This multi-faceted Italian experience takes you to four fascinating locales: the crown of a hill, a former monastery, the shores of a lake and the heart of a city.
Italy’s great grape, Barolo, has long been called the “king of wines and the wine of kings,” and the Ceretto Winery is the crown. In the geographical heart of the Barolo growing area, there lives a monument to Barolo wine, Ceretto’s Bricco Rocche Winery. Bricco Rocche is the four acre site on the hilltop (bricco in Italian) of the Rocche vineyard. Solely owned by the Ceretto Family, Bricco Rocche is the only example of a “monopole” vineyard in the Barolo DOCG area. And for the Cerettos, it is their crown jewel.
The exclusive two nights you will spend at Ceretto’s Bricco Rocche guesthouse begins with a private tour at the crown on the hill. There you will see the breathtaking symbol of the Ceretto Family’s Barolo philosophy—grounded in tradition with an eye toward innovation. The Cube, an entirely glass structure, rests on the Bricco Rocche hilltop. This modern, hi-tech work of art was designed as a pledge, guaranteeing tradition and the preservation of a masterpiece of nature, Barolo. The use of glass without a frame ensures that nothing obstructs the panoramic view of the surrounding landscape enjoyed from the Bricco Rocche Winery, located in the center of the Barolo growing area.
Your Barolo pilgrimage continues to the “temple of wine,” the Chapel located in Le Brunate, one of the most important vineyards in the Barolo production zone. The Ceretto Family, dedicated patrons of the arts, commissioned English artist, David Tremlett, and American artist, Sol LeWitt, to renovate the Chapel, now a picturesque, brightly-colored structure that is sure to inspire all wine-loving travelers.
This monumental visit reaches another peak with dinner prepared by chef Enrico Crippa at the Three-starred Michelin restaurant, Piazza Duomo in Alba, and owned by the Ceretto Family. As chef at of one of the “World’s 50 Best Restaurants,” chef Enrico Crippa will amaze you with cuisine that is subtle but powerful, not unlike a great Barolo, and imaginatively loyal to his adopted land, the Piedmont.
Then you’re off to Santo Stefano Belbo in Piedmont for three nights in Suites at Relais San Maurizio Hotel. In the heart of the Piedmont vineyards and the white truffle region, this former Franciscan monastery was transformed into a place dedicated to the wellness of body and soul.
There’s no better way to take in the glory of Turin than from the air. Your hot air balloon ride over the legendary landscape of Piedmont begins at dawn, with the Alps rising majestically to the north. After landing in a magical setting enjoy an authentic Piedmontese breakfast. Search for truffles with the help of a professional truffle hunter and his trusty dogs, followed by a scrumptious truffle lunch. Unwind with a moment of wellness during a massage at the hotel spa.
You will also have a full day of excursions to explore the Piedmontese towns of Barolo, La Morra, Castiglione Falletto and Monforte d’Alba, discovering the local monuments, castles, piazzas, streets and more.
Spectacular Lake Como will welcome you next for three nights in Lake View rooms at the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, with sunsets guaranteed to take your breath away. Enjoy a full day guided excursion on Lake Como in a private Venetian water coach, taking in the legendary coastline with its grand vistas and inspiring landmarks. Explore enchanting villages that include Tremezzo, Villa Carlotta and Bellagio with their grand public gardens and quaint shopping districts.
An invigorating three-hour hike around Tremezzo on the western shore of Lake Como connects your mind, body and soul. San Martino Griante offers panoramic views of Varenna and northern Lake Como, while the Chiesa San Martino, a 14th-century church on the mountainside affords views of Lake Como, Bellagio, Griante and the eastern shore.
Cosmopolitan Milan will be your final destination and here you will spend two nights in Deluxe rooms at the beautiful Mandarin Oriental. Explore Milan’s exclusive Quadrilatero d’Oro, which is closed to traffic and home to the boutiques of the world’s most famous designers, luxurious palazzi and upscale cafés. You’ll also have the opportunity to visit a fashion atelier to discover how a couture item comes to life in this iconic fashion capital, and if you desire—order a custom-made outfit.
On your last day, history will unfold before your eyes when you tour historically important sites from the 14th and 15th centuries Imagine the events that took place in the Sforza Castle, the church of Santa Maria Presso San Satiro, and the Church of San Maurizio. Sense generation upon generation who trod these streets and created what you now enjoy. Take in the artistic gravity of Leonardo’s The Last Supper. Have an exclusive VIP backstage visit to the legendary La Scala Opera House and meet some of the managers who make it hum. Experience the La Scala Museum, the Church of San Marco, the Grand Hotel et de Milan and via Durini. You’ll leave this glorious, history-drenched locale with a renewed sense of what endures and why.
Become the Maestro of your own domain, bid passionately, now!
Roundtrip, Business Class Airfare from the United States needs to originate from and return to a major city, such as New York, New York; Chicago, Illinois; Dallas, Texas or Miami, Florida. Trip dates are confirmed for Thursday, September 19–Sunday, September 29, 2019. If the winning bidders are unable to travel to Italy in September 2019, they are able to select alternate dates, based on availability, by Friday, March 1, 2019. All ground transportation around Italy and guides for activities listed above are included. Personal expenses, meals not listed on the itinerary, passport fees, travel insurance and gratuities are not included.
Roberta Ceretto of Ceretto Winery, Perfetto Traveler and with thanks to Christin McKay, Luxury Travel Advisor with SmartFlyer
Airfare donated by Angela & Don Smith