Day 1 – Rome: Arrival & PM Vespa Sidecar Tour
Upon arrival at Rome Fiumicino Airport, you will meet your private driver who will transfer you directly to your hotel in Rome: Hotel degli Artisti 4****. We will reserve for you: 2 double superior rooms. Check in and time to rest. In the afternoon, you will meet your private English speaking guide with your sidecars and will be ready to enjoy a unique tour of Rome. The tour will start with the Quirinale Square: the Palace, the Obelisk and Fountain are protagonists along with the Panoramic view. Riding down the Quirinal Hill, you will reach Fontana di Trevi, where you will park the Sidecars and walk to the Fountain. You will proceed towards Trinità dei Monti. This stop also provides a beautiful panoramic view over Rome. Next stop will be in Piazza del Popolo and then, you will have the opportunity to walk under the colonnade of Saint Peter’s square. Then, you will reach one of the must-see of Rome for its view, the Gianicolo, a highlight that will allow you sightseeing and time for taking pictures. Here, you will enjoy a quick aperitif. On the way to the next stop, you will drive you through Trastevere and Jewish ghetto, two important areas of Rome. Trastevere’s narrow streets colored by boutiques & trattorias and lively squares with markets & cafés, allows you to sense Rome’s authentic soul, going beyond usual touristic attractions. The Jewish ghetto, besides its beauty, is imbued in tangible main historical facts. The last stop will be at Pantheon, where you will do a complete visit of the inside. You will not miss driving through the central hub of the Capital, Piazza Venezia, where you can get an idea of where to shop, as it intersects via del Corso and via dei Fori Imperiali. Finally, you will briefly stop your vehicles between the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill and, due to its strategic position, you will circumnavigate the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, entirely narrating miracles & legends of this important Church. The tour will end in a typical restaurant of Trastevere neighborhood, where you will taste the most famous Roman dishes made with the freshest ingredients. Rest pf the day at your leisure. The Grand Hotel De La Minerve is housed in a magnificent mansion dating from the 1600s. Set in Rome’s historic center, the hotel overlooks the Pantheon and is just a few minutes’ walk from Piazza Navona, the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps. Completely renovated to better meet the needs of its modern, sophisticated clientele, the hotel has retained its noble, elegant lines and the warmth of a comfortable, welcoming aristocratic “home”.
Day 2 – Rome: Ancient Rome Tour & Private Visit of Domus Romanae
After breakfast, meet your private English speaking driver and personal English speaking guide at the lobby of the hotel for a direct transfer to the Ancient part of the Eternal city: Colosseum and Roman Forum. Specially designed to provide visitors with an unforgettable experience and in-depth understanding of the splendors of Ancient Rome, this tour will lead you to the most significant monuments and sights of this spectacular open-air museum. Your visit begins as you access the Colosseum, Rome’s most stunning landmark and one of Ancient Rome’s most vital social centers. Once inside the amphitheater, you will tread the ground where gladiators and ferocious beasts once fought and emperors, with a mere gesture of the thumb, decided the fate of slaves and prisoners. Your professional guide will lead you through the ruins and bring to life the dramas that unfolded within these ancient walls. You will climb the Palatine Hill, the legendary birthplace of Rome where Romulus and Remus are said to have been raised by the she-wolf. From here enjoy a breathtaking view of the Fora and Nero’s Circus Maximus where chariots once raced round the track. The tour will end with a stroll along the Via Sacra which is the main route through the Roman Forum. Free time for lunch at your leisure. After lunch, meet again your personal guide and walk to a unique site for living an experience off the beaten path. This visit will be EXCLUSIVE AND PRIVATE JUST FOR YOU. In this unique “museum”, you will discover the fascinating remains of the patrician "Domus" of the imperial Rome belonging to powerful families, with mosaics, wall decorations, polychrome floors, paving blocks, and other remains. This museum has been further enhanced by a project curated by Piero Angela and a team of experts, including Paco Lanciano and Gaetano Capasso, who have recreated the past with virtual reconstructions, graphics and videos. Visitor can see walls, rooms, peristyles, kitchens, baths, furnishings and decorations all come back to life, taking a virtual tour of a great Domus of ancient Rome. A new important section has been added to the archaeological zone and museum. Finally, a virtual reconstruction of the Traian column gives you a close up look at the bas-reliefs and the history of Trajan’s military campaign: the conquest of Dacia, present day Romania. An extraordinary event that ended with the death of King Decebalus and the emperor’s triumph. A unique and magnificent example of how the artistic heritage of antiquity, regenerated by careful and painstaking restoration, can be enhanced with the use of new technologies. After the visit, rest of the day at your leisure.
Day 3 – Rome: Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel
After breakfast at the hotel, meet your private English speaking guide and your personal English speaking driver at the lobby of your hotel and direct transfer to the Vatican Museum. There are no queues and no waiting in long lines as your specialist guide introduces you to the masterpieces of such great painters as Raffaello and Michelangelo. This is one of the greatest collections of art in the world, a collection gathered over the centuries by the Popes of the Catholic Church. You will be enthralled and enchanted by the stunning vision of the Sistine Chapel and also continuing to the “Cortile della Pigna” ("Court of the Pinecone") and the celebrated Raphael’s rooms. Finally you will have direct access into Saint Peter's Basilica. After the tour , rest of the day at your leisure.
Day 4 – From Rome to Florence with stop in Orvieto
After breakfast and check out you will be met by your private English speaking driver for a transfer to Florence. Along the way you will stop off in Orvieto, an old city situated on the flat summit of a large hill of volcanic turf, famous for its Duomo and its strong Etruscan identity, traceable to the nearby necropolis and town museums. Here, you will enjoy a private walking tour with your private English speaking guide who will introduce you the history of the town. At the end of the city tour, you will reach an impressive restaurant that can be considered as a private museum in Orvieto. Thirty years ago the owner, whilst restoring his shop floor, he came across a large medieval cistern, to collect rain water and from here, he found an unknown underground city unique in Orvieto. This labyrinth was excavated by Etruscan People in the V century before Christ both for storing and cooling wine and food and also as a refuge in case of invasions. This amazing site has been declared by the State "Private Museum”. Here, you will combine Italian art with a guided tour of the cave together with a delicious lunch, top level offering seasonal products and local wines in an absolute private and exclusive environment. After lunch, meet up again with your private driver for a direct transfer to your boutique hotel in Florence: Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 4****. We will book: 2 double deluxe rooms. Check in and the rest of the day will be at leisure. The Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 1 is a historic residence located in the heart of Florence, a short distance from the city's famous attractions, the places of interest and the luxury shopping streets. The hotel is housed in a tower-house built in the mid-12th century. Thanks to attentive restoration, it is an exclusive location with 24 rooms, decorated in Renaissance or classic style with frescoes, exquisite fabrics and furniture, canopy beds, soft tones finishings as well as opulent bathrooms. Almost all the rooms enjoy an enchanting view of the Arno River. Breakfast is served on fine Richard Ginori porcelain at the Salotto Sonoro, a refined ambience featuring panelings. The hotel also features panoramic terraces where guests can sample select cocktails, good wines and culinary delights. You will enjoy this unique view of Florence: The dome of Santa Maria del Fiore, the hills of Fiesole and Settignano, the Arno River, the Santa Trinita Bridge and Via Maggio, the church of San Miniato a Monte, Forte Belvedere designed by Buontalenti, the hill of Bellosguardo, Palazzo Vecchio, the bell tower of Santa Trinita: wherever you turn, Florence will show you all its splendor.
Day 5 – Florence: Walking Tour with Food tour & Accademia Gallery
Breakfast at your hotel and meet your private English speaking guide at the lobby of the hotel and start the walking guided visit of Florence. You will have the opportunity to observe up close the priceless Dome (Duomo) by Brunelleschi, the largest brick dome in the world, stretching protectively over the Florence Cathedral. You will also see its splendid bell tower: the famous Campanile of Giotto. Next stop will be the political center of the city that will open its doors, offering you the chance to visit the Palazzo della Signoria, seat of the secularists' power with the Palazzo Vecchio, seat of the municipality, as well as the oldest "piazza" (square) in Florence, Piazza della Repubblica, surrounded today, by historic cultural cafès, where young intellectual Florentines like to gather. Your walking will lead you to the nearby San Lorenzo Market, where you will have a taste of Tuscany’s “green gold”, its renowned olive oil, as well as a variety of cheese, salami and prosciutto, truffle sauces and oil and balsamic vinegar. You will have also wine tasting where you will enjoy some of the region’s finest wines. Not full yet? Next stop will be at a local “fiaschetteria” where you will have a tasting of some of the city’s traditional recipes. The tour will finish in grand style with one of the finest gelato parlors of the city where you can pick your flavor made with genuine and fresh products. After this culinary experience, you will discover the Accademia Gallery Museum where the most symbolic work of Michelangelo is housed: Il David, an expression of beauty and physical perfection. It also has other sculptures by Michelangelo and a collection of Renaissance paintings: you will admire also the “Il Ratto delle Sabine” by Giambologna (The Rape of the Sabine Women), as well as “La Madonna ed il Bambino” (Madonna and Child) and “la Madonna del Mare” (Madonna of the Sea) by Botticelli. End of the tour and free afternoon at your leisure.
Day 6 – Florence: Farm tour & Pic Nic in Pienza and Guided Tour of Siena
After breakfast at your hotel, meet your private English speaking driver and together, you will reach the small and charming village of Pienza, a small town in the center of Tuscany. UNESCO declared it a World Heritage Site for its artistic beauty and historical importance. This town is completely Renaissance style, because has been built by order of the Pope Pio II – Enea Silvio Piccolomini – who decided to transform his home town in a beautiful place for him and his court to be protected and relaxed near the water risings of Val d’orcia. Pienza is also the capital city of the “Pecorino” – sheep cheese, and organizes every year, on the second Sunday of September, the “Fiera del Cacio” or the Festival of the local sheep cheese. The milk is particularly aromatic because the configuration of the clayey land where many aromatic herbs grow, and sheep all freely grazed, producing a perfumed milk and cheese. Pienza Pecorino cheese has the D.O.P. European label (which means a Protected Origin Denomination). You will visit a cheese factory, located on the beautiful hills inserted in a frame of history, art and nature, therefore the dairy stands over a hundred and ninety hectares, between olive trees, vineyards and pastures. These pastures are the natural food of the herds, consisting of a thousand sheep, and are famous for the quality of their herbs, which give the milk, and then the cheese, the delicate flavor, distinctive and pleasant . Since its origin, the dairy has always been faithful to a craft production respecting the typical local and even the milk of their flock today and some stalls of Pienza and the Val d'Orcia is transformed into various types of cheese. Here, we will arrange for you a Pic Nic and surrounding by this stunning views you will enjoy and taste the products made by them. After some free time at your leisure, you will meet again your private driver for a transfer to Siena. Upon arrival in Siena, you will meet your private English speaking guide and she will accompany you on a pleasant walking tour of the city. You will discover the Magnificent Piazza del Campo where twice a year (2 July and 16 August) an event, that every citizen of Siena looks forward to, takes place: the Palio di Siena. You will learn about the history of the Contrade (ancient Sienese name for neighborhood) and visit the famous Cathedral of Siena that houses some of the most important monuments of the European artistic panorama. During your tour, you will discover also the “gastronomic” Siena with a tasting of the locally produced “Panforte of Siena” and of “Ricciarelli biscuits”. At the end of your guided tour of Siena, you will meet again your driver and transfer back to your hotel. Rest of the day at your leisure.
Day 7 – Florence to Venice
After breakfast and check out, you will meet your private driver who will transfer you to the railway station to get your fast train to Venice. Upon arrival, you will be greeted by your personal assistant who will accompany you to get your private water taxi for a direct transfer to your hotel: Liassidi Palace 4****. We will reserve for you: 2 double deluxe rooms. Check in and rest of the day at your leisure. The 4-star Liassidi Palace Hotel occupies a 15th century palazzo overlooking one of Venice’s finest old canals, the Rio di San Lorenzo ‘dei Greci’. A warm welcome awaits you from the staff, with a 24-hour “clef d’or” concierge service ready to respond to your every need. You will be captivated as soon as you step into the Zorzi-Liassidi Palazzo and experience the grand festival and concert hall on the upper floor, the magnificent internal courtyard and the sumptuous furnishings that hit the perfect balance between contemporary design and 18th century Venice; a fascinating blend that pervades the atmosphere throughout the hotel.
Day 8 – Venice: Grande Canal boat tour, Murano & Burano
After breakfast at your hotel, you will meet your private English-speaking assistant and personal water taxi at your hotel and get ready for an amazing tour. The best way to know and experience Venice is certainly by getting on a private boat and travelling around the Grand Canal that is reasonably defined as “the most beautiful avenue in the world”. From your boat, you will enjoy the most beautiful parts of the city and recall of the legends, history; point out the monuments, architectural masterpieces, art and introduce to the lives of those who created or enjoyed it – artists, noblemen, courtesans and other inhabitants of the lagoon. To get a better insight of the Venetian culture, then, you will visit the island of Murano that ever since all around the world is known for its glass production – worth-seeing mastery of blowing and shaping the glass that has a long history as the city itself. Here, you will visit a glass factory for an exclusive presentation of glass making. This is your chance to observe at close quarters the skill of artisans as they forge objects of art employing techniques past down through generations. Next stop will be the adjacent island of Burano that is visible from afar because of its buildings painted in bright and vivid colors. Here, you will have a time to wonder around, meet some locals, enjoy a cup of coffee and make some memorable pictures. Finally, you will meet again your private driver with water taxi and through some smaller and secret channel pathways, while observing the most popular and lively neighborhoods, you will reach the pinnacle of the tour - San Marco’s Square. End of the tour and rest of the day at your leisure.
Day 9 – Venice: Walking Tour & Gondola ride with cicchetti tasting
After breakfast at your hotel, you will meet your private English-speaking guide and start the perfect tour for those who want to know the history of Venice starting from the most important site of the city: Saint Mark’s Square. Together with your guide, you will explore a wealth of hidden sights not normally granted to visitors of this spectacular city. Allow yourselves to be soothed by the magical imperfection of the Venetian streets and cast under the spell of its evocative atmosphere. You will visit also St. Mark's Basilica, its respective Piazza and its main monuments: Basilica (inside), Doge’s Palace (inside ), Bridge of Sighs, Clock Tower, Bell Tower. After this historical tour, your private guide will escort you to get your private gondola, to see from the water the less-known canals. Along the tour, your gondola will stop in a traditional Bacaro where a waiter will serve to you directly on board a tasting of local “cicchetti” and a bottle of fresh Prosecco wine. Enjoy your aperitif along the canals of this unique floating city! End of the tour and rest of the day at your leisure.
Day 10 – From Venice to Milan & Private Home-based Cooking Class with dinner
After breakfast and check out from your hotel, you will be met by your private English speaking assistant and water taxi for a private transfer to the railway station where you will get your fast train to Milan. Upon arrival at the railway station, you will be greeted by your private English speaking driver for a direct transfer to your centrally located hotel: Hotel Spadari al Duomo 4****. We will book: 2 double superior rooms. Check in and time to relax. First of all, we like to offer the best possible hospitality, in which people are the most important thing. We pay close attention to detail and seek the best products for our guests, from our breakfast to our line of organic bathroom amenities. Secondly, we share what we like with our guests, from our personal design style to our contemporary art to the short stories that you will find in your room every evening. Lastly, we strive to continuously improve our hotel with better comfort, innovative services and reduced impact on the environment. Our idea of a hotel is a place where you can feel good right in the heart of Milan. Ideal location in the center of Milan. In the afternoon, you will be met by your private English speaking driver at the hotel, for a direct transfer to your cooking class. You will immerse yourself in a private cooking class in a beautiful characteristic apartment located right in the heart of Milan. The Chef will share her secret techniques with you and you will learn how to prepare the tasty local dishes using fresh and organic ingredients. You will cook a complete meal with appetizers, a pasta dish, a main course (meat, fish, or vegetarian) and a dessert. Each dish will be accompanied by fine wines. The cooking class takes 3 hours and it will be an engaging and a fun experience for you. Make sure it is good as this will be your dinner, the rest of the evening will be at leisure.
Day 11 – Milan: Walking Tour
After breakfast at your hotel, meet your private English speaking guide and get ready for a walking tour of the city. Together with your guide, you will discover the cathedral, the main church of the city, home to the famous "Madunina", the golden statue of the Virgin Mary that inspired one of Milan's most popular folk songs. Close by the famous Vittorio Emanuele Gallery where several elegant shops, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, bookstores, clothes shops windows are located and which draw citizens and tourists attention, together with Via Montenapoleone and Via della Spiga; it is considered one of the shopping sites of Milanese luxury. Then, you will proceed towards the famous Teatro alla Scala (outside visit) and Castello Sforzesco. End of the tour and rest of the day at your leisure.
Day 12 – Milan: Departure
After breakfast and check out meet your private English speaking driver for a transfer to Milan for your flight back home.