|Portrayed by||Gillian Blakeney|
|First appearance||18 January 1990|
|Last appearance||11 May 1992|
|Introduced by||Don Battye|
|Occupation||Assistant Manager of The Robinson Corporation and Lassiter's Hotel (1990–1992)
Hotel manager (1992–)
Caroline Alessi is a fictional character from the Australian soap opera Neighbours, played by Gillian Blakeney. She made her first on-screen appearance on 18 January 1990 and remained until 11 May 1992. Caroline's twin sister, Christina was played by Gillian's real-life twin, Gayle Blakeney.
Career minded and confident, Caroline Alessi was the younger of twins (sister Christina was born nine minutes before her) born to second generation Italian immigrant Frank Alessi and his Australian wife, Margaret. The identical twins were always very close and grew up as best friends as well as sisters. As teenagers, they would play pranks that only twins can, like swapping classes to fool teachers and tricking boyfriends.
But while Christina was always more reserved and less driven, Caroline was far more outgoing and confident and more academically successful at school. Upon completion of her HSC, Caroline started working in big restaurants and hotels. But after the twins witnessed a murder in 1990, they were placed under the witness protection programme, and advised to pose as the one person – Linda Giles – as an extra precaution. The twins moved into No. 22 Ramsay Street, not far from their parents home. Caroline landed a job as Paul Robinson's number two at The Robinson Corporation, and assistant manager of Lassiter's Hotel, under the guise of Linda, while Chrissie stayed indoors as much as possible to avoid the twins being seen together in public. However, as Chrissie began to tire of hiding out all day, Caroline agreed to let her act as Linda from time to time, leading to bewilderment on Paul's part when 'Linda' would suddenly become useless around the office. After Caroline failed to realise Christina was posing as Linda one day, she walked in on her and Paul at the office, and the twins were forced to reveal the truth to Paul. The murderer they were hiding from was caught soon after, and Caroline was finally free to devote her full attention to the job at Lassiter's.
Paul moved into No. 22 with the twins after they figured it would do no harm to have a man around the house, and as the girls got to know him better, both realised they were attracted to him. At first, the twins battled for his affections, but eventually agreed on a 'hand's off' pact to avoid any tension between them. Instead, Caroline started dating Paul's father, Jim, who was 20 years her senior. The relationship caused so much controversy among the neighbours that they agreed to cool things off, and Caroline began dating student doctor, Adam Willis, from No. 28 instead. But Adam was always struggling to make ends meet with the expenses of life as a medical student, and as a result, found himself feeling beneath Caroline who was used to a few more luxuries. The couple eventually split, but remained good friends.
While Caroline had been seeing Adam, Christina had started seeing Paul, and they eventually married, with Caroline as bridesmaid. Feeling restless in Erinsborough, Caroline was delighted when Paul's aunt Rosemary Daniels offered her a top job with her company, the Daniels Corporation, in New York, and she readily accepted. But while in New York, Caroline uncovered a plot within the Daniels Corporation to discredit Paul and immediately phoned Paul to inform him. Grateful for Caroline's loyalty, Paul persuaded her to return to work for him at The Robinson Corporation complete with a wage increase. Caroline agreed, but on her return to the office, she clashed with her replacement, Martin Tyrell, who mistook her for a secretary and asked him to get him some coffee. A feud developed between the two, but while working alone at the office one afternoon, Martin came to Caroline's aid when she started having severe pains in her stomach. She quickly realised that she was experiencing sympathetic labour pains for Christina, who had been taken into hospital that same day to give birth. Martin brought Caroline home, and waited with her for news of Chrissie. After Paul phoned to tell them Christina had given birth to a baby boy, Andrew, Caroline and Martin got caught up in the excitement and kissed. They embarked on a relationship, but Caroline soon discovered that Martin was married with two children. He assured Caroline that he and his wife were separated, however, but Caroline felt hurt and betrayed when she showed up at Martin's apartment one night to find his family there, and it transpired that they had never separated at all. Caroline was then left heartbroken as Martin chose to stay with his family.
Caroline grew closer to Paul when they got trapped in the bush overnight after their car broke down on the way back to Erinsborough from a business meeting. Throughout their ordeal, it became clear to the two that a certain chemistry existed between the two of them, but they buried their feelings to avoid causing any upset to Christina. Things came to a head one night, however, when Paul was banished to the sofa after an argument with Christina. Caroline came downstairs during the night to get a drink of water, and Paul initially mistook her in the dark for Christina, pulling her to him to kiss her. But even after he realised it was Caroline, Paul kissed her again, and Caroline was delighted that at last, they had both acted upon their feelings. But Caroline could not cope with the guilt she felt whenever she was around Christina afterwards, and matters were complicated further when her cousin, Marco, overheard Caroline talking about her feelings with Paul in the Coffee Shop one day. So, when the chance of running a hotel near her family in Italy arose, Caroline quickly packed her bags and made plans to leave Erinsborough. Christina was devastated by her sister's departure, particularly the speed at which she had left. It was only a few weeks later when Christina overheard Paul confiding in his grandmother, Helen, that she realised what had happened between Caroline and Paul.
An angry and hurt Christina flew to Milan to confront Caroline, and after a lot of soul searching, the twins reconciled their differences. Caroline still opted to stay in Milan, however, because she had finally begun managing a hotel of her own – something she had always wanted.
- Cooper, Lorna (17 March 2010). "TV's Neighbours: where are they now?". MSN. Retrieved 28 April 2010.