DOLCE VITA: Roma, Lecce and Matera

Day 1 – Wednesday, May 18: Arrival in Rome

Arrival in Rome and check in at HOTEL RADISSON BLU GHR*, located in the trendy Parioli district.

5:00-6:00PM: meeting with Suite Travel staff for an introductory briefing at the hotel.

8:00PM: Meet at Restaurant Zeldina (located 2 minutes walk from hotel) and dinner with typical Roman cuisine menu (included in the trek fee, alternatives for participants with dietary restrictions will be offered):

Pasta cacio e pepe / amatriciana / gricia

Veal Saltimbocca

Home made tarts

Walk back to the hotel for the night.

Day 2 – Thursday May 19: Ancient Rome & Elegant Aperitivo

Breakfast at the hotel.

9:00AM – Departure for a visit ofAncient Rome” conducted by private licensed guides.

Departure from Piazza Venezia, dominated by the imposing Vittoriano, monument celebrating the Unification of Italy. Then we will proceed to the Campidoglio, centre of the city’s political life. After that we will see the Imperial Fora, the Colosseum, the Arch of Constantine, opera dedicated by the Senate and the people to Constantine in 315, The Palatine, ancient home of important people and emperors and, at the end, the Circus Maximum, the biggest location for entertainments ever built.

Lunch and afternoon at leisure to possibly discover the most famous squares of the city like Square of Spain, Navona Square and Piazza Venezia.

Lunch at leisure and free time during the afternoon.

7:30-9:00PM: Aperitivo at UpSunset bar, elegant terrace overlooking Rome. The terrace is on the roof of the Rinascente department store, great location for luxury shopping.

Included in the trek fee: aperitivo with some finger food and one glass of wine / Aperol spritz. A la carte menu for additional drinks.

Dinner at leisure and free time. Return to the hotel on your own.

Day 3– Friday, May 20: Rome parks and squares & Conference

Breakfast at hotel and meeting with our expert guides.

In the morning, you can choose between one of the following two city visits

You can choose one of the following city tour

Lunch at leisure and free time during the afternoon.

5:00-8:00PM: Meet at Villa Blanc, part of the campus of Luiss Business School for a conference themed “Italy’s present and future – opportunities and challenges ahead”, organized by the Wharton Italian Club in partnership with the MBA program of Luiss Business School (one of the most prominent Italian business schools) to educate the participants on the Italian business ecosystem.

  • Speakers will be Italian MBA alumni: Corrado Passera (WG’80, Founder and CEO of illimity, high-tech banking group, previously Minister of Economic Development and Infrastructure and Transport of Italy and CEO of Intesa Sanpaolo, Italy’s largest bank), Massimo Ambanelli (WG’00, Co-Founder and CEO of Hi-Food, innovative startup in the food space), Nicoletta Luppi (Luiss Business School MBA alumna, SVP and Managing Director of MSD / Merck Italy).
  • Networking aperitivo between 7:00-8:00PM in Villa Blanc park, generously sponsored by illimity, to enable exchange and networking between alumni and MBA students (around 60 Luiss Business School MBA students will also attend the conference).
 

8:00PM: Transfer by private bus to Trastevere neighbourhood for a special dinner with typical Roman folk music at Restaurant “Da Meo Patacca”, where waiters wear typical dresses to create  the characteristic and picturesque atmosphere of a  nineteenth century inn while folk musicians perform a repertoire of Roman, Neapolitan and Opera songs. The rooms for the restaurant reflect an history of  steeped in art and tradition, each with their characteristic name.

Typical Roman cuisine 3-course menu (included in the trek fee, alternatives for participants with dietary restrictions will be offered).

After dinner, either return back to hotel via private bus or free time and then return back to the hotel on your own (Trastevere has a very lively nightlife).

Day 4 – Saturday May 21: Lecce

Breakfast at hotel.

7.30AM: Departure via private bus to Lecce.

12:30PM: Stop at Canosa di Puglia for quick lunch at Twinristo. Lunch not included in trek fee, participants will have to confirm and prepay to Suite Travel, cost is € 19,50 (alternative is buying something on your own before leaving Rome or at the gas station along the highway)

Menu as follows (alternatives for participants with dietary restrictions will be offered):

Orecchiette with tomato sauce

Grilled meat or cotoletta with French fries

Fruit salad

Water

4:30-6:30PM Arrival in Lecce and meeting with our expert guides for a two-hour guided tour of the historical centre of this beautiful baroque city.

We will start the guided tour of Lecce from Sant’Oronzo square, the most important site of Lecce where the remains of a partially buried Roman amphitheatre are located. After that, walking through the centre, we will discover the magnificent Baroque architecture of its buildings and the most emblematic monuments of this wonderful city, such as the Cathedral of Lecce and the Basilica of Santa Croce, two temples that shine of its own light … Seeing is believing!

Finally, we will reach a traditional bakery to taste some typical sweets. Can you imagine a sweeter way to end our Lecce guided tour?

At the end, transfer to the hotel 8PIU ‘HOTEL 4 * and check in.

Dinner at leisure and return back to the hotel on your own for the night.

Day 5 – Sunday, May 22: Ostuni, Borgo Egnazia and Alberobello

Breakfast at the hotel.

8:30AM: meeting with our expert guides and departure via private bus.

10:00AM: Estimated arrival in Ostuni, the “white city” sitting atop the last hill of the southern Murgia plateau. We will walk through the medieval streets lined with whitewashed buildings, ending up in the sophisticated 15th century Gothic Cathedral. Not only an open-air museum, but also a vibrant city, with wonderful hotels, nice restaurants, cafes and ice cream shops.

 

12:00PM: End of the tour and departure to Borgo Egnazia

12:45PM: Arrival at Borgo Egnazia, a unique resort that resembles a typical rustic village, founded and led by Wharton alumnus Aldo Melpignano (WG’05 Managing Director of San Domenico Hotels group). Several celebrities (including Madonna, the Beckhams, Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel) have chosen this resort for their holidays and celebrations.

Here we will have informal meetings and lunch with Aldo Melpignano and several members of the Wharton Executive Board for EMEA that are hosted at the Borgo during that weekend (lunch not included in the trek fee, price to be confirmed).

 

2:30PM: Departure to Alberobello

3:15PM: Estimated arrival at Alberobello, the capital of the trulli, the cone-shaped houses characteristic of Puglia, which make it the most enchanting part of the heel of Italy. Alberobello is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1996 and is certainly a landmark of Puglia, a unique place.

During the trip to Valle d’Itria, we will cross the beautiful and idyllic countryside that surrounds the cities, with its breathtaking views on the trulli. Then, in Alberobello we will go off the beaten track to discover the most evocative and authentic corners.

5:15PM: End of the tour and departure back to hotel.

6:30 PM: Estimated arrival at the hotel and free time to freshen up.

8:00PM: Departure via private bus to Otranto for dinner (45 minutes drive). Otranto is the most Eastern city in all of Italy, a coastal town with splendid ancient city center and a beautiful castle.

9:00PM: Dinner at Restaurant La Cala dei Normanni seated on a splendid terrace overlooking the sea with the following menu (included in the trek fee, alternatives for participants with dietary restrictions will be offered):

 Burrata and frisella

Linguine noodles with clams, dry tomatoes and pine nuts

Sword fish “Mediterranean” style

Home made “Spumone” (light mousse dessert)

After dinner, some free time to explore the city center and then return back to hotel via private bus for the night.

Day 6 – Monday, May 23: Gallipoli and beach or winery

Breakfast at the hotel.

9:00AM: meeting with our expert guides and departure via private bus to discover Gallipoli.

9:45AM: estimated arrival in Gallipoli.

9:45AM-12:00: Tour of Gallipoli, charming coastal town rich in history for its Greek roots and for its wonderful Baroque and Renaissance buildings. We will walk through the alleys of the historic centre, connected to the mainland by a seventeenth-century bridge. We will admire the courtyards and palaces of what was once one of the richest cities in southern Italy in the 16th century. The wonderful cathedral dedicated to Santa Agata, hosting over 80 canvases painted by the most talented masters of the period, is considered one of the most beautiful churches in the Salento area.

The city is also known for its traditional underground oil mills that we will visit. Until the 19th century, the city was very famous for the production of oil for lamps, used for the street lamps of the great European capitals. After the visit, time at leisure to relax and for shopping.

We will be able to taste the delicious “pasticciotto”, a short pastry filled with custard and black cherry. During our visit, we will discover in depth the popular phenomenon of “pizzica”, a popular music of local tarantella joining ancient dancing rites

12:00-4:30PM: Free time, participants can decide between:

4:30-4:45PM: transfer to the winery

4:45-7:00PM: Visit the wonderful Cantina Coppola winery for tasting of 3 different wines with taralli (included in the trek fee). For additional €25 (optional) per person: two glasses of wine and buffet of local cheese & charcuterie.

7:00PM: Departure back to the hotel.

7:30PM: Arrival at hotel and free time to freshen up.

8:45PM: Transfer to the restaurant for dinner

9:15PM: Dinner at Masseria Caradonna, beautiful location in a restored farmhouse, with following the menu (included in trek fee, alternatives for participants with dietary restrictions will be offered):

Santo Spirito octopus salad with potatoes, radishes, carousel, cherry tomatoes, capers and basil

Mallorcan flour striped cavatello with redfish, potatoes and crispy bread

Deep fried fish

Dessert

Return back to hotel via private bus for the night.

Day 7 – Tuesday, May 24 Matera

Breakfast and check out.

9:30AM: Departure to Matera

12:00PM: Arrival in Matera, lunch at leisure and free time.

3:00PM-5:30PM: meeting with expert guides and departure for a guided tour of the city recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1993 for the uniqueness of the stones: ancient districts whose houses have been carved into the limestone rock. Tour of the historic centre and the Sasso Barisano, the oldest part of the city.

5:30PM: transfer to the 4* Hotel MH Matera for check in.

Dinner at leisure and free time.

8 day - May 25, 2022: Cooking class at Viceconte Palace

Breakfast at the hotel.

9:00AM: Transfer to Viceconte Palace located on the Civita of Matera.

9:30AM-1:00PM: cooking class at Viceconte Palace.

With this cooking class we will venture into the kitchen of a well-known local chef, to prepare the typical dishes of the Matera cuisine. A Taralli challenge will allow participants to assess their skills in creating the famous Taralli. Homemade pasta which always fascinates and amuses all our guests could not miss. The culinary experience is carried out in the elegant setting of Viceconte Palace, one of the ancient noble palaces of old Matera, and ends with the tastings of typical dishes prepared during the lesson and tasting of limoncello, served on the beautiful palace’s terrace overlooking the Sassi.

2:00PM: departure by private bus to Rome.

8:00PM: Estimated arrival in Rome. Upon arrival, check in at the RADISSON GHR BLU 5* HOTEL.

Dinner at leisure and free time.

9 day - May 26, 2022: The End in Rome

Breakfast at the hotel and check-out.

1,440.00 € per person cost

**In the unfortunate event that Italy deny arrivals from USA for medical reasons, the dates of the travel will be postponed

*Due to the limited places available, it is not possible to cancel and a refund from the travel agency is not possible. Participants waiting list and booking transfers will be managed directly by the Wharton Italian Club, please refer to the board members for any question

**In the unfortunate event that Italy deny arrivals from USA for medical reasons, the dates of the travel will be postponed

***We kindly suggest you to inform with your personal insurance about the event of personal denial at embarkation or impossibility to travel for personal or US general reasons

Program and venues included may change according to the effective number of participants or other unforseen reasons. Replacements will be made respecting the same standard provided.

For any question you may have, please contact Marco Marni, mmarni@wharton.upenn.edu

Deposit

€ 450 to be paid at confirmation and balance to be paid by March, 18

The cost includes:

  • All transfers included in the itinerary via private bus
  • 3+1 overnights in 4* hotels in Rome (like RADISSON or similar)
  • 3 overnights in a 4* hotel in Lecce (like 8PIU’HOTEL or similar)
  • 1 overnight in a 4* hotel in Matera (like MH Matera Hotel or similar) 
  • Accommodation in double rooms (a supplement for single accommodation will be applied)
  • Dinner in a typical restaurant on 1st day
  • 3 licensed English speaking guides for the Ancient Rome tour on 2nd day (half day, hearphones included)
  • 3 licensed English speaking guides for the tour of Rome (to be decided) on 3rd day (half day, hearphones included)
  • Dinner in a typical restaurant in Trastevere with live folk music on 3rd day
  • 3 licensed English speaking guides for a tour of Lecce on 4th day (half day, hearphones included)
  • 3 licensed English speaking guides for the visit of Galatina and Gallipoli on 5th day (full day, hearphones included) with wine and pastry tastings
  • Dinner in a typical restaurant on the sea in Otranto on the 5th day
  • 3 licensed English speaking guides for the visit of Ostuni and Alberobello on the 6th day (full day, hearphones included) with olive oil tasting and visit of the oil mill
  • Dinner at Masseria Caradonna on the 6th day
  • 3 licensed English speaking guides for a tour of Matera on 7th day (half day, hearphones included)
  • Cooking Class at Bernardini palace on the 8th day
  • 1 licensed English speaking tour leader per coach to assist throughout the entire program

Cost DOES NOT include:

  • Lunches
  • Dinners of day 2, 4, 7 and 8
  • Drinks during meals
  • City taxes
  • Additional entrance fees or general extras
  • Everything not specified as “The cost includes”
  • Flight to/from Italy
  • Medical insurance
  • Transfer from/to airport

*Due to the limited places available, it is not possible to cancel and a refund from the travel agency is not possible. Participants waiting list and booking transfers will be managed directly by the Wharton Italian Club, please refer to the board members for any question

**In the unfortunate event that Italy deny arrivals from USA for medical reasons, the dates of the travel will be postponed

***We kindly suggest you to inform with your personal insurance about the event of personal denial at embarkation or impossibility to travel for personal or US general reasons