The Locals

Version 2

Abbie | @abbiestark | Rome 

After a whirlwind semester abroad, Abbie fell in love with Rome and a native Roman along with it. She moved back in 2015 and got a crash course in the Italian language, food and culture by living with her fiancé’s family and traveling to various regions throughout the country. Through her role as the manager for a food tour company and the creator of her food and travel blog, Abbie has discovered the best local hot spots for grabbing caffè, the city’s best gelato, a mouthwatering Roman pizza or a traditional plate of pasta. She loves sharing her off-the-beaten-path tips for visitors to see the authentic side of Rome without the crowds or tourist traps and planning trips that strike the perfect balance between personal growth, entertainment and developing a deep appreciate for the Italian culture.


Tanya | @cusp_of_beauty_ | Rome 

Completely bilingual, Tanya was born in Canada but has lived most of her life in Italy. She spent her childhood between Mantova and Bologna, and after graduating with a BA in Art History from the University of Toronto, accomplished her dream of moving to Florence. She has been working in study-abroad and tourism for the past twenty years acting as a cultural bridge between North America and Italy. 


Mary | @verymarygray | Florence

Mary is a writer and journalist who caught the Italy bug during undergraduate studies in Florence. She taught English, studied Italian and had many misadventures in Rome before boomeranging back to Florence, where she has now been based for six years and counting. Before recently going freelance, she had a five-year run as the Events & Associate Editor at English language news magazine The Florentine and can recite the city calendar and venue addresses from memory. A co-author of the 2017 Time Out guidebook to Florence and a Middlebury M.A. graduate in Italian Studies, she loves exploring local literary history, is highly partial to the Oltrarno neighborhood, and is always suspicious of any trattoria whose waiters aren’t a little bit gruff.

Sally Headshot

Sally | @tuckedawaytravels | Florence

Sally was born and raised in North Carolina but has called Florence home since 2014, when she moved to Italy to finish her master’s research in Renaissance art history. She now works as a lecturer and private guide, sharing her passion for Italian history and culture with others. Sally also loves to travel and seeks to uncover the unique spirit of each new city that she visits. She hopes to give visitors to Florence the same opportunity to discover the city’s truly special character by sharing some of its better kept secrets while providing the kind of practical tips and advice that can help make a trip both enjoyable and rewarding. 


Michelle | Florence

With an appreciation for the good life (i.e., a love of art, good food and wine) Florence seemed a good place to land! Michelle was born and raised in California and came to Florence to finish her MA in art history of the Italian Renaissance with Syracuse University. She never left and has now been living in Florence for the last three and a half years. She works part time in the education department of the Museo del Duomo, at Stanford University’s study abroad campus, babysits and teaches English. Michelle has a passion for children and helping families with young children enjoy the city. She looks forward to sharing tips for having an enjoyable and memorable trip to Florence – whether it be alone, with friends, a significant other or family.


Kim | Tuscany

Kim told her parents after university that she was going to Italy for a month...three years later, they wondered when and if she was ever coming home!  This began her long time love affair with Italy that eventually brought her back to live permanently in Tuscany 15 years ago. She thrived helping to create eno-gastronomic start-up projects such as a Tuscan wine train, a wine school, and a university for gastronomic traditions.  She loves architecture and history, but what she really knows best is that behind that famous building, there is the really great gelato place that she wants to share with you!



Evelyn | @evoo_boh | Turin 

Evelyn came to study Archaeology and Art Management when she was 18 and never looked back.  After living in Rome for 5 years, Milan for 2 and a brief stop in Florence, she finally settled in Torino. A smaller city she fell in love with Torino's elegant streets, and the Piedmontese rustic edge found in the surrounding hills and mountains. She's grateful to wake up every day in a city famous for gianduja chocolate, the birth of espresso and rich Nebbiolo wines.