Our Story - Ortensia blu“Attenzione, Attenzione!” (“watch out, watch out”) shouted the porter racing with our luggage on his cart through the alleys of Venice from the vaporetto to our tiny hotel. As we scurried behind him, racing to keep up as he dodged in and out of strolling tourists I fell in love….that very minute was all it took. The melodic sound of beautifully spoken Italian, the smells and fragrances of the trattorias and ristorante and the charming shops filled with beautiful masks, brilliantly colored glassware and elegantly marbled papers were absorbed by all five of my senses. And the sixth one sighed “aahhh!”.  And if my very first trip to Italy to one of the top tourist destinations of the world did this to me, just think of what seeing more of it did.

Working for a German/Italian import company, I was extremely fortunate to have the opportunity to travel to Italy and to get to know kind and wonderful people. And then travelled more with my family…and then some more with friends...and kept returning. And with each visit, I brought back items I fell in love with – extra virgin olive oil, wine, pestos and beautifully hand painted dishes. A chandelier from Murano-why not? Tiles from Positano for the kitchen backsplash-of course! And every single item was from a family business – and every family has an interesting story. Knowing I’m not the only one with this love affair with Italy, I started Ortensia Blu to easily bring to you the enticing food and magnificent home items produced by families for generations who are all masters of their craft.

So...what is "Ortensia Blu"?

It means blue hydrangea, and with its soothing color of the sky, which calms my very soul, it is my all time favorite flower.  With their shades of blue hues, these magnificent Ortensie Blu (plural in Italian) lavishly grace my garden and Mother Nature and her spirit amaze me. Simple things, uncomplicated just like what I love about Italy.