May 10 Arrival in Milan and transfer from Milan’s Malpensa airport to Turin and the NH Lingotto Hotel (4 star -2 nights). Upon our arrival, we have the opportunity to go onto the roof of the Lingotto, which was originally the test track for Fiat. Also, the fine art display of the Agnelli Art Gallery is bound to impress. Dinner tonight is at our hotel.
May 11 A morning visit to the Museo dell ‘Automobile Carlo Biscaretti di Ruffia’, one of the finest auto museums in all of Europe. It houses the largest collection of historic cars in Italy. One of our special evenings is at a magnificent winery south of Turin in the Alba region. The short ride takes us through beautiful countryside. As this tour prides itself on the great food of Italy, we can safely predict you are going to be amazed. The effort and presentation of our appetizers, meal and accompanying prize winning wines is consistent with the finest restaurants of Europe.
May 12 We depart Turin for Lake Garda and our standout accommodations at the Grand Hotel Gardone (4 star-4 nights). This hotel has been so popular with our past groups, we have extended this venue to four nights. En route we journey to Arese and the Alfa Romeo Museum. This recent, magnificently reopened museum follows the history of Alfa Romeo from inception to present day. We have allowed plenty of time to enjoy this visit and include the choice of joining our English speaking guide or to wander the floors and exhibits at your own pace. This evening, following check-in, we dine at a lakeside restaurant.
May 13 Today, we make an early start for Brescia, and our first glimpse of the Mille Miglia. First we visit the town center where all the cars are registering and preparing for the afternoon ‘off’. At lunchtime, we head for the Mille Museum. All the entrants journey from the center and are staged here before the official start this afternoon. We’ll be able to watch the cars as they head out on the Mille course amid enthusiastic support from the crowds lining the route. Later this afternoon, we return to Lake Garda. This evening we have another special night with appetizers and champagne on the hotel terrace overlooking the lake. For dinner, we retreat to the beautiful ballroom for another superbly prepared dinner and live music. We are joined by special guest, race driver Brian Redman, and his wife Marion.
May 14 Today is our first ‘catch your breath’ day. The beautiful setting of our hotel is also supplemented with an attractive village and a particularly classic garden. Today, we leave for your own exploration or relaxation at the hotel. A ferry runs from the hotel to the next village, just a five minute ride or a twenty minute walk. Dinner this evening is at your leisure.
May 15 This morning we head across Lake Garda to the eastern shore. Today’s visit is to the Alegrini Vineyards. This gorgeous setting is in the heart of the Valpolicella region. The once ‘tavern wine district’, has become a major renaissance for Italian wines. One of the leaders of this has been the Allegrini family. The vineyard surrounds a stunning 16th century medieval ‘palazio’. Our visit includes a wine tasting followed by an ‘Italian lunch’, something to remember. The return to our hotel is by the lake ferry service, that crosses the lake and very obligingly drops us right outside our hotel.
May 16 Today we depart Lake Garda for another major lake, Lake Como. In the morning, we drive to Milan for a number of visits. This includes a private collection of extremely important cars, some of which have taken top honors in Europe and at Pebble Beach. You’ll also experience a very different and highly entertaining visit is to the private Lambretta Museum. It houses numerous scooters from all over the World as well as the very earliest bicycles. Our last visit for the day is an Alfa dealer who has collected, over the years all the cars produced by Alfa Romeo. It was a special ‘find’ from our last trip. Late in the afternoon we arrive at our lakeside Barchetta Exelcior Hotel (4 star – 2 nights). Dinner at our hotel.
May 17 Our second chance to take a deep breath. A day on Lake Como. A ferry takes us from our base at Como to the lovely and popular village of Bellagio. A beautifully located restaurant offers one of the finest lunches on all of Lake Como. There will be plenty of time to explore the little hamlet of Bellagio, be sure to take your camera and flat shoes, it’s hilly! The late afternoon and evening is at your leisure in very lively Como.
May 18 This morning we head for Bologna. En route, we visit the Enzo Museum in Modena, dedicated to the life of Ferrari and his contribution to Italian automotive industry. Our all time most popular lunch venue is a small family restaurant in the Emilia Romagna countryside, where we might be lucky to get a pasta making demonstration. This afternoon, we schedule a visit to the remarkable Righini Collection, one which has to be seen to be believed. I Porcini Hotel, 4 star - 2 nights.
May 19 This morning, we tour both the Ducati and the Lamborghini factories, a great double header. We then head to Maranello and a visit to the Ferrari Galleria. There will be plenty of time to visit the many Ferrari and F1 shops. Mid afternoon, we head back toward Modena for a visit to the unique Parmaggiana Cheese Factory, where strangely is housed the historic Maserati Collection. This evening, our farewell dinner, is at an Italian Restaurant. Fittingly, the restaurant is pure Italian.
May 20 This morning, following breakfast, we head back to Milan and Malpensa airport, and concludes our 2020 tour.
CANCELLATION INFORMATION: a $1,000 per person deposit is due with booking, fully refundable up to December 11, 2019. The balance is due Feb 1, 2020. Cancellations between Dec. 12 - Jan 31 will be subject to a cancellation of 50% of the tour cost. Cancellations received between Feb. 1 - April 1 will be subject to a cancellation of 75% of the tour cost. Cancellations received after April 1, there will be no refund.
Cancellation insurance is available and suggested. Steve Austin's Great Vacations does not provide cancellation insurance. We recommend you use a company you've used in the past, or you could contact an independent provider, Stephanie Warrington, at World Travel via email email@example.com Please be advised cancellation insurance must be taken out no later than 14 days after your deposit is made in order to get a Pre-Existing Condition Waiver.