Read More of My Italy Road Trip:
Up at 8am, we had some breakfast at the hotel prior to our 9am meeting. Well, at least we looked at it…
The food was horrible at the Palace Hotel: the eggs powdered, the bread stale, and even the coffee weak and without flavor. Such a waste: I should have found a café and just had a Nutella croissant, cappuccino, and orange juice: the breakfast of champions in Italy. Air China uses the Palace Hotel as a crew hotel and we shared the dining room with about 20 fully-uniformed FAs preparing to return to Beijing.
Our morning meeting stretched over five hours and included a great lunch at a local restaurant. Sorry, no pictures, but I had prosciutto and risotto.
Our next meeting was in Brescia, on the other side of Milan on the way to Venice. It took about 90 minutes to reach it, the meeting took an hour, then we faced what became our usual choice: drive to the next meeting or rest.
We decided to do both. We found a local bar called Meet with wifi and set up shop. Originally, I just ordered a glass of water and my colleague a Coke, but when I saw the beautiful appetizers served to tables around us, I ordered an Aeperol Spritz. The appetizers included carrots dipped in balsamic vinegar, pizza, mozzarella balls, and prosciutto. So delicious.
Refreshed and caught up on email, we headed back the same we came: our meeting the following morning was in the Lake Maggiore area.
Checking online, I saw there was a mobile home park on Lake Maggiore (which, for lack of a better phrase, is a poor step brother of Lake Como about 60km west). It actally looked nice and was far more spacious than a hotel room or pair of hotel rooms. Hotels.com showed plenty of space avialble. Arriving, however, the Russain owner was not interested in renting to us.
ME: Do you have rooms available?
ME: Can we rent one?
ME: Why not?
ME: As in full?
We found dinner at a steakhouse in town that looked like a Texas Roadhouse Grill in the USA. I ordered a plate of pasta to begin, followed by beef tenderloin covered in pistachios, cheese, and artichoke. It was great. And we were exhausted.
Next to the restaurant was a dive hotel called Hotel Le Palme and not wanting to search further, we just stopped there. A man from Ghana with a booming baritone voice simply took our passports and gave us room keys.
My room had two beds…unnecessary, but I soon passed out.