Discover Florence through the eyes of an artist!

Follow in the footsteps of Sophia, the protagonist
of Melissa Muldoon’s novel “Dreaming Sophia”

Florence, Italy Dreaming Sophia Art Program

4 Days & 4 Nights – Maximum 8 people (couples & solo travelers)

September 13-17, 2017

Discount for participants who enroll in the 
Arezzo Italian Language Program (Sept 1-12)
(directly before the Florence Program)

Please contact Melissa for details

Join Melissa and local Florentines — Giulia Bucciarelli (Florentine artist) and Benedetta Bronzino (Italian teacher & Florentine Tour Guide) to see and experience Florence through the eyes of an artist. We will follow in the steps of Dreaming Sophia and fall in love all over again with Florence. (The Florence Dreaming Sophia program will be conducted in English. But if you are an Italian language buff there will be chances to use your conversation skills.) 

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta
Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

During the 4 days and 4-night program, we will learn about Florentine art & artists, and visit artisan shops in the Oltrarno. We will have guided tours of the Academia, the Uffizi, and the Duomo Museo. We will explore the Pitti Palace, home of Eleonora de’ Medici, and the magnificent Boboli Gardens where Giulia will give us a watercolor painting lesson. We will learn more about Renaissance history and the Medici family, visiting the chapels in San Lorenzo and the Medici Palace. We will also sample authentic local foods and wine during a special Florentine food crawl with “Curious Appetite starting with a tour of the Santa Maria Novella Church complex & the Profumeria, the oldest Farmacia in Florence.

We will conclude our program in the countryside in Chianti for a full day of wine tasting and lunch at an Osteria where we can enjoy the Vendemmia — the grape harvest.

Join the fun! Be like Sophia! Stop dreaming about Italy! Make it a reality!

Two Packages to choose from

Florence Program Package 1: WITH HOTEL
4 Days/4 Nights in Florentine B&B near the city center, Florence City Pass, Renaissance food & wine dinner crawl, 2 dinners in local trattorias, 1 Lunch in Chianti, 3 wine tasting Events, 4-day/4-night Accommodations in B&B, 5 guided walking tours (Academia, Duomo Museum, Uffizi Gallery, Boboli Gardens, Oltrarno artisans), Watercolor Outdoor Painting Lesson with Florentine Artist, Art Supplies & Welcome Gift, All day trip with wine tastings and lunch to Chianti in a private van

Florence Program Package 2: WITHOUT HOTEL
Same as above without cost of Accommodations in Florentine B&B

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

During our four days and four nights in Florence, we will stay at a charming Bed and Breakfast near the Academia. Rooms have been reserved at Residenza Johanna, and the Antica Dimora both located on the same street and run by the same proprietor. You can choose to take advantage of the special room rates for this program, or you can book your own lodgings in Florence.

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

(There may be a few tweaks or additions. All changes will be updated on the website)

Day 1 – Wednesday, September 13 – Benvenuti! Welcome to Florence
Check-in Morning
(arrangements can be made for check-in a day early — but let us know soon)
Afternoon walking tour with Melissa & Giulia a local Florentine artist
• Visit to San Lorenzo & Medici Palace
• Evening Welcome Dinner finishing with gelato! Did you know gelato was invented during the Renaissance?

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

Day 2 – Thursday, September 14
Guided tours with Benedetta Bronzino, resident of Florence and professional tour guide
– We will visit  Duomo Museo where we will meet “meet” Brunelleschi and learn about how Florence’s famous cathedral Dome was constructed
– We will visit the Academia where we will “meet” Michelangelo’s David
– Lunch in Florence at All’Antico Vinaio near the Uffizi (out of pocket expense)
– We will visit the Uffizi Galleries where we will rub elbows with Giotto, Botticelli, Leonardo, Caravaggio AND Bronzino who painted the portrait of Eleonora de’ Medici.
— Dinner with wine will be provided at a local Florentine trattoria Cafaggi

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

Day 3 – Friday, September 15
Guided tours with Benedetta Bronzino
We will visit the Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens and spend several hours walking through the open-air museum, enjoying landscapes and works of art and architecture
— There will be an opportunity to have an outdoor watercolor painting lesson with Giulia. Art supplies will be supplied
— Lunch in Florence (out of pocket expense)
— Afternoon walking tour in the Oltrano to discover the bohemian side of Florence with its workshops, cafes, art galleries, canteens, and picturesque narrow streets. We will meet artists and artisans at their workplaces.
— Sunset wine-tasting experience
—Dinner with wine will be provided at a local Florentine trattoria Pallottino

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

Day 4 – Saturday, September 16
All day trip to Chianti in the countryside – it’s time for the Vendemmia!
In a private van, we will visit the most beautiful spots of the Florentine countryside. Duration: whole day tour. The tour includes: visit a wine cellars in Chianti with wine tastings
— Lunch in Chianti included at Osteria Fuori Porta (as this will be an all-day eating and drinking excursion, dinner not included)

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

Day 5 – Sunday, September 17
Baci & Abbracci! It’s time to say goodbye. Morning guest checkout

Book Now! There are only 8 spots!  

Availability is based on first-come-first-served & a reservation is not guaranteed until the receipt of deposit or full trip payment.  

The balance of the trip fee will be due approximately 60 days before the trip start date (7/6/2017). You may also pay full the trip fee at the time of booking. To book with peace of mind and to safeguard your trip investment, in the case of a personal emergency or a family life event that might prevent you from departing for Italy, you may want to consider purchasing travel insurance through agencies as such as Travel GuardAAA  or American Express.

Please read the Refund Policy & Terms of Conditions.

For more information contact Melissa@StudentessaMatta.com

Photo Credit: Studentessa Matta

To learn more about Italian Language Programs in Italy see these links:

2017 Matta & Cultura Italiana Arezzo Italian Language Program

2017 Matta & Lucca Italian School Italian Language Program

Homestay Italian Language Program – Stay with Italian teacher in Italy

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One Comment

  1. Reading the place names & seeing the pix of Italy, takes me back to my visits there…(before the Euro). If you have never been, you will be enchanted with the country. Especially if you have Italian blood. Seeing & experiencing the land of your ancestors opens your heart to your family roots…Italy is where you began. If at all possible, do go with Melissa & the gang! Be enchanted for 10 days! I would go, too, but I need a wheel chair & travel is not easy for me. Buon viaggio, a tutti!