Destination: Europe

Our list of articles tagged with "Europe."

September 17, 2020

The Best of Belgium, including Brussels, Bruges, Ghent & Antwerp

Belgium offers travelers much more than great beer, chocolate and waffles. It also has the atmospheric medieval towns of Bruges and Ghent, the vibrant modern cities of Brussels and Antwerp, incredible art masterpieces by van Eyck and Rubens, beautiful Art Nouveau landmarks, numerous UNESCO World Heritage sites, fascinating military history and excellent contemporary cuisine. Here […]

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July 15, 2020

A Visit to the Franciscan Church & Monastery in Dubrovnik, Croatia

One of our favorite historic places for a private tour in Dubrovnik, Croatia, is the Franciscan Church and Monastery, a 14th-century complex that’s a microcosm of the city’s cultural and artistic heritage. The still-active monastery has a celebrated Romanesque cloister, an impressive library and one of the world’s oldest continuously operating pharmacies.

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July 7, 2020

Must Visit: Municipal House Cafe in Prague

The Municipal House is one of Prague’s most beautiful historic buildings and a must for anyone who loves architecture and interiors. A coffee and cake break at the cafe is a must when in Prague.

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June 21, 2020

Meals We’re Dreaming of Around the World

One of the things we love about traveling is the food! Here are some of the meals and culinary treats that Artisans of Leisure travel experts are dreaming about for when we’re able to travel again.

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May 1, 2020

Helsinki: Top 10 Design & Architecture Sites

Helsinki, Finland, is a beautiful city with a rich architectural and design history, especially from the last 100 years or so. Here are a few of our favorite Helsinki design and architecture landmarks.

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February 9, 2020

A Luxurious Honeymoon in Greece

Artisans of Leisure travel expert Maria Merrill shares her favorite luxury resorts and top cultural, scenic and culinary highlights from  her recent honeymoon in Greece.

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December 12, 2019

Must Visit: Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen

Tivoli Gardens is one of the world’s oldest theme parks and an enduring landmark in the heart of Copenhagen, a must-see during any visit to the city. Artisans of Leisure arranges tickets, transportation and restaurant reservations for travelers on our private, luxury tours of Denmark.

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November 18, 2019

Wine and Truffles in Piedmont, Italy

We just returned from a food and wine immersion tour in Piedmont, Italy’s northwest region famous for white truffles, the Alba Truffle Festival, Barolo and Barbaresco wine, and the Slow Food movement.

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October 16, 2019

Must Visit: Delphi in Greece

The spectacular archaeological complex at Delphi is one of the most impressive ancient sites in Greece and a must-visit with one of our private expert guides.

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September 24, 2019

Norway’s Atlantic Road

Artisans of Leisure arranges private excursions to Norway’s spectacular Atlantic Road, an incredible off-the-beaten-path experience.

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July 31, 2019

Italy: The Best of the Dolomites

Artisans of Leisure arranges private luxury tours in the Dolomites, including hiking, food and wine experiences, and the most interesting cultural touring.

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May 20, 2019

Iconic Image: Santorini

Few images evoke summer like the whitewashed houses, blue domed-churches and spectacular scenery of Santorini. One of the most beautiful islands in the Aegean, it offers incredible cultural touring, luxurious resorts and outstanding food and wine.

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May 10, 2019

Munich: Quintessential Germany

Artisans of Leisure arranges private in-depth cultural and scenic touring in and around Munich, Bavaria’s capital city and major European cultural powerhouse.

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April 24, 2019

Just Back: The Best of Paris, Provence and the Cote d’Azur

Enjoy this interview with Ashley Isaacs Ganz, the founder of Artisans of Leisure, about her recent France tour that included Paris, Provence and the Cote d’Azur–some of our favorite destinations during the glorious summer months. Q: Where did you visit on this trip? A: We started in Paris, where we stayed at the iconic Ritz Paris. […]

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April 12, 2019

Iconic Tuscany

Artisans of Leisure’s bespoke private tours of Tuscany feature highlights of this iconic region, including ancient hill top towns, incredible art, renowned food and wine, and luxurious countryside resorts.

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December 28, 2018

Soaking in Budapest’s Thermal Baths

Soaking in Budapest’s legendary thermal baths is a wonderful way to experience the local culture. Artisans of Leisure arranges tickets to the top thermal baths in Budapest, including the Gellert, Szechenyi and others.

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November 1, 2018

Ashley Isaacs Ganz on The Best of Ireland

We asked Artisans of Leisure founder and CEO Ashley Isaacs Ganz to share some favorite experiences in Ireland based on her most recent visit to this beautiful country. Read more about her tour and the best of Ireland. Q.) Tell us about your trip. Where did you go? I traveled all over the country, and I also […]

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October 19, 2018

Exclusive Access to Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte in France

For travelers wanting a unique and very special day trip from Paris, consider visiting exquisite Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte, the privately owned palace and gardens that were the inspiration for Versailles. Artisans of Leisure arranges exclusive private tours of the chateau with the owners, as well as elegant lunches, dinners or cocktails in the lavish interiors. […]

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October 1, 2018

Alesund: An Art Nouveau Jewel in Norway

Built on a series of small islands in an archipelago in the fjord region, Alesund is a jewel in Norway known for its beautiful Art Nouveau architecture and proximity to one of the country’s most famous fjords, Geirangerfjord. Artisans of Leisure arranges in-depth private cultural and scenic touring in and around Alesund. Devastated by a […]

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June 18, 2018

History, Food, Crafts, Jewish Touring and More in Poland

Many travelers are aware that Poland is a wonderful destination for culture, history and Jewish heritage. But they may not realize that the country also has beautiful decorative arts, delicious food, vibrant cities and charming traditional villages. The newly opened Raffles Europejski Warsaw hotel is the capital’s most luxurious hotel and the perfect base for […]

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May 18, 2018

Vacation like Royalty at Cliveden

The sumptuous interiors, beautiful gardens and extensive grounds at Cliveden make this one of our favorite properties in the London area, conveniently located near Heathrow Airport and Windsor Castle, and a fitting choice for Meghan Markle, who will spend the night before the Royal Wedding at the historic property with her mother.

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March 15, 2018

A Private Day Tour to Capri

The idyllic island of Capri makes for an ideal day trip from the Amalfi Coast, with the chance to enjoy beautiful scenery, tour the historic highlights, savor local cuisine, shop for specialty goods and more.

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August 30, 2017

Postcard from Sicily

Few images evoke a sense of summer like a shot of the breathtaking blue waters off the Italian coast. In Sicily, short hikes along the coast–through beautiful nature preserves–lead to secluded beaches where locals and visitors flock to enjoy the sun. Our private Italy tours feature the best of the country’s gorgeous coastal regions, including […]

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May 19, 2017

Just Back: Keukenhof

Spring at the Keukenhof in Holland is an explosion of vibrant color. More than seven million tulips, daffodils, hyacinths and other flowers fill this renowned 79-acre (32-hectare) garden outside Amsterdam. We recently returned from a visit to the Keukenhof at peak bloom, and it was a sight to behold. Patchworks of pink and purple, fields […]

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February 13, 2017

Interview: An Incredible Around-the-World Tour

Artisans of Leisure travel specialist, Abbey Chase, recently spent a year traveling around the world—in style. Some of the highlights of her incredible tour included visiting more than 80 UNESCO World Heritage Sites, a sunrise hot air balloon ride over Bagan, a helicopter tour of Siem Reap, a private tea ceremony in Kyoto, a river […]

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January 9, 2017

Decorative Arts at the Opulent Palace Residences of Seville

Artisans of Leisure arranges visits to private homes and important, formerly private residences in destinations around the world. Such visits are a great way to learn about local history, experience exceptional architecture, and see impressive collections of art and decorative arts–they also often provide a fascinating peek into the lifestyles and personal whims of their inhabitants. A […]

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January 6, 2017

Oplontis: An Undiscovered Archaeological Gem in Southern Italy

Close to Naples and the Amalfi Coast, Oplontis is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with some of the most interesting yet least known ruins in southern Italy. Oplontis was once a cluster of villas on the outskirts of Pompeii and was also buried under ash after the infamous 79 A.D. eruption of Mount Vesuvius. Though […]

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January 6, 2017

Top Luxury Tours for the New Year

The beginning of the New Year is an ideal time for making travel plans for the year ahead. Here are some of our most recommended Artisans of Leisure luxury tours for inspiration! For Foodies… Vietnam for Foodies Highlights of Puglia Food & Wine of Portugal Culinary Tour of Israel Exclusive England: Country Estates, Gourmet Food […]

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December 12, 2016

Must Experience: Truffle Hunting in Italy

Italy abounds in gastronomic treasures, but perhaps none is more highly prized than white truffles. Travelers visiting the Piedmont region in October and November—prime white truffle season— can see and taste the best of the best at the Alba International White Truffle Fair. We arrange for our travelers to visit the fair, and we also […]

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November 16, 2016

Exclusive Tours of The Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia

St. Petersburg, Russia, is a must for anyone interested in art and design. Beautiful palaces and museums in the former imperial capital overflow with incredible art treasures. The most renowned of these is the State Hermitage Museum, a mind-boggling art collection housed in the pistachio-green-and-white Winter Palace and adjoining structures built by the Romanov czars. […]

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September 20, 2016

Jewish Heritage Tours of Poland

Poland has a deep Jewish history that goes back centuries. Before World War II, 3.3 million Jews lived in Poland, making it home to one of the largest Jewish communities in the world. The Nazis nearly destroyed all of this during WWII and the horrific and tragic Holocaust. However, Poland’s two most interesting cities—Warsaw and […]

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August 12, 2016

Akrotiri Archaeological Site on Santorini, Greece

When most people think of the beautiful volcanic island of Santorini in Greece, they think of terraces of whitewashed houses clinging to the steep sides of the caldera or cliffside pools with dreamy views of the Aegean Sea far below. In the southern part of the island is another sight that visitors shouldn’t miss: the […]

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July 26, 2016

The Douro Valley and Porto, Portugal

Portugal’s dramatic Douro Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage Site of steep hills covered in vineyards extending down, row by row, to the Douro River. The planting patterns form intricate designs in the hills, which are best viewed during a slow cruise up the river in a vintage wooden boat. Between the vineyard terraces, the […]

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July 10, 2016

Flowers in Holland: Keukenhof and Aalsmeer

When many people think of Holland (the Netherlands), they automatically think of tulips. Since first being imported from Turkey in the middle of the 16th century, tulips have thrived in Holland, becoming one of the country’s most important sights and industries. During the Dutch Golden Age in the 17th century, tulips were an essential possession […]

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May 24, 2016

The Rich Culinary Heritage of Genoa, Italy

Genoa, a port town in the Liguria region of northern Italy, may not be the first city that comes to mind when thinking of culinary destinations in Italy, but that means fewer tourists and lots of hidden gems. Genoa’s culinary tradition is rich and vibrant. The city is best-known as the birthplace of pesto, but […]

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February 18, 2016

Carcassonne: An Ideal Stop between Barcelona and the South of France

When traveling between Barcelona, Spain, and destinations in southern France, such as Provence and the Cote d’Azur, we highly recommend a stop in Carcassonne.    A spectacular fortified city, Carcassonne sits atop a strategic hill above the Aude River in the Languedoc-Roussillon region of southern France. From afar, the scale of the city, with its fairy-tale […]

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February 3, 2016

Insider Iceland: Interview with an Iceland Travel Expert

Iceland has been one of our most popular destinations since we launched our private Iceland tours. Luke Pyenson, one of our Iceland travel specialists, has visited the country several times and closely studied its tourism industry while in graduate school. We chatted with Luke about what makes the island so compelling, and why he can’t stop […]

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January 15, 2016

Sintra, Portugal: A Favorite Excursion from Lisbon

The town of Sintra, about 30 minutes west of Lisbon, is rarely described without some mention of the word “fairy-tale.” It’s easy to see why. Tucked into verdant hills and overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, Sintra is awash in over-the-top castles and estates with design elements both fanciful and mysterious. These unique structures and their related […]

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January 11, 2016

Where Do You Want to Go This Year?

The start of the New Year is a great time to finalize travel plans for the next 12 months. Plan Something Wonderful… Here are some of our favorite tours for the coming year: • Luxuries of Switzerland & Italy • Classic Argentina • Highlights of India • Best of Vietnam & Cambodia • Highlights of Spain & Portugal • Classic South […]

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December 31, 2015

Delicious and Hearty Winter Food in Central Europe

Woodsy foraged mushrooms, roast goose with dumplings (above), foie gras, grilled sausages, braised cabbage, dill, sour cream, paprika—these are some of the things that make Central Europe such a satisfying place to eat, particularly over the winter months. Though not always thought of as leading food and drink destinations, cities such as Budapest, Prague, Krakow […]

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December 28, 2015

Must Stay: Chateau la Cheneviere in Normandy

Many of our private France tours include a stay at Chateau la Cheneviere, a wonderful luxury hotel in the heart of Normandy.  Situated in a beautifully restored 18th-century chateau surrounded by expansive grounds, the hotel makes a perfect base for exploring the region, including highlights such as the D-Day beaches, Mont-Saint-Michel, the Bayeux Tapestry, the […]

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December 4, 2015

Iconic Image: Winter Light at Harpa Concert Hall in Reykjavik, Iceland

Stunningly beautiful Iceland is known for its unique, otherworldly landscapes including rugged hills, icy blue glaciers and black-sand beaches. But Iceland’s stylish capital city, Reykjavik, is also home to impressive cultural attractions, such as Harpa, the magnificent concert hall designed in part by Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson and opened in 2011. The mesmerizing glass-paneled facade […]

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December 3, 2015

Luxury Travel Gift Ideas: One-of-a-kind Private Tours

Need ideas for unique luxury gifts? Give the gift of travel! Artisans of Leisure arranges exclusive, bespoke private tours around the world. Here’s some inspiration for the ultimate one-of-a-kind luxury travel gift for everyone on your list: FOR THE FAMILY… Highlights of Italy Family Tour of Australia Family Tour of Peru Family Tour of England FOR A […]

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November 29, 2015

Exclusive Experience: A Private Tour of the Strahov Library in Prague

Some of our favorite places to visit around the world are libraries, with their collections of unique objects, rare manuscripts, and beautiful works of art that are lesser known yet no less impressive than their counterparts in busy museums. In Prague, Artisans of Leisure arranges private tours of the magnificent Strahov Library, part of the […]

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November 6, 2015

Exclusive New Culinary Tours

Artisans of Leisure has been on the cutting edge of culinary travel for over a decade. Staffed by a group of in-house foodies, food writers, cooks and culinary travel experts, we continue to expand our culinary tours around the world. With an international network of culinary experts, acclaimed chefs, food historians and writers, Artisans of […]

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October 27, 2015

Christmas Markets in Europe

We love visiting European cities during the holiday season, especially to visit the wonderful Christmas markets that take place throughout the region. The markets—which showcase local holiday traditions, seasonal cuisine, and regional crafts—are an amazing way to join in the local holiday cheer. Many cities in Europe—from Salzburg, Austria to Waterford, Ireland—have Christmas markets. Some […]

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October 19, 2015

Must Stay: La Bastide de Gordes in Provence

The South of France is a perennial favorite destination for Artisans of Leisure travelers. This year, we’re excited about the reopening of La Bastide de Gordes, a sophisticated hotel and spa that offers luxury and style in the heart of Provence. Perched on the steep slopes of Gordes, a beautiful and ancient Provencal hill town, […]

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September 9, 2015

Just Back: Expo Milan 2015 – A Must For Architecture Lovers

Artisans of Leisure founder and CEO Ashley Isaacs Ganz just returned from a trip to Italy that included a stop at Expo Milan 2015, an ambitious World’s Fair focused on food. While the many international delicacies on offer were a highlight, the stunning architecture of the national pavilions left the biggest impression. At the top, geometric […]

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September 6, 2015

Hiking along the Caldera in Santorini

The Greek island of Santorini is one of the world’s most stunningly beautiful destinations.  A prehistoric volcanic eruption formed the unique topography of Santorini. In fact, the island’s western coast is actually the rim of a partially submerged caldera, or crater. For active travelers, hiking a scenic path along the edge of the caldera is […]

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August 4, 2015

Food Obsession: Halloumi

Whenever we travel, we’re on the lookout for halloumi: a salty Cypriot cheese often griddled or grilled until crispy and golden brown. Halloumi can be very difficult to find in the United States, but it’s wildly popular in some of our favorite travel destinations: Greece, Turkey and Lebanon, especially, but also cities like London, Berlin […]

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June 18, 2015

Chateau Mcely in the Czech Countryside

For travelers wanting a luxurious tour of Central Europe that includes ample time to relax, we arrange a stay at Chateau Mcely, a romantic spa hotel and resort in the beautiful Czech countryside. The hotel’s sprawling, English-style grounds (and the adjacent St. George Forest) offer plenty of spots for nature walks, bike rides and garden […]

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June 5, 2015

An Interview with the Duchess of Palma di Montechiaro, a Cooking Instructor in Palermo, Sicily

A great way to get to know the delicious and fascinating cuisine of Sicily is through a hands-on cooking class. One of our favorite cooking instructors is Nicoletta Polo Lanza Tomasi, the Duchess of Palma di Montechiaro, who conducts lessons at her beautiful 18th-century palazzo by the sea in Palermo. (The palazzo was once the home of Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, author of the classic Sicilian novel The Leopard and the adoptive father of Tomasi’s husband, Gioacchino.)

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May 28, 2015

Plan Now: Dream Summer Trips

From summer festivals in Japan to al fresco dining and luxury seaside resorts in the Mediterranean, summer is a wonderful time to travel in many of our destinations. Need ideas for an amazing last-minute vacation? We’ve selected a few of our favorite tours that are sure to inspire: • Journey Through Italy • Best of Ireland & […]

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May 11, 2015

Notes from Our Travelers: Mother’s Day in Giverny, France

We just received the following message and photos from Artisans of Leisure travelers in France. They had a private tour through beautiful Normandy, where they visited the historic city of Rouen and Monet’s house and gardens in Giverny, among other places: “The day in Giverny and Rouen was PERFECT!  Mother’s Day . . .  Perfect […]

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May 1, 2015

Another Reason to Visit Germany: the Food

Germany has a rich and varied cuisine that extends far beyond pretzels and sausages. Informal pubs, lively markets and white-tablecloth restaurants are among the many facets of Germany’s dynamic food scene. Treats such as mohnschnecken (poppy seed “snails”) and Berliners (jelly donuts, also known as krapfen or pfannkuchen in different parts of the country) are […]

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April 26, 2015

Top Picks for Scandinavia & the Baltic States Tours

We’ve recently launched new private tours featuring the very best of Scandinavia and the Baltic States. This is one of our favorite parts of the world, and we’re excited to offer tours that incorporate our unique expertise and perspective on Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. The comprehensive private tours include exclusive access […]

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March 12, 2015

A Visit to the Iittala Glass Factory in Finland

One of our favorite excursions from Helsinki is to the Iittala glass factory. We can arrange a private tour of the factory to watch artisans creating the glass vases, tableware and objets d’art that are synonymous with modern Finnish design. This tour is especially recommended for collectors of Oiva Toikka—designed Iittala annual birds, eggs and other works of art. All of the vases designed by master Finnish architect Alvar Aalto, including the iconic Savoy vase, are made in the main factory.

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March 3, 2015

Dublin for Foodies

Dublin’s fabulous culinary scene is finally gaining the recognition it deserves. In recent years, restaurants, bars and markets in the Irish capital have taken a renewed interest in top local products from the surrounding land and sea, resulting in many intriguing eating and drinking options. We always enjoy visiting Dublin cheesemongers to try favorite Irish […]

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February 19, 2015

Private Cooking Classes in Puglia

We love Puglia for its excellent local cuisine, whitewashed villages, outdoor activities, sandy beaches, luxurious hotels, and interesting culture and history. A highlight of our private tours in Puglia is a private cooking class. Puglian cooking is distinct from other Italian regional cuisines in its simplicity and fascinating Greek, Middle Eastern and North African influences.

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February 13, 2015

Beautiful Lake Como, Italy

We love returning year after year to Lake Como, one of our favorite destinations in Italy. Villa d’Este is our preferred lakeside hotel. A classic grand hotel in the European tradition, it’s perfect for both families and seekers of Old World romance. We love its immaculately manicured gardens, excellent restaurants, clay tennis courts and the […]

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February 11, 2015

Must Experience: A Private Tour of Iceland’s Golden Circle

Artisans of Leisure arranges private Iceland tours including Reykjavik and the Golden Circle. Visit Geysir geothermal area, Strokkur geyser, Gullfoss waterfall, Thingvellir National Park UNESCO site. Diving, farm visits, hiking also. Iceland tours, luxury Iceland tours

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February 5, 2015

Just Back: Seville

We have just returned from Seville, Spain. Located in the Andalusia region of southern Spain, Seville has gorgeous Moorish gardens and unique Mudejar architecture. Our private luxury tours feature the best of the city.

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January 9, 2015

An Interview with our Newest Food, Culture and Travel Expert: Luke Pyenson

The newest member of the Artisans of Leisure team is Luke Pyenson. Read on and you’ll see why! Q: What got you started traveling? My whole family loves to travel, in particular my grandmother, who has been all over the world. Growing up, I would hear stories from her or my parents about various far-flung […]

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January 5, 2015

Hiking in El Torcal, Spain

El Torcal Natural Park Reserve is one of our favorite off-the-beaten-track destinations in Spain, especially for hikers or anyone interested in spectacular scenery. A craggy, otherworldly landscape of eroded limestone karsts on a high plateau, El Torcal was formed millions of years ago during the Jurassic Period, when the area was under the sea. In […]

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December 30, 2014

Must Visit: Rosendals Tradgard in Stockholm, Sweden

If you want to experience Stockholm as the locals do, we recommend visiting Rosendals Tradgard, one of our favorite places in the Swedish capital. Located on the leafy island of Djurgarden—which is also home to major cultural sites such as the Vasa Museet and the Skansen open-air museum—Rosendals is a large garden and one of […]

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December 4, 2014

The Ultimate Gift: One-of-a-kind Tours for Everyone on Your List

This holiday season, spoil family members and friends with the ultimate gift of an Artisans of Leisure tour. Here’s a selection of new tours and perennial favorites that are sure to inspire and delight every sophisticated traveler on your list: • For foodies… Who wouldn’t want to eat their way through a Vietnam for Foodies tour, […]

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November 10, 2014

Letter From a Mother: Don’t Wait to Travel with Your Children

We were touched and honored to read this letter from the mother of a family that travels regularly with Artisans of Leisure. We hope you enjoy reading about how traveling together has become such an important part of their lives. As my eldest daughter enters her senior year of high school, with her two sisters not […]

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November 9, 2014

Must Visit: Milan Expo 2015 (A World’s Fair in Italy)

Italy is adding another must-see destination to its already long list with the Milan Expo, which runs May 1–Oct 31, 2015. This World’s Fair explores the theme of “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life” in individual country pavilions, as well as group pavilions with displays related to cacao, coffee, rice, spices and other foods. In […]

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October 7, 2014

Notes from Our Travelers: A Romantic and Luxurious Honeymoon in Switzerland

Many of our travelers ask us to plan trips that celebrate some of the most important moments in their lives, including spectacular customized honeymoons. We were delighted to plan a private tour of Switzerland for Brian and Allison Reichenbach, newlyweds who have generously allowed us to share their photos on our blog. The honeymooners started […]

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October 3, 2014

Spain Through the Eyes of a Sixth-Grader

More and more Artisans of Leisure travelers want their private tours to include activities based on their passions. One such traveler is Derek S., an energetic sixth-grader who loves soccer. Last spring break, Derek’s parents surprised him with an Artisans of Leisure private tour of Spain that included Madrid, Barcelona, Toledo and Valencia. To help […]

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June 5, 2014

Must Stay: Park Hyatt Vienna

The Park Hyatt Vienna is a great hotel option for travelers wanting luxury and contemporary style in the heart of the Austrian capital. Set in a grand historic building in one of our favorite neighborhoods of this culturally rich city, the Park Hyatt is just steps from St. Stephen’s Cathedral, major museums and historic attractions, […]

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April 16, 2014

The New Faberge Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia

Travelers who appreciate the finest craftsmanship will be happy to know that Artisans of Leisure arranges tours of the outstanding Faberge Museum, which recently opened inside the restored 18th-century Shuvalov Palace in St. Petersburg, Russia. The museum contains more than 1,500 objects crafted by the legendary Faberge workshop, including the nine imperial eggs once owned […]

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April 2, 2014

Top 10: Favorite Breakfasts around the World

We always enjoy experiencing how different cultures approach the most important meal of the day. Here are a few of our favorites: 1.) Breakfast at a cave hotel in Cappadocia, Turkey We love sitting on the hotel terrace and taking in views of the fantastical rock formations of this beautiful region while eating a classic […]

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February 20, 2014

Exclusive New Sicily Tours for Foodies, Culture Lovers and More

Lunch with a duchess in her seaside palazzo. A private cooking lesson with a renowned Sicilian cookbook author. Meeting a member of the Italian royalty and touring her exquisite Mediterranean garden. These are a few of the exclusive culinary and cultural experiences included in our all-new 2014 private Sicily tours. The tours define the best of […]

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February 13, 2014

Must Try: Private Yoga Lessons When Traveling

If you love yoga, or if you have always wanted to try yoga, consider incorporating it into a private tour. Artisans of Leisure can arrange expert-led private yoga sessions in many of our destinations, including a sunrise session among ancient ruins in India, one-on-one lessons at spa retreats in the Himalayas, a beach side yoga […]

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January 25, 2014

Read the latest Artisans of Leisure luxury travel newsletter

The latest Artisans of Leisure newsletter is now online. It’s full of inspiring travel ideas and photos, including: Where Do You Want to Go in 2014? – A few of the dream destinations our travel advisers are hoping to visit this year Exclusive Thailand in Photos (slideshow) – A slideshow of some of our favorite […]

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January 8, 2014

A Winter Getaway to Zurich and St. Moritz

We recently returned from a winter getaway to Zurich and St. Moritz, Switzerland. Based at the luxurious Dolder Grand and Badrutt’s Palace hotels, we enjoyed the best of both cities. Here are a few favorite places and experiences from our trip: The Dolder Grand is the perfect luxury retreat in Zurich. We love the light and […]

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November 29, 2013

Iconic Experience: Visiting a Pub in Ireland

Experiencing pub culture is a quintessential experience when traveling in Ireland. Large or small, modern and elegant or centuries-old, these neighborhood bars serve as community living rooms, where friends and family gather to socialize or enjoy a hearty meal. We love that wherever we are in Ireland we can stop in a local pub, order […]

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October 17, 2013

Our Latest Luxury Travel Newsletter

Be sure to visit our website to read the latest Artisans of Leisure newsletter. It’s full of inspiring travel ideas and photos, including: Just Back: Holland, Belgium & Paris (slideshow) Just Back: The Best of Vietnam (slideshow) Ireland for Families New Zealand: Luxury, Landscapes & Lifestyle Insider Venice & Florence Festive Season in Europe Our Newest […]

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September 24, 2013

Thanksgiving Abroad: Unique Trips Families Will Love

The Thanksgiving holiday is an ideal time for a quick overseas getaway with family or friends. It’s also a great way to celebrate the tradition in a creative way. Artisans of Leisure’s private, customized Thanksgiving tours combine in-depth cultural touring with the best of the season, such as fall foliage, special cultural performances and holiday […]

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August 15, 2013

A Jewish Tour of Krakow, Poland

Krakow is a compact, UNESCO World Heritage-listed city filled with culture and history, including some of the most interesting Jewish touring in Poland. Before World War II, a quarter of Krakow’s population was Jewish, and many important buildings related to Jewish life still exist in the city. The Kazimierz neighborhood, the historical center of Krakow’s […]

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August 7, 2013

Amsterdam: Our Top 10 Recommendations

Amsterdam is an incredibly rich cultural destination with world-renowned museums, beautiful canals lined with gabled buildings, and a dynamic social milieu. The city is also an ideal base for touring the many other interesting places in the Netherlands, such as Delft, Maastricht and The Hague. Here are our top 10 most recommended experiences in and […]

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June 14, 2013

Private Scandinavia Tours

Our private Scandinavia tours bring the Artisans of Leisure style of travel to Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Iceland. Here are a few of our favorite destinations and activities in the region. Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, is a wonderful introduction to Scandinavia. The beautiful city is built on several islands, and we usually recommend taking […]

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April 29, 2013

An Interview with Emeric Harney of Harney & Sons Fine Teas

We recently caught up with Emeric Harney of Harney & Sons Fine Teas to discuss tea, travel, fashion, food and more. Q: What makes Harney & Sons unique? A: Harney & Sons is a tea company that is committed to making quality tea an everyday luxury. We pride ourselves on providing education on proper tea […]

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April 19, 2013

Read the latest Artisans of Leisure newsletter

The latest version of the Artisans of Leisure newsletter is now online. Highlights include: Interview: Summer Travel in Greece & Turkey Italy: A Few of Our Favorite Places Peru beyond Machu Picchu A Luxury Journey through Dubai, Abu Dhabi & Oman (slideshow) Exclusive Switzerland The Best of Normandy, France New Holland & Belgium Tours   […]

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April 9, 2013

An Interview with Ashley Isaacs Ganz on Greece & Turkey

Artisans of Leisure founder and CEO Ashley Isaacs Ganz has spent the past few summers touring in the Mediterranean region, including Greece and Turkey. Here are a few of her favorite places and experiences. Q: What’s the one place in Turkey that every visitor should see? I never tire of Istanbul. It’s one of the great […]

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February 28, 2013

Our latest luxury travel newsletter

The latest version of the Artisans of Leisure newsletter is now online. Visit our website to read the complete newsletter. Highlights include: The Very Best of Kenya & Tanzania Just Back: Portugal (slideshow) What We Love About South America Israel Tours for Luxury Travelers Coming Soon: Belgium and the Netherlands On Our Blog: The Basque […]

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February 15, 2013

Just Back: The Basque Country of Northern Spain & Southern France

Stephanie Dosch, one of our Spain travel experts, just returned from her most recent trip through Northern Spain and the Basque Region. Q: Where did you go? I spent several days in the Basque Country, including time in Pamplona, San Sebastian, Bilbao and the French Pays Basque, before traveling to Madrid. Q: What was your […]

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January 11, 2013

Where Do You Want to Travel This Year?

2013 is an exciting year for Artisans of Leisure: it’s our 10th anniversary! We’re proud to be celebrating our first decade of offering the most luxurious and creative private tours available. Where are you considering traveling? For inspiration, we asked a few of our clients to comment on favorite aspects of their recent Artisans of […]

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November 29, 2012

Our Latest Luxury Travel Newsletter

Be sure to visit our website to read our latest Artisans of Leisure newsletter. It’s full of travel ideas for now and the future, not to mention two slideshows from recent trips: • Just Back: Vienna, Prague & Berlin (slideshow) • An Interview with Our Newest Travel Expert • Where to Go Now: India • Expanding Our International Garden […]

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November 29, 2012

Sicilian Food and Wine: A Delicious History

One of our favorite ways to experience Sicily’s unusually complex history is through its delicious food and wine. The beautiful Mediterranean island has been colonized, invaded and controlled by many different groups over the centuries, including the Greeks, Romans, Normans, Arabs and Spanish. Each wave of people brought its own ingredients and culinary traditions. The […]

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August 24, 2012

Just Back: A Fun Few Days at the Four Seasons Hampshire, England

We recently returned to the Four Seasons Hotel Hampshire, a luxury resort in the beautiful English countryside just 35 minutes from Heathrow Airport. It’s an ideal spot to spend a few nights if you’re transiting through London or taking an England trip and want a few days of luxury and relaxation in a rural setting. […]

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August 21, 2012

Five Favorite Basque Country Experiences

Comprising four provinces in northern Spain and three provinces in southern France, the Basque Country packs a lot into an area about the size of New Jersey. The region has its own language and a rich cultural heritage that make it a surprising change from the flamenco-tinged pueblos of Andalusia and the big-city bustle of […]

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July 14, 2012

Learn by Doing While Traveling the World

Want to learn to make mozzarella by hand on the Amalfi Coast? How about a private karate lesson in Kyoto? A surfing lesson in Bali? Would you like to paint porcelain in Austria or assist on an archaeological dig in Israel? We offer hundreds of such learning experiences that can be incorporated into our private […]

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June 7, 2012

Just Back: Austria, Germany & Switzerland

Artisans of Leisure founder and CEO Ashley Isaacs Ganz shares a few of her favorite things about her recent two-week overland trip through Europe. Favorite hotels on this trip: I love the luxurious Old World hotels found throughout the region, such as Brenners Park-Hotel in Baden-Baden (Germany), the Hotel Sacher in Salzburg (Austria), the Baur […]

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June 6, 2012

Traveling vegan, kosher, gluten-free or with food allergies

Many people with restricted diets or food allergies worry about finding appropriate meals when traveling overseas. Several of our in-house travel experts have food restrictions, so we understand firsthand the challenges. We also know how to overcome them. Artisans of Leisure regularly works with travelers who have food restrictions, including vegetarian, vegan, kosher, gluten-free and […]

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June 1, 2012

Conversations: Fabio León Ramírez, Hotel Ritz Madrid

Fabio León Ramírez, sales director at the Hotel Ritz Madrid, shares stories with us about this legendary hotel. Q: You have a long history with the hotel that goes back to when you were a child. Tell us more. Yes, my family lived in many countries when I was a child because my father was […]

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May 15, 2012

An interview with one of our birding and travel experts

Artisans of Leisure travel specialist, Stephanie Dosch, tells us how she has been lucky to be able to combine her twin passions–birding and travel–since she was a child. Q: When and how did you become interested in birding? A: My mom has been birding forever, and she would take me along with her when I […]

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May 6, 2012

Top 5: Creative Ideas for European Summer Getaways

Europe is one of our favorite regions to visit in the summer, and there’s still time to plan an incredible summer vacation. Here are a few ideas from our travel specialists. 1.) For the Mediterranean at its best Recommended destinations: Italy & Sicily, French Riviera, Greece & more Inspiration for your tour: Enjoying beautiful views […]

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April 13, 2012

Inspiration for Amazing Family Trips

Your son likes castles, your daughter likes shopping, your husband likes history, and you like art–how can you make sure that family vacations please everyone? Artisans of Leisure specializes in one-of-a-kind, private, customized family tours that feature a world of engaging experiences sure to satisfy families of all sizes, ages and interests. Here are a […]

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April 13, 2012

Our latest luxury travel newsletter

Artisans of Leisure newsletters are a great source of travel inspiration. Our latest issue includes the following articles and slideshows: •    A Great Time to Visit Burma •    Exclusive Japan (slideshow) •    Italy Our Way •    Just Back: Peru (slideshow) •    What’s Hot: Central Europe Destinations:  Asia, Austria, Burma, Central Europe, Czech Republic, Europe, Germany, Hungary, […]

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March 6, 2012

An Interview with an Artisans of Leisure Portugal Guide

Portugal is a cultural and culinary gem still waiting to be discovered by many travelers. Our carefully planned Portugal tours and excellent local guides give access to iconic Portugal experiences such as touring the atmospheric back streets of Lisbon, attending a fado performance, private wine and port wine tastings at local vineyards, and tracing echoes […]

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January 6, 2012

Just Back: Russia

An Artisans of Leisure travel expert recently returned from Russia. Here are a few highlights from her trip. Most memorable meal: Café Pushkin in Moscow. This is a great place to sample traditional Russian fare such as borscht or pelmeni, which are dumplings with various fillings. My meal of mushroom pelmeni was delicious in its […]

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December 19, 2011

Just Back: Scotland

Artisans of Leisure founder and CEO Ashley Isaacs Ganz reveals a few of her favorite things about Scotland and her recent trip there. Favorite hotels on this trip: Gleneagles, in the Perthshire countryside, is truly one of the great resorts in Europe. I also love The Balmoral in Edinburgh. The location is ideal. It’s a […]

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December 9, 2011

The Artisans of Leisure Cultural Travel Hot List

The Artisans of Leisure Cultural Travel Hot List is your guide to the top luxury travel destinations for the coming year. Each December, we look ahead at the destinations and activities our travelers have booked for the next 12 months, as well as those that we anticipate becoming popular as the year progresses. Because we […]

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October 21, 2011

Touring the Alhambra in Granada, Spain

The Alhambra is one of Europe’s “must visit” attractions, especially for travelers interested in Moorish architecture, design and gardens. Located on a hilltop above the town of Granada in Andalusia (southern Spain), the Alhambra is a fortress-palace-garden complex built from the ninth through the 14th centuries by the Moors who ruled over much of the […]

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September 21, 2011

Last-minute Fall Travel Ideas

October and November are two of the best months to travel in many of our destinations—the crowds are gone and the weather is often ideal. If you are considering booking an overseas getaway during the next several months, here are a few of our travel specialists’ top picks for autumn trips. MOROCCO Autumn is a […]

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July 14, 2011

Touring the Berner Oberland in Switzerland: A Family Favorite

For many of our travelers, a day in the Berner Oberland is a highlight of their Switzerland tour. This beautiful region in central Switzerland is perfect for anyone wanting to see iconic Swiss landscapes such as snow-capped mountains, waterfalls streaming over cliffs hundreds of feet high, and chalets sitting on meadow-covered hillsides speckled with cows […]

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October 6, 2009

Top 5: Quick getaways over the Christmas and New Year holidays

Looking for great options for a short international trip over the Christmas and New Year holidays? Our luxury travel experts have selected five of their favorite destinations. 1.) Marrakesh A week in Marrakesh promises over-the-top luxury, thriving traditional culture, great shopping and dining, and plenty of outdoor options. We recommend using Marrakesh as base for five or […]

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September 25, 2009

Porticos of Bologna

Porticos are as essential to Bologna as gourmet food and university students. The distinctive covered walkways course 38 kilometers (more than 23 miles) through this attractive and very walkable city in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy, sheltering pedestrians and window-shoppers from the elements while providing access to daylight and fresh air. Porticos typically flow […]

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September 17, 2009

Classical Music: A Central European Tradition

Classical music is the enduring soundtrack of Central Europe and one of the many compelling reasons to visit the region. Some of the world’s greatest composers were born here—including Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Liszt and Dvorak—and their musical masterpieces are a legacy treasured by locals and visitors alike. One of our favorite ways to immerse […]

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August 3, 2009

Secret London: Chelsea Physic Garden

The Chelsea Physic Garden is one of our favorite places in London. Hidden behind high brick walls and largely unknown to many travelers, this three-and-a-half-acre garden is not just a beautiful and relaxing sanctuary. It’s also a fascinating window into the botanical world, international trade and London’s history. The garden was founded in 1673 by […]

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June 9, 2009

The best of Normandy: food, history, villages, gardens and art

Normandy is one of our favorite travel destinations in France. It’s just a few hours by private car and driver from Paris, and there are endless touring options. One of the highlights of traveling in Normandy is the food, which we feel is among the best in France. Normandy is the home of many of […]

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June 2, 2009

Top 5: the most romantic travel destinations

Our travel experts have created a list of our Top 5 favorite romantic destinations–these locations are perfect for honeymooners or anyone seeking a special romantic getaway. 1.) Morocco Our favorite way to experience the most luxurious and romantic side of Morocco is to stay in Marrakesh for several days at luxury resort such as the […]

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May 18, 2009

A conversation with renowned art curator David Elliott

We recently caught up with David Elliott, the British-born, globetrotting curator. A major tastemaker in the contemporary art world, Elliott has been the director at the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, Japan and at the Istanbul Modern in Turkey, helping introduce a fresh approach to contemporary art in both cities. Elliott’s current post is artistic […]

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May 15, 2009

Ryabushinsky House and Other Highlights of Moscow’s Art Nouveau

Among the riot of buildings that make Moscow such an exciting cultural destination–polychrome medieval churches, proletarian-Baroque subway stations, bold Constructivist experiments, Stalinist “wedding cake” skyscrapers, etc.–some of our favorites are in the Moscow Art Nouveau style. Art Nouveau came into vogue in Moscow at the end of the 19th century, an exciting time for local […]

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April 17, 2009

Madrid for art and design lovers

Madrid is one of Europe’s most interesting cities for art and architecture lovers, with renowned art museums, notable contemporary architecture and beautiful historic sites. The first stop for many international travelers arriving in Spain is Terminal 4 at Madrid Barajas International Airport. A stunning complex of glass walls and undulating rooftops designed by British architect […]

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April 14, 2009

Helsinki and the architecture of Alvar Aalto

Helsinki, the capital of Finland, is home to an intriguing collection of architectural monuments ranging from vernacular wooden structures and stone fortresses to neo-Classical edifices and even a church hewn from rock. But for fans of modern architecture–and those curious about one of Finland’s most creative minds–a trip to Helsinki would be incomplete without touring […]

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April 3, 2009

Portuguese tiles (azulejos) are a visual delight and a travel highlight

We love Portugal and especially love the tiles (azulejos) that can be seen everywhere—on the exterior walls of private homes, in the train stations, on water fountains, and covering the walls of the magnificent countryside palaces. Tiles have been used as architectural and decorative elements for many centuries in Portugal. We’ve carefully selected our Portuguese guides—they are experts on the country’s history […]

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March 31, 2009

Our favorite day trips from Prague

Most travelers fall in love with Prague and never want to leave its fairytale architecture and enchanting backstreets. Prague’s beauty and charm is obvious, but it’s the experience with our guides–who bring the history, traditions, art, architecture, music and cuisine to life–that is what our clients rave about the most. Travelers also appreciate that our […]

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March 24, 2009

Private Jewish Heritage Tours

Many travelers ask us to incorporate people, places and activities of Jewish significance when they are traveling internationally with us. We can incorporate Jewish touring into any of our tours around the world, from Sydney to Shanghai and most places in between. Many travelers simply want us to incorporate some Jewish-related sightseeing in Europe, Asia, […]

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February 20, 2009

Our Top 5 Best Adventure Tours

Many of our travelers like to complement cultural touring with soft adventure activities. The following tours in Asia, South America, the Himalayas, the South Pacific and Africa have just the right balance of soft-adventure and culture—and they all include private touring and the best luxury hotels in the world. 1). Journey Through Morocco A highlight […]

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February 18, 2009

Top 5: Best food markets in Europe

We feel that food is a window into culture, history and traditions, and we always encourage our travelers to visit local food markets as part of the private tours we arrange. It’s a great opportunity for people-watching and to sample the tastes and flavors of each destination. Here are a few of our favorite food […]

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February 12, 2009

An Interview with One of Our Honeymoon Specialists

Artisans of Leisure has developed a real following with honeymooners who want our expertise when planning their unique, totally customized, once-in-a-lifetime honeymoons. We asked our travel specialists for their tips: Q: What advice do you give honeymooners? A: Don’t try to do too much (or too little)! We find the best honeymoons have a perfect balance of […]

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February 5, 2009

Must Stay: The Four Seasons Budapest is a work of art

Every inch of this hotel is absolutely stunning. Our private luxury tours in Budapest include accommodation at the Four Seasons Gresham Palace, and we also arrange other related activities. For example, upon request we take our travelers to meet the renowned artist who created the sculptures in the lobby (see above). Also, the hotel features authentic Zsolnay ceramic […]

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February 5, 2009

A gourmet hideaway in Lisbon’s botanical garden

Estufa Real Lisbon Estufa Real is located in Lisbon’s botanical gardens and was one of our most memorable dining experiences during our recent visit to Lisbon. The cuisine was innovative yet unpretentious, featuring fresh ingredients and herbs picked from the garden out the window. After dining, it’s worth strolling through the gardens. A driver is […]

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