Yet as I take in the sumptuous surroundings, I’m struck by the sad irony that Bocelli will never be able to appreciate the visual splendour of his home.
“Yes, a beeg reeespect for sex.” There are several of us in this New York hotel room, but I appear to be the only one with a blush rising from their neck, and I soon realise that this is because I am the only one who is not from Italy. He is Italian, the most famous Italian after Silvio Berlusconi now I come to think about it – a section of the Adriatic coast is named after him – and, much like the Italian prime minister, Bocelli’s voice seems to make women’s clothes fall off, as witnessed the night before when he performed to a packed Central Park.
It was tipping with rain and so cold that the teeth of the pregnant woman sitting next to me started to chatter, and we had to fashion a blanket for her out of various cagoules, yet still she swooned as the Italian love god made his way through arias from La Traviata and La Bohème.
The world-renowned singer was speaking to Radio Times when asked what his guilty pleasures are, and gave a candid response."Anything that is sinful! "My biggest weakness has always been that I love women. "The classical superstar is singing at the Festival of Remembrance concert at the Royal Albert Hall this weekend and explained why the gig means a lot to him."It's important to remember people who have died in the service of their country," he explained."I’m a great patriot.
I could live without wine, without food - but not women."Told by his interviewer about jazz musician George Melly saying growing old and losing his libido was "like being unchained from a lunatic", Bocelli laughed: "Well, I like these chains very much! But deep down we all hope and wish that these conflicts will never happen again."The Festival of Remembrance takes place this Saturday and will also feature performances from Rod Stewart, Pixie Lott and Gregory Porter.
It’s amazing how many seemingly cool and hip people have a Bocelli ferreted away on their i Pod.
Anyway, as Celine Dion joined him on stage, I must confess that I, too, embraced the cheese.
Whether or not these ‘distractions’ led to the end of his marriage to Enrica, he doesn’t say.
According to my tape recorder, just six minutes and 52 seconds have elapsed since I met the tenor Andrea Bocelli and he has just announced that he “haf a beeg reeespect for sex.” A big respect for sex?
Chuck in a rendition of Time to Say Goodbye, finish with a rousing Nessun Dorma, and Manhattan felt as if it might just float away on a cloud of oestrogen.
Fast-forward to the next day, and Bocelli, 53, has just announced that he “haf a beeg reeespect for sex”. I’ve just asked him what he thinks about the likes of Lady Gaga and Rihanna in their uniforms of PVC and I wonder if we haven’t got something lost in translation; he speaks very little English, I know barely any Italian, and so someone must sit between us in an attempt to make sense of everything.
They spent the night together and Veronica never left.