Genoa History, Genoa
It is an interesting thing, the English word "blue jeans" has an origin from the French word "Bleu de Gênes", meaning "blue material from Genoa".
In times past, the very strong denim cloth was used to make the trousers worn by the port workers over 500 years ago.
France also has played a role in the history of jeans, as the material was originally known as cloth ''de Nimes'', or denim.
Fondest memory: Worlds Oldest Levi's jeans was sold via Ebay in June of 2005. The sale price of 60,000 USD has been officially entered in the Guiness World Records as the "World's Most Valuable Jeans".
First of all take a panoramic view of the city from the high of Righi taking the Funicolare (cable-car) in Largo Zecca
Fondest memory: The epithet "Superba" (proud) that the city has carried down through the centuries was first given by Francesco Petrarca. Writing of a visit to Genoa in 1358 the poet described the city, in Latin of course, as follows: "you will see a regal city on the side of a rugged hill, proud in its menfolk and city walls The aspect of the place alone tells you the city is mistress of the seas".
Petrarch's highly effective portrait of the Genoese was passed from pen to pen over generations of visitors and travellers and became a common place. The city merited the term "Superba" (and still does to a certain extent) because, seen from the sea, it presents an extraordinary spectacle. Towers, palaces, churches do not look in on a harmonious urban centre but out to sea.
In recent years urban development has redrawn the architectural geometry and managed to create spectacular effects without in the least compromising Genoa's historic heritage. The Expo gave back the city her old harbour, now completely renovated, with the new convention centre in the Cotton Warehouses forming a splendid centre-piece. One of the most advanced structures in Europe, this development follows on from similarly successful projects, including the Fiera del Mare congress facility, the World Trade Centre and the Sant'Andrea abbey.
On the eve of 2000, Genoa is consolidating its reputation as a top congress venue. For several reasons: apart from the enviable climatic and environmental conditions, the location is well served by motorways and an airport and has excellent accommodation facilities including brand new hotels and country houses available for meetings and banquets. Another conference facility is the auditorium in the recently rebuilt Carlo Felice Opera House, one of Italy's greatest theatres. Entertainment space has also been created in the towers of Corte Lambruschini, a new office development that, with San Benigno, represents a focal point of business
The oldest part of the urban center, a distinctive maze of crowded and narrow streets leading to the old port, form a striking contrast with the modern part, spread out on the nearby hills.
Genoa comes from the Latin "janua" (gate). What an attractive hypothesis, so redolent of mystery and promise! A gateway to the sea, to far horizons, exotic beaches, the fabulous markets of the Orient. A gate that also closes behind it a wealth of treasures: the arts, history, society and culture, the ordinary men and women who shaped the destiny of Genoa. Genoese, in a word at sea and on land, within and beyond the gate, a surly folk rooted in age-old traditions, loth to parade their possessions, yet more than ready to render what they receive.
A reserved character, tempered by the scirocco and north wind, extraordinarily suited to developing a special sort of tourism-one that aims at preserving and enhancing an artistic and cultural heritage without selling out to commerce for mass consumption: on the facades of the palazzi, in the shady alleys, in the quarters where time, so far, hasn't worn away what man created . To savour an experience unique of its kind, just walk through the gate into Genoa "Superba", Genoa the proud, not through arrogance but by sheer majesty of image.
The atmosphere is evocative, the tone historical, redolent of things maritime: it is the old but "proud" part of Genoa that wears a big heart on its sleeve. Witness the winding alleys, the squares that suddenly open out the narrow spaces across which austere palaces have scrutinized one another over the centuries. To venture into the historical centre is a gripping experience You are impressed not only by the narrow streets and minute squares, but by the "illuminating" effect of mediaeval-Renaissance architecture co-existing with the strikingly up-to-date structures of an urban fabric in rapid development.