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Wednesday, 19 September 2007

Le Zagare Hotel, Ischia, Italy - Page 2

Written by Sherry Ott
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I was tired of the stampede of tour buses throughout Italy this summer, so I began looking for a place to try to experience Italy without a bunch of other tourists and bad souvenir shops.  I had an extra week of time to spend in Italy and I wanted to find something different.  I was done with shopping and seeing ruins, so I set out to find a place to enjoy the beautiful blue seas that Italy had to offer – I wanted to sail! I searched all over for a nice, quiet location with sailing instruction; and with a mid-range budget I never really thought I would find a place that would fit all of these things. However, Google pulled up Le Zagare in Ischia, my paradise in the tourist filled country of Italy!


Andrea had promised me a big room with a large terrace and view, but  in all honestly all of the rooms in Le Zagare have a view with some sort, however he did provide me a huge terrace off my big airy room.  The room wasn’t overly fancy; however, it was extremely clean, big, and had everything one would need.  I was especially in love with my terrace which was adorned with lounge chairs, and tables.  The first night I sat out on the terrace and watched the sun set – very happy with my ‘hotel find’! le zagare


I was really here for sailing, though, and the blue water was calling!  Prior to this I had only been a passenger on sailboats, but I’ve always wanted to learn more.  Andrea however, was an experienced captain used to adventure.  He grew up sailing off of the island of Ischia.  He became competitive in the sport and completed two yacht races around the world on board Gatorade in 1989 and Brooksfield in 1993.  In addition, he has been in command of numerous other yachts on every ocean.  He was a sailor first, and then a hotel owner.  After all, the hotel was a business that has been in his family for years, but when he retired from racing he came back to Italy to run the hotel and added the sailing school.  He has a nice partnership with his Australian wife, Kate, who runs much of the hotel side of the business while he focuses on the sailing school.


le zagareThe beginning three day course consisted of one hour of “classroom/terrace”: training on the physics, mechanics, and theory of sailing.  This is when I had to dust off the cobwebs in my brain and take myself back to high school physics to re-learn the Bernoulli Principle, in addition to learning the correct terminology for the parts of the boat and the types of maneuvers we would be doing.


Next we walked down to the marina and had hands on experience for the next four hours.  We learned how to prepare the boat, change/hoist sails, tie knots, and navigate tacks.   We even learned how to pick up a man overboard.  Don’t worry, we didn’t throw anyone over, we simply practiced with a life preserver.  I had an ample chance to try everything…including time for a wonderful sandwich lunch on the boat. Luckily there was no test to pass at the end of three days.  le zagareHowever, I felt as if I had passed by the sheer fact that I hadn’t fallen overboard. The class was enough to get you comfortable with the sport of sailing and with being on the water.  One day we even had to try and outrun a storm and race back to the marina.  We pulled into the marina, got the sails down and tied up just when it started to hail.  We all ran below deck and hid out there eating leftover fruit from lunch and drinking Limoncello until the weather cleared.


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Last modified on Sunday, 16 December 2012

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