A message from Fine Art Connoisseur Publisher Eric Rhoads
A wise mentor once told me, "Most things don't turn out as you expect them to." I've found that to hold true with every venture I've undertaken in my career. When Fine Art Connoisseur editor Peter Trippi and I first envisioned an art cruise, we knew there would be unexpected consequences, but we had no idea how surprising some of those consequences might be.
Sharing Our Unique Art Experiences
We wanted to invent a program that allowed us to share little tidbits of our lives with others. We both have felt fortunate to find ourselves being walked through closed museums in private tours, with a curator or director at our side. We have both experienced viewings of private art collections, often world-class museum pieces few others will ever see. Each of us has visited with countless artists, met with the best art students in the world, and savored art experiences that have been unparalleled. We thought, "If only we could help give others these same opportunities we've been exposed to." That was the goal of our series of art cruises.
We have given our cruise guests some unforgettable moments, such as the evening we had the entire Hermitage in St. Petersburg to ourselves after hours. We arranged for the first private art show of student works in the 200-year history of the Repin St. Petersburg State Academy Institute of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture, part of the Russian Academy of the Arts. We've taken our guests to the homes of prominent historical artists to meet with family members and see their own private collections. The list of special memories is almost endless.
It's the unexpected consequences, however, that have been the most enriching part of our art cruise program. Because our groups are intentionally small, we have developed deep, meaningful relationships. A majority of the guests on our first art cruise, to Russia, also joined last year's Danube Art Cruise in order to re-connect with friends and experience more special art moments together. And as new guests join in, they too are embraced as part of a family that grows a little bit with each cruise.
A Unique Look at Italy
Russia and the Danube are hard to top. When debating our next cruise, we decided a cruise around the "boot" of Italy would be fun. Because our art connections and friendships are deepest in Italy, we believed we could offer experiences that surpass even those of our earlier cruises. Though most people who have traveled to Europe have visited Italy and seen the familiar art treasures, we believe we can show our guests experiences they could not create on their own. We will be gaining entry to special places not on the radar of tourists or cruise lines, and we will be offering access to artworks through special arrangements we are making, much as we did in Russia.
Italy Through New Eyes
Already, most of our cruise family have signed up. Even though most have been to Italy, they know based on experience that their lives will be enriched with memories that cannot be duplicated. Italy, it appears, could be our most successful cruise yet. We are adding pre- and post-cruise stays in Venice and Florence because we have so many special visits in mind. If you're an art aficionado, this could be one of the best trips you could ever consider attending.
You can explore our destinations and details on our website.
More Than Five Stars
As spring approaches, most of us are making our plans for the summer or fall months. October in Italy is amazing. It's not as hot as it is earlier in the year, there is some fall color, and the tourist activity has subsided considerably. (Of course, with our VIP access, we've not yet had to stand in line.) Our cruise line has earned more than five stars, and all shore excursions are included. Plus, every room is a balcony room, at no extra charge, and our cruise includes all alcohol and tips.
Our offer is limited because we like to keep our group intimate, and because we have reserved only a limited number of cabins. It is our hope to get all reservations in by June.
We hope you will consider joining us in October.
Fine Art Connoisseur
PS: After last year's cruise, one of the participants said, "We love art, but we don't claim to understand it. We love travel, but we don't often know where to go on our own. We love cruising, but we don't like to be thrown together with strangers. We'll be back every time because we get to see our new friends every year, because you have made us feel so welcome, and because your art excursions make us feel we're seeing things others will never see. You have made art understandable, and it has not been intimidating, as so many things in art tend to be. Best of all, this gives us something we can look forward to all year, and that gives us hope during those stressful moments in our work."
To register for the 2012 Italian Art Cruise, go to https://www.regonline.com/fineartconnoisseurcruise2012
or contact Gabriel Haigazan at Creative Travel Planners.
Direct Line: 818.444.2700 | Toll Free: 800.255.3070 ext 123