Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Jean Govoni Salvadore and her Dolce Vita

Yesterday was a typical Monday. I was drowning in emails, drowning in laundry, and drowning in stress. But you know what? I'm going to stop complaining about things like that. Why? Well, because Jean Govoni Salvadore would never whine and moan. She would stay positive and upbeat despite the laundry and emails.

Salvadore is the author of
My Dolce Vita: A Memoir, a recently published book that chronicles Salvadore's career first as the Rome based public relations person for TWA and later as the PR doyenne for Villa d'Este in Lake Como. I recently read the book, and while I was intrigued by her impressive career, I was even more taken with her positive attitude. Salvadore is a woman who seems to roll with the punches and who appreciates all that she has been given and all that she has accomplished. Isn't that refreshing in a world in which mean spiritedness seems to run rampant?

Of course, being enthusiastic about one's career is made a little easier when one has encountered interesting and notable people throughout the years. As one of the early female public relations executives, Salvadore charmed her guests with her sunny demeanor. During her years with TWA, Salvadore greeted such luminaries as Richard Burton, Nehru, Hedda Hopper, and Audrey Hepburn when each visited Rome. And later, as the "ambassador" of Villa d'Este, she went on to meet the likes of Billy Joel, Robert Mitchum, and Barbra Streisand as well as to promote the resort in the far corners of the world. What a fascinating woman! What is even more impressive is that she became lifelong friends with many who she met during her career. One of those friends is Pamela Fiori who wrote the foreword to the book.

So why am I writing about a book that isn't design related? I think it's because I believe that we all need a pick-me-up every now and then, and this book is just that. It's breezy, engaging, and fun. It's the perfect antidote to all of the heaviness we see on the news. And quite frankly, it's nice to see someone who, despite an enviable career, has remained down to earth and, from what I can tell, nice too.

Salvadore, at right, greeting a young Shirley MacLaine. Both are attired in Chanel suits.

Salvadore with Richard Burton.

Salvadore's house on the Villa d'Este property was once a greenhouse, seen here in an old photo.

The author with Pamela Fiori and Colt Givner.

All images from My Dolce Vita: A Memoir by Jean Govoni Salvadore; Glitterati publishers.


  1. Thank you for the refreshing post this morning. I can't wait to get this book!

  2. Yes, we seem to be surrounded by over-active egos. Simplicity of spirit does seem to be the key to happiness and it seems as if Jean Salvadore is one of these special people that has maintained her balance. Great review.

  3. Sounds like my kind of book!! Not to mention, who wouldn't want to read about the glory days of such iconic brands?! It's like Liz Lange said when I interviewed her for Behind the Q, she thinks one of the most important qualities to have in order to be a successful entrepreneur is a positive outlook!! And it's certainly one of the most appealing!

  4. Jennifer Dengel10:53 AM

    Jennifer, you have given me the perfect excuse to turn off the vacuum, forget about the laundry and head to my nearest bookstore and pick up a copy of this book. Reality will just have to wait a little while longer!

  5. I hope that you all enjoy her book. The author's positive attitude is infectious!

  6. Love this post! We all need to slow down and enjoy the sweet life, don't we? DC from http://dianecarnevale.blogspot.com

  7. Your blog piqued (peaked?) my interest. Ms. Salvadore sounds like a person too interesting to miss knowing more about. Thanks for the must-read recommendation.

  8. Rissi Cherie- She comes across as a very charming person! Hope that you agree!