A Classic Italian Trilogy
A Classic Italian Trilogy
The classic Italian trilogy combines the three great cities of Venice, Florence and Rome in one tailor-made holiday, which takes you through Renaissance, Classical and Baroque architecture, exceptional art galleries and magnificent religious buildings ranging from the Basilica of St Mark in Venice to Brunelleschi’s Duomo in Florence and the vast dome of St Peter’s in Rome. With high-speed intercity trains, these three cities can easily be incorporated in a holiday of about a week – but stay during low season (early spring, high summer or winter), and you can stay nine nights for the price of six, with three free nights at 5* hotels.
Baglioni Hotel Luna
Star Rating:***** Superior
Ideally located a stone’s throw from the entrance to the Grand Canal and Piazza San Marco, The Luna is the city’s most historic and oldest hotel.
Formerly a convent, a private palace and a shelter for the Knights Templar, the palazzo dates from the 12th century. Although recently completely renovated, many original features remain including ornate stucco walls and frescoed ceilings attributed to pupils of Tiepolo. There are 118 sumptuous bedrooms and a wonderful gastronomic restaurant.
Baglioni Hotel Regina
Star Rating:***** Superior
This is one of the most stylish and fashionable hotels in Rome and combines classical architecture and Art Deco furnishings with some wonderful designer elements – it should appeal to both the older and younger generations.
It is located on the via Veneto and is a 15 minute walk to many of the city’s most popular sites. It has a less corporate feel than many of its rivals. The ‘Brunello’ restaurant serves modern Mediterranean cuisine and is highly regarded and there is a small spa and fitness centre.The 116 comfortable and spacious bedrooms will appeal to lovers of Art Deco style.
Relais Santa Croce
Star Rating:***** Superior
The Palazzo was built in the early 1700s by Marquis Baldinucci who was the treasurer to the Pope and a recent restoration has returned it to its original splendour – the frescoes are spectacular.
It has a quiet location, close to the Arno and just 50 metres from Santa Croce Basilica. The Duomo is less than 10 minutes’ walk away. All 24 bedrooms are extremely comfortable and are beautifully decorated with a combination of period furniture and designer elements; many overlook the Florence skyline. The elegant ‘Guelfi e Ghibellini’ restaurant combines traditional Tuscan recipies with contemporary flair.
- Return flights
- Return private water taxi transfers in Venice
- High-speed rail between Venice & Florence and Florence & Rome
- Return private car transfers in Florence & Rome
- Three nights' accommodation at the Baglioni Hotel Luna with breakfast
- Three nights' accommodation at the Baglioni Hotel Regina with breakfast
- Three nights' accommodation at the Relais Santa Croce with breakfast
- A complimentary dinner in each hotel’s gastronomic restaurant
- Guaranteed entrance tickets to the Doge’s Palace
- A guaranteed entrance ticket to the Uffizi Gallery (Accademia or Bargello tickets available if preferred)
- Vatican Museum or Borghese Gallery tickets
- Kirker Guide Notes for each city
- The services of the Kirker Concierge
Day 1: Flight to Venice
Fly to Venice from the airport of your choice – ask one of our experts about direct flights from your local airport. On arrival you will be met by a Kirker representative at Venice Marco Polo airport and taken the short walk to your private water taxi waiting at the pier – there is simply no better way to arrive in Venice than to cross the lagoon on board a private boat and watch the city rise out of the horizon. Passing the Piazza San Marco and the Doge’s Palace, you will then stop at the Baglioni Hotel Luna’s private mooring, and check in to your room. This evening, enjoy your complimentary dinner at the hotel’s excellent Canova restaurant – within a spectacular ballroom.
Day 2: Venice
Today is free to explore Venice independently. From the Luna it is just a few steps to San Marco, which is the heart of Venice and a great place to start. We recommend booking a walking tour with one of Kirker’s expert local guides to introduce you to the city on the first morning – even if you know Venice well it can provide a fascinating insight into a new side of the city. If you are in the city on a Tuesday, ask about the weekly Kirker tour which operates every Tuesday morning with a small group of Kirker clients. In the evening, ask the Kirker Concierge about schedules and tickets for an opera or ballet performance at La Fenice, or its sister theatre the Teatro Malibran.
Day 3: Venice - Doge's Palace
Use your complimentary Kirker entrance tickets for the magnificent Doge’s Palace today – the seat of the rulers of Venice for hundreds of years. The Kirker ticket enables you to bypass the queue and head directly for the wonderful interiors – the main council chamber in particular is unmissable, with a vast Tintoretto painting which dominates one wall. You can also cross the Bridge of Sighs and discover the cells which housed Casanova, and ask about the ‘Secret Trails’ tour to discover some of the passageways and hidden doors which run behind the wood panelling of the palace. Alternatively, visit one of Venice’s great art galleries – the Accademia for the masterpieces of the Venetian Renaissance, or the Peggy Guggenheim Foundation for a unique collection of 20th century art.
Day 4: Train to Florence
This morning you will be met by a Kirker representative for your private water taxi transfer from the hotel to Venice Santa Lucia train station, an iconic building which links the city to the mainland over a narrow causeway. Board your high-speed train and take your reserved seats for the journey to Florence, which takes a little over two hours, passing through the fertile countryside of the Veneto and Emilia-Romagna. Arriving into Florence’s grand Santa Maria Novella station, you will be met by a Kirker driver for the short transfer to your next hotel, the stylish Baglioni Relais Santa Croce, located close to the church of Santa Croce and the traditional leatherworkers’ district. Ask the Kirker Concierge to book your table for (complimentary) dinner tonight at the hotel’s excellent Guelf i Ghibellini restaurant, which showcases the best of Tuscan ingredients with innovative modern techniques.
Day 5: Florence Walking Tour
Florence is a perfect city to explore on foot, with much of the historic city centre within easy walking distance. Start your day with a private walking tour with an expert Kirker guide – or, for those staying in Florence on a Sunday, join the Kirker small group tour which departs from the Piazza della Republica and takes in the Ponte Vecchio, Piazza Pitti and the church of Santo Spirito. Stop for lunch in one of our recommended trattoria, Florence is famous for its fabulous cuisine, in particular the traditional Bistecca Fiorentina, truffles from the Tuscan hills, and wild boar ragu with fresh pasta. Or, for the more adventurous, try a tripe sandwich – a popular local snack. In the afternoon, head to Piazza Duomo to admire Brunneleschi’s magnificent cupola, and if you feel like earning your supper, climb the steps to the top of the campanile – bell tower – where you will be rewarded with panoramic views of the Florentine rooftops.
Day 6: The Art Galleries of Florence
Devote your second day to the art galleries of the city – starting with the Uffizi, the world’s greatest gallery of Italian Renaissance art. Recent renovations have provided more modern galleries for some of the greatest masterpieces, including rooms dedicated to the works of Botticelli, Leonardo and Caravaggio, which enable these paintings to be appreciated in the space which they deserve. After admiring Botticelli’s Birth of Venus, take a short stroll to the nearby Accademia Gallery, where you will find the original stature of David by Michelangelo – or try the Bargello Gallery for a less-visited but equally impressive collection of sculpture. Tickets for all three galleries can be arranged by the Kirker Concierge before you travel, to save the queues on the door, and Kirker clients receive complimentary entrance to the first museum of their choice.
Day 7: Train to Rome
Departing from Florence you will be whisked back to the station for the high-speed train journey south – it takes just 80 minutes to reach Rome. The scale of the Eternal City is apparent as soon as you arrive at Termini station and your Kirker driver takes you through the bustling streets towards the oasis of the Regina Hotel Baglioni. Located on the Via Veneto, perhaps Rome’s most prestigious address, the hotel is within walking distance of the Spanish Steps and the sprawling Borghese Gardens. Spend the afternoon exploring the designer shops of the Via Veneto and perhaps take a walk down to the illuminated Trevi Fountain in the evening. For dinner, the Brunello restaurant at the Regina offers delicious Mediterranean cuisine – book your table before you travel.
Day 8: Rome
Rome is a vast city which is nonetheless eminently walkable, providing you have the stamina. The best way to appreciate the city is to tackle one area at a time. First-time visitors to Rome should not miss the iconic Colosseum, the most famous monument of Ancient Rome, and it is now possible to also explore the building’s upper levels as well as the former dungeons. Speak to the Kirker Concierge before you travel to pre-book a ticket which also includes entrance to the adjacent Roman Forum, the heart of the Classical city and still home to some impressive remains. If you have been to Rome before, or are visiting during the heat of summer, head instead into the lush, shaded Borghese Gardens where you will find one the best sculpture galleries in Europe, within an elegant villa.
Day 9: Rome - Vatican Museums
Today, head over to the other side of the Tiber River to explore the Vatican, starting at the Vatican Museums with your pre-booked Kirker entrance ticket, which will help you to avoid the often lengthy queues. The museum complex here is an astonishing treasure trove of art accumulated by the Vatican over many centuries, and is displayed within magnificent interiors, decorated with frescoes and murals – including the famous Gallery of Maps. You will find classical sculptures, masterpieces by Raphael including his magisterial School of Athens, and not forgetting Michelangelo’s interiors of the Sistine Chapel.
Day 10: Return flight
On your final morning there might just be time to stroll down to the Spanish Steps, decorated in spring with swathes of flowers, and to stop for a coffee in the same spot as generations of Grand Tourists, the great Romantic poets such as Keats and Shelley, and discerning travellers today.
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