De Blasio welcomed by Marino
The New York mayor Bill De Blasio began his nine-day Italian holiday with a welcome from his Roman counterpart Ignazio Marino at the city hall on the evening of 20 July.
De Blasio, who has Italian heritage, is on a family vacation with his wife Chirlane McCray and their teenage children Dante and Chiara.
It was a case of mutual admiration between both mayors, who share a left-leaning reforming approach and a populist touch. De Blasio described Marino as "progressive" and "one of the great mayors of the world", even saying it was like finding “a new brother".
During their private meeting the mayors reportedly discussed inequality, waste disposal, immigration and cultural exchange. De Blasio underlined his support for Marino's plan to create the world's biggest archaeological park, and committed to helping source patrons to donate towards the project.
The family of New York's first citizen enjoyed a view of the Roman Forum from Marino's office before visiting the adjoining Capitoline Museums where Chiara told the Rome mayor "You're so cool."
The De Blasios leave Rome on the afternoon of 21 July, heading south to the popular island of Capri in the Gulf of Naples. The holiday continues with a visit to Grassano, in the southern Basilicata region – the home of De Blasio's maternal grandmother before she immigrated to the US in the early 1900s – as well as S. Agata de' Goti, near Naples, where the mayor's grandfather Giovanni De Blasio was born. The holiday ends in Venice.
Photo New York Post