During the second half of the nineteenth century, crowned heads, musicians and writers from all over Europe could be met in Sanremo. The merit must be given to Countess Adele Roverizio Roccasterone who brought here the Empress of Russia and her considerable following, including the writer Aleksej Tolstoy who remembers his time in Riviera in some letters. The Empress Maria Alexandrovna, wife of Tsar Alexander II, fell in love with this town during her stay to the point that in 1874 she wanted to donate to the city a large sum of money to adorn the seafront promenade with numerous palm trees. Since then the community decided to remember the Empress’s magnanimous gesture by naming the avenue, Corso Imperatrice, and which in time became one of the most representative places of the city.

A visit to Sanremo cannot be complete without a walk along Corso Imperatrice, strikingly framed by the majestic parade of palm trees, from which you can enjoy a wonderful view over the beaches. On the uphill side we find the Marsaglia Park, with its botanical rarities, and the prestigious villas, now hotels, a meeting point for European aristocracy in the early ‘900. At the furthest western point, the walk presents a small garden with two famous sculptures: the statue of “Spring” which is now the symbol of the city, made by the sculptor Vincenzo Pasquali, and the monument to Giuseppe Garibaldi inaugurated in 1908 who is represented gazing at sea.

[Ilaria Grigoletto]

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