October 5, 2016

Celebrating Our 30th Wedding Anniversary

Hi Kathy,

I hope all is well! We are still recounting our Italy experiences, what a great time! We will have memories for a lifetime! 

Please see my comments for your testimonials page.

All the Best!
Wayne G. - Atlanta, GA

We are frequent travelers from the US, and wanted to celebrate our 30th anniversary in Italy. A close friend suggested Kathy and we were not disappointed. She tailored a magnificent trip based on our requests and schedule. 

Kathy was super personable and we felt like she was our Italian host. While in Greve for the Chianti Classico festival Kathy made it a point to meet and welcome us to Tuscany. I highly recommend her, and will rely on her for future travel to Italy.

In recap, we arrived in Venice, traveled to Florence/Tuscany, and departed from Rome. 
Kathy arranged:

- Excellent transportation services: train bookings from Venice to Florence and from Florence to Rome. No issues.

- Tremendous, passionate, and highly knowledgable private guides in Venice, Florence, Tuscany and Rome. 

- Hotels and villas, top notch. Wineries, amazing.

- Restaurant reservations perfect in all areas we traveled, with excellent tables and special treatment because of Kathy's relationships. (Not the usual tourist dining experiences).

- Lastly, Stefano, our private guide/driver for our time in Tuscany, did a great job and made us feel like family. 

Grazie Kathy and New Tuscan Experience! 

September 7, 2016

Discovering Chianti and its Castle Wineries

With only a couple of days to see the Tuscan countryside, this couple from Australia asked us to arrange their accommodations and a special private wine tour in Chianti. We are happy to hear that they had a great experience!

Hi Kathy,

We had a wonderful time in Tuscany. Our boutique hotel in Chianti was very nice, with its beautiful grounds, delicious food and lovely pool. Our room was a good size and very comfortable, not that we spent much time in it! The location was perfect; close enough to the village, allowing us to easily walk in, yet far enough out to give the feeling of remoteness. 

We had a fantastic day on our private tour visiting the wineries and San Gimignano, even if the town was quite crowded. It was also very interesting visiting the wineries that you chose because even though they were not very far apart there was a distinct contrast. The first castle had a real wow factor about it, their cellar was magnificent and their wines were very nice. 

The second castle seemed that much older and more rustic. Having our own private dining room for lunch gave the feeling that we were the lords of the manor, plus the food was brilliant. We also loved their wines to the extent that we purchased a box and have had it sent back home. Stefano was a great driver, very friendly and engaging. He had a good knowledge of the area, its history and its landmarks. 

Thank you so much for arranging all of this for us! As I mentioned at the start, our brief stay in Tuscany was absolutely wonderful.

Best Regards,
Scott K. - Melbourne, Australia

July 29, 2016

Family City Tour

This family of 6, with young adult children, wanted to explore Florence and Rome after traveling in Switzerland. We helped arrange their train tickets, accommodations and tours. 

Hi Kathy,

We had a wonderful time.  All the accommodations were superb, the three tour guides were awesome and we had a great time.

One of the things our group enjoyed doing best in Italy was eating! We did not have a bad meal anywhere. 

You rock,  I would highly recommend you and your company to anyone.  All your suggestions, train tickets, the accommodations and the guides you set up for us were spot on. 

Thanks again,
Tom & Tia - California, USA

July 13, 2016

Group Trip to Tuscany

Hi Kathy,

I just wanted to touch base with you to Thank You, and to let you how incredibly pleased we were with all the arrangements you made for our group of 12!!!  We had an amazing time in Chianti, and much of it had to do with all the planning you did for us!!!  We’ve been to Tuscany a few times before and we know our requests can be a little demanding…  I knew when I asked you to find a perfect Villa on a large rural estate with outstanding views and a full time chef, and stay within my budget, it would be a challenge…  I have to tell you, you blew me away!!! WOW, the Villa you reserved for us far exceeded our expectations!!!  It was wonderful in every facet…  The setting was bucolic, and the staff was so very friendly… 

The chef was amazing, and the menu that you prepared for us was perfect!!!  When we awoke in the mornings, she had wonderful breakfast buffets laid out with coffee, juices teas, fresh fruits, melon, berries, toasts, eggs, meats, cheeses, granolas & yogurts… It was so nice to have breakfast on that lovely terrace and watch the sunrise with views of the vineyards and olive orchards!!!   

And after a long day of of touring and sight-seeing, to come back to the Villa and go swimming in that amazing  pool,  and then have all those authentic dinners prepared for us… well what can I say;  it was truly magical!!! 

The musical duet that you hired for our party on the terrace was outstanding!!!  And the BBQ and Pizza parties were truly a hit with our group…  

Thank you so much for all the detailed planning… You went above and beyond, and I truly appreciate all of your hard work…  I am grateful for everything that you’ve done for us, and as you already know, we’ll be back next year for another great adventure!!! 

Tommy Harpster
Pennsylvania, USA

July 12, 2016

A Villa Vacation with Friends

A group of 9 friends traveling through Italy requested a nice villa, close to a charming town, within easy reach of southern Tuscany and Umbria. Clearly, Cortona was the perfect place! 
We suggested a lovely property that fit the description and are happy to know they really liked it. 

Hello Kathy,

The Villa in Cortona was the highlight of our trip to Italy! The bedrooms were perfect for our group. The owner was friendly and always helpful. We made good use of the pool and barbecue and found the little grocery store down the hill very adequate.  

I too would highly recommend the Villa to any of your clients. 

Bill A. - Washington, USA

Hi Kathy,

We feel the same way.  Staying at a villa in France or Italy had been high on our "bucket list" for some time, and it fully lived up and even exceeded our expectations. The owner was great, the villa comfortable and well equipped, the views and property were beautiful, and the pool was great.  We really enjoyed our hikes to Cortona, and enjoyed the town itself.  The property worked well for family and friends to spread out, but also come together in spaces that were perfect for partying together.  
Thanks for steering us to this and for making our arrangements. 

John and Heather B.

Hi Kathy,

Val and I have now stayed at two villas you suggested and I wanted to say first of all that we loved both properties.

The historicalness of the building at the Villa in Cortona was very interesting. It felt like it dated from several centuries before yet still had the necessary modern conveniences.  I liked the fact that we could walk along a “nature” walk from the Villa to Cortona - admittedly the walk is a good 35 minutes for someone who is reasonably fit.

And Cortona is a city that you could go into on multiple days; we actually did the walk to Cortona on 3 different days. I also liked the fact that Cortona did not feel overly touristy. I also liked the fact that driving to the Montepulciano region felt very close. 

Even though the property has several villas, it is set up so that there are separate pools for each set of guests. The pool that we had access too was great and had just the right amount of shade around it as well.

Very much liked being able to have direct contact with the owners - they gave us a great recommendation for a pizza place that we would never have found if not for their mentioning this place (they do amazing long rectangle takeaway pizza). They also presented us with a bottle of gin that they make which was wonderful.

Finally, there was an incredible store for provisions with an excellent in-house butcher just down the road from the Villa that sold outstanding wine/fresh meat and a great selection of groceries and veg at very reasonable prices.

Thanks again for your help.  Have a wonderful summer season!

John and Vally A. - London, UK

Hi Kathy,

Our family thoroughly enjoyed our time at the villa.  Cortona was a good walk but not over taxing and the surrounding sites were close enough.  

Thank you,
Peter and Carol L.

Large Family Vacation

This large multi-generational family (15 people, from 6 months to 65+) from the US came to Florence for a relative's wedding and requested a few days of activities for the whole group before heading to Venice. We arranged their tours and excursions (including an exclusive private visit and lunch at a stunning castle winery in Chianti), as well as their transportation to Venice. 

Hello Kathy,

I hope you are well! Thank you so much for arranging such wonderful excursions for us. Here is my feedback for the various parts! Overall we are so grateful for your suggestions and enjoyed our trip.

We enjoyed our tours in Florence. We had a wonderful experience at the Uffizi. The guide was very laid back and had a lot of knowledge to give us. He kept the kids entertained and they lasted the whole time!

The drivers were great and helpful. They made the experience easy and simple. Would definitely be happy to have them drive us again! We did not have any issues and the day went smoothly.

The winery was spectacular. The entire experience from the tour, the guide, the lunch, the gorgeous scenery, and the wine was amazing.

We really enjoyed the authentic nature of the winery and the private feel. We were able to spend time as a family and take our time to experience each part. We truly appreciate your recommendation! We will be enjoying the wine we ordered for some time. It just arrived!

Thank you for the wonderful recommendations and for all your help. I will most definitely pass along your information to any friends who will be traveling to Florence.

Take care and I will be in touch next time we are headed your way.

Sri L. - Milwaukee, WI

June 2, 2016

Cooking in Chianti

This couple was celebrating their 10th anniversary, and wanted a few memorable structured days to discover Tuscany with a guide. As foodies, they also requested an authentic private cooking experience in a beautiful setting - and we knew just the right place!

Hi Kathy, 
We had a great time in Tuscany! You did a great job. We really enjoyed our tours in Florence and Siena - the guides were excellent.  
The cooking class you arranged for us was great! The day spent at this beautiful villa and olive farm can't be beat and we enjoyed our time there very much. What really made the experience so meaningful was being able to enter an Italian home, see their culture and really meet Italians. It’s what made our trip complete.
Eleonora is a gracious hostess and wonderful teacher. The villa is impressive and the food was delicious, it was the best meal we ate on our trip - also because it was made with such love and care. We can’t wait to take out our notes and start cooking at home!

Thank you for helping us have a beautiful vacation!

Kind regards,
Amy and Amin A. - Milwaukee, Wisconsin