Thursday, April 30, 2009

New York Times Article Europe Discounts

New York Times still recommends booking now as the reasonable prices make Europe affordable. “Right now, the great deals are for departures before the end of May and some are leaking into mid-June,” said Rick Seaney, chief executive of, a price tracking website. He recommends that Americans book now for trips to Europe in May or June, but to hold off for flights later in the summer.

See our Super Special Rick Steves Readers Grand Tour of Italy Special DISCOUNTS

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Tuscany Bike Tours Review and Information about the new Tuscany Bike Tours and Villa Swim Tours

Here is a review of our Tuscany Bike Tours and an introduction to our new Tuscany Bike Tour and Villa Swim. We are the first company in Italy to offer a day bike tour with a villa swim. If you don’t fancy biking, you can choose to meet family and friends up at the Villa to enjoy with them the wine tasting, walk around the vineyards and olive groves, and lunch. You can laze away the afternoon beside the fabulous pool with stunning views of the Tuscany countryside. Our new Tuscany Bike Tour allows you to just do the bike tour, or take the option to stay at the Villa and laze away the afternoon swimming. The guide then comes back and brings you back to Florence.
The Villa is a magnificent renaissance villa replete with beautiful olive groves, vineyards and ancient hunting grounds. The Villa estate also produces wonderful wine and olive oil.
Book the Original Tuscany Bike Tours or Tuscany Bike Tour and Villa Swim at

You can also choose to have a day just lazing around the Villa pool with lunch or a wine tasting, Villa visit and lunch with or without a swim, see our site for more information.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Spring 2009 Tours Italy-Review Marvelous Chianti Castle Wine Tour Tuscany Italy

Our favorite review so far for 2009

"the epicentre of wonderfulness" said by one of our clients while relaxing over a glass of wine and delicious Tuscan lunch at the castle on our Marvelous Chianti Castle Tour....

and for those that love the Tuscan spring, here's one of the first poppies in Tuscany for 2009!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Concerts July 2009 at La foce, Tuscany Italy

A Wonderful July Concert Series at the Famous La Foce Villa in Southern Tuscany

About La Foce
The property of La Foce lies on the hills overlooking the Val d'Orcia, a beautiful and miraculously intact valley in Southern Tuscany. Midway between Florence and Rome, it is also within easy reach of Siena, Arezzo, Perugia, Assisi, Orvieto.
Renaissance and medieval gems such as Pienza, Montepulciano, Monticchiello and Montalcino are only a few miles away. The countryside abounds in lovely walks among woods and the characteristic crete senesi (clay hills); the food is among the best in Tuscany and famous wines such as the Vino

“Incontri in Terra di Siena” is a not-for-profit cultural association, founded in 1989 in memory of Antonio and Iris Origo, who dedicated their lives to the development and progress of the Val d’Orcia. The Incontri chamber music festival is now recognized as one of the best and most refined in Tuscany.
Incontri is based at Villa La Foce and in a medieval castle nearby, Castelluccio di Pienza. Its aim is to spread the appreciation of music and art through concerts, meetings, and artistic events in the many beautiful venues of Southern Tuscany. Members and donors receive invitations for the many activities – contemporary art exhibitions, conferences, symposia, youth concerts – initiated by Incontri.
The Avalon String Quartet with pianist Alexandros Kapelis The famous zig-zag road visible from Castelluccio
Antonio Lysy, the internationally acclaimed cellist, now also Professor at UCLA, and grandson of Antonio and Iris Origo, is the Incontri’s Artistic Director and its principal founder.
Musicians like Charles Dutoit, Maurizio Pollini, and Hans Werner Henze, among others, are on the Incontri’s Honorary Board, while some of the most interesting and talented artists have played in the Incontri concerts – such as Louis Lortie, Ronan O’Hora, Kathryn Stott, Jeremy Menuhin, Daniel Phillips, Ani Kavafian, Anthony Marwood, Daniel Zisman, Rachel Podger, Mark Kaplan, Lucy Shelton, Stephan Genz, Nicki Kennedy, Steven Isserlis, Carter Brey, Colin Carr, Janet Hilton, Antony Pay, James Campbell, Stephen Stirling, and chamber groups like the Orpheus and Schidlof Quartets, Goldberg Ensemble, Amadeus Chamber Orchestra, Kremlin Chamber Orchestra, Red Priest, and many others.

“The Incontri constitute one of the most enjoyable musical enterprises of the Tuscan summer” — William Weaver, Financial Times

July 22 - 25 2009
The 2009 festival sees the return of Vladimir Ashkenazy and Pascal Rogé and the first visit of The Tallis Scholars. Mr. Ashkenazy will conduct the Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto in a programme of music by Prokofiev, Poulenc (soloist Pascal Rogé) and Schoenberg.
Other festival highlights include the legendary Tallis Scholars in the newly restored S.Maria dei Servi in Città della Pieve, a recital by the renowned Irish pianist Barry Douglas, and the return to Incontri of the Italian violinist Domenico Nordio in duo with Russian pianist Mikhail Lidsky.

Wednesday July 22Mercoledì 22 luglio
S. Maria dei Servi, Città della Pieve‘The Tallis Scholars’, conductor Peter Phillips
music by Victoria, Allegri, Palestrina, Monteverdi
Thursday July 23Giovedì 23 luglio

Castelluccio di Pienza, La FoceBarry Douglas, piano
programme to be announced / programma in preparazione

Friday July 24Venerdì 24 luglio

Castelluccio di Pienza, La FoceDomenico Nordio, violin, and Mikhail Lidsky, piano
J.Brahms, Sonata op.78E.Grieg, Sonata no.2A.Dvorak, “Romantic Pieces”L.Dallapiccola, “Tartiniana Seconda”N.Paganini-K.Szymanovsky, Tre Capricci op.40
Saturday July 25Sabato 25 luglio

Villa La Foce, ChiancianoGala Concert in the Lower Gardenwith the Orchestra di Padova e del Venetoconductor Vladimir Ashkenazy - Pascal Rogé, piano
choreography by Alessandra Ashkenazy
Dinner in the Limonaia Garden before the concertCena nel Giardino della Limonaia prima del concerto
Sergei Prokofiev, Sinfonia n.1 in re maggiore 'Classica' op. 25Arnold Schoenberg, Verklärte Nacht, op. 4Francis Poulenc, Aubade per pianoforte, 18 strumenti e tre danzatori


Barry Douglas' concert on July 23rd:

Tchaikovsky, May and June from Les Saisons Op.37b
Rachmaninov, Moment Musical No 5 in D flat
Schumann, Sonata No 1
Mussorgsky, Pictures at an Exhibition

For more Information and bookings :


tel/fax +39 0578 69101

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Florence in One Glorious Day (or two) Special

See this review and introduction to our Florence in One Glorious Day special package. The package consists of 3 great tours covering the must see highlights of Florence with a 3 hour Original Florence Walk, a 2 hour Masterpieces of the Uffizi Gallery tour and a 0ne hour Original David Walk. All tours are eco-friendly and have great guides. We keep the group sizes small. We have specially designed our tours to ensure that they cover all the must-sees in the most entertaining way. See our site for more information.

The Marvelous Chianti castle Wine Tour, Tuscany Italy

See Tuscany tour reviews from 2009 travelers for our Marvelous Chianti Castle Wine Tour. To book this tour go to :

The Marvelous Chianti Castle Wine Tour booking page