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Imagine staying in a villa that surrounds a medieval tower right on the Amalfi Coast. A private villa that has been home to Kings and Queens, and combine it with an all-inclusive vacation of a lifetime with incredible sightseeing, private boats, cooking classes, parties with the locals and much more. This is the ultimate Amalfi Coast experience unlike any other.
In the heart of the Amalfi Coast, right on the water between Amalfi and Minori and just below Ravello, sits one of the most iconic medieval towers of the coastline. This has been the home to Princes, Barons, Kings, Queens, and even Jacqueline Kennedy. It is paradise within paradise. It is the ultimate "pinch myself because I must be dreaming" location.
It is the Ravello Castle, a tower built in the 1500's as part of the Amalfi Coast's defenses, around which a breathtaking villa with magnificent gardens, private dock, swimming pool over the cliffs, and stunning panoramic views from every angle await. We have the entire property to ourselves this week.
The villa consists of two buildings built around the tower on the property, with the gardens, terraces and swimming pool between them. There are 3 two-bedroom apartments, 3 one-bedroom apartments, 1 three-bedroom apartment, and 5 hotel-style rooms. 10 of them have balconies or terraces overlooking the Amalfi Coast, and two have long arched windows overlooking the coast.
All rooms have air conditioning, flat screen televisions, mini-fridge, hair dryers, and WIFI Internet (1 or 2 rooms have very weak signals). Each room/apartment has one bathroom with shower (only one has a tub), and all rooms have at least one Queen bed, and most have a second bed as well.
We assign the rooms to our guests as they reserve based on a needs and desires model. That is, we assign the best rooms to the first people to book, while also taking into consideration their needs. For example, if a couple is the first to book, they will get the best 1 bedroom apartment with the nicest balcony, but we will hold off on the 2 and 3 bedrooms for reservations with friends traveling together that need separate bedrooms.
We also take age and physical condition into consideration when we have that information. Like everything on the Amalfi Coast, there are many steps. One room may be just 25 steps from street level, while another is more than 100. Finally, the non balcony rooms are always the last to be assigned for people booking late.
Like most of the Amalfi Coast, we are on the side of a cliff, with the entire property below the road, reaching down to the sea. There is no elevator on the property. From street level, some rooms are as few as 25 stairs, and some are as much as 140 stairs!
It is very important that all of our guests understand that even if they get one of the rooms that is closer to street level, there will still be stairs while walking around the property. For example, when we take the boats to Capri and Positano, you will need to walk all the way down to the water, and all the way back up.
It is a week that embraces Southern Italian cooking, culinary and artistic tradition with some of the most wonderful locations along the Amalfi Coast and Naples area. It is a week of discovery as you integrate into coastal Italian village life, getting to know the locals, shopping with them, dancing and singing with them. Most of all, it is a week of fun, family and laughter as we share what makes Italy so special in a very personal way.
Many people ask us how our locations are different when trying to choose the trip that is best for them. Each of our locations is different not just in the places you see, but in the overall "feel" of the week. For a "Culture Discovery" style trip, the Amalfi coast presents us some great challenges to overcome.
For example, many of our trips are based in places that are off the beaten path, allowing for a uniquely immersive exprience. The Amalfi Coast, however, being a very popular destination, has a large tourism industry built around it. Getting off the beaten path here is difficult, causing a true sense of immersion to be a complicated proposal. Additionally, how do we build a week here and not go to iconic sites like Positano, Capri, Amalfi and Pompeii?
We have found a balance with our Amalfi Coast itinerary that we believe offers our guests the traditional Amalfi Coast experience, while bringing you into the actual lifestyle here in a way that no other tour could. To begin with, our home base is not just a stunning villa on the water, but its location is closer to some of the towns in which a true local lifestyle does still exist.
This is the reason you see us spending more time in the village of Minori than other places. It is not nearly as touristy as places like Amalfi, Positano and Ravello. It is a place where we actually get to know the locals, integrate into their life, and feel like guests rather than tourists. But with that immersion, we also have a more traditional Amalfi Coast experience as we boat around Capri, shop in Amalfi, visit Ravello, and tour Pompeii.
We'll have three half-day completely hands-on cooking classes this week, plus a unique "family cooking experience". Our cooking classes are not demonstrations. They are 100% hands-on. We structure them so that you can be as involved as you wish in every stage of every course we prepare.
With every class, we roll up our sleeves and get wrist deep in making everything fresh, from scratch. During the week, we will be making three kinds of pasta from scratch, a local Ragu recipe, traditional Neapolitan style Pizza, Caponata, Pasta Fazul, Fresh Mozzarella, Lemon Scaloppini, and local desserts like Baba' al Rum, Sfugliatelle pastries, and much more!
For those would rather eat than cook, you are at one of the most coveted spots of the Amalfi Coast. Hang out by the pool, take it all in, or head into town for a stroll. Boredom is not likely to be a problem for anyone!
As we arrive at the villa, we'll help all guests to their home for the week, and give you a couple hours to get settled an rest up. You will find fresh fruit, a bottle of wine, and some extra goodies to make you feel at home as you get ready for the week ahead of us.
In the meantime, under the tower's Pergola, we will have a light buffet available for anyone wanting something a little more substantial.
While there, you can meet Peppe, our chef/instructor for the week. He'll be preparing the dough for our Baba' dessert that will be made in tomorrow's class. You are free to jump in and help if you want to get started with the cooking experience right away!
In the early evening, we will all meet under the pergola for a cocktail reception and get together. We'll spend about an hour getting to know one another as we discuss the week we have planned, answer any questions and get ready to get started.
Next we will board our mini-bus for a very short drive to the coastal village of Minori. We will shop for our cooking class tomorrow.
After shopping, we will make our way on foot to the beautiful "Il Giardiniello" restaurant, where we will have our welcome dinner tonight.
Highlights: Welcome to The Amalfi Coast!
Places: Castello di Ravello, Minori
Foodie experiences: Welcome Reception with Afternoon Cocktails
Dinner: at Ristorante Il Giardiniello
Walking: When we are at the villa, it is important to keep in mind that there are many steps between the street level and the lower levels of the property, so depending on your room, you may have as few as 25 steps, and possibly more than 100. For the evening excursion to Minori, we will be walking roughly 0.4 miles (0.6 km) total, all of which is on flat surfaces and no hills or steps.
Time in Bus: For those being picked up at the Naples airport, the drive will be roughly 1 hour and 20 minutes to the villa. For those meeting us at the Salerno Train station, the ride will be roughly 45 minutes. For the evening, we will simply be going to Minori, which is about 5 minutes in each direction this evening.
Rest Time: Depending on the time you arrive, you may have more or less time to rest once we check in. Those arriving from the airport should have roughly 3 hours to get settled in. Those arriving at the train station will have about an hour and a half before we get started.
Minori is one of the smaller villages along the Amalfi Coast, and thankfully, it is one of the few villages that is not overrun with mass tourism. In other words, it is still real.
We'll take a stroll around the town and visit some of the local shops (butcher, grocer, vegetable store) to do some shopping for tomorrow's cooking class. We'll already be meeting some of the locals we will be getting to know this week.
Breakfast this morning will be served on the main terrace of the villa under the pergola, overlooking the coast. We will have Italian pastries, espresso, cappuccino, etc. for breakfast each morning.
Our Italian cooking class today will be right here at the villa under the pergola with all of is breathtaking views. As we get started, we'll give everyone a quick familiarization of how the classes will go and what we will be making. After you have been given your aprons and recipe books (yours to take home at the end of the week), we will get down to business. We have a huge meal to make for lunch, so we'll not waste much time, especially since our cooking classes are extremely 'hands-on'.
We'll start out by making Caponata together, which will be our appetizer today. Then we will get wrist-deep in dough, as we make three kinds of local pasta: Dunderi', E'Ricci & Cocce (A type of ricotta gnocchi, spaghetti and orichette).
As we continue with our class, we will be making a local recipe for Ragu sauce which we will have with our pasta, as well as Beef & Pork Braciola, Ribs & Sausage in the ragu for our second course.
Our side dish today will be Potatoes Gateau, and finally we will prepare the rum syrup soak for our Baba al Rum (for which we made the pastry yesterday), which will be our dessert.
During the class, we will also begin with the first of a 3 phase process of making Sfugliatelle pastries.
We'll have an hour or two to rest up after lunch, then head up the hill to picturesque Ravello. You can join us for a visit to villa Rufolo and the Duomo, or shop & explore on your own this afternoon.
After a couple hours in Ravello, we will go to the tiny village of Pontone di Scala, where we will be having dinner at the San Giovani restaurant, which has beautiful views from high above, allowing us to marvel at the sunset over Ravello and the Amalfi Coast during dinner.
Dinner tonight will be mostly local seafood based (please contact us in advance if you are non seafood eater for a different menu).
Highlights: Cooking Class Overlooking the Amalfi Coast + and an Afternoon in Ravello
Places: Ravello, Pontone di Scala, Castello di Ravello
Classes: Caponata, Dunderi pasta (from scratch) with Ragu, Beef & Pork Braciola, Ribs & Sausage in Ragu, Potatoes Gateau, Baba al Rum. We will also be making E Ricci & Cocce pasta from scratch to be used another day.
Breakfast: Italian / Continental Breakfast at the villa
Lunch: The meal we prepare in cooking class
Dinner: Ristorante San Giovanni
Walking: You can expect roughly 0.75 miles (1.2 km of walking today in Ravello, plus a very short walk to the restaurant for dinner. There are a few stairs to consider when we go to dinner tonight.
Time in Bus: The drive to Ravello in the afternoon is only 4 miles (6 km), and we will spend about 15 minutes getting there. Form there to dinner is another 2 miles (3 km) that will take 10 min., and back home is another 2.5 miles (4 km), for about 15 min. In all, we will spend about 40 minutes driving today.
Rest Time: Assuming we finish our cooking class and lunch on schedule, we have 2 hours of rest time before the afternoon excursion. However, cooking class times can vary, and lunch always depends on our group. If lunch goes long, the rest time can easily be cut to one hour.
Dunderi', E'Ricci & Cocce Pasta from scratch with ragu sauce
Beef & Pork Braciola, Ribs & Sausage in the ragu
Side: Potatoes Gateau
Baba al Rum
Shrimp w/ Lemon & Arucola
Scialatielli with Zucchini & Scomorza Cheese
Grilled Catch of the Day with Roasted Potatoes
Dessert of the day
After breakfast at the villa, we will take the steps down to our private dock, where we will have a "Gozzo Sorrentino" (The traditional boat of the Amalfi Coast) come pick us up and take us to the island of Capri.
We'll make our way up the Amalfi Coast, viewing the spectacular coastline from the water, until we reach Capri, where we will begin a couple hours navigating around the island and its many beautiful grottos.
We will have some time to relax, swim, and have lunch on the boat.
After lunch, we will head to the marina in Capri, and take the funicular up to the village, where you will have a few hours to spend shopping, strolling, or head over to Anacapri.
In the early evening, we will board our boat once again and make our way home to the villa, where dinner will await us. Tonight we will be having Neapolitan lasagna, salad, and fresh fruit.
Highlights: A Day of the Island of Capri
Places: Capri, Castello di Ravello
Breakfast: Italian / Continental Breakfast at the villa
Lunch: Pannini & Fruit on the boat
Dinner: Dinner at the villa
Walking: Walking today is very much up to you. We will have roughly 3 hours on the island of Capri, during which you will be free to do your own thing. Some will simply find a cafe and take it all in, while others will walk around town for shopping, and others will take a hike.
Time in Boat: There is no time in a bus today, except a very short funicular to get to the piazzetta in Capri. However, we will be spending a considerable amount of time in boats. The boat from our Villa to Capri is about 1 hour, then we will be boating around the island for roughly 2 1/2 hours. Later in the day we will boat back to the Villa, which is another hour. All in all, we will have spent about 4 1/2 hours in the boat today.
Rest Time: Being our first full day out, there is no rest time built into the itinerary in the middle of the day, except the fact that we will be on a boat much of the day.
We'll go to Capri and make some stops in some of the grottoes (including an opportunity to go inside the Blue Grotto), and finally anchor somewhere for a chance to swim as we have a light lunch on our boat.
Pancetta & Eggplant
Smoked Mozzarella & Olives
Wine, Beer, Water
After our morning breakfast, we'll drive toward Naples and head to the ruins of Pompeii, and begin a guided tour of the iconic site.
After our tour of Pompeii, we will grab a quick snack of fried pizza, a popular local favorite, then head back to the villa for lunch.
Lunch today will have been prepared for us by Peppe and Filomena.
After lunch, we we have a little rest before heading back to the Pergola for our second cooking class, which will result in tonight's dinner.
What would a trip to this area be without making PastaFazul? Of course, we'll use one of he fresh pastas we made on Sunday for this one! Our second course will be Eggplant Involtini, and we'll even be making a very unique Chocolate Eggplant Dessert today! Today, we will also prepare phase two of our Sfugliatella the filling and tirare la sfoglia (the preparation of the pastry shell).
Dinner tonight will give us the chance to take in the breathtaking sunset over the water from our splendid location!
Highlights: Pompeii and Our Second Cooking Class & Mozzarella Cheese making!
Places: Pompeii, Castello di Ravello
Classes: PastaFazul (using pasta we made on Sunday), Eggplant involtini, Mozzarella (we will be making from scratch), Chocolate eggplant as dessert. We will also prepare phase two of our Sfugliatella the filling and tirare la sfoglia (the preparation of the pastry shell).
Breakfast: Italian / Continental Breakfast at the villa
Lunch: At the villa
Dinner: The meal we prepare in our cooking class
Walking: Today, you can expect roughly a mile (1.6 km) of walking in Pompeii, much of which is on uneven surfaces with up and downgrades. Pompeii is a challenging proposition for people with walking problems.
Time in Bus: The drive from the villa to Pompeii is 30 miles (48 km), which will take roughly an hour each way.
Rest Time: The excursion to Pompeii can be very exhausting, as the entire time there is under the sun. However, upon our return, we will have 2 1/2 hours of down time, which will include a lunch that awaits us at the villa. Additionally, after that down time, we are still at the villa for a cooking class, so guests can really take it easy today if they desire.
Pompeii is a location that needs no description! The amazing ruins of this city (an UNESCO World Heritage Site) were buried by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 AD, and it is now one of the most popular destinations in all of Italy.
We'll spend a morning here during our Amalfi Coast weeks, with a professional guided tour of the site.
Paccheri alla Genovese (pasta with beef & onion sauce)
Beef alla Genovese with Seasonal Vegetables
Chocolate Eggplant Dessert
Sfugliatelle the filling and tirare la sfoglia for pastry shell
During our class, we will have a visit from a local cheese-maker, and together we will make Mozzarella cheese from scratch.
Some of our mozzarella will be used in today's meal, some we will naturally be eating right there while it is warm, and some we plan to set aside for our pizza class, of course.
We are in the middle of the week, so we have a little down time this morning. For those that want to relax, hang out by the pool, sleep in, or whatever you like. For those that want to stay on the go, we will have a vehicle handy to take you into Amalfi for the morning. Either way, this is a good morning to relax, since it will be a late night.
Lunch today will be prepared for us at the villa.
At around 1:30 PM, we will walk down to our private dock once again and board our "Gozzo Sorrentino" boat, which will take us to Positano for the afternoon.
Excursion and tour fashion house with the owner Cristina and free time.
About a half hour before sunset, we will hop back on our boat and set out to the outer bay, where we will pop open bottles of Proseco for a sunset toast, overlooking Positano and the coast.
BBQ on the beach.
Highlights: An Afternoon in Positano, Proseco Sunset & Beach BBQ
Places: Positano, Amalfi, Conca dei Marini, Castello di Ravello
Meals: Breakfast: Italian / Continental Breakfast at the villa
Lunch: At the villa
Dinner: Grigliata (Beach BBQ) in a cove near Positano
Walking: Once we arrive in Positano, the walk to the designer we will visit is only about 1/3 mile (0.6km), but it will be on an upslope with steps. As you walk around Positano during the ~3 hours of free time, you will see that Positano is built on a rather steep hill, so getting around will involve many hills and steps unless you spend all of your time down near the beach.
Time in Boat: There is no bus time today (unless the seas are too rough to go by boat), but we will be on a boat for about 30 minutes each way today.
Rest Time: Being the middle of the week, we have a large chunk of rest time in the morning for guests to sleep in, spend time at the pool, etc. We won't be leaving the villa today until 1:30 PM, unless you feel like spending some time on your own in Amalfi today. However, because of the beach BBQ, it is likely that we will not return home until around midnight tonight.
Fusilli allo Scoglio (One of the pastas made on Sunday with seafood)
Totani e Patate (cuttle fish with potatoes)
Once we arrive in Positano, we'll take a walk up to "La Bottega di Brunella", one of the last remaining Positano boutiques that not only creates its own designs, but designs its own fabric. This is possibly the most original and acclaimed designer of the iconic Positano fashions.
Here, we will meet Cristina, one of the owners. She will show us behind the scenes all about what they do back in their studio, and for those that are up to it, we'll even do a little fashion show!
After our visit with Cristina, everyone will have a few hours to explore Positano on their own, do some shopping, and snap those photos!
We'll then head to a tiny little cove, where we will have an Italian "Grigliata", essentially and Italian BBQ on the beach.
We'll have candles lit as we grill up dinner with live music under the stars tonight!
After breakfast this morning, we will head into the village of Minori once again to attend their weekly market.
Next we will take a walk to the Carlo Mansi Limoncello factory.
After our visit with Carlo, we will take a short drive to the tiny seaside village of Atrani, where we will have lunch at the A Paranza restaurant.
After a little post-lunch rest at the villa, we will make our way up to the top of the hill above Minori to a friend's villa, which is in a wonderful setting under lemon trees and vines, and with an amazing panoramic view of the coast. Peppe will be waiting for us here as we get started with our Pizza Napoletana class!
This promises to be another wonderful evening as Peppe and Tonino serenade us with their guitars and mandolins, and hopefully the rest of us have learned the words to some of the Neapolitan classics!
Highlights: The Minori Market, Limoncello, and Pizza Napoletana!
Places: Minori, Atrani, Castello di Ravello
Classes: Limoncello, Pizza Napoletana
Breakfast: Italian / Continental Breakfast at the villa
Lunch: Ristorante A Paranza in Atrani
Walking: In the late morning when we go to Minori, there will be very little walking involved, not more than 1/4 mile (500 meters or so). The same goes for lunch. Finally, in the afternoon when we have our pizza class, we will have a bit of a challenge for those with walking issues. We will be high above Minori at a private villa. From the place we can park our minibus, there will be roughly 150 stairs to get to the villa.
Time in Bus: In the morning, we will simply be going to Minori, which is about 5 minutes. For lunch we will be going to Atrani, which is about about 2 miles away (3 km) - a 10 minute drive. Then back to the villa (5 minutes), and back into Minori for the evening (5 minutes). The total driving time for the day is about 35 minutes
Rest Time: Today is a fairly leisurely day. We get a late start at about 10:00 AM, and stay very close to home. We are doing some basic shopping at the weekly market, then a short Limoncello class, followed by a leisurely lunch. We should have between 1 1/2 and 2 hours of rest time at the villa between lunch and our pizza class. Furthermore, the pizza class is at a very relaxing villa overlooking the Amalfi coast.
We'll visit the local vegetable stands to shop for the ingredients we will be needing for pizza class tonight, and give everyone some time to browse the market on their own.
Carlo Mansi Limoncello factory. This tiny producer of limoncello is known locally to be the best of the best, and we will quickly find out why.
But not only will we taste his limoncello, but we will make it with him today, learning what makes his limoncello so unique.
We'll get our limoncello started here, and tomorrow we will bring home some of what we made (along with the instructions for making the finished product since Limoncello takes time).
Pizza Napoletana is considered to be the best of the best when it comes to pizza, and it is truly different than all other pizza you find in Italy.
We'll be preparing the dough, and each of us will make our own individual pizza plus some other traditional favorites.
Finally, we will pass to phase three of the sfugliatella we have been working on all week! Fill and bake and above all eat!
After breakfast today, we will head to Amalfi and visit an ancient paper mill in town. We will have a tour and experience making paper.
Next, we will have a little free time for visiting Amalfi and shopping in town.
At around 12:30, we will take a drive up in the hills to the mountain village of Tramonti, famous for its centuries old vineyards. We will have a wine tour, wine cellar visit, wine tasting, and lunch.
After lunch, we will head back to the villa, where you will have some time to get a little packing done before our farewell dinner.
Dinner tonight is not quite a class, and not quite served dinner. Instead, it is a family cooking experience. We will be there with many of our new friends (guests and locals) as we prepare dinner together. Everyone chips in here and there. Tonight's dinner is based on Amalfi Coast Lemons.
As has become our custom by now, Peppe and Tonino are sure to break out the mandolin and guitar for another, final evening music, singing and dancing, until we meet again!
Highlights: Amalfi, a Paper Mill, Tramonti Wines, & Our Lemon Dinner
Places: Amalfi, Tramonti, Castello di Ravello
Classes: Family Cooking Experience
Breakfast: Italian / Continental Breakfast at the villa
Lunch: Tenuta San Francesco Winery
Dinner: Farewell Dinner at the villa
Walking: There will be very little necessary walking in Amalfi today, except time that you spend on your own shopping and browsing. You can estimate roughly a half a mile (0.6 km) total.
Time in Bus: The drive to Amalfi is only 1.25 miles (2 km), taking about 5 minutes. The drive to the winery is about 13 miles (20 km), but it is up mountain roads, so it will take about 35 minutes each way today.
Rest Time: We will have roughly 2 hours of rest time between lunch at the winery and our final cooking experience. Also note that cooking tonight is not a traditional class, but rather a family cooking experience at the villa, so it will be very laid back.
We'll have a tour, learning how they have made paper for centuries, and try our hand at making paper ourselves.
We'll be visiting the San Francesco winery here, tour the vineyards (and see one vine that is over 700 years old!), visit their wine cellar, and have a lunch with the family that runs the winery with a full tasting of their wonderful wines.
We'll be making a Citrus salad, Tagliolini al limone, Scaloppini al limone, Potatoes sfruguliate, and finally Bab soaked in Limoncello syrup.
We do all-inclusive weeks, so we make sure there is always something to do, but we design the weeks so that you can opt-in or opt-out of just about everything. So when we are not cooking, there is always some sort of excursion going on, or you can just relax back at home and soak up that awe-inspiring view and lay out by the pool.
Most rarely opt out of the excursions, because they are pretty amazing and unique! We'll be visiting Positano, Amalfi, Ravello, Minori, Tramonti, a Day of the Island of Capri, and and outing to Pompeii. Moreover, they are not mere sightseeing trips, but they are true culture discovery.
On the day we go to Positano, we go by private boat from our private dock. We get to know a local designer of Positano's iconic fashions, and we end the day with a "Grigliata" (Italian BBQ) on the beach in a tiny cove off the coast.
On the day we go to Tramonti, we visit a family vineyard with vines as old as 500+ years, then join the family for lunch. While in Minori, we make Limoncello with Carletto, owner of a small Limoncello factory. The list goes on, and these are all experiences we trust you will never forget.
The weather can be unpredictable, and some things on our itinerary simply cannot be done in certain weather conditions. For example, on the day we go to Capri, and the day we go to Positano, if the sea conditions are not right for boating, we simply cannot boat.
In the case of Capri, we will do everything in our power to reorganize the week and do Capri on another day, but sometimes it just is not in the cards. In the case of Positano, we may need to go there by bus instead of boat, in which case the Proseco at sunset on the water has to be canceled and the BBQ becomes a dinner in a restaurant.
Unfortunately, we cannot control what we cannot control, but please know that we do everything our power to make everything happen. There are, however, some things that we may change from time to time that are within our control.
For example, there may be a special festival event happening in a nearby town. Or we may have a unique opportunity to participate in local activities, such as harvesting. These are often the kinds of things that come up on the fly with a phone call. They are rare, but they do happen.
These are the times that we make a call based on our experience, because if we look for a unanimous vote among the guests on something they cannot imagine until they have experienced, we will never get a consensus.
An example of this happens on our Tuscany trips in the Autumn. We may get a call telling us we can go harvest wine grapes. When that happens, we always cancel whatever we were doing that day and go harvest.
Our reasoning is simple: Our name is "Culture Discovery", and we are all about unique experiences that you would never be able to otherwise have. You can visit that town on the itinerary again, but when will you have the chance to harvest those Tuscan grapes?
This very exclusive week-long vacation will consist of a very small and intimate group of no more than 18 people. It is an all-inclusive experience that offers a wonderful mixture of some of the Amalfi Coast's highlights with some truly off-the-beaten-path treasures unique to the area. As people drive up and down the Amalfi Coast, the views are naturally breathtaking, but there are a few locations that really stick out.
One of these is a tower built in the 1500's at the edge of a cliff just south of Amalfi and Ravello. The tower, with its surrounding villa has been home to the Princess of Marsicanovo, the Barons of Campagna, King Vittorio Emanuele III, and Queen Elena. Today it belongs to Prince Don Luigi d'Angerio, who refers to it as "Caroline's Tower" after a stay here by Jaqueline Kennedy with her daughter Caroline as a child in 1962.
The tower is surrounded by breathtaking gardens, a stunning villa with 12 apartments and rooms, each with independent entrance and breathtaking views, and a pool that hangs out above the coastline. It is one of the more photographed spots along the coast and it is all ours this week. It is such a stunning location that we feel confident that once our guests see it, the rest of the itinerary for the week simply won't matter.
Most of the week we are at sea level, except the day we go to the winery, which is 1,000 feet above sea level. We are right in the heart of the Amalfi Coast, and right on the cliffs with our own private dock. The villa is located 1 mile (1.6 km) north-east of Amalfi, and 0.8 miles (1.3 km) south-west of Minori. While sitting at the villa, look right up the hill, and you are looking at Ravello.
We are all about food & wine, and if there is one comment we hear more than any other from our guests throughout our weeks, it is "I can't eat another bite". Unlike so many other tour companies out there, we take a very artisanal approach to what we do.
We do everything we can to get away from the touristy places that serve substandard tourist fare, and o where the locals do. And when we do, we always opt for the local specialties. After all, if a place is famous amongst the locals for a certain dish, it is a pretty safe bet, and it always works!