Pretty Puglia may sit on the heel of Italy, but she is anything but a place to simply wipe your feet on. An evocative destination carved from bleached rock, heavy ornate architecture and with a regal sense of flair that no doubt comes from the historical wealth of cultures and kings. The charmed towns and villages of Puglia provide sensory relief from the flocking crowds of the south without losing its sense of Italian stateliness.

It’s no wonder then, that the Azimut Benetti Group picked this tangled wine and olive drenched spot to host its eleventh yachting gala. We can’t think of a better destination than the spot the National Geographic declared one of the most beautiful in the world, for hosting an array of glitzy yacht owners who perfect their pleasure in the art of fine dining, wining and splurging on artisan goods.

Kickstarting the event, cocktails in the grandiose halls of the Castello Carlo V accompanied by a private Joan Miro exhibition set the tone for a weekend of cultural wonders. Over on the shimmering waters of Monopoli, the company hosted a parade of some of their finest fleet, including the beautiful new Azimut S6 which is preparing to make her debut come September at Cannes.

The vibe around the bay captured the art of celebration with everything from seabob races to pop up casinos offering well-heeled visitors the chance to try their hand at black jack. Italian designers also flocked to the Azimut Benetti village to showcase their finest wares. Tantalizing tailors and buttery soft leather shoemakers hosted exhibitions for would be spenders.

The gala dinner that took place on Saturday was no doubt the highlight of the weekend for culinary connoisseurs.  The maze-like alleyways of Borgo Egnazia, the evocative local dishes, and the enchanting folk song performances that echoed through the main piazza offered an unrivalled atmosphere for all.

Of course, Azimut Benetti believe in going out with a bang. To see the late night revelers through from dusk until dawn, an impressive pyrotechnic show and international DJ superstar spinning the decks added a whole new depth to the daring weekend.