Interview from Rome…Marie Louise Scio

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Marie Louise Scio- second from left
I’ d like to introduce you to  the stunning Marie Louise Scio, the creative director and daughter of the owner of Il Pelicano hotel. This is such a unique destination not only because of its beauty but because of the rich history, tradition, exclusivity and quirkiness  and thus its capacity to  set  a high standard in the hospitality industry. We talk about the history of the hotel, her design studio, her style,etc…

What is your role at the Pellicano Hotel?

I started of by giving it a “facelift” as I studied architecture, from that I got into changing the whole image of the place and working in all areas of the hotel…I would say I’m the creative director of both hotels, the other being la Posta Vecchia which is 30 mins from Rome.

The property has been in your family since 1979- tell us a bit more about the history of the hotel?

The hotel was a result of a love story between Michael and Patricia Graham. They bought the land from the Borghese family and decide to build their ideal hotel which was a home away from home. They personally ran everything, Patricia was the women of the house, she was the host the decorator, she was the one who oversaw everything. Michael was the charmer, the bar tender, the story teller. They had all their friends come and go including Charlie Chaplin, the Queen of Holland, Douglas Fairbanks and many others. They were quite selective of who came in the hotel and luckily enough my dad was one of the few Italians who was allowed to stay. A few years later when the Grahams decided to sell my father was so in love with the place and bought it.


You have a design studio- what are your favourite projects?

Doing up hotels are my favourite projects.  The greatest satisfaction was having clients who have been coming for 40 years, who generally don’t like changes in their “home” who approved of the changes  and tell me that even “changed” the hotel never lost the spirit of Il Pellicano.  Besides that I love all the apartments and design projects I’ve done. Out of the pieces I’ve designed- the stag head is probably my favourite and a lamp bird cage.

You have a 2 Michelin star restaurant in your hotel- what are your favourite recipes?

So many to choose from! My perfect menu would be verdure with mozzarella, crab filled ravioli with rhubarb sauce and the monk fish baked in red clay.

Tell us about the hotel book that was just published by Rizzoli? Jurgen Teller, John Swope and Aaron Slim photographs with texts by Bob Collacelo, Bronwyn Cosgrave and Roberto Scio…

It was a little dream come true, when I revamped the Il Pellicano I wanted to see what it was like back in the day. I called Slim  Aarons (US photographer for famous for photographing socialites, jet- setters and celebrities)  who was a family friend and asked him if I could see his Il Pellicano archive. He had sold all of it to Getty images so I went to London and found 30 years of pictures of the hotel so it came natural to think of making a book. I worked with Robert Violette who is an amazing  publisher and editor and developed the idea further, it became a trilogy with 3 great photographers of different times.

What is the best room to stay in? They are all great!

Any fun anecdotes from the hotel? So many, but you need to come here and I’ll tell you lots of fun stories as we sip a cocktail overlooking the sea!

Famous guests? Many but the Pellicano is really a place to come to have a quiet time and relax. Its not the place you come to be seen. That’s why famous people come and that’s why I can’t tell you who!

Do you have any other hotels?

Yes. La Posta Vecchia 30 mins from Rome. It’s a XV century villa build on the ruins of a Roman villa. It was owned by John Paul Getty, it was a museum, its another really special unique place.

Who are your favourite designers?

Phoebe Philo, Missoni, Alaia, Martin Margela, Isabel Marant and  Chinti and Parker

Fashion faux pas? …ummmm can’t think of a particular one right now

Describe your style? Really depends on the mood! I always look different but I would say quite classic with a twist.

Favourite pieces?

A pair of super simple Celine sandals and a Roland Mouret dress, a Kotur clutch. In winter a wonderful McQueen coat with tails.


Favourite stores?

Nuyorica in Rome, Relik, Cadognato in  Venice

Favourite restaurants, bars?

Xarcu restaurant in Ibiza, Omen in NY

Style icon?

Patty Smith & Daphne Guinness

Most cherished item?

My mothers 1970 Bulgari necklace.


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