PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 11, 1997 - It's no surprise to David Diliberto that
people love to travel to Italy in small escorted groups of four to six
friends or family, with custom itineraries designed just for them, but
knows that most tour companies can't accommodate such very small groups.
Diliberto is President of Caravella Italia, a tour operator which takes groups as small as four people. They specialize in custom tours of Italy, and Discovery tours of the Amalfi Coast, The Lakes District plus Venice, Umbria and Tuscany plus Rome, and Sicily (Call: 888-665-2112). See http://www.seeitaly.com .
"Our clients love the idea that we can work with them to create their
`dream itinerary' whether it's the cities like Rome, Florence and Venice,
the countryside and small towns, or special places, or events they've wanted
attend," says Diliberto.
Most of Diliberto's clients dread the idea of joining a large 25-50 person tour group. What they want is a custom tour with the freedom of independent travel but none of the hassles.
So, to deliver the dream, Diliberto's company creates custom tours with a bilingual escort, an air conditioned chauffeured Euro-van, and accommodations tailored to reflect any taste and budget. "It's the perfect solution for people who want to travel together and do their own thing," says Diliberto.
The custom tour concept sounded good to Lou and Barbara Marchese, who
contacted Diliberto when they decided to make their third trip to Italy.
The Marcheses and two friends, all veteran independent travelers, wanted
to visit relatives, Rome, Pompeii, the Amalfi Coast, and Sicily. "Since
we were covering so much ground, I wanted to find a way to relax on this
trip," says Lou Marchese. "I'd driven through Italy before and always
worried about traffic, or reaching destinations on time -- when you travel that way, there's no time to see what you came for."
This time the Marchese's experience was different. Chauffeured travel was relaxing, and their tour escort was skilled at anticipating their needs. Learning of their interest in the mineral springs at Fiuggi, for example, she surprised them with an unscheduled stop there, and satisfied a lifelong curiosity.
"If one event sums up the trip for me it was our visit to Pompeii, where
the four of us, our escort, local expert guide, and chauffeur passed a
long line of American tourists. I overheard one fellow say, `They
must be VIPs,'"
Marchese says. "We did feel like VIPs, everywhere we went."
Caravella Italia has its headquarters in Philadelphia and offices in
Bologna, Italy. Caravella Italia may be reached at: 888-665-2112,
and at http://www.seeitaly.com .