Ask anyone to name an Italian island and the usual triumvirate of Sicily -Sardegna -Capri is first to roll of the lips. Glamorous and magical as they are, Italians know that true beauty is wild, and but lately, the island of Ischia has been elbowings its way to the top five list thanks to a concerted effort from a united group of Ischitani entrepreneurs whose dream campaign Ischia is More is grounded on the amazing reality of the vibrant isola verde.
Isola Verde, Legend and Myth
Let’s start from the beginning. Ischia is more than just a beautiful and rustic island – it’s a community of 60,000 ischitani (local residents) proud of its millennia-spanning culture. Located a few miles off the coast from Napoli, Ischia is a contradiction – a legendary wellness destination a little rough around the edges with a fiery origin story. According to myth, Zeus forced the battle-worn titan Tifeo to rest in the Tyrrhenian, covering his cousin with enough rocks just too heavy to remove but not heavy enough to prevent Tifeo’s anger from bursting through the flora in fumaroles and thermal springs. Fast forward to the 20th century, Ischia became the Wellness Weekend for Italians looking for a natural reboot. Unlike its neighbor Capri, Ischia preferred to stay wild to charm and nature, instead of pedicured and posh.
Ischia is More
“Ischia holds an incredible amount of culture and richness in its tiny area of 18 square mile area,” says Michele Sambaldi, Ischia Is More president and director Managing Director of Pellicano Hotels. “With Ischia, it’s a matter of beauty and love.”
It is easy to love Ischia. Since antiquity, the island has shared her wild beauty as well as healing waters, wellness spas and natural thermal pools. But the Isola Verde wants to fight back from its reputation as summer destination and weekend retreat by showcasing the gorgeous green island as what it truly is – a vibrant and year-long experience of mountain trails, vineyards, archeological sites, and charming villages that combine to create a community.
Teaming together nine innovative entrepreneurs in hospitality, wellness, transport, and retail brands in Ischia and including Mezzatorre Hotel, San Montano Resort & Spa, Albergo della Regina Isabella, Leohotels, Giardino Eden, Fonte delle Ninfe Nitrodi, Imperatore Travel, Judith Ischia and Scaglione Group, Ischia is More is both business network and long-term strategy with the singular purpose of synergizing online and offline activity and communication to Ischia both in image and investment. Let’s call it a 21st Ischia Renaissance with the overall objective of fostering a green destination of quality sustainable year-round tourism that incorporates all elements and activities of Ischitano lifestyle including wellness, culture, gastronomy and history by showcasing local stories of fishermen and farmers, intellectuals and artists,all the men and women who have contributed to the success of Ischia. These entrepreneurs have officially solidified their commitment to Ischia and to initiatives and projects that promote the island and the beauty of this all year-round destination.
Ischia Is More ismore than a catchphrase. A quick trip to the island, and you can’t help but see that Ischia has every facet of Italian culture that you love. Ancient history and contemporary life, fabulous food and great wine, local artisans and traditions, and a natural landscape exclusive to exploration and exercise, coagulated together by Ischitani, local full-time residents who continue the traditions along with the innovations. And it’s these vast offerings that inspired Ischia is More, a campaign focused on sustainable tourism with the aim of transforming Ischia from summer vacation to year-long destination.
Ischia Above All
Ischia is more than wild – it is adventurous as seen through the nature hikes around Mont Epomeo, its insane fumaroles and craters. Ischia is more than rustic, it’s an edible journey demonstrated by its local cuisine of hearty mountain dishes which often revolve around fumarole-smoked recipes and feature wild rabbit. Ischia is more than cultural – it is all year long with annual festivals including July’s Ischia Film Festival, heritage traditions, and Michelin starred chefs. And Ischia is artisanal, with a strong community of local artisans. Everything about Ischia is ISSIMO (check out our guide!), from its verdissimo colour and gorgeous curves that hint at the sleeping Tifone, to its volcanic personality and super healing powers.
“We are honored to support the promotion of the green Island,” Sambaldi tells. “It’s a long term project and we believe that together, we can push the destination with the same overall idea: Ischia, above all.”
Ischia and You
Have you been to Ischia or dreaming to visit? First and foremost, follow @IschiaisMore for full immersion in contemporary Ischitano lifestyle. IschiaIsMore brings you front row to Ischia’s artisans, boutiques, hotels, restaurants, festivals, traditions, experiences and people. When you’ve had your fill, find your favourite Ischia moments or just search out some Ischia inspiration and share them on Instagram tagging #ischiaismore and @Ischiaismore. By bringing the island to your Instagram (and elsewhere), you’re helping to solidify Ischia as more than a destination..