Sanremo

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Sanremo
Comune
Città di Sanremo
Panorama of Sanremo from the harbour
Panorama of Sanremo from the harbour
Coat of arms of Sanremo
Coat of arms
Sanremo is located in Italy
Sanremo
Sanremo
Location of Sanremo in Italy
Coordinates: 43°49′N 7°47′E / 43.817°N 7.783°E / 43.817; 7.783Coordinates: 43°49′N 7°47′E / 43.817°N 7.783°E / 43.817; 7.783
Country Italy
Region Liguria
Province Imperia (IM)
Frazioni Borello, Bussana, Bussana Vecchia, Coldirodi, Gozo Superiore, Gozo Inferiore, Poggio, San Bartolomeo, San Giacomo, San Giovanni, San Romolo, Verezzo, Verezzo San Donato, Verezzo Sant'Antonio
Government
 • Mayor Maurizio Zoccarato
Area
 • Total 54.7 km2 (21.1 sq mi)
Elevation 15 m (49 ft)
Population (30 April 2009)
 • Total 56,864
 • Density 1,000/km2 (2,700/sq mi)
Demonym Sanremesi or Sanremaschi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 18038
Dialing code 0184
Patron saint Saint Romolo
Saint day October 13
Website Official website

Sanremo or San Remo[1] (Sanrœmu in Ligurian) is a city with about 57,000 inhabitants on the Mediterranean coast of western Liguria in north-western Italy. Founded in Roman times, the city is best known as a tourist destination on the Italian Riviera. It hosts numerous cultural events, such as the Sanremo Music Festival and the Milan – San Remo cycling classic. The city is widely accepted as the origin of the five-card stud variant telesina.[2]

Name[edit]

The name of the city is a phonetic contraction of Sant'Eremo di San Romolo, which refers to Romulus of Genoa, the successor to Syrus of Genoa. It is often stated in modern folk stories that Sanremo is a translation of "Saint Remo", a deceased Saint . In Ligurian, his name is San Rœmu. The spelling San Remo is on all ancient maps of Liguria, the ancient Republic of Genoa, Italy in the Middle Ages, the Kingdom of Sardinia, and the Kingdom of Italy.[citation needed] It was used in 1924 in official documents under Mussolini.

History[edit]

Sanremo postcard from the 1920s.

Once the Roman settlement of Matutia'or Villa Matutiana, Sanremo expanded in the Early Middle Ages when the population moved to the high grounds. The nobility built a castle and the walled village of La Pigna to protect the town from Saracen raids.

At first subjected to the countship of Ventimiglia, the community later passed under the dominion of the Genoese bishops. In 1297 they sold it to the Doria and De Mari families. It became a free town in the second half of the 15th century, after which it expanded to the Pigna hill and at Saint Syrus Cathedral. The almost perfectly preserved old village remains.

Sanremo remained independent from Genoa for a long time. In 1753, after 20 years of fierce conflicts, it rose against the hegemonical attempts of the Genoese Republic. At that time the latter polity built the fortress of Santa Tecla, situated on the beach near the port. The fortress was used as a prison until 2002. It is now being transformed into a museum.

After the French domination and the Savoy restoration (1814), Sanremo was annexed to the Kingdom of Sardinia. Since the middle of the 18th century, the town grew rapidly, in part due to the development of tourism: the first grand hotels were built and the town extended along the coast. Notable people, such as the Empress Elisabeth of Austria "Sissi", Empress Maria Alexandrovna of Russia, Czar Nicholas II of Russia, Alfred Nobel, and the writer Italo Calvino stayed here.

Economy[edit]

Sanremo Municipal Casino.

Sanremo enjoys a Mediterranean climate and physically attractive setting on the seacoast—tourism is the main basis of its economy.

The Municipal Casino, built in 1905, is an example of liberty style building. The Ariston Theatre offers annual series of concerts, operas and theater plays. The Symphony Orchestra is one of twelve symphony orchestras recognized by the state of Italy; et performs some 120 concerts throughout the year, most in the Municipal Casino's Opera Theater.

Besides tourism, the city is active in the production of extra virgin-grade olive oil, whose regional "designation of origin" is protected (D.O.P., Denominazione di Origine Protetta). It is one of the agricultural commodities in western Liguria and in particular within the province of Imperia. Sanremo is known as the City of Flowers (la Cittá dei Fiori), this being another important aspect of the economy of the city. The nearby towns of Arma di Taggia, Bordighera and Ospedaletti are also involved in the cultivation of flowers for the international flower market of Sanremo.

Transportation[edit]

Sanremo cable car advertising, 1937.

The city is connected to Genoa and to Ventimiglia, the border city with France, by the A10 motorway, whose last part is also known as the Autostrada dei Fiori ("Freeway of Flowers"). It has a large number of elevated sections with viaducts that give a panoramic view of the coast. The A10 Autostrada joins the French A8 autoroute at the border between Ventimiglia and Menton. Together these national routes are part of the European route E80. The A10 motorway is a toll road, and the A8 demands a toll in sections, and some sections are free of charge. Notably when travelling from Italy into France, there one does not pay until after the towns of Menton and Monaco.

The closest airport to Sanremo is in France, the Côte d'Azur International Airport airport in Nice, 75 minutes away by car or train. The railway connects the city to the other Ligurian cities like Imperia, Genoa and to Nice, Milan, Turin and Rome.

The railway line used to be along the coast, running close to the sea, and providing a view for travelers. The line has been moved further north and underground, which allows for faster trains; Sanremo railway station was relocated next to the City Hall. The city is refurbishing the area once occupied by the railway and converting it into a biking route and pedestrian area.

Other roads of importance are the SS1, the "Aurelia Bis", which connects Sanremo to Taggia. This is a non-toll bypass route. The coast road is the via Aurelia or SS1 and follows the route of a Roman road. This can be heavily congested when it passes through towns, as it has only one lane in either direction for most of way around Sanremo. A trolleybus line along the via Aurelia links Sanremo with both Taggia and Ventimiglia.

Climate[edit]

Sanremo experiences a warm Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification Csa).

The city generally has a salubrious climate with comfortable warm days followed by the cool mornings and nights.

Climate data for Sanremo
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 13.4
(56.1)
13.8
(56.8)
15.7
(60.3)
18.5
(65.3)
21.7
(71.1)
25
(77.0)
27.8
(82.0)
27.6
(81.7)
25.4
(77.7)
21.6
(70.9)
17
(62.6)
14.6
(58.3)
20.2
(68.3)
Average low °C (°F) 6.8
(44.2)
7
(44.6)
8.6
(47.5)
11.1
(52.0)
14.2
(57.6)
17.5
(63.5)
20
(68.0)
19.8
(67.6)
17.8
(64.0)
14.4
(57.9)
10.6
(51.1)
8.3
(46.9)
13
(55.4)
Precipitation mm (inches) 102
(4.0)
89
(3.5)
91
(3.6)
81
(3.2)
76
(3.0)
38
(1.5)
20
(.8)
43
(1.7)
56
(2.2)
107
(4.2)
97
(3.8)
79
(3.1)
879
(34.6)
Source: Enea,[3] Intellicast[4]

Culture[edit]

Music festival[edit]

The Ariston Theater hosts the celebrated annual Sanremo Music Festival, a very popular song contest held in the city since 1951. This festival inspired the Eurovision Song Contest, which started in 1956, and for years the Sanremo festival selected the Italian entry. The internationally notable song "Nel Blu Dipinto di Blu", also known as "Volare", was performed at this festival for the first time by Domenico Modugno in 1958. The festival is so popular among Italians that it is often referred to simply as "Il Festival" (The Festival). Other events include the Tenco Prize (autumn), a song contest for authors dedicated to the memory of Luigi Tenco; the Flowers Parade in January/February in which every city of the Italian Riviera presents an original composition of flowers displayed on a Carnival/Mardi-Gras style moving car; and the summer Firework International Contest in the second week of August also called "Ferragosto".

Sports[edit]

The Rallye Sanremo is a rally competition that was part of the FIA World Rally Championship from 1973 to 2003. It was replaced by Rally d'Italia Sardegna on the island of Sardinia, in hosting the Italian round of the WRC. Formerly a mixed surface event (tarmac and gravel), the rally has later been an all-tarmac event and takes place around the mountains.

Sanremo is the finish of the classic Milan – San Remo cycle race of 298 kilometres (185 mi), one of the five "Monuments" of the cycling season. Milan – San Remo is traditionally held in March and is one of the first major fixtures on the cycling season.

The famous local football club is the A.S.D. Sanremese that has played also in Serie B and in Serie C.

Cuisine[edit]

The culinary specialties of Sanremo and environs include Sardenara, Focaccia, Focaccia alle Cipolle, Torta Verde, Farinata and Tallesca olives.

Notable people[edit]

  • Mercurial Italian tennis player Fabio Fognini.
  • The Venerable Giorgio Baldassarre Oppezzi, a monk who died in 1525, and whose body was later discovered to be incorrupt, is buried here in the church of Santa Maria degli Angeli.
  • Maria Alexandrovna, consort of Alexander II of Russia, spent the winter of 1874 in Sanremo and as a gift to the city she donated the palms along the seaside walk of Corso Imperatrice (Empress Avenue).
  • Italian-American mobster friend of Jimmy Burke, "Remo", whose name was derived from the city.
  • Alfred Nobel bought a villa in Sanremo in 1891 and died there in 1896. Since 2002 it has housed a permanent exhibit on the most important discoveries of the 19th century including the research interests of Nobel himself. Sanremo continues to maintain its ties with Nobel, long after his death. Each 10 December (the date that Nobel died in 1896) large quantities of flowers sent by the province of Imperia, the city of Sanremo and the Board for Tourist Promotion of the Riviera dei fiori adorn the annual Nobel Prize Award Ceremony and Banquet in Stockholm.
  • Italian writer Italo Calvino spent his youth in Sanremo and many of his novels, including Il Barone Rampante are reminiscent of his attachment to the city.
  • Edward Lear, artist, illustrator and writer known for his nonsense poetry and limericks, lived and died in Sanremo. His tombstone is in the Foce Cemetery.
  • The Italian actor and comedian Carlo Dapporto was born in Sanremo and became a household name in post-war Italy.
  • The Sicilian playwright and Nobel Prize winner Luigi Pirandello lived in Sanremo in 1933-34 and was appointed artistic director of the Casino.
  • The writer Tobias Smollett stayed a few days in Sanremo in 1765 and described it thus: "St. Remo is a pretty considerable town, well-built upon the declivity of a gently rolling hill...There is very little plain ground in this neighbourhood; but the hills are covered with oranges, lemons, pomegranates and olives....The women of St. Remo are much more handsome and better tempered than those of Provence." Travels through France and Italy (1766)
  • Italian director and cinematographer Mario Bava was born in Sanremo in 1914.
  • Italian-born sculptor Giuseppe Moretti lived in Sanremo in his final years and died here in February 1935. Moretti designed the world's largest cast iron statue, of the Roman god Vulcan (56 ft or 17 m), which stands atop Red Mountain in Birmingham, Alabama (USA). The statue is the symbol of the city.
  • Italian progressive-impressionist painter Demetrio (Dino) Rosa lived in Sanremo during his youth and part of his adult live.
  • Mehmed VI, the last Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, died in Sanremo on May 16, 1926.
  • Juan Manuel Fangio won his first European Grand Prix in Sanremo-Ospedaletti in 1949.
  • Mohammad Ali Shah Qajar, Shah of Persia from 1907 to 1909, died in Sanremo on April 5, 1925.
  • Alex Liddi, who was born in Sanremo, became the first native Italian to play Major League Baseball, in 2011 with the Seattle Mariners.

Notable events[edit]

The Sanremo conference, 19–26 April 1920, of the post-World War I Allied Supreme Council determined the allocation of Class "A" League of Nations mandates for administration of the former Ottoman-ruled lands of the Middle East by the victorious powers. The most notable of these was the British Mandate of Palestine.

Sanremo is the home of International Institute of Humanitarian Law, the most notable institute in courses about refugees and international humanitarian law.

Sanremo hosts an annual poker tournament as part of the European Poker Tour.

International relations[edit]

Twin towns — sister cities[edit]

Sanremo is twinned with:

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ The official spelling of the city is Sanremo, a phonetic contraction of San Romolo (Saint Romolo), official saint and protector of the city. In the local dialect of Ligurian, it sounds like Sanrœmu. The spelling San Remo, as two words, was introduced in 1924 by the mayor and used in official documents during Fascism. This form of the name appears still on some road signs and, more rarely, in unofficial tourist information. It has been the most widely used form of the name in English at least since the 19th century.
  2. ^ "Telesina Review :: Poker - by Reviewed Online Poker". Reviewed-online-poker.com. 2006-06-29. Retrieved 2009-05-06. 
  3. ^ "Sanremo weather averages". ENEA. Retrieved 5 August 2012. 
  4. ^ "Sanremo historic weather averages". Intellicast. Retrieved 24 September 2009. 

External links[edit]