The team at this travel company is amazing! I would highly recommend them to anyone visiting Italy.
I was planning a family trip to Italy to celebrate my parents’ 50th anniversary. My parents are art and history lovers and they talked of visiting Italy for years, but it never happened. So, this was going to be the trip of a lifetime.
Right from the first phone call, it was apparent that this travel company was going to be the right choice to plan our trip. Our trip planner spent almost a half-hour on the phone with me getting to know my parents’ likes and dislikes. Our group included an elderly person with some health issues and a toddler. Not an easy group to plan for! But our planner took the time to understand all our needs. He then followed up with an itinerary that was comfortably paced while covering everything my parents should see, and worked with me to tweak things as needed. When I asked the trip planner about hotels that others had recommended, he gave me the background on which were worth it and which didn’t live up to the hype once you got past the lobby. I really appreciated his knowledge and candor. By the way, the hotels he suggested for us had some of the best food of anywhere we ate on the trip.
We were not sure what to expect of the “concierge” service provided by this travel company, but that changed as soon as we met our first and main concierge upon landing in Venice. Our guide is the absolute nicest person (really, as are everyone from the travel team who we met) and our family considers him a friend. He is a Venice native and spent an evening taking us out to the local spots not on the tourist circuit. He also pointed us to the best gelato we’ve ever had, tucked away in a little corner we never would have found otherwise. My daughter still asks "where's our guide?" at the most random moments. We tell her he's back in Venice and maybe we will go see him again someday.
At each city we visited, there was a similar concierge available to meet us and provide guidance if needed. But really, everyone from the company was so thoughtful and knowledgeable. Even the drivers, who very patiently helped my elderly parent in and out of the car, entertained my toddler, and shared the history of the area we were in.
The travel company also gave us an info packet in each city providing helpful information and suggesting amazing restaurants at every price point. The travel team also left gifts for my parents to celebrate their anniversary. That was a really touching surprise.The only rough on the trip was our guide in Rome, but that was our own doing. I told our trip planner how much my parents love history so he arranged for an academic-level historian to be our guide! It was a little overwhelming at first, but once the guide realized he didn’t need to go that deep, he adjusted and we all had a great time. I guess one other rough patch was when, out of sheer hunger after a long outing on our own, we jumped into a restaurant not recommended by our planner or one of the concierges. It was not great. While we did find a few amazing places on our own, their recommendations were just consistently amazing.
Our trip ended with a celebration dinner in Rome on the date of my parents’ anniversary. Our concierge in Rome recommended a restaurant in an old mansion overlooking the whole city. It was a stunning and perfect ending to the trip of a lifetime. We are so grateful to our planner for arranging it and will definitely call him if (when!) we return to Italy.
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