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Beach-life in Forte dei Marmi

  • Beach-life in Forte dei Marmi

    Tuscan beaches deliver both romance on the rocks and the regimented lines of beach umbrellas that most Italians confuse with beach-break heaven. In Forte dei Marmi, Versilia boasts the best-known beach resort for the chic set while Viareggio remains the most popular big beach resort in Tuscany. The region is judged to have a superbly clean coastline, second only to Liguria’s, and scores highly for cleanliness of the water, safety, quietness, eco-friendliness and sustainability. Known as `the blue flags’ system, it is considered trustworthy and confirms the wisdom of opting for a beach holiday in Tuscany. In Versilia, the current resorts awarded the best `blue flags’ are fashionable Forte dei Marmi and bustling Viareggio. Neighbouring resorts of Marina di Pisa, Massa and Carrara have all confirmed their blue flag beach status.

    Beach-lounging is big business in Forte dei Marmi. Framed by the Apuan Alps, the resort is made for swimming and strolling and there’s even a stretch of dunes. Patches of beach are freely accessible, while the remainder is made up of smart bathing huts and tropical-style bars, perched on the fine pale-grey sand. The gently sloping shore means bathing is safe. Italian-resort-style, the sea is mostly reached by paying an entrance fee.  Expect to lie on a sunbed among rows of others, on sand carefully raked and flattened for your added comfort. There are benefits to this classic Italian approach to beach holidays. Even if you pay for access, in return you get facilities such as sun-loungers, showers, beach cabins and probably a bar or a restaurant. Beach games may well come with the territory and are even more entertaining to watch than to play. And, as described, the water is still very clean, despite the crowds.

    For the smart set, summer in Forte dei Marmi is highly ritualistic, with general agreement about which beach, beach club and cocktail bar is the most fashionable spot. Not that you have to follow the crowd. Fashion-conscious visitors favour busy beaches where the latest Prada shades can best be appreciated. One of Versilia’s most fashionable nightspots is Flavio Briatore’s Twiga Beach Club, on the coast between Forte dei Marmi and Marina di Pietrasanta. Here, passing celebrities down cocktails on the beach before dancing the night away in this chic club. You can book a massage, dine on seafood or down Champagne. With hip DJs, the club is international rather than Italian but it delivers what is expected. Beach Club del Principe Forte dei Marmi is another beach club, with the equally exorbitant Ristorante Dalmazia serving such delights as stir-fried shrimps, baked seabass, grilled rock-octopus, or Jerusalem artichokes with black truffles – all on the Principe’s private beach, of course. Bagno Angelo (on via Arenile, T: + 39 0584 82050) is a more affordable beach establishment. If you don’t want to pay the inflated prices of Forte dei Marmi, simply head to Viareggio, further down the coast. While there, sip reviving drinks in the historic Gran Caffe Margherita on the seafront.

    Address: Twiga Beach Club, via Roma 2, Lungomare, 55042 Forte dei Marmi
    Tel: +39 0584 21518 &

    Beach Club del Principe Forte dei Marmi, Hotel Principe, Viale Morin 67, 55042 Forte dei Marmi
    Tel: +39 0584 784145 &

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