Join the J in Italy
Imagine yourself sitting under a wisteria-covered pergola, sipping a glass of cold Prosecco, looking out on the shimmering blue waters of the Mediterranean. Or staring up at the ceiling of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel. Dream no longer and join us for the trip of a lifetime to Italy!
Journey first to the town of Sant’ Agata sui due Golfi, situated about 10 km from Sorrento, for this exclusive trip featuring five-star accommodations at a relais hotel of only eleven rooms. Originally built in 1892 as the villa of a rich German aristocrat, the villa was restored and is now a splendid boutique hotel high on the hills overlooking the gulfs of Salerno and Naples. Our JCC group will have exclusive use of the hotel.
The Amalfi region is truly one of the most beautiful in Italy. Your excursions for the week will take you to the towns of Positano, Amalfi, and Ravello, to the island of Capri, and even the ancient ruins of Pompeii. The week will include wonderful hands-on cooking classes in the dedicated teaching kitchen, and meals and memories to last a lifetime.
From there head to the Eternal City, Rome, for 2 nights. Stay in the upscale 4* Rose Garden Palace Hotel and enjoy tours of Ancient Rome, including the Colosseum and Roman Forum, as well as of the Vatican’s Saint Peter’s Basilica and Sistine Chapel. Through it all enjoy delicious food and wine, wonderful companionship, and an insider’s perspective into the wonders of Italy.
Amalfi Coast and Rome Trip Highlights
Highlights of your amazing trip will include:
- Hands-on cooking classes featuring authentic Italian cuisine
- A full-day visit to the isle of Capri
- A full-day visit to the towns of the Amalfi Coast
- Guided cultural tours of the archeological ruins of Pompeii, the Colosseum and Roman Forum in Rome, Saint Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums
- A 2-star Michelin dinner at the famed Don Alfonso 1890
- and much more!
- Depart Boston’s Logan Airport at 7:55 pm for your overnight flight to Italy (via Munich) on Lufthansa Airlines.
- Arrive at Naples Airport at 12:25 pm and group transfer to Sant’Agata sui Due Golfi, about 90 minutes away.
- Enjoy a light lunch on arrival, and check in to the lovely 5* Oasi Olimpia Relais. You will have time on your own this afternoon to relax or explore. Take a short walk into Sant’Agata, a charming little town, to shop or enjoy a pastry, coffee, or gelato; or, just enjoy some time relaxing in the hotel’s gardens.
- Welcome dinner of local cuisine at the hotel’s elegant restaurant, Villa Oasi.
- A lovely buffet breakfast awaits you.
- In the morning you are off to a local farm, where top quality local cheese – such as mozzarella – is made. Visit the farm, and then enjoy a cheese-making demonstration and tasting of the farm’s cheeses and olive oil. (We recommend you wear appropriate footwear for this excursion.)
- Return to the hotel for a light lunch (if you are still hungry), and then have some time to relax.
- This evening at 5:00 PM, meet for your first cooking lesson, followed by dinner based on your efforts with wine.
- Breakfast at the hotel, then depart for a full-day tour of the Amalfi Coast.
- Your first stop will be Positano, the cliffside village famed for its steep, narrow streets lined with shops and cafes.
- Next head to Amalfi, a town that seems to have climbed up out of the sea. See the town’s impressive Duomo, wind through the narrow cobblestone streets, visit the boutique shops, and enjoy the charm of this famous town.
- Lunch will be on your own today during your stop in Amalfi. You might find a restaurant with wonderful sea views, or stop for a quick bite and continue your explorations. Or, we can organize a special group lunch if there is interest.
- Next head to Ravello, another charming town perched on the cliffs above the sea. Ravello is known for its ceramics, as well as for the lovely gardens of the historic Villa Cimbrone. Enjoy a garden tour with a local guide, as well as free time for shopping.
- Return to the hotel and relax for a bit before enjoying dinner at the hotel.
- After breakfast, head to the ruins of Pompeii with a 2-hour guided tour of the archeological site. We will have 2 guides – one for those who want to explore as much of the site as possible, and one for those who prefer a more relaxed pace.
- Next, head to a winery on famous Mount Vesuvius. Enjoy a wine tasting and lunch.
- Return to the hotel around 4:30 PM. Relax before heading to dinner out at the world-renowned Michelin star restaurant Don Alfonso 1890, a truly exception experience.
- After breakfast, start your next cooking class. Lunch will follow, based on your efforts.
- This afternoon, you will have free time for relaxing. You might choose to walk into Sant’Agata to explore. We will also organize a mid to late-afternoon transfer to Sorrento for those who want to enjoy its shops and sights.
- Dinner is on your own tonight, and the transfer back from Sorrento will leave you time to dine there. (If you prefer, you can stay in Sant’Agata and dine at the hotel’s restaurant or at one of the many wonderful restaurants in town.)
- After breakfast, enjoy a full-day visit to the famous isle of Capri, weather permitting. You may be able to visit the magical Blue Grotto (sea permitting), or you can explore the island’s many sites. You will have an English-speaking guide to help you, and the cost of the funicular from the Marina Grande to the famed Piazza Umberto is included, as is a scenic boat ride around the island.
- Today’s lunch will be on your own on Capri.
- Return to the relais mid-afternoon, and learn to make pizza dough with the chef. While the dough rises, enjoy a class on how to make the tasty Limoncello liqueur, so famous in the area. After the dough rises, you will finish making your customized pizza, which will be baked in the brick, wood-burning oven and enjoyed for dinner.
- (Please note that in the event of bad weather, the Capri excursion will be replaced by an alternate excursion.)
- Breakfast, followed by an early group departure from the hotel. Transfer to Rome, about 4 ½ hours away, and check in to the Rose Garden Palace hotel. We will provide a boxed lunch for you to enjoy en route to Rome.
- At 3:00 pm, transfer to the center for your 3-hour tour of Ancient Rome, including the Colosseum, Roman Forum, and Palatine Hill.
- After the tour, head to a nearby trattoria for a 3-course dinner, local wine included. Transfer back to the hotel.
- After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Vatican City for your 3-hour tour with early-access tickets. See Saint Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums, including the famed Sistine Chapel.
- After the tour, you will have free time to explore and to have lunch on your own. You may want to stay and see more of the Vatican, perhaps climbing the cupola of Saint Peter’s Basilica. Or you might make your way to the nearby Castel Sant’Angelo, the Sant’Angelo bridge, or any of the other amazing sites in Rome.
- For those interested, we can schedule an optional walking tour in the Jewish quarter. (Other private tours are also available on request – please inquire for details and cost.)
- You should eventually make your own way back to the hotel, where you will have your farewell dinner at the hotel restaurant.
- Breakfast at the hotel, then transfer to the airport for your 12:55 pm flight home, connecting through Munich and arriving at Boston’s Logan Airport at 6:05 pm.
Included in the 9-Night Trip
6 nights accommodation at the boutique 5* Oasi Olimplia Relais in Sant’Agata sui Due Golfi
2 nights accommodation at the 4* Rose Garden Palace Hotel in Rome
Food & Beverages
- Daily breakfast
- 5 lunches
- 7 dinners
Classes & Instructors
Your 3 hands-on cooking classes will take place in the large teaching kitchen that features a large professional range, spacious granite counters, and an outdoor veranda where you can enjoy a break or a glass of wine between courses. Your cooking classes will be taught by one of two chefs, or sometimes even both of them! Chef Giuseppe is a young but experienced chef from Sorrento who studied at a local culinary school and has cooked in a variety of restaurants and hotels, including the Michelin-star restaurant Il Buco in Sorrento. Chef Giovanni may be your second instructor. He lives in Sant’Agata and studied at the local hospitality school.
You will learn typical southern Italian dishes incorporating fresh fruits and vegetables from the hotel’s organic garden, as well as other fresh products from the local area. One of your cooking lessons will focus on the art of preparing true Neapolitan style pizza!
- Farm visit with cheese demonstration and olive oil tasting
- Full-day excursion to the Amalfi Coast towns
- Winery visit at Mount Vesuvius
- Guided tour of the archeological site of Pompeii
- All-day excursion to Capri (weather permitting), including scenic boat ride around the island
- Guided 3-hour Ancient Rome tour, including skip the line tickets for the Colosseum
- Guide 3-hour Vatican tour, including early access tickets, the Sistine Chapel, and Saint Peter’s Basilica
- Optional: you can add a walking tour of Jewish Rome ($165 per person for 2 people, $95 per person for 4 or more people). Please inquire for details.
- One group arrival transfer from Naples airport to the relais.
- One group departure transfer from the relais to your Rome hotel.
- One group departure transfer from the Rome hotel to the Rome airport for your departure.
- Round-trip, one-connection coach class airfare between Boston and Naples for the arrival, and between Rome and Boston for the departure
- Roundtrip funicular ticket on Capri
- Scenic boat tour on Capri
- Taxes and gratuities
- Dedicated TIK tour escort and JCC Travel and Special Projects Manager
- Drinks outside of meal times.
Located on a hill just outside Sant’ Agata sui due Golfi, 5* Oasi Olimpia Relais was built in 1892 for a German aristocrat. It now boasts six rooms and five suites that are beautifully furnished. The hotel offers access to such amenities as a 15-meter swimming pool (in season), jacuzzi, sauna, wine bar, outdoor dining, tennis court, exercise room, and beautiful gardens.
In Rome stay at the beautiful Rose Garden Palace Hotel. Located just off the Via Veneto, this charming hotel is close to local shops, the Spanish Steps, and the Villa Borghese. The hotel features a mix of contemporary and classic decor, and the elegant en-suite rooms and suites have Wi-Fi, satellite TV, minifridges and minibars.
Pricing & Tour Dates
Special J Trip Pricing:
Pricing exclusive for Springfield JCC members
April 30-May 9, 2023
US$6250 per person based on double occupancy
- Add US$755 for single occupancy (use of a double room by 1 person)
- Add US$100 per person to upgrade to deluxe room in Rome
Cost for non-members: $6400 per person (double occupancy)
A non-refundable deposit of 30% is due upon confirmation. Optional trip insurance is strongly recommended. If you choose to forgo the trip insurance, you will be required to sign a waiver indicating you understand the risk of losing your deposit if you cancel. (This is to protect the group so that cancellations do not affect our ability to run the trip for the other travelers.) Trip insurance costs are based on traveler age and run upward from a few hundred dollars.
Balance is due January 20, 2023.
All participants will be required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters.
The trip will run with a minimum of 14 and a maximum of 18 participants.
Maximum 4 single occupancy rooms, first come, first served. Only one single-occupancy room left.
If you do not wish to cook but wish to join for all the meals and excursions, there is a non-cooking reduction of $150.
Available April 30-May 9, 2023 for a minimum of 14, maximum of 18 people (plus tour escorts).
We Can Help Plan It All
Flights, additional nights and tours, Transportation, and Much More…
We might not be able to pack for you, but there are tons of things we can help with to make your vacation that much better.
Contact us for more information, or you can indicate your interest during check out and we will follow up directly!