Tell me a bit about yourself
I am Sardinian but was born in the North of Italy, my parents decided to return to Sardinia when I was 8 because Sardinian people have a strong attachment and bond with the island where we lived in Oristano. What I do is my passion, I am very lucky. I love travelling and would say I am a globe trotter. When I have spare time I always just take a flight and travel anywhere. I lived in San Francisco for a year and there I had a chance to improve my English especially because for Italians it is not easy learning English because of our complex way of thinking, our language has a lot of words and so we often find it difficult to translate into the correct English words.
What inspired you?
I graduated in Italian modern literature, whilst I was studying I was very conscious of the food that I was eating because I am diabetic. I have always been passionate about food because I have to control everything that I consume so that I remain healthy. Once I graduated, I applied and completed a masters in Italian gourmet food and the tourism industry. The course I did was the first time they did it and they only chose 20 people from all over Italy to attend it and I was lucky enough to be one of them. Immediately after that I managed the tourist office in Oristano and maintained the European relations to help organise people.
By chance after travelling in Canada where I met another Italian lady who had a chain of high-class restaurants who suggested opening a Sardinian gourmet food export company because she was frustrated that she could never get her hands on the best food that we had. And so, I started working with her and we decided to set up this company where I would export the best Sardinian food products to the international market and created relations with importers all over the world. I started working with an importer from Australia who I did business with who encouraged me to think of a way to demonstrate to people why the products that Sardinian has is premium. He suggested to take groups of people around Sardinian and Italy so that they can experience the bakeries and wineries on small gourmet tours. We soon saw that this kind of tour was extremely popular and so I decided to change and start just doing the tours.
What are unique about your tours?
I don’t do anything mainstream touristic; I take people off the beaten track. I don’t take people to big restaurants or big hotels and make sure they experience places with real personality. For example, on the tours we stay in Masseria which are small farms in the country which have a true personality as they are connected to traditions. At the same time though they are still elegant, country chic would be the style. Every experience I do is very immersive, I try and give people emotions to involve them with cooking classes and interactions with local families. I am always there and participate with my guests to make sure that they are comfortable. You don’t have to think about anything, just come enjoy and relax and get to know the real soul of Italy. I sell slow tours, not because we do few things but because you have a chance to enter and experience the real Italy.
What I focus on
I really love Puglia and Calabria because of the people. They are all very authentic and kind and I work very well with the people here. I always try and have a relationship with the people we visit in the tour and become friends with them to ensure a close relationship with them. The exchange of good energy between these people makes the experiences special because if I cultivate that kind of energy then my guests will also feel that. Ethics are an important part of what I do. I try to be honest, even when I pay the hosts and I always try to recognise the value of what they do to ensure that I am always fair with them.