June 27, 2007 / 3:19 PM / 10 years ago

Italian women get privacy on new "No Men" beach

RICCIONE, Italy (Reuters Life!) - Italian women, tired of unwanted advances and stares while sunbathing on the beach, now have their own exclusive stretch of sand on the Adriatic coast, complete with a sign saying “No Men”.

<p>Patrons of a beach, exclusively for women, pose with a sign indicating to bar men from visiting it in the Italian Adriatic resort town of Riccione June 27, 2007. Owners of a seaside complex in Riccione on Italy's Adriatic coast have come up with the perfect solution for women tired of those famous Italian amorous stares - a stretch of sand where men are banned. REUTERS/Daniele La Monaca</p>

The town of Riccione has opened a beach concession -- known in Italian as a “stabilimento”, which rents out sun loungers and umbrellas and charges for beach access -- where not only men, but also children, are made unwelcome.

“They are not really banned, but they are not welcome here because women have to do their own thing: gossip, talk about women’s things like make-up,” Fausto Ravaglia, the male owner of the concession, told Reuters.

He spends a lot of time rowing in his rescue boat just off the beach to avoid intruding himself.

<p>(L-R) Francesca Vanni, Alessandra Spacagna and Roberta Butturini, patrons of a beach, exclusively for women, sunbathe in the Italian Adriatic resort town of Riccione June 27, 2007. Owners of a seaside complex in Riccione on Italy's Adriatic coast have come up with the perfect solution for women tired of those famous Italian amorous stares - a stretch of sand where men are banned. REUTERS/Daniele La Monaca</p>

With some men looking on from outside the perimeter, women customers do aerobics, sports and put sun cream on each other.

“For many women who want to sunbathe topless, for instance, it’s a great plus not to have men around, because often men won’t go away and stare insistently”, said Italian beachgoer Giulia Martini.

But the men were not impressed.

“I think this is very stupid. Men and women should always be mixed. Otherwise, what are we on this planet for?” said Italian beachgoer Franco Stroppiani.

Dogs are not included in the ban and Valeria Mignucci said her small white dog was “the only male on the beach”.

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