The Story

Back in 1957 a young Apulian who was passionate about boating, nature and the sea, sailing with his boat discovered a bay called on the cards Baia dei Mergoli. An uncontaminated place reachable only by sea and with ancient paths in the woods.

Love at first sight!

The young sailor decides to build a house there for himself and his family but soon realizes that such a place deserves the attention of nature tourism and dreams of building a hotel.

After years of complex work due to the steep and rocky terrain, rises the Hotel Baia delle Zagare named after the fragrant citrus flowers in the park.

More than 50 years have passed and the Hotel Baia delle Zagare still retains its “charm”.

History through a photo

A 1970’s photograph by maestro Franco Fontana exhibited inside the hotel tells a story…

It represents my way of understanding photography. In fact, I believe that photography should not document reality, but interpret it. We all have reality around us, but it is the person who takes the photo who decides what he wants to express. Reality is a bit like a block of marble. You can take out an ashtray or Michelangelo’s Pietà.

Franco Fontana

“Thanks to her I became famous all over the world. It was the French who appreciated her philosophy. In 1978 – by then I had decided to bet on myself, I had given up furniture and started to photograph full time – I did an exhibition in Paris, where Baia delle Zagare was also present.

They called me from the Ministry of Culture to tell me that, according to them, that image perfectly expressed the spirit of their country and that they wanted to use it in a poster to spread “French thought”. I was happy about that and then I discovered this poster had arrived in all the embassies and in the most remote cultural centers in Asia and Africa”..

The historical tale of photographs

Here is our gallery of images that tell the story of the Baia delle Zagare Hotel.