From the Glories of the Renaissance to La Dolce Vita (April 19-27, 2017)
In the heart of Italy sits the home of La Dolce Vita, the Sweet Life. There the city of Florence and the nearby hilltop towns of Tuscany hold treasures both culinary and artistic. Leftheris Papageorgiou invites you to join him on a fascinating journey to experience the Italian heartland in a truly "once-in-a-lifetime" experience.

Discover the glories of the Renaissance, as well as the majesties found in Tuscan vineyards. Special activities include:

  • Private tours exploring the artistry of Michelangelo and Brunelleschi
  • Cheese tastings and Balsamico tastings
  • A cooking class in the private countryside home of one of our eminent chefs
  • Hiking the hills of Chianti
  • Special wine tastings in illustrious wineries

Do all this while exploring the cultural and historical museum highlights of Florence and Siena, as well as visiting some of the loveliest hilltop towns in Tuscany. Of course, Leftheris always likes to include a few surprises as well!

These special experiences will give you a taste of the Sweet Life like few others experience. Contact us to receive the complete itinerary and to learn more about how to join Leftheris and a small group of lucky travelers as you explore Italy From the Glories of the Renaissance to La Dolce Vita set for April 19-27, 2017.
4 nights Florence, Santa Maria Novella, (4-star superior
boutique hotel, junior suite with view)

4 nights Pianella (Tuscany), Le Fontanelle, (5-star luxury hotel, classic room)
Your 8-night/9-day journey consists of the following services, as per itinerary: accommodations in 4-star superior to 5-star luxury hotels; transfers and land transportation provided by private, air-conditioned vehicles; half-board (all breakfasts at hotels and 9 additional lunches or dinners (multi-course) at lovely local restaurants) excluding beverages except bottled water and coffee/tea; however, the Welcome and Farewell dinners include wine and non-alcoholic beverages; private sightseeing tours and special culinary experiences as detailed in the full itinerary; all entrance fees to sites and museums as per itinerary; our comprehensive travel insurance program; all tips and taxes for the services noted above. Plus, Leftheris often has one or two surprises up his sleeve!
8 Nights/9 Days: April 19–27, 2017

Minimum/maximum participants: 10–14

Trip cost including comprehensive travel insurance:
€4,713 per person ($5,260 at exchange rate of $1=€.896, subject to change) based on double occupancy
Day One through Four: Florence
(April 19–22)

No matter how many times one comes to Florence, it is always stunning to turn the corner and suddenly be overpowered with awe at the ochre and emerald hues of Brunelleschi’s Duomo. It towers over this center of the Renaissance, along with Giotto’s Campanile and Ghiberti’s stunning bronze Baptistry doors, all greeting you as you arrive. Our eminent guides will introduce us to the neighborhoods of Florence, and we’ll experience the city with all our senses. Between the art and the food of Florence, you will be truly tasting the Sweet Life.
  • We’ll meet a noted chef, cooking instructor, and certified olive oil taster, for a walk through myriad market stalls to enjoy a Balsamico and cheese tasting.
  • At a Chianti countryside home, our guide/chef and her partner, another illustrious chef, expert in pastries and vegetables, cooking instructor, and certified sommelier, will guide us in a cooking class to prepare a delectable three-course meal for our Welcome Dinner with very special wine pairings.
  • With our exceptional guides, we will explore the artistic riches of Florence, focusing in particular on the works of Michelangelo and Filippo Brunelleschi. With special presentations and visits to local sites and museums, we’ll experience the multitude of Florence’s artistic treasures.

Day Five through Eight: Tuscany (Pianella)
(April 23–26)

Our journey through the Tuscan countryside will center around our home for the next few days, Pianella. A few of the places we will visit include:
  • San Gimignano, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and a town noted for its medieval towers (more than a dozen).
  • Marvelous hikes though the hills of Chianti. The Black Rooster legend? We’ll learn about it. Etruscan ruins? We’ll see them… and so much more.
  • Explore the Campo of Siena, considered one of the most beautiful piazzas in the world, where the famous Palio horserace is run twice a year between the different districts of the city.
  • Discover the hilltop towns noted for their famed wines, Montepulciano's Vino Nobile and Montalcino's Brunello, along with Pienza, famous for its sweet sheep’s milk cheeses, Pecorino.

In your free time, enjoy the splendor of our hotel, a beautifully restored country estate which dates from the 13th century. Relax with a book under the Tuscan sun, have a swim in the heated indoor pool; step into the whirlpool or take a sauna or steam bath in the Spa; feel the burn in the gym; borrow one of the hotel’s bicycles for a jaunt in the Tuscan hills; write in your journal; and eventually, prepare for your departure.

Day Nine: Travel Day
(April 27)

All good things must come to pass. Say good-bye to your fellow travelers prior to your private transfer to the Florence airport or train station to begin your outgoing journey.