Salute! Always Italy At Home with Frances Mayes

Bummed you can't travel this year? Want to visit Italy with us? 

We're excited to host a virtual tour of Italy with Frances Mayes and Ondine Cohane through their new book Always Italy. This book, published by National Geographic in March, is a lush guide, featuring more than 350 glorious photographs from National Geographic. It showcases the best Italy has to offer from the perspective of these two women who have spent their lives reveling in its unique joys. You will get to view some of these photographs and hear both writers discuss the book, their travels, and live vicariously from your couch. 

We will also experience Italy right here in North Carolina with a visit to Raffaldini Vineyards. Nestled in the rolling foothills of the Swan Creek Wine Appellation within the Yadkin Valley, family-owned Raffaldini Vineyards brings Tuscan charm to North Carolina. Known widely as “Chianti in the Carolinas,” Raffaldini currently produces only classically dry Italian style wines ranging from reds like Sangiovese Classico, Montepulciano Riserva, Sagrantino and Grande Riserva with the white being Vermentino and a sparking Prosecco style wine called Auguri. Raffaldini hosts public and private events throughout the year and is the definitive place for lovers of dry wines. Visit their website at:

Barbara Raffaldini, co-owner of the vineyard and Bookmarks Board President, will lead us on a virtual tour of their beautiful property. 

All attendees will be entered to win a special Italian prize pack from Bookmarks that will include a copy of Always Italy, two bottles of Raffaldini wine, and some special Bookmarks surprises. 

You can attend this event by purchasing a copy of any of the books listed below. Once you have purchased the book, we will send you a confirmation with more details. Any questions, email

About the Authors
FRANCES MAYES is the author of four bestsellers, Under the Tuscan Sun, Bella Tuscany, Everyday in Tuscany, and In Tuscany. All are about taking chances, living in Italy, and the "voluptuousness of Italian life." A widely published poet and essayist, Mayes has written numerous memoirs, books of poetry, and novels. Formerly a professor of creative writing at San Francisco State University, she now devotes herself full-time to writing, traveling, and restoring a historic garden. She and her husband divide their time between North Carolina and Cortona, Italy.

ONDINE COHANE, a contributing editor at Condé Nast Traveler, writes regularly for the New York Times travel section, among many other publications. She has appeared on CNN and Good Morning America, and co-hosts Condé Nast Traveler's Insider Guide series on PBS. Cohane lives in the Renaissance town of Pienza in Southern Tuscany and owns two boutique hotels.

About Always Italy:
In these illuminating pages, Frances Mayes, the author of Under the Tuscan Sun and many other bestsellers, and New York Times travel writer Ondine Cohane reveal an Italy that only the locals know, filled with top destinations and unforgettable travel experiences in every region. From the colorful coastline of Cinque Terre and the quiet ports of the Aeolian Islands to the Renaissance architecture of Florence and the best pizza in Rome, every section features insider secrets and off-the-beaten-path recommendations (for example, a little restaurant in Piedmont known for its tajarin, a pasta that is the perfect bed for the region's celebrated truffles). Here are the best places to stay, eat, and tour, paired with the rich history of each city, hillside town, and unique terrain. Along the way, you'll make stops at the country's hidden gems--art galleries, local restaurants, little-known hiking trails, spas, and premier spots for R&R. Inspiring and utterly unique, this vivid treasury is a must-have for anyone who wants to experience the best of Italy.


Event date: 
Saturday, June 27, 2020 - 3:00pm
Event address: 
Frances Mayes Always Italy Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9781426220913
Availability: Backordered
Published: National Geographic - March 31st, 2020

Winner of the Lowell Thomas Travel Journalism Award.

The world's favorite expert on la dolce vita, Under the Tuscan Sun author Frances Mayes guides readers through Italy's iconic regions, in a book replete with lavish National Geographic images.

See You in the Piazza: New Places to Discover in Italy Cover Image
ISBN: 9780451497703
Availability: Order Processes in 1-5 Days Depending on Store Stock
Published: Crown - March 10th, 2020

The bestselling author of Under the Tuscan Sun discovers the hidden pleasures of Italy in a sumptuous travel narrative that crisscrosses the country, with inventive new recipes celebrating Italian cuisine.
Don’t miss Frances Mayes in PBS’s Dream of Italy: Tuscan Sun Special!

Women in Sunlight: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780451497673
Availability: Order Processes in 1-5 Days Depending on Store Stock
Published: Crown - March 5th, 2019

The story of four American strangers who bond in Italy and change their lives over the course of an exceptional year, from the bestselling author of Under the Tuscan Sun.
Don’t miss Frances Mayes in PBS’s Dream of Italy: Tuscan Sun Special!