High up on one of the most sumptuous and imposing palaces in the Piazza Unità, facing the sea in Trieste, there is the inscription “Lloyd Triestino” in large letters. This glamorous building still bears witness to the great power of the historic enterprise which, founded on the 2nd August, 1836, remains the oldest still-active shipping company even though its name was changed to Italia Marittima a few years ago and ownership has passed to the Taiwanese Evergreen group. In the XIX Century, Trieste, the chief city and port of the Giulian region which was then part of Austria, became the obvious gateway between European and Eastern markets, thanks to its strategic geographic position. The opening of the Suez Canal in 1869 brought enormous benefits to the Lloyd of Trieste. Regular passenger and cargo routes were started to the Middle and Far East, reaching parts of the Red Sea, the Indian peninsula and China and Japan. Other regular intercontinental sea-lanes enriched the company’s offer after the Great War (1914-18), such as the Australian route, reinforcing the established lines which the Lloyd Triestino was already operating before the conflict, such as the service to the Lebanon, Syria, Palestine and Egypt. After the Italian colonial adventure in Africa in the inter-war years, the regular routes to the new dominions were also entrusted to Lloyd Triestino. In the 1970s, competition from the airlines forced the Lloyd, like most other shipping companies, to close down its passenger services, withdrawing its glamorous liners and replacing them with container vessels. Although it is now a much lesser enterprise than it was in its glory days, the company still bears eloquent witness to the great seafaring tradition of the Adriatic city of Trieste.