This article examines the transformations of tourist places due to the changes occurred in elite tourism during the second half of the 19th century. It focuses on Liguria, the well-known Italian Riviera, which, during the 19th century, emerged as a leading tourist region in Europe. In particular it sheds light on the construction of the image of fashionable resorts, by examining the role played by three factors: places for social relations (grand hotels, kursaals, etc.), entertainments and social events (such as Carnival), and specialized magazines aimed at tourists, the so called journal mondain. It analyses how these elements interact with each other and argues that all of them were crucial in determining the success of the most important Ligurian resorts on the international tourist market.
Keywords: Elite tourism, Italian Riviera, Grand hotels, Kursaals, Carnival, Tourist magazines, Nineteenth century