My wife and I were looking for a company to help us plan our honeymoon and this agent's company was a godsend. At first we felt that the two of us could plan a perfect 10 day honeymoon throughout Italy, highlighting Venice, Tuscany, and Florence. As we started to conduct research we soon realized that we were in over our heads and could use some real help. Our agent, a Florence native, took the time to listen to our every wish and in no time started to plan the vacation of our dreams.
We had huge dreams of what this trip could be and a fixed budget in which to make those dreams a reality. Our agent not only worked within our budget, but never made us feel as if we had to spend another dime to make our experience incredible. She started by having us complete of survey as she was trying to get to know us, enabling her to make the most out of our time in Italy. After completing the survey, my wife and our agent bounced ideas back and forth via email or telephone until the dreams I mentioned earlier were shaping out to be inevitability. To give a sense of how much she catered to us: She made sure that we had private tour guides (who could not have been more professional, fun, informative, simply incredible) on the first day entering a new city. Sharing a love for history with my wife, Our agent insured that every guide could be a walking professor of local history. I am a theatre teacher, so she planned a one day excursion to Verona to see the location of many of Shakespeare's classic tales. As a lover of cooking, we were treated to a one-on-one cooking class at a winery (which was amazing). Every hotel we stayed at was 5 star, including a castle in the country side with a Gordon Ramsay restaurant on site. Every hotel offered free upgrades. What I am trying to say, is that our agent not only took the information given about what we thought would make for a great trip, but went above and beyond to ensure that every hotel we stayed at, every city we visited, every meal we ate was simply the greatest experience of our lives. She succeeded in every way. She even took the time to treat us to coffee at a local shop once we arrived at our final stop, her home city of Florence. She did not have to do that, but cared so much about our experience that she wanted to. We cannot recommend any person on the planet to plan a trip to Italy other than this agent.
This is difficult because our entire experience could be listed below. We landed in Venice, hopped on a boat with our incredible tour guide and headed for the hotel. Not long after checking in a bottle of prosecco and fresh strawberries arrived at our door. What cannot be expressed enough about every Hotel we visited was the kindness received from every employee. The Italian people are truly incredible when it comes to hospitality. Our second day included a tour of the Doge's Palace and Saint Mark's Basilica. Our guide was so engaging while showing off her city and these locations. Saint mark's Basilica is one of the most beautiful churches I have ever set foot upon. Our agent knew that my wife was dying for a Gondola ride, but asked us to wait until our second day to get over any jet lag. She could not have been more right, thank you!
The bulk of our trip was spent exploring the different towns in the Tuscany region. We stayed at a converted Castle, and could not have asked for a better experience. We could live at this place!!! The room was gorgeous, yet had a touch of rustic charm and the fresh country air invited us to leave our windows open. Our agent set up an Audi rental car with unlimited miles so that we could explore anything and everything Tuscany. We had an incredible private cooking class that was a highlight for myself as I made a classic Tuscan Sunday lunch with Roasted Pork Loin, homemade Tagliatelle, and fresh Focaccia bread (to name a small portion of the feast), trips to several high-end wineries with private 4 course meals included. The meals were ridiculously good by the way! Our evening were free for exploration, however our agent provided a packet of information including incredible restaurants in every location from the largest city to the smallest town and sites to see, so we were never lacking for something to do nor something to eat. This does not mean that we didn't have any down time to simply relax. We had spa credits at the hotel to use at our leisure, and our agent built in plenty of relaxation time.
Our final stop was Florence, and what in impressive and fun city. We took a gastronomic tour sampling some of the finest pastries I have had, we went to the local market where I had the best cured meats and cheese that I have ever had, and later stopped for some Gelato. We had Gelato pretty much every day of the trip, and as someone that cannot live without ice cream, I was in heaven. Our guide took us by what she called the finest Gelato known to man...she was correct in every sense of the word. I still dream about that Gelato. The next day our same guide returned to show us the more historical side of the city, including a stop to see michelangelo's David. This was an awesome sight to behold. We feel in love with the people at the local restaurants and the employees of our final hotel. The hotel is located on the Arno river and was equally as impressive as every other hotel we stayed at.
I could continue to go on and on, but please, stop reading now and just call this agent and get yourself to Italy. I can promise that you will not regret this decision. We are talking with her about a second trip to spend some time in Sicily, so we cannot give her any higher recommendation. She is simply the most impressive Italian travel agent on the planet!
Perhaps we would decide to stay :)
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