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Cortina d’Ampezzo

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Dubbed the “Pearl of the Dolomites”, CORTINA D’AMPEZZO is well and truly part of the mountains of Trentino-Alto Adige, even though it officially belongs to the Veneto region next door. An upmarket ski resort – think an Italian St Moritz – Cortina boasts a gorgeous setting, surrounded by a great circle of mountains, and it’s had a starring role in many films, including The Pink Panther and For Your Eyes Only.

After hosting the Winter Olympics in 1956, Cortina swiftly became the resort to be seen in and in the 1960s you were just as likely to spot movie stars such as Brigitte Bardot and Sophia Loren sauntering down the Corso Italia as people in ski boots. Nowadays, the VIPs it attracts tend to be titans of Italian industry – the Agnellis, Benettons, Barillas and the president of Ferrari all frequent the resort – and the population swells from 7000 to around 40,000 during the ski season (roughly Christmas to Easter).

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