Oh, the charm of Italy! As a connoisseur of the finer things in life, my journey through Italy’s storied landscapes has been nothing short of an opulent escapade. Now, nestled in the serene landscapes of Umbria, I find myself reflecting on the contrasts with its glitzy neighbor, Tuscany. I’ve been living the dolce vita in Tuscany since 2019, but recently, I ventured into the quieter, yet equally captivating region of Umbria. Let me take you on a whimsical, insider’s comparison of these two Italian jewels, laden with my own splash of humor and a dash of haute couture perspective.


Firstly, let’s talk Tuscany. Ah, Tuscany! With its rolling hills and postcard-perfect landscapes, it’s a region that screams luxury from every sun-kissed vineyard. I’ve indulged in its offerings, from the bustling streets of Florence to the historical marvels of Pisa. However, it’s become a magnet for international buyers and tourists, transforming quaint towns into hotspots for the blue rinse brigade—yes, the baby boomers and pensioners, darling! Lucca, once a hidden gem, now feels like a parade of Australians, Germans, Brits, and Americans, all sipping on overpriced coffee and scooping up gelato that costs more than my Prada lip gloss.

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The authenticity of Tuscany, with its artisan shops and café culture, has taken a backseat to tourist traps. Picture this: restaurants serving more spaghetti to tourists than any Italian nonna would ever approve of.

And let’s not even start on the fashion faux pas – so many ‘Made in Italy’ tags, so little actual Italian craftsmanship.

Grand Universe Lucca Hotel Tuscany


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In contrast, Umbria is like the sophisticated sister, not trying too hard to impress but absolutely succeeding. It’s smaller, less tourist-trodden, and the locals? Oh, they’re as warm as the Umbrian sun. Here, I’ve savored truly authentic Italian dishes that taste like they’re made with amore and a secret recipe passed down through generations. The coffee? Cheaper than my daily designer water, and every sip feels like a cozy hug from Nonna herself.

Umbria’s charm extends to its serene villages. Take Todi, an elegant enclave where cleanliness and quiet reign supreme, or Spello, where the older tourists bring a dignified calm instead of clamor. Then there’s Assisi, pristine and reverent, a haven for the soul rather than a check mark on a tourist’s itinerary. And not to forget Spoleto, with its rustic appeal attracting a creatively inclined crowd, a stark contrast to Florence’s constant hustle and endless queues.

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Oh, and the driving! In Tuscany, the roads might be well-paved, but the drivers? They’re as aggressive as a final clearance sale on Via Condotti. In Umbria, on the other hand, I swear on my most cherished pair of Louboutins, not one person has honked at me in anger. Here, patience isn’t just a virtue; it’s the way of life.

Now, about the hunt for a home. In Tuscany, finding a rental felt like competing in an Olympic sport. In Umbria?

I found my dreamy abode in a single day, thanks to a real estate agent who worked faster than a New York minute.

This is unheard of in Tuscany, where agents seem to take longer siestas than business hours allow.

Unveiling the Spirit of Spoleto Orvieto

Perugia, the vibrant university city of Umbria, contrasts sharply with anywhere I’ve been in Tuscany. Dominated by youthful energy and friendly students eager to assist a damsel in distress looking for a long-term rental, it’s refreshingly welcoming. Unlike some Tuscan locales, where the locals can sometimes seem as frosty as forgotten gelato.

In my heart, Tuscany will always have a special place—it’s where my love affair with Italy began. But Umbria? It’s where my soul feels at peace, wrapped in authenticity and untouched beauty. As I continue my journey, exploring the rustic pathways and savoring the simple pleasures of Umbrian life, I realize that sometimes, the road less traveled is not only less crowded but also more enchanting.




So, if you ever find yourself torn between the opulent allure of Tuscany and the understated elegance of Umbria, why choose? Dive into both! But remember, while Tuscany seduces with its fame, Umbria captures the heart with its sincerity. As for me, I’ll keep dancing between these two beauties, espresso in one hand, gelato in the other—living my very own Italian fairytale. Ciao for now, as I go off to enjoy another enchanting Umbrian sunset, perfectly content in this less-heralded paradise.

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