I pass by, curious to see the golden yellow colour becoming more intense.  The container must be hermetically sealed.
To the water add the sugar and gently stir whilst bringing to the boil.  Leave to cool.
Add the remaining quarter litre of alcohol and then combine with the lemon zest and alcohol mix.  Leave in a cool dark place for 40 more days.
Then Strain, filter and put in the freezer and enjoy! Cin Cin!


Out this afternoon visiting great friends in the valley to be met with complaints

Not a usual state of affairs when visiting neighbours but I guess there has to be a first time. I have an amazingly good friendship with the residents here in Valdichiasio the beautiful valley in which Bellaugello Gay Country House is situated I am truly fortunate. So today was a wee bit of a shock.

Time to come clean. I went to share some great news with dear friends and at the same time to see their daughter and son in law who were visiting from London, a couple whom I know well. Of course there was a lovely warm welcome, lots of news caught up on and then the complaint….

They all told me off for not blogging. My neighbours miss my writings and their daughter has been deprived of news from the valley. So to E M M and R a huge thank you ! My writers block is finally over and I’m inspired once again to blog

Watch out I’ve lots to rant about and lots of news joys tribulations and maybe even some gossip to share and of course not forgetting the beautiful Bellaugello Back or two to share with you all

Speak soon

I love my Infinity Pool


A photo says it all.  Doesn’t really require words, and in future my choice of words will be more carefully scrutinised before clicking the ‘Publish’ button! (thanks P for alerting me to that slip-up)A beautiful back in the infinity pool at Bellaugello Gay Country  House, Umbria, Italy

What I would like to know is if I can put this photo on Facebook?  We are in disagreement over their policy guidelines re nudity, and I would hate to think of our f/b page going down.  What do you think?

All I know is that the infinity pool at Bellaugello Gay Country House, is such a beautiful place to enjoy and relax, and the views aren’t all that bad either!


I’m still here and so is the sun

No writing, no blogging of late, it seems I have been on strike, not true.  It is not that I have not hd anything to say, it is just that I have been demoralised, and felt rebellious and thought not to blog for a bit.

For the past six years blogging has been a significant part of my life here at Bellaugello Gay Guest House, recounting the stories of my daily life, the things an people I come into contact with, trials, tribulations, highs, lows and above all the odd rant or two.  So it is with a bit of arrogance I signed off for a few weeks.

I am now concerned that I have let my regular readers down.  At no time in my blogging history have there been such breaks, I usually post two or three times a week, people follow my jottings, and I am on  guilt trip that my readers have had nothing to laugh at, and Google might have overlooked me.

What you cannot over-look with out being amazed is the view over the infinity swimming pool at Bellaugello…The infinity pool at Bellaugello May 2015

Early this May morning the mist lingers in the Chiasco valley, small wisps break off and float lazily skywards, the water brilliant azure, the sky cloudless Infinity pool at Bellaugello Gay Guest House, Umbria

Tempting, very tempting….

over the infinity pool at Bellaugello Gay Country House, near Tuscany, Italy

Come join us, keep watching this space, I will be writing more soon

Getting ready for the race

Sunshine, comfort, a swimming pool crystal clear and waiting….  Bellaugello is waiting peacefully for next week and the “Festa dei Ceri” the traditional “Race of the Candles” held in our local town of Gubbio every 15 May

The flag of S Ubaldo the patron saint of Gubbio hanging in the gardens at Bellaugello Gay Guest House, Umbria, Italy

We are ready, are you?  There are still some suites available for next week, come join in the fun.  Grab a flight to our local airport of Perugia S Francesco di Assisi which are are aplenty.  Quote “ceri 2015” for a 10% discount on a stay that includes 15 May 2015.  Email us at:

Hmmmm…. it’s been a bit of work in the making

Clearing through photos this morning at Bellaugello Gay Country House I came across this set which brought back memories of just how the house was and all the effort we put into restoring it to make what you see today.

The south elevation of Bellaugello 2009 – 2015 enjoy!

Let battle commence! demolish the lean-toBellaugello in 2009 before demolition of the illegal stallaMore progress, looking cleaner1Progress, we are definitely getting theretoday the south elevation and Giardino suite of Bellaugello gay Country House