Genoa & Pesto at Zeffirio's
Discover the scenic beauty and enticing flavours of Genoa during this Silver Shore Collection sightseeing tour of the city, and a memorable pesto-making demonstration and lunch at the renowned Zeffirino restaurant.
After tendering ashore, meet your guide and walk to the motor launch, then embark your boat for a coastal cruise to Santa Margherita. Upon arrival, board a bus for the approximate one-hour drive to Genoa.
Although Genoa is renowned as Italy's main commercial port, it also offers plenty of tourist attractions. Hilly Genoa is actually comprised of two cities. The steep, narrow lanes, Baroque-style churches and vacant lots of the old working port stand in stark contrast to the handsome bustling city filled with avenues, arcades, palaces, theatres and cafés spread out into the nearby hills.
Genoa City Tour
Upon arrival in Genoa, depart the pier for a panoramic sightseeing drive through downtown Genoa. Along the way, see the old and new sections that combine to create one of Italy's larger cities. A photo stop is then made at Castelletto Hill for spectacular views over Genoa.
Next, proceed to the Zeffirino restaurant. Family-owned since 1939 with its nondescript decor, candelabras, quaint genre paintings and waiters in dark suits who expertly-arrange each serving at the table, Zeffirino's lives up to its advance hype for providing definitive Mediterranean seafood and its world-famous pesto. Despite the flimsy chairs and bright lighting, the food is here is terrific.
This famous eatery has gained universal recognition. Guests of this upscale Genoese establishment, known as the 'Ambassador of Italian Cuisine', include opera singer Luciano Pavarotti, boxer Muhammad Ali, entertainers Liza Minelli, actors Sophia Loren, Roger Moore, Vitorio Gassman, Charles Aznavour, the late Frank Sinatra, and many international celebrities. Zeffirino's owner, Gian Paolo Belloni, has personally presented Pope John Paul II with his pesto, which he was delighted to accept. In 1999, to honour his father and the original family restaurant, Gian brought the Zeffirino restaurant to the Venetian Resort Hotel and Casino.
During your visit, Zeffirino's chef shows you the secrets to making authentic pesto sauce; a beautifully-light olive oil infused with basil. Here, the pesto is made from the infant leaves of Genovese basil that impart a minty sparkle rather than the rather strident, licorice-like tendencies of 'mature' basil. The pesto demonstration is followed by a lunch consisting of pesto, fresh fish and a delicate dessert. After lunch, re-board the bus to the motor launch then embark your boat for the return cruise to Santa Margherita.
Upon arrival, some free time is made available for you to explore the famous summer resort of Santa Margherita Ligure. Palm fronds wave along the esplanade of this wonderful, old-fashioned resort, a favourite destination for foreign visitors enticed by the balmy climate, picturesque views and comfortable, long-established hotels.
Following your visit, embark your boat for the cruise back to Portofino, then tender back to the ship.
Please note: This Silver Shore Collection tour requires a moderate amount of walking, with a steep, narrow ramp that must be negotiated to enter and exit the motor launch. Therefore, this tour is not recommended for guests who utilise a wheelchair; however, it is suitable for those guests with limited mobility. There is a flight of steps to access the first floor of the restaurant, but a lift is available. Operation of this tour is dependent upon sea and weather conditions. The time spent at certain venues may be extended or reduced, and other brief stops may be added.