There has always been a continuous presence of Italians in Egypt and especially in Alexandria; the Mediterranean southern port. That presence has led to a huge accumulated amount of acculturation and influence which went both ways. Most Italian Egyptians resided in Alexandria and Cairo, and formed the second largest expatriate community in Egypt after the Greek. The influence of that intercultural communication is very obvious in the physical or tangible elements like all architectural and artistic forms but we can also trace it in the nonphysical or intangible assets. Crosslinguistic influence is such a clear evidence of the mixing between the two cultures that refers to the different ways in which one language can affect another within individuals or groups. There are many words that we never wondered, where they came from and what were their origins.
“Locanda” is an Italian word means inn or motel. It was commonly used along with the French word “Pension” among people from the lower to middle class in the Egyptian society regardless their origins or nationality. We can still find those words in old Egyptian cinema and also in the writings of those who were deeply involved in the fabric of Egyptian society like most of Naguib Mahfouz novels.
Side note: The mentioned telephone number of the “Locanda” consists of only five digits which are now seven digits in Alexandria and eight in Cairo.