Genova, Italy
Federico, 41
Head of Policy & Campaigner at NGO
see his Genova city guide

What do you do and why do you do it?

Actually I'm Head of Policy and campaigner at an Italian NGO focused on transparency and anticorruption. It's the kind of job where I can mix my different passions: politics, analysis, activism. Before turning into a not for profit professional, I worked as researcher in Turin and Naples, always dealing with political sciences and history. At some point, I realised I wanted to care more about my country's troubled life. This is why I really like what I do.

You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?

I don't remember my heart ever broke. Nevertheless, when I was a romantic guy, I loved Bjork songs and the memory of her concert in Amsterdam a long time ago still makes my heart beat

What are the best TV shows of all time?

When I was a child, I loved watching Miami Vice with my mam. My intellectual side would vote for Heimat while my pop side would chose Twin Peaks, Mad Men and, of course, House of Cards.

Name some spots in Genova that are good for a Tinder date.

Boccadasse for sea lovers; Spianata Castelletto for city view lovers; the so called barge island, at the end of the Aquarium Pier, for a floating date.

Who’s your hero and where in Genova would you take them out for a serious hang?

As Bertolt Brecht's Galileo said, Unhappy is the land that needs a hero!

Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?

For me, it's so rare to buy clothes in Genoa! I like Japanese brands like Uniqlo and Muji but they have no local shops; when I'm abroad, I look for Cos and J. Crew, but unfortunately you won't find any of these here in Genoa. When I'm at home, I often find something interesting at Aspesi, Ghiglino, Fabriek, Ghiglione and Glad Store

What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?

At the football stadium: I don't understand why Italians love watching football so much!

What’s the thing you LOVE to do in your city that you never get to do?

A relaxing breakfast sitting outside one of my favorite bars on Saturday morning

What’s the most decadent / extreme dish you ever ate in Genova and where did you get it?

Fried tripe at Il Genovese

Is there a hidden bar / hole in the wall in Genova that you particularly like?

I would definitely recommend Cantine Matteotti: hidden in a tiny vicolo under a dark arch

What’s the most expensive restaurant / spa / hotel you’ve ever been to in Genova? How much did it cost and what did you get there?

I usually avoid expensive restaurants and I prefer my comfortable bed

Where can you get the best cocktail in Genova? Which one do you like?

Any cocktail at Les Rouges: the three redhead brothers owning this venue love to create new recipes

Where would you take your partner in Genova if you wanted to really pamper them?

Tasting (expensive) candies at Romanengo, a local icon founded at the end of the 18th century

Which snacks can you only get in your country, and which ones do you recommend?

There is only one choice in Genova: focaccia! Try all versions: with onions, with green olives, with sage...

What’s the one place you think is overrated in Genova?

Corso Italia, the local promenade. Genoese love to walk, have a swim and jog there but beaches have no free access and the quality of restaurants is low.

What’s the one place you think is underrated in Genova?

Sampierdarena, once an independent and rich city, now mainly a working class and migrants district; with its diverse architecture such as ancient ruined mansions, beautiful Belle Epoque buildings, abandoned warehouses and the proximity of the harbor has a lot of unexpressed potential

What are the Genova spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

A first time visitor shouldn't miss the opportunity to get lost in the labyrinth of the old city discovering randomly churches, medieval buildings, tiny squares and streets.

Tomorrow’s your last day in Genova. How do you spend it?

No doubts: I would fill my belly up with tons of fried fish and calamari cooked at Friggitoria Carrega

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

Berlin, because it's relaxing, green, young, efficient, inspiring, cheap

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Giulio Paletta