REFRESH + REBOOT IN ITALY
A Retreat for Creative & Professional Women
October 14 - 20, 2018
Welcome to Abruzzo…Benvenute in Abruzzo
Our adventure begins in Rome's Piazza Bologna at 12 PM -- our private driver picks you up and navigates the mountains to wild and beautiful Abruzzo.
Unpack and unwind with an aperitivo at Castello di Semivicoli, your home for the week. Owned by the lauded wine-making Masciarelli family, the restored 17th century castle is perched in a rambling countryside of vineyards and olive groves, overlooking La Majella, Abruzzo’s “montagna madre” or mother mountain.
Settle in. Explore the stunning grounds. And enjoy a farm-to-table welcome dinner -- with vintage wines and new friends.
Vision + Views…Visione e paesaggi
Wake to a steaming cappuccino in the stunning Castello gardens. With pinch-me-I’m-here views as a backdrop, we spend our morning creating -- and writing -- your Vision of what extraordinary looks like to you.
When was the last time you had the luxury of thinking deeply? Our guided exercises fuel reflection and creation – writing down your Vision for your work and life is the first step to making it a reality.
Your afternoon is an Italian postcard sprung to life. Enjoy a wine tour & tasting at the regional wine gem Masciarelli Winery, run by a mother-daughter duo creating award-winning wines. Try tantalizing Montepulciano and crisp white Trebbiano. Discover rare Abruzzo varietals virtually impossible to source stateside such as Pecorino and Cerasuolo.
We cap the day with a sunset walk along Abruzzo’s hauntingly beautiful Costa dei Trabocchi, a stretch of coastline dotted with “trabocchi,” spiderlike wooden fishing platforms jutting out into the Adriatic Sea. If you look carefully, you might see them catching our dinner!
Personal Branding Workshop + Cooking Class...Raccontare e cucinare
With the unspoiled, rugged beauty of Abruzzo as inspiration - Day Three is all about creation - working on your professional story in the morning and a cooking class in the afternoon.
Everybody and – every business – has a story to tell. But in today’s information-saturated world, breaking through the noise to make our stories known takes work.
During a morning workshop in the heart of the historic Castello, you’ll learn how to unlock the story of your professional value and amplify your voice. Telling your story well transforms you into the advocate you want to be -- for your work, your priorities and your life.
Recharge midday with lunch in the nearby town of Guardiagrele -- called “Uno dei Borghi Piu’ Belli d’Italia” -- one of the loveliest villages in Italy.
In the afternoon, we roll up our sleeves and prepare dinner during a cooking class in the Castello’s warm and inviting cucina, the heart and soul of every Italian home. Prepare typical dishes from Abruzzo, including maccheroni alla chitarra, a traditional pasta that is cut on a wooden instrument resembling a guitar. Learn to cook dishes born from the tradition of “la cucina povera,” literally translated as "poor kitchen," referring to the frugal genius of poor southern and central Italian cooks who make culinary alchemy with abundant and affordable ingredients.
Explore + Ask More...Esplorare e chiedere di piú
Italy is magic in the fall with every bend and corner traveled revealing an arresting new view -- the changing colors, the fairytale villages, hidden hermitages, majestic castles.
On Day Four – we explore with a day-long excursion and a gentle hike to the ancient villages and wild landscapes of the Gran Sasso mountain range.
We'll visit the Castle of Bominaco and the stunningly frescoed Oratory of San Pellegrino, known as the Sistine Chapel of Abruzzo. Lunch in a charming family-owned agriturismo, sampling traditional dishes featuring the highly prized saffron of Navelli and learn about the cultivation of this refined spice.
Next, a private hiking guide leads a laid-back hike up to Rocca Calascio, a medieval fortress dramatically positioned at 1460m above sea level, the highest in all of Italy. We end the day at a trattoria beloved by locals, specializing in dishes featuring Abruzzo’s prized lentils and other legumes.
Connect + Conversations…Connessioni e conversazioni
Pick your morning pleasure -- sleep in, work out, savor a leisurely breakfast -- before a late morning workshop, afternoon excursions and a cocktail party in the Castello’s wine cellar.
Day Five sees you putting your new personal branding thinking and language into practice. Our morning workshop shares simple and immediately actionable tools to crisply and cogently communicate your work and worth. Explore ways to amp up your voice at home and in business.
The afternoon takes you beyond a guidebook to experience the stories of local artisans and entrepreneurs. Meet our friend Francesca, a certified olive oil sommelier and vintner. She transformed her grandparents’ “terreni” – farmlands - into Cantinarte, an olive oil and wine company that produces a Montepulciano the New York Times calls “superb.” Tour her stone “frantoio” (olive oil mill), savor a tasting, and wend your way through charming Bucchianico, a medieval hill town.
Relax and recharge in the afternoon at the Castello -- practicing the classic Italian art of “il dolce far niente” – the sweetness of doing nothing.
Rested, restored… it’s time to unpack that party dress for an evening cocktail party of light bites and deep conversation. Mingle with local artisans, women entrepreneurs, reinventors, dreamers and doers. Hear their stories. Share your own. Soak up the energy only found in a room full of dynamic, inspiring women.
Parks + Recreation..Parchi e divertimento
We have a dazzling final day as we travel deep into Italy’s last wild, pristine stretch - the Majella National Park. Named for the beautiful Dea (goddess) Maja, the Majella mountain is revered as the “La Madre” – the mother - a proud and nurturing symbol of the region’s land and fertility.
Together, we visit a medieval hermitage carved into the mountains by Pope Celestino V and his "Celestiani" monks -- who built sacred refuges in splendid isolation to be closer to God.
The remainder of your day is deliciously open. Choose to explore the lush and magical Orfento river valley -- known as "the Land of the Fairies" -- and visit the larger-than-life Marisa at Agriturismo Pietrantica in the tiny hamlet of Decontra for a family-style luncheon of her farm’s Solina and farro grains. Or choose lunch and a quiet spa afternoon at Hotel La Riserve Terme tucked deep in the park. (Please note: the spa option has additional fees).
Our afternoon ends with a stroll and shopping in the town of Caramanico Terme before returning to a farm-to-table farewell dinner -- one last chance to savor the food you will go home dreaming about.
One last mouthwatering crosata...after breakfast, we bid farewell to the Castello. Our driver returns you to Piazza Bologna in Rome. Ready to see more of the Eternal City? We are happy to offer insider recommendations for the best places to see, stay and dine.
Our trip may be ending but we cannot wait to see what you do next -- we know your deep thinking and new communications tools for career and life are going to make you shine.
Thank you for joining us to Reboot + Refresh in Italy. Arrivederci amiche.
We are committed to creating an enjoyable itinerary. If improvements can be made prior or during the trip, or if unforeseen conditions make changes necessary, we reserve the right to vary the details of the trip and will not be held responsible for any of these types of changes or occurrences. See Terms & Conditions for greater details.