January 04 2010
One must dismiss the Roman claim that, art apart, the best reason to visit Naples is to be measured for a necktie. On the other hand, the ties tailored – I use the word advisedly – at E Marinella are something special. For 95 years Maurizio, his father and grandfather before him have been measuring up clients, cutting and lining bespoke ties, cravats and kerchiefs in a cramped little shop overlooking the Bay of Naples.
Maurizio knows more about knots than the Chief Scout (the Camorra wrapover apparently has little to recommend it beyond making garrotting difficult). I could pass a cheerful hour poring over silks unique to the casa, especially the discreet patterns favoured by King Juan Carlos, and the late Mark Birley, who wore no other. For moments of impatience I have discovered that the hotel store at London’s Dorchester offers a handful of Marinella styles, hand-cut but strictly prêt-a-porter, at £120 each.