02 Oct Getaway Girls’ Shopping Trip 2018
Getaway Girls Trip
re you ready for the ultimate shop-pamper-repeat getaway? Do you want to radiate effortless chic like Amal Clooney? Follow me to Florence for a once-in-a-lifetime tour of the most fabulous boutiques – the hidden gems only locals know about – where you’ll find classic, timeless pieces at amazing prices.
I spent a month living like an Italian last summer crisscrossing Florence’s charming cobblestone streets in search of the very best family-owned boutiques (not big box designer emporiums). My quest led me to one-of-kind luxe treasures and curated collections unlike anything you will find stateside. This is an exclusive, magical, immersive experience in Italy’s fashion capital! Together we will handpick the most perfect, no-one-else-will-ever-have threads and accessories for your lifestyle and budget. No impulse purchases that you will regret once you step foot back on US soil. Only garments that fit you perfectly and enhance your wardrobe beyond your wildest dreams.
Oh and don’t worry … it’s not all shop and no play. We will have plenty of time to savor Florence’s other guilty pleasures (wine and food)!
WEDNESDAY JUNE 20 – ARRIVAL
We go back to where it all began with a private stroll through the history of Italian Fashion. We’ll start with the Costume Gallery inside the Pitti Palace which houses one of the richest collections of garments in the world from the 1500’s to present times. Here we’ll ooh and ahh over the genius of Italian and international fashion designers.
Next we’ll hit the Ferragamo Museum. Opened in 1995, it is the first museum in the world dedicated to the opus of a fashion designer. In the 1920s, Italian shoemaker Salvatore Ferragamo revolutionized the entire conceit of shoes, infusing them with unprecedented color, fantasy and glamour. No where better can you witness the strong relationship between art and fashion than with a rare glimpse of the footwear created by Ferragamo for Hollywood icons such as Marilyn Monroe and Greta Garbo!
Finally, a trip to Italy would not be complete without a jaunt to the Gucci Museum to marvel at the unmistakable suitcases, handbags, purses, silk scarves, clothing and jewelry created by the master: Guccio Gucci (later in the trip we’ll have a chance to nab our own Gucci prizes at a discount!).
DINNER – included
THURSDAY, JUNE 21
Now that we are truly inspired by Italy’s glorious fashionista past, it’s time to shop! We kick off our fashion foray in the San Lorenzo district. Florence has a reputation for fabulous leather goods, so our first stop is a visit to my new favorite leather atelier brimming with custom handbags, jackets, luggage and small accessories. This is not your typical bag but one made by hand by a talented husband and wife team using sumptuous snake, python, gator, hair-calf, calfskin, deerskin and just plain old gorgeous Italian leather.
Then we’ll skip across the street to a dazzling find … more leather but this time jewelry (pewter and silver too). Seriously to die for. You will want to stock up on gifts as well as for yourself.
Next up: a date with three sisters who pursued a common dream of independent fashion. From a small mill in Via de’ Pucci to the catwalks of Milan and Paris, their approach has become synonymous with style, quality and unconventionality.
Even their shop-lounge oozes “cool girl” with handcrafted dresses, tops, skirts, shawls, bags, hats and jewelry mixed together in unusual chromatic combinations. We’ll also score some fun items for the house (and maybe even bring back Italian rag dolls and unique clothing for the little ones).
LUNCH – included
Caffeinated by espresso, we’ll wind our way to a hip indie boutique that has received rave reviews from the fashion world. An independent concept store based in Florence, it serves up contemporary apparel brands and a broad selection of international publications.
Then it’s off to another artisan shop teeming with ready-to-wear and made-to-measure clothing, lingerie and swimwear. Located in the heart of Florence’s historic Oltrarno quarter, we’ll encounter three more fashionistas who forged their diverse abilities and passions to produce creative and artistic goods in a spacious store-laboratory. There is something bewitching about the high concept, high quality products that are utterly modern yet reminiscent of the finest Florentine artisan traditions.
Last stop of the day is another one of my true treasure finds, a shop that does one thing best: quintessential runaround dresses at amazing prices. Trust me these frocks are all you will want to wear for the rest of your stay in Florence!
DINNER – included
FRIDAY, JUNE 22
We love the next shop owner whose jet-setting lifestyle made it impossible to take the road less traveled in a pair of high heels (she hails from Ohio btw!). So she created a boutique devoted to fabulous flats handmade in Italy, using the finest fabrics by the same artisans who have been making shoes for centuries. Shoes make people #HAPPY she says! We agree! Here, you can design your perfect pair or slip into a pair of ready-to-wear for a true Cinderella moment (fyi – the shop works with the same “accessoristas” who apply Swarovski crystals and jewels to the luxury shoes worn on the red carpet!).
LUNCH – Included
It’s time for some bling! Embellished silver jewelry with colored quartz, bracelets that are inspired by the movement of the planets and hammered “timeless jewels” will spark your appreciation for the elegant, refined and simple. Here you can choose from a myriad of chains by the yard and create your own necklaces … not to mention earrings, bracelets, bangles, diamonds, gold and silver … the options are endless! Bonus: we get wholesale pricing!
Our latest showroom isn’t just about jewelry though … you’ll also discover exquisite hand-forged tableware. You won’t want to leave without a decanter for wine, each accurate in every detail, shape, volume, weight and size for the ultimate enjoyment of the Italian vino you are sure to ship home!
Now that we have a collection of new rings, let’s keep the focus on our hands and visit a shop that has been producing leather gloves since 1919. You will never feel gloves this soft again – the leather is like butter. The selection is unbeatable and the quality incredible.
We’ll finish our whirlwind shopping fest with a stop at a trendy fashion empire while soaking in the breathtaking views of the Ponte Vecchio and the Fiume Arno. A refreshingly different approach to fashion, our last destination marries the comfort and ease of a department store with the creative ideas and personality of a forward-thinking independent boutique.
SUNSET WINE APERITIVO TOUR
Time to grab a prosecco and take a guided tour of the historic district of Florence tucked away from the tourist routes. Oltrarno, the city’s artistic heart, dazzles with beautiful squares, gardens and palaces. Our expert guide will immerse us in the life of a Florentine while savoring a glass (or two or three) of Chianti and special nibbles prepared by a famous local wine merchant. The sojourn continues in the area of classical Florence, the political and religious city center. We will stop to fill our glasses and nosh again! Saluti!
SATURDAY, JUNE 23
Named after the infamous Queen of “I have seen all, I have heard all, I have forgotten all,” Marie Antoinette, our first beautifully curated store of the day delights with an elixir of new, vintage and resale designer items. Tucked away on a quiet street just behind Portrait Firenze, it will be tough to tear ourselves away from contemporary finds by smaller local designers intermingled with vintage clothing and accessories by designer powerhouses Prada, Gucci and Mardi.
But tear we must because another unique boutique is waiting across the street with its mesmerizing accessories, clothing and ornaments.
From there we cruise to the Santa Croce area of Florence for a romp through a whimsical shop filled with color and light. This textile galleria weaves a very personal home furnishings line with women’s and children’s clothing collections. Though designed in Italy, each piece is produced in India by specialized artisans, who monitor every single stage of production from the weaving and dying of the cotton to the ancient block printing.
LUNCH – included
To love Florence is to lose yourself on the winding streets and palazzo courtyards dotted with unexpected and intriguing shop doors. Our next stop beckons with just such mystery – it’s a perfumery full of aromas crafted with passion — a space to see and breathe.
Created by perfume master Sileno Cheloni, the store harkens back to a bygone era of Florence. Set in an ancient 16th-century palazzo in the Santa Croce district, the beguiling space is punctuated with glorious arched ceilings and glowing orange orbs. Large wood cabinets give birth to rows of brown glass bottles safeguarding botanical ingredients from which we will create our own signature scents!
DINNER – on your own
SUNDAY, JUNE 24
Go big or go home!
Today we will make merry with other Florentines and join feast day for its patron saint, St. John the Baptist. In between catching parades animating the morning streets and evening fireworks setting the sky ablaze above the Pontevecchio bridge, we will squeeze in a satisfying visit the mall! Not just any mall but THE PREMIUM DESIGNER OUTLET MALL in Italy representing all of the names you would expect such as Alexander McQueen, Jimmy Choo, Gucci, Tom Ford, Pucci, Valentino, Versace, etc.
Plan on spending the day looking for treasures before our last arrivederci. Tenni and I will be with you every step of the way to guide you in making selections you will love forever!
DINNER – included
MONDAY, JUNE 25
Depart or stay in Florence for more touring and shopping (si!!!). I will be available for one-on-one appointments from June 25—June 27. Prices vary according to itinerary.
6 days, 5 nights: $3,995 per person if booked by Nov. 4, 2017; $4,695 if booked between Nov. 5-Nov. 30, 2017. Supplement for one-on-one shopping in Florence is available upon request.
Prices are based on trip itinerary. If you would like to add or delete dining, tour days, etc., we can adjust the rate!
A deposit of $1,500 will hold your spot. Minimum 6 travelers required; maximum 8. The shopping itinerary is subject to change based on preferences of the group.
Nancy and Tenni are also available to pack for the trip (current hourly rates apply).
The Getaway Girls’ Trip includes four full days of shopping, a full time assistant plus Nancy K to help you with your selections, pre-shopping when available, translator touring with the group on shopping days in Florence (excluding outlet mall), transportation of your purchases to your hotel throughout the day, three dinners and three lunches including wine (and tips), private tour of Florentine Fashion with entrance to the museums, private sunset wine tour of Florence, perfume-making class, services of all guides and experts, all transportation for the duration of the trip including pick up and return to the Florence airport or train station, arrangements for shipping to the US.
Hotel and airfare not included
I have found a spectacular hotel in the heart of the city center that is accessible to everything in Florence. Antica Torre di Via Tornabuoni 1 is a historic residence, where guests are welcomed with every possible attention to detail, making you feel at home and like protagonists in a fascinating scenario rich in art, memory and new inspirations. The general manager has reserved 6 suites for me.
* 3 Deluxe rooms: 320.00 euro per day, per room
* 3 Suite and Jr. Suite: 485.00 euro per day, per suite (talk about “experience” … with this room you could have the Salone Gianfigliazzi to yourself!)
Accommodations include buffet breakfast, taxes and all of our services. There is a rooftop terrace, as well as a private terrace just for us. If you would like for me to make this reservation for you, please let me know. If you prefer to spend less or more on accommodations, I will send you alternate suggestions. If you are traveling solo and want to share a suite, I would love to pair you with another fabulous traveler!