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My name is Melanie and I’ve been obsessed with Italy for most of my adult life.

It’s hard to pinpoint when my affection turned into an obsession. My journey has not been a straight line. But I have had the good fortune to experience Italy in so many different ways, as both a traveler and a resident.

I’ve been a broke au pair in Rome. I’ve traveled around Tuscany and Umbria while working as an eager (still broke) guidebook writer. Here are a few of the guidebooks I’ve worked on:

For four glorious years, from 2014-2018, I lived and worked in Italy while my family was posted to the U.S. Embassy in Rome. During my four years in Rome, I got to experience Italian life as a resident, as a mom, and through the eyes of my school-aged sons. I did more traveling than writing during that time and I am still trying to make up for that by writing about the many places my family and I visited on day trips, weekend jaunts, and extended holidays.

I am no longer living in Italy. But I am still obsessed with it, still writing about it, still keeping up with current events, and still dreaming and scheming about when I will be there again. I think this adds yet another layer to my blog, a perspective that many Italophiles can relate to—that wistful feeling of planning a trip to Italy and making it come true.

At Ottica Casoni, an eyewear store in Modena

About Italofile

When I started Italofile—in 2006!—it was one of the first travel blogs exclusively about Italy.

An Italophile is a lover of Italy, an admirer of Italian customs, traditions, and food. When I created Italofile, I wanted to build a resource—a file, if you will—where I could save, share, and write about my passion for Italy travel, art, culture, and living.

I have been writing about Italy for more than 20 years. I’ve written and edited guidebooks for Frommer’s, Michelin, and DK, and I’ve also written for dozens of other print and online publications, including Bell’Italia, Travel Channel, The Washington Post, and Saveur.

Here is a sample of some of my favorite posts on this site:

Inside the Castello Estense of Ferrara
Inside the Castello Estense of Ferrara: it’s me! The paintings on the ceiling were being restored. Mirrors were set up throughout the castle so you could see the art without craning your neck. © Melanie Renzulli

Contact Italofile

Contact me if you have questions about travel to Italy or if there is a topic you’d like for me to cover on Italofile.

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