Meet the Squad



Russell Purkiss el jefe

Originally from Texas, Rusty left his country at only 14 years of age to join a traveling missionary school. He has dedicated the majority of his life to volunteer work and has lived as a missionary in Central America, Europe, South America, and Asia. Together he and his wife have run The Pitstop for over 4 years. He enjoys meeting people, getting to know them and exchanging life experiences and dreams. When not working, He can be found playing tennis with his wife and daughter or enjoying a nice meal. He loves all kinds of sports.

Read his story



Gioia Purkiss el verdadero jefe

Gioia’s youthful spirit, passion for her work, and love for young people is what spurs her on every day! She loves to see things grow and much of what you may experience at The Pitstop is due to the fruit of her efforts! Her greatest hope is to see others happy & fulfilled & she will do her best to make you feel welcome! While you may not escape from The Pitstop without a hug! You might just leave with a smile.

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Alisa Purkiss la barrista

Born in Taiwan, Alisa grew up in Asia and later moved to Italy with her family. She has travelled throughout Asia, North America, and Europe. Since joining The Pitstop she has become an integral part of the team as a hard working barista. She loves her coffee with milk. Sweets and donuts are her biggest weakness. When not working or reading, she’s snowboarding, riding horses, or playing tennis.



Danilo el dueño del fuego

Born in a small village in southern Italy, Danilo has since his teens followed his passion for cooking. Traveling through Italy he worked in Neapolitan restaurants along the coast, and in Tuscany honing his culinary skills.  He has also traveled throughout the European continent bringing with him the traditional southern Italian flavors. Now a chef at The Pitstop he is punctual, precise, extraverted and creative. On his own time he enjoys following his other passion…that of football!



Daniele Ghelfi chef maestro

Daniele is a citizen of the world, fluent in both Italian & English and is adding Spanish as a third notch to his linguistic belt. He has lived all over Italy and traveled extensively to various European countries. His diligent work ethic & affable nature has made him a veteran of the Italian tourism sector. Now at The Pitstop as one of our main chefs He brings stability and positivity to the team, always willing to do whatever needs to be done. When not in the kitchen, he can be found playing football, or at the gym stacking on weights, and while he may stomp his “foes” at table soccer don’t be fooled, inside he’s soft at heart and is very much a cat lover with two fluffy ones of his own, Toby & Kitten.


Marzia La Encantadora

Marzia, a solid team member, critical thinker, and always attentive to customers’ needs, she has worked in the service industry for over ten years and now lends that experience to The Pitstop as one of our baristas and waitress. Originally from Vigevano, Marzia now lives in the countryside with her soul mate and their dog Thor. Being the dynamic person she is, she enjoys taking long walks in the country or hiking mountain trails. In her downtime she likes to read.



Sara la Mascot

Sara is our “oldest” team member working with us as a barista and a waitress from almost the very beginning. Because of this, Sara is considered the mascot of the team. She is loyal, reliable and a dedicated worker that has taken up the challenge of improving herself in the years that she has been with us. When not working, she plays sports and hangs out in the company of her friends.