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The great escape

Sex, death and aristocracy on a private Italian island

The Italian island of Zannone is famed for more something rather spicier than just its stunning landscape, says Silvia Marchetti in CNN: orgies. In the 1960s, the Marquis Casati Stampa and his wife, former actress Anna Fallarino (pictured), rented the island to host “lavish sex parties”. Dozens of yachts would ferry aristocrats and billionaires to the erotic isle, where the Marquis would watch and photograph his starlet wife with her handsome young lovers.

The X-rated exploits took place in a colonial villa fitted with a “hidden mirror room”, so voyeurs could “spy on heavy sex sessions”. But in 1970, “the erotic games ended in bloodshed”: Anna fell in love with one of her lovers, and in a jealous rage, the Marquis killed the pair and then himself. It was only afterwards that Italian tabloids discovered his secret “green velvet diary” detailing the antics on the island, along with 1,500 lewd photos.