Turin for 2 Nights at Grand Hotel Sitea to start is really good news, Its a lovely place, Food food food and a leisurely start, your right in centre, shopping is all on your doorstep and everything is close by.
We are in Villa Crespi, not wanting to put your expectations to the moon but it is pure heaven and we already booked the restaurant for one of the 3 Nights.
Then into the Langhe, Unesco World heritage for the outstanding beauty. Villa Amelia is a delight the GM is a good mate and he knows what I expect. 2 Nights
2 Nights overlooking Elba, Gorgeous views at Poggio Ai Santi, Amazing food and gardens, donkey and lovely cared for animals laze around and we are close to some of the Super Tuscans. No Children accepted. 2 Nights
Next we are onto Castello Monestero, an amazing Borgo with a Spa that has won World recognition, Perfectly placed an afternoon in Florence perhaps and Montalcino for a taste of Brunello. 3 Nights.
We finish on the highest point for a World class stay at Il Pellicano on the Southern Coast Of Tuscany, we really cannot say enough about this place apart from its easy and chilled as are the clientele. 4 Nights.
Tim was the biggest reason we had such a great time in Italy. Thanks again Tim .Randy Palomba. Dever USA Tim Robertson of Robertson Wine Tours doesn’t design tours. He designs dreams...unique wineries, delicious restaurants, beautiful lodging, charming towns, cultural experiences and loads of glorious wine tastings. Italy. A dream come true. .Grazie Mille Tim! And cheers to many more RWT adventures. Bev Suttman Denver. USA
OPTIONS FOR THE TOUR
In Turin we have the brilliant La Palestra del Cibo Cooking School with Chef Sergio Maria Teutonico, Here we can do whatever you want to learn about what have never had the confidence to try, This can be as professional or wine filled fun as you like.
In Florence we also have an excellent experience that Jon and Kathy also loved. Could work well AM Florence cooking and Diane and Randy see Davide post lunch and Bev and I do whatever Bev fancies.
Touring I think, in Turin it might be interesting to make a walking tour on the afternoon of arrival time allowing. After this the idea is for you all to really enjoy people watching, wandering stress free and some cafe and aperitivo action.
Wines and Wineries Well still not sure how much or how little you want here....its really fundamental for the best use of your time to give me a little more guidance here of how many wineries we should visit or taste in? Was thinking of giving you at least a one bottle of wine per night for 10 nights, but we can double that and on and on do as little winery visits but use tastings by me. I will put a decent budget for the wines, are you consumers or tasters? I need to know a little more about your wine tastes Diane and Randy too how interested not interested etc?
Also, if you would like Sandro (in Turin) and he is around is my top Piedmont guy, We could crack a few bottles of interesting wines with him, and extract his wisdom.
While at Villa Crespi perhaps we will look at our options Boat wise on Lake Maggiore.
I think a good compromise would be 2 Wineries in Piedmont.
Bolgheri. 2 or 3 Wineries at least my ideal would be Grattamacco, Le Macchiole and or Tua Rita. three of the greats. And you can have lunch at San Guido or eat at the trattoria I love and we can choose any wine you want. Or Not and you relax more at Poggio Ai Santi.
Montalcino. 2 Wineries on a day out. Capanna and perhaps Casato Prime Donne. We have a great lunch too...no view but exactly the type of place you asked for in terms of Antonio is Amazing, his wife cooks, and you will dine at Daria's in Monticello in the evening. So thats 1 day out in wine and food.
6 or 7 wineries in 16 nights. For us its not a lot but I think due to heat and not to want to push you into activities and time keeping I think that could work, What do you think?
Meals. We will make reservations for lunches and dinners throughout, It sounds like you are sufficiently sophisticated and do not need to much hand holding in this respect. Please note that I do plan to join you occasionally for the odd lunch and dinner as and when it works for all.
Spas and Treatments. Well we have a complimentary day of access to their SPA in Castel Monestero for all of you. Frankly they all have in all these amazing places you are enjoying. No pool at Crespi by the way, Lake swimming. You can have all sorts of soothing rebalancing type things along the way but better on we give a little notice too, so shall we can tell you whats available or just let that happen if it does?
Table of contents
- FIRST IDEA. TOUR OUTLINE
- Hotel: Grand Hotel Sitea, Turin
- Hotel: Villa Crespi, Lago d’Orta
- PIEDMONT WINE COUNTRY
- Hotel: Villa d’Amelia, Benevello
- Hotel: Poggio Ai Santi. San Vincenzo. Tuscan Coast
- CENTRAL TUSCANY
- Hotel: Castel Monastero. Siena. Tuscany
- END HERE!
- Hotel: Il Pellicano, Porto Ercole. Tuscan Coast
Tour Outline & Guiding – 3 Great Friends in Italy –15 Nights
TOUR OUTLINE July 2019
DAY 1 – Tuesday 2nd. Arrival in Turin/Walking Tour /Welcome wine tasting / Sleep Grand Hotel Sitea
DAY 2 -Wednesday 3rd. Optional Cooking Experience and Turin by Yourselves/ Pre dinner Tasting
DAY 3 – Thursday 4th. Check out G.H. Sitea /Biella for Cashmere/ Designer Outlets /Check in & Sleep Villa Crespi
DAY 4 – Friday 5th. AM Free to Relax /Lunch and Boating experience Lago Maggiore
DAY 5 – Saturday 6th. Optional Cooking Demo Experience with Lunch / PM Free to Relax
DAY 6 – Sunday 7th. First AM Free / Check out V.Crespi / Drive to Langhe via Lunch in Gattinara /Check in & Sleep V. Amelia.
DAY 7 – Monday 8th. Wineries of Barolo & Barbaresco / Pre dinner informal wine tasting with Tim
DAY 8 – Tuesday. 9th. Check out V. Amelia / Drive to San Vincenzo via Genova or a super cheese tasting / Check in & Sleep Poggio Ai Santi
DAY 9 – Wednesday 10th. Am Enjoy Poggio Ai Santi / Lunch at Tenuta San Guido Sassicaia /Tasting at Le Macchiole / Dinner in Bibbona
DAY 10 – Thursday 11th. First AM free / Check out and Drive to & Check in Castel Monestero / PM Spa & Pool Action / Sleep Castel Monestero
DAY 11 – Friday 12th. AM Spa & Pool Action / Lunch in Siena /PM Free time in Siena /Informal Super Tuscan Tasting /Dinner Out TBD
DAY 11 – Friday 12th . AM Spa & Pool Action / Lunch in Florence /PM Free time in Florence /Dinner in Florence.
DAY 12 -Saturday 13th. First AM Free /Depart for Montalcino for Lunch and wine tasting / Pienza and Montepulciano / Dinner in Monticello
DAY 13 – Sunday 14th. First AM Free /Check out Castel Monestero /Lunch Castiglione della Pescaia /Check in and Sleep Il Pellicano
Note. Tim will leave you once you are all settled in. You will not want or need to leave.
DAY 14 – Monday 15th . Enjoying Il Pellicano / No Services needed
DAY 15 – Tuesday 16th. Enjoying Il Pellicano / No Services needed
DAY 16 – Wednesday 17th. Check out of Il Pellicano / Airport Transfer to Rome or Pisa Airport
End of Services
Tim was born in the UK and is of Scottish descent. Tim was introduced to fine wines in 1988 when he worked for Sakagura Wine & Liquor … part of Intercontinental Group in Hong Kong. He was responsible for selling their collection of Bordeaux Wines and other top quality new world wines, probably the best collection in Asia at that time. He never quite recovered from tasting the very best at early age of 18. However, he went on to complete his studies in Economics and Business. He was unable to find a suitably well-paid job in wine in London and so embarked on a career in finance. He decided to leave finance in 1998 to refocus on finding a project involving his love: the wine. He inaugurated Robertson Wine Tours (RWT) in 2003. The business has grown organically over the years and despite efforts to get involved in exporting he has stuck to the tried and tested formula of offering his clients the best the wine countries have to offer. The client base of RWT is rightly demanding of the best, extremely well travelled and generally with knowledge or love of wine.
Hotel: Grand Hotel Sitea, Turin
Grand Hotel Sitea is located right in the middle of cobbled pavements with no car access in front of the hotel, which makes it perfect for walking straight out into the heart of Turin. It is literally in the centre of it all. It is the perfect base for visiting the historical centre and the shopping area. It is also within a short distance of Porta Nuova Train Station from where you can take a shuttle bus to the airport or a train. The atmosphere is quiet and serene after the breakfast and check out, but generally there is a great little buzz. The rooms are well-protected noise wise, the staff polite and efficient. The service in the hotel is excellent: concierge and front desk mainly. Although small, it is obvious that all staff has been carefully trained: everyone in every capacity we have come across is gracious and efficient. The other aspect of this hotel that we like is the fact that there are both contemporary and classic style floors meaning we can provide for most of our clients. Breakfast is very well done and we think it is the perfectly formed hotel.
Hotel: Villa Crespi, Lago d’Orta
This is the real thing: a classic and unique villa with a wonderful service and fabulous restaurant all adjacent to the most beautiful unspoilt lake of Northern Italy: Lago di Orta. It is the perfect base to visit some of the countryside around this lake and just a short walk takes you to the path that allows you to walk on the water’s edge and taking a dip. The rooms are filled with period antiques, comfortable beds and have lovely views over the lake and surroundings. The breakfast is a highlight with a huge range of choices catering for all tastes. If weather allows, we recommends having breakfast outside on the terrace. For dinner? Just try what the chef recommends, including the wines. This is a glorious gourmet experience.
Hotel: Villa d’Amelia, Benevello
Villa d’Amelia is situated just outside the small town of Benevello, overlooking the vineyards for miles with the Alps in the distance. This is a lovingly restored farm and winery. The view from the terrace is delightful, vineyards as far as the eye can see. The restaurant has a Michelin Star and with clement weather this terrace is a joy to be on with its stunning surroundings. The outside swimming pool and spa area also overlooks the countryside. Rooms are tastefully done and although not enormous in size it’s the service of this hotel which sets it apart.
We like the size and feel of this hotel, good food, good people and well-trained staff. Entry rooms are small, we recommend moving up 3 levels for a decent sized room. The restaurant is of course a destination in itself and it would be a shame while staying at Villa D’Amelia not to dine here.
Hotel: Poggio Ai Santi. San Vincenzo. Tuscan Coast
As soon as they open the gate for you, there is a feeling of one with nature and calmness, it’s a lovely feeling. Poggio Ai Santi is a recent addition to our properties, We first found the property due to its restaurant ‘Il Sale’ which has a reputation in the region, that has gone from serving very manicured haut cuisine to extremely simple yet personally farmed animals and fruits and vegetables with only fish being brought in from the coast by an old boy in a little Piaggio. You will see that sea and Elba is ever present from the breathtaking views from this property. The restaurant and Aperitif scene in summer here is very strong so we are careful which rooms we book. We prefer to book the top sea view suite which is huge and extremely quiet and set in the forest. Less expensive rooms are available but if we are making our way here we say treat yourself.
Everything is extremely homely with some very chic touches with these rooms we are more than set. The grounds as you will discover are just amazing, there are many places to find a place to read or take a wine, dogs cats, donkeys they are all just happy and wandering around disturbing nobody. In reality this is a small family owned house where the owners run and reside for 9 months of the year. Views over Elba Island and our vicinity to Bolgheri just finish it off. Dinner here is a must. The wine list is super and not at all overpriced. So while being more laid back we think its charms will be more than sufficient for a wonderful stay in this zone which still enjoys only mild tourism apart from in August when we rarely work. The lack of industry in this region means its pristine in many ways. Francesca the owner runs the roost here, We love it, food, fluffy pillows, and the views are extraordinary. Close by we have the gorgeous Tuscan Coast, Hilltop Borgos such as Castagneto Carducci and the superb wineries of Bolgheri and beyond. Highly recommended.
Hotel: Castel Monastero. Siena. Tuscany
This Castle or as we say in Tuscany a Borgo and a beautiful one at that. With 78 immaculate suites and rooms. This is a new property for us and we are so pleased to be able to offer it to our clients. There are many Pretenders in this zone but we have never been convinced of their style or management, Castel Monastero feels different and is not a chain and of course so much better for it.
Food and beverage is suitably strong with Enrico Marmo the chef overseeing both ‘Contrada’ the top restaurant and ‘La Cantina’ for a lighter more casual affairs as one would would expect being in the Chianti hills, they want to keep you in house and we certainly think a night or so in house is worthy.
We suggest the prestige rooms and up but the Royal Suite gets a little silly money wise and would save those funds for Villa Cora if we are moving to Florence.
The Spa which is reason we got interested in this property initially. FYI they have the most amazing face cream called Caviale del Mare fill your boots. Berber Massages, somato-emotional releases all up for grabs. The pools are killer as you would expect at this level. The Moto at Castello as we call it is a home away from home, perhaps an overused term but we feel it here.
Hotel: Il Pellicano, Porto Ercole. Tuscan Coast
Il Pellicano, One of the Classic hotels of the Tuscan Coast. Famed from the mid 1960’s with a jet set of Italians and Americans alike this hotel has a cult following. Views are just stunning, Pool and beach club all excellent. There is no negative really, Each year they work manically to keep the structure up to scratch and nothing is left to chance, I guess thats having a family management and ownership that makes the difference. With just 50 rooms Suites and separate Villas you never feel swamped with people. Pool area and Beach Zone are all gorgeous with white clad staff serving up the best in wines cocktails and Snacks.
Michelino Gioia the Chef overseas the Pelligrill for more informal dining and the main restaurant ( Michelin Starred) for more intimate dining. There are plenty of places to be outside of your room, the Pellicano has a very special atmosphere, its very friendly and many of our guests have raved about meeting like minded people, and having made friends over some super wines in this magical place. The Location is unique just over 2 hours North of Rome in Porto Ercole, one of the most Beautiful Towns in Italy Founded by the Etruscans on this headland’s unique coastline. Interestingly Porto Ercole is where the master Caravaggio died 1610.