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Interviews

I like you just the way you are

June 2022 - Number 22
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I like you just the way you are

Federica Panicucci and Forte dei Marmi: a long and passionate idyll in the name of the sun, the sea and relaxation. “The real strength of this town is that it never changes”, she says

Interview by Marta Nicolazzo

Forte is always Forte, say the regulars, breathing a breath of fresh air on a bicycle among towering maritime pines and bougainvillaea cascades. A ride to the pier, where the elderly local fishermen make the atmosphere colorful. The view that opens out onto the vastness of the sea... Among the common sentiment expressed by aficionados, there is also that of Federica Panicucci who feels at home in Versilia. A Tuscan transplanted in Milan from an early age, the blonde TV presenter has a strong bond with her birthplace: from the summers spent with her grandmother Chiarina in Cecina to those in Versilia with friends. Since she was a young girl Federica has lived Forte like a local and appreciates the dual spirit of the Versilian town, perfect for both young people looking for fun and for families.

“After crossing the Cisa Pass I am reborn”, Federica says. “Forte dei Marmi is my favorite place. Here I feel safe, pampered, welcomed”. A town where you can create a familiar and intimate relationship with people within an authentic context. “The beauty of Forte is that it doesn’t change, it remains true to itself. Those who return year after year find what they had left behind and this is its strength. I think it should stay like this, with its traditions, historical places, strengths and weaknesses. Those who love Forte dei Marmi don’t want it to change”.

And, in addition to wanting to preserve it in its entirety, loving this small town means appreciating it all year round; even in winter, when the sea “is rough” (as the locals say) and the beach appears in its truest, wildest guise, devoid of beach umbrellas and gazebos, and walking along the water’s edge proves to be a regenerating practice. Then, there are some “rituals” that Federica suggests to thoroughly enjoy the holidays: staying on the beach until late in the evening sipping an aperitif at sunset, a stroll around the renowned boutiques in the center of town, using the inescapable bicycle to forget about your car and the chaos of the city.

If she were a season, Federica Panicucci would be the summer: sunny, smiling, optimistic. Just like Ondina, the female soul of the Carnival of Viareggio. It is not by chance that this year Federica received the Ondina d’Oro, an award intended for extraordinary women from the world of entertainment, music, culture, business, sport, art, science or the media. Before her, exceptional artists such as Carla Fracci and Gina Lollobrigida have received it. And Federica, with good reason, is proudly honored and delighted.