Italian Interlude

October 6-13 2024

8 days | Max 25 guests

Italian Interlude

Wright in Fiesole

Sunday, Oct 6, 2024

Leave your home on an overnight flight to Rome.

Monday, Oct 7, 2024

Arrive in Rome, an illustrious, historical city. Check into your hotel— centrally located within walking distance of the Villa Borghese and the Spanish steps—before meeting your fellow guests and Frank Lloyd Wright tour leaders in the late afternoon. A short drive takes us to the church of San Luigi dei Francesi, where we will see three masterpieces by baroque painter Caravaggio (The Calling of Saint Matthew, The Inspiration of Saint Matthew and The Martyrdom of Saint Matthew). Our private visit provides a rare chance to see these dramatic and moving masterpieces—so utterly modern for their time and so lifelike that the figures seem to emerge from the darkness and come to life—without the crowds. Return to our hotel and get to know your fellow guests at the Welcome Dinner, featuring fresh and local Roman cuisine.
Grand Hotel Palace, D

Maxxi Museum

Tuesday, Oct 8, 2024

After breakfast at the hotel, depart by bus for a full-day tour of Rome’s modern architectural highlights, including the Ara Pacis Museum (1995-2006) designed by Richard Meier to house the Ara Pacis of Augustus, an ancient 9 B.C monument. The modern, light filled building — of white travertine marble and a monumental, 150 ft. glass curtain wall — is inspired by ancient Roman architecture. Next, enjoy a private architecture tour of Casa Baldi, designed by Paolo Portoghesi and built between 1959 and 1961. This peculiar and important example of post-war Italian organic architecture now houses the Creative Centre of Casalgrande Padana, a leading maker of cutting-edge ceramic tiles. Portoghesi went on to design the Roman Great Mosque, his most renowned work, in 2019. The day ends with Zaha Hadid’s MAAXI (National Museum of the Arts of the 21stCentury). Return to the hotel for an evening at leisure. Choose from our insider’s list of authentic trattorias in the neighborhood for dinner.
Grand Hotel Palace, B L

Florence sunset

Wednesday, Oct 9, 2024

After breakfast, transfer to the Roma Termini Station and board a train to Florence. Meet our lecturer Paolo Bulletti at the Maria Novella station and journey across the river. Visit Piazzale Michelangelo, a 19th-century building and plaza dedicated to the artist, followed by an al fresco lunch of Florentine specialties nearby. End the day strolling the sumptuous gardens of Villa Bardini, and enjoy the panoramic views of Florence. Then, enter the magical city itself and check into our centrally located hotel. Return to the hotel for some time to relax before gathering for dinner at a nearby trattoria.
Hotel Regency Firenze, B L D

bicycles lined up on a street in Florence

Thursday, Oct 10, 2024

After breakfast at the hotel, join Professor Bulletti on a walking tour of Florence, studying its architecture through the ages. In the morning, explore the Middle Ages to the Renaissance at the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo. This Florentine cathedral — the largest building in medieval Europe (and the fourth largest in Europe today) — is a masterpiece of Gothic and First Italian Renaissance architecture. Highlights from its collection of over 750 works of art spanning more than 720 years include sculptures “Pietà Bandini” by Michelangelo and “Penitent Magdalene” by Donatello. After lunch, continue our exploration on foot, ending with architecture of the modern age. Your evening is at leisure to enjoy this storied city on your own.
Hotel Regency Firenze, B L

Antinori winery staircase

Friday, Oct 11, 2024

Depart after breakfast for a day of food, wine, and architecture. Travel to Chianti, a rural agricultural region known mostly for its wine, as well as olive oil, cheeses, meats, and stunning landscapes with rolling hills, cypress trees, and historic stone castles. Visit the historic and traditional Castello di Verrazzano for a winery tour and tasting. The picture-perfect estate includes a castle and splendid renaissance-era gardens. Lunch is in nearby Panzano at the restaurant of eighth-generation butcher -turned famous restauranter Dario Cecchini, who gives respect to the life of the animal by using all its parts, from nose to tail. The full-course lunch includes beef and pork in many preparations, including his world-famous Florentine steak. In the afternoon, enjoy an exclusive tour of Antinori nel Chianti Classico winery, awarded first place in the World’s Best Vineyards competition in 2022. The winery is also known for its dramatic modern architecture, which is mostly underground. Return to Florence for an evening at leisure.
Hotel Regency Firenze, B L

Fiesole theater

Saturday, Oct 12, 2024

After breakfast, trace Wright’s path and ponder his lasting legacy. We begin at the villa in Florence where he lived in 1910. Then, travel along winding roads to the romantic, ancient hilltown of Fiesole for an exterior tour of Villino Belvedere, where Wright and his lover Mamah Borthwick Cheney lived until 1911. What Wright learned from his time here had an influence on his later designs, especially Taliesin, for the relationship between the land and buildings, and for its stone courtyards and belvedere tower (in Italian; bel “beautiful” and vedere “to see”) which frame expansive views of the surrounding rolling hills that bring to mind Italy, as well as his native country, Wales. Hopefully we will come to a new understanding of the architect’s work when we see Fiesole through the architect’s eyes as we follow the same ancient, cobbled streets and behold the same views Wright had absorbed more than a century past.

Also visit Fiesole’s ancient Roman Ruins as well as the hill from where Leonardo da Vinci tested his flying machines. After lunch at a local favorite, visit the Giovanni Michelucci Foundation to learn about the so-called “Florentine School,” which also included Leonardo Ricci and Franco Bonaiuti. These post-war architects were greatly influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1951 Exhibition at Palazzo Strozzi. Once can only imagine the impact that Wright’s work—including an enormous three-dimensional plastic model of Broadacre City—had on these young minds.

Return to the hotel for some time to relax before our Farewell Dinner in the hotel’s lovely garden restaurant, or extend your stay in beautiful Italy.
Hotel Regency Firenze, B L D

Sunday, Oct 13, 2024

After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the airport, or continue your onward journey.
Hotel Regency Firenze, B L


Daily Itinerary subject to change.

Registration Details

Journey Includes

8 days

Six nights’ accommodations in luxury hotels

14 Meals

  • 6 breakfasts
  • 5 lunches
  • 3 dinners

14+ Tours

  • Church of San Luigi dei Francesi
  • Sala Paolo VI, aka Nervi Hall
  • Private visit of Casa Baldi
  • Zaha Hadid’s MAAXI
  • Piazzale Michelangelo
  • Villa Bardini
  • Museo dell’Opera del Duomo
  • Walking tour of Florence
  • Castello di Verrazzano winery tour
  • Antinori nel Chianti Classico winery
  • Walking tour of Fiesole
  • Exterior tour of Villino Belvedere
  • Fiesole Roman Ruins
  • Giovanni Michelucci Foundation

+

  • Events, guides, lectures, entrance fees and curator honorariums
  • All taxes for goods and services as well as all gratuities
  • Transportation by luxury motor coach
  • Porterage of one bag per person

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