We are off!!! And so we begin our 11th tour. It’s hard to believe that I did my first tour 14 years ago with two clients. This year we have 17 travelers from several different locations from the country. I have a number of repeat travelers and some travelers who have never been to Europe. Every tour is so different – obviously due to the people. This year I have all ages and all walks of life. That’s the other aspect I enjoy of this trip, watching the group come together and the friendships that are created.
This whole trip started with a client who wanted to have us design a “Tuscan” home. I convinced him and his wife to go to Italy and really research what a true “Tuscan” home was all about. At the same time I was working on a remodel for a travel agent. I told her of my other client’s desire to go to Italy and so she put the whole trip together for us and asked to join us. That is how it all started!
During and after the trip, my clients encouraged me to make this part of our business plan. So the next year I promoted the tour and was surprised to get 8 travelers…. The Candelaria Design Tour Italy was born! I’ve had every size group ever since from four travelers to up to 22 travelers. Ages from 8 to 75!
This year we will fly from Phoenix to Washington DC for a short layover and a chance to stretch out, charge the phones and computers, make some calls and then we fly across the pond to Brussels, Belgium. Another quick layover and a plane switch and then we move on to our final destination – Florence, Italy!
Each trip has its own challenges, joys, apprehensions, laughter, surprises, and most of all great memories. Despite all the great planning by my staff – primarily Evelyn – things happen!!! It’s just like life. You deal with it, keep things positive, and turn what might be perceived as a hiccup into an amazing experience and memory!
So here we go! We are off on another adventure! Follow along here on our blog and on our Candelaria Design Tour Italy Facebook Page. I will do my best to keep up with the trip and we will be adding much more video clips this year. Next year we will go to the Amalfi Coast and Positano and Capri. So make sure you get your reservation in as the trip fills up fast during and right after this trip.
Here is this year’s itinerary:
September 24th Departure for Florence
September 25th Our arrival in Florence and dinner on the Piazza del Duomo.
September 26th Our day in Florence and dinner at Villa San Michele
September 27th Drive to Umbria and our arrival dinner at our Country Homes
September 28th Brunch at Villa Piazzano and dinner in Cortona
September 29th Perugia and Assisi
September 30th Wine tour in Tuscany
October 1st Farmer’s Market in Umbertide, Antique shopping, cooking class farm houses
October 2nd San Gimignano and Siena
October 3rd Free day at the Farm Houses
October 4th Drive to Lake Como and arrival at Villa d’Este
October 5th Lake Como & Milan
October 6th Lake Como
October 7th Fly home to Phoenix
Finally, Thanks for all who attended Isabel and my American Wedding reception last week! We had a such a great time and it was wonderful to see so many of you!! We also appreciate and thank all of you for the gifts to the American Heart Association on our behalf. Here are a few pics from that wonderful day and evening!