Meet the Characters

Benvenuto! Meet some of the staff and guests at Hotel Portofino, "A Very English Hotel on the Italian Riviera," and your perfect summer escape!
Published on June 16, 2022 by Megan Hearst

Welcome to Hotel Portofino, "A Very English Hotel on the Italian Riviera." Let's get you oriented!

Lucian Where to Start

Before you dive into life at Portofino, allow us to introduce some the characters staying at the hotel.

Bella Ainsworth

Bella Yes

First, our fearless leader, Bella Ainsworth, owner of the Hotel Portofino, host extraordinaire, and family matriarch.

Stop Worrying

This hotel is Bella's dream, and she works hard to make sure her guests have the best experience possible.

Bella Smiling

This isn't always easy considering how much drama her guests and her family can bring.

Immortality Love

But in spite of all the stress, Bella remains a romantic at heart, a trait which can get her into trouble.

Cecil Ainsworth

Its Me

Next up is Cecil Ainsworth, Bella's husband. A perfect English gentleman (in public at least).

Cecil Of Course

Cecil loves the good life, something which can lead him into shady dealings with dangerous people.

If You Say So

This, naturally, creates conflict between him and the rest of his family, particularly his wife Bella, and son, Lucian.

Lucian Ainsworth

Lucian Of Course

Cecil wants Lucian to marry Rose Drummond-Ward, a young woman with enough money to make all his dreams come true.

Lucian No

Lucian dreams of a different life, one where he can pursue his passion for painting and a love of his choosing.

Lucian Shaking Head

On top of that, he's still dealing with physical and mental scarring from WWI, something he tries to hide from the family.

Alice Ainsworth

Alice Letter

Meanwhile Lucian's sister, Alice, is seeking a fresh start in Portofino after being widowed.

Bloody Fool

Alice wants a better life for her and her daughter, but life with her family is proving more chaotic than expected.

Betty Scanlon


Luckily the family has a lot of help, including Betty, a top rate English cook who's worked for the Ainsworths for years.

Billy Scanlon

Nothing To Do With Me

Billy, her well-meaning, hardworking, but sometimes hot-headed son.



Paola, an independent-minded Italian maid, who knows way more than she's letting on.

Constance March

What Constance

And Constance, the new nanny, who's still finding her way in the world.

Lady Latchmere

Do I Know These People

Now that we've met the staff, let's meet some of our guests. Starting with our guest of honor, Lady Latchmere.


Lady Latchmere is an old-fashioned grande dame with strong opinions and a flair for the dramatic (as you can see).

Dont Look Surprised

She's visiting Portofino with her niece and has high expectations for her accommodations.

Julia Drummond-Ward

Side Eye Julia

Another guest with high expectations is Julia Drummond-Ward, a wealthy guest looking for a suitor for her daughter, Rose.


Julia does not approve of the Ainsworths' bohemian ways, but is drawn to Cecil because of their long history.

Rose Drummond-Ward

Youll Have to Do

Her shy daughter, Rose, is constantly under pressure from her judgmental mother.

Rose Please People

But Rose's time in Portofino gives her the chance to spread her wings, and perhaps find love along the way.

Anish Sengupta

Is It Obvious

Another friend of the family is Dr. Anish "Nish" Sengupta, Lucian's dear friend from their days in the service.

Thank You

Nish provides the family with much needed moral support as they struggle with their traumatic pasts.

Claudine Pascal

Claudine Sunglasses

Now let's meet our American guests. Among them is Claudine Pascal, world-class performer and true fashion icon.

Book on Love

Claudine is seeking a home abroad after tiring of the racial oppression back in the US.

Jack Turner


She's accompanied by Jack Turner, a bombastic art-dealer who's at the hotel for business and pleasure.

Hell No

The pair's large personalities and taboo-breaking relationship are causing quite the stir among the buttoned-up clientele.

This Is Ridiculous

These characters are just the beginning. There are many more people to meet and secrets to uncover during your stay!


1920s Portofino is as dangerous as it is beautiful, full of new threats from the rising fascists, and men like Danioni...

Good Man

So be sure to check in with us as our valued staff and guests navigate these dangers and have some fun along the way!

My Pleasure

We are pleased to welcome you to Hotel Portofino.

About the Author

Megan Hearst is an intern with the Multiplatform Production team at PBS. She loves all things popular culture and loves the opportunity PBS gives her to talk about some of the best TV and films out there. When she’s not catching up on her favorite shows, she is an avid hiker and seamstress.