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Luxury tours in Italy

Luxury tours in Italy

Tuscan Princess tour

Lesser known picture perfect Italy

Capri coast with Faraglioni rocks, flowers and boats, Italy
Capri coast view with the Faraglioni rocks, flowers and boats in the blue sea, Italy

An tour of Italy so exclusive it’s whispered about in the Vatican!

In the grand ballet that is the European Summer, especially in Italy, it seems the gods of gastronomy and history have conspired to offer a reprieve from the mundane, courtesy of two characters ripped straight from the pages of a novel too implausible to publish. Enter stage left, Valerio Fantinelli, an Australian-Italian chef with the culinary wizardry of a Michelin-starred sorcerer, and his cohort, Luca Rocconi, a professional Italian tour guide whose ancestry presumably includes a lineage of Roman emperors, given his encyclopaedic knowledge of Italy’s secrets. Together, these cousins concoct asmall-group tours through Italy’s heart and soul, promising escapades from one to six days that would make Caesar himself green with envy.

Traditional pasta makng on tour
Traditional pasta making on tour in Italy

Their enterprise, dubbed Italy Tour Co, promises culinary and historic adventures not for the faint of heart or stomach. Imagine, if you will, a band of up to 12 intrepid souls, embarking on a journey through idyllic locations so exclusive they’re whispered about in the corridors of the Vatican. Thanks to Luca’s contacts and a shared zeal for all things edible and historical, guests are treated to experiences the average Joe, or Giuseppe, could only dream of.

Pizzas on tour
Pizzas on tour in Italy

This year, they’ve upped the ante with personal boat tours that sound like something out of Homer’s lost epics. Picture sailing the Adriatic with a skipper uncle who’s been braving the seas longer than Odysseus, or swapping tales with fishermen off the Neapolitan coast who’ve got saltwater in their veins and stories that could make a statue weep.

Tuscany
Image courtesy of Visit Tuscany

On terra firma, guests rub shoulders with Tuscan royalty, sipping vintages that would make Bacchus abandon sobriety, or meander through a pope’s summer retreat, presumably while he’s not there. They’ll unearth medieval basilicas that make the Colosseum look like a modern upstart and dine in the shadows of history, with chef Valerio conjuring dishes that could revive the dead.

Ancient Rome
Ancient Rome on tour!

For those whose appetite for the undiscovered matches their palate for the exquisite, the Gold of Abruzzo tour beckons like a siren’s call. It’s a realm of 11th-century frescoes, Michelin-starred feasts, and gold artisans whose secrets are as closely guarded as the recipes for Valerio’s dishes.

Amalfi Coast
Amalfi Coast

After a pandemic-induced sabbatical, Luca and Valerio are back, not that they ever truly left the hearts and stomachs of those who’ve traversed Italy’s wonders by their side. “It was a dream come true,” Valerio muses. They’re gearing up for 2024, ready to enchant a new cadre of guests with the magic of Italy, wrapped in a tour as intoxicating as the country’s finest wine.

The curtain rises in May 2024, with the promise of an adventure. And for those quick on the draw, a special offer on the Trastevere Food and Art tour awaits. Venture to italytour.com.au, for a glimpse into a journey that’s part reality, part myth, and entirely unforgettable.

About your guides

Italy Tour Co owners guides Valerio and Luca
Italy Tour Co owners guides Valerio and Luca

VALERIO FANTINELLI

Valerio was born in Italy. Food was always an integral part of his culture, growing up with a strong connection to cooking traditions of Italy. He started working as a pizza chef at 15 in a few restaurants in his home region of Abruzzo. His search for new adventures took him to Australia in 1999, where he continued to build his experience between Perth and Sydney, where he catered for ABC Studios and Fox Studios. Valerio was part of the slow food committee in Perth, and a chef delegate for Terra Madre in 2012. Valerio has been a guest chef at food festivals including Ord Valley Muster, Taste Great Southern, Gascoyne Food Festival and Taste of the Kimberley.

In 2015 he launched Flour and Fire from his home in Fremantle to fulfil his love for artisanal food and cooking with fire. He built an outdoor dining room using recycled and natural materials, where he hosts private dinners with menus seasonally designed to tell a story, bringing to the plate the flavours of his tradition using ancient methods and equipment with the best of local seasonal produce.

LUCA ROCCONI

Luca was born in Abruzzo, the greenest region of Europe, just 150 km from Rome. From an early age he had a passion for travelling, reading, and communicating. His deep love for languages and oriental mysteries led him to study Mandarin at La Sapienza University Rome, then in 2005 he applied and won a scholarship at Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs where he perfected his Chinese proficiency at Tongji University of Shanghai.

For the following six years Luca worked as a tour leader in China with groups of Italian tourists. In 2012 Luca returned to Italy, working with foreign tourists in Rome as a tour leader and achieved the qualification of official tourist guide of Rome and the Vatican City State. Luca’s passionate about his works and desires to pass on his knowledge to tourists and friends, and help them understand more about the history, culture and traditions of Italy and Rome.

https://www.italytour.com.au/


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