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Stress free, Delicious, & Delightful!

I saved a simple post on FB during the pandemic. After many months, I contacted Beth and felt an instant connection! I am a young 80 and traveled alone, but met 2 other travelers at the Chicago airport! We were instant friends! The trip was magical! Our group was lively, fun, and many lifelong friendships were made! Beth and her wonderful, hands-on assistant, Heather, do everything possible to make things stress free, delicious and delightful! I even had an offer of romance from an artist outside the Duomo... Ah, Italy! Book it! You will have a blast!

You will not be sorry! 

If you are seriously thinking/dreaming of visiting Italy, I highly recommend you reserve a spot with Bethany and Heather at Appassionata Me. You will not be sorry!!! I was fortunate to sign up for this opportunity to travel with them this past September. This was my first trip abroad and I had many visions and expectations of traveling through Italy... They exceeded every expectation! The accommodations were beautiful and comfortable, the food was excellent (not even one undesirable meal!), the wine was plentiful and delicious! The tours, shopping, and traveling to additional cities was fabulous! The art was so much fun and I learned a lot. The fun and camaraderie among our group was amazing. There was no downside to this trip at all. Did I mention the kindness, friendliness, professionalism, and great attitude of Bethany and Heather? They can’t be beat! We were all pampered and spoiled for the entire trip! How do you top this? I’ll just have to save up and do it again!

Christine, St. Clair Shores MI

I have made lifelong friendships.

This is the most wonderful trip. Just make the commitment and go. You will see the most indescribable art and architecture plus wine, wine, wine. I was so moved by everything Italy. Also Bethany and Heather are the best at everything they do. They go out of their way to make your experience the most memorable, fabulous time ever. I am so happy to have made lifelong friendships. Take the trip.

Kim, Cabot AR

Michele, Wauconda IL

Art, history, food, wine...

Bethany executes a professional yet amazingly flexible tour in Italy. Her experience with navigating Florence, her hiring of super drivers with diverse skills (Marco) helps any anxiety of travel dissolve immediately. The combination of seeing art, living in 500 year old apartments, eating incredible food and drinking the best wine brings the whole experience into your heart. Then you get to go Do Art! I can't recommend this trip more highly.

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Meridith, Northfield MN

Perfect twist of personality & professionalism.

This trip of a lifetime was more than I ever could have expected. Bethany shares her knowledge and love of Tuscany and Florence with the perfect twist of personality and professionalism. Can’t wait to join another trip with this company!

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Barbara, Stone Mountain GA

I'd definitely go again!

I just had a fantastic vacation with Bethany and her super assistant Heather. This is the perfect trip especially for someone travelling alone. Bethany went out of her way to make everyone comfortable during the entire trip and took care of all the details. There's a variety of sights and activities but time to relax as well. Drinking wine on the terrace was like a girls night out. So much fun! And the food! Tried all kinds of great meals. San Leo is just spectacular and Patrizia an excellent cook and hostess. The countryside is so beautiful and Florence is a world of its own. And you get to create art in Tuscany! I'd definitely go again.

Tammy, Springfield IL

Truly a wonderful experience...

Fantastic trip to Italy with Appassionata Me. So much to see and beauty everywhere. I made 14 new friends and enjoyed getting to know each of them. Wine Food laughter. Walking the streets of Florence and sometimes getting lost. But I had Heather as my guide. lol. Thank you Bethany Ekblad and Heather. Truly a wonderful awesome experience. My best trip to Europe ever! Where are we going next?

Rita, Fayetteville GA

The perfect tour guide. 

What an amazing trip to Italy! You had everything arranged so that we did not have to worry about anything, and you handled all the little details for us. I really like the fact that it was just a small group of women, so we were really able to get to know each other one on one. Florence was awesome, and you made getting around and seeing the sights so easy and enjoyable. You were the perfect tour guide. I loved the farm and the art. Wasn't sure about that part at first, but it was truly memorable for me.  You know, of course, that I thoroughly enjoyed myself at the wineries; the scenery was amazing; food was scrumptious; relaxing accommodations; I could go on and on. Thank you so much for all you did to create such an unforgettable trip!

Karen, Greenbay WI

 

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Relaxing, Rewarding, & Wonderful.

If anyone is on the fence about this trip, I’d like to share that I’m repeating it. I never understood a friend who keeps returning to Florence. After my first visit, I so understand the call to return, the beauty, the art everywhere, the food, the wine and awesome hosts. This was a wonderful trip. I have no attachment to the group other than being a soul sister, oh, it’s probably soul mother to be truthful. I took my first trip with them with blind faith and extreme interest due to the inclusion of Siena right after I retired 3 years ago. Did not have time for much exploration, just was compelled to visit Siena. Plus, loved the idea of exploring artistic endeavors as I was an absolute novice. Fell in love with All the areas visited. Learned a lot but so much more awaiting me this visit. Felt like I was traveling with friends but had never known anyone before this trip. It was relaxing, rewarding and wonderful. Plus, safe. Hope to meet you in Italy.

Mary Margaret, Jackson  MS

I saw things I never thought I would...

I went on this trip last year and had an amazing time. If you are on the fence about going, just put aside your worries. I had so much fun and met some wonderful ladies. Saw things that I thought I would never see and I am so glad to have made this trip. Bethany is a great tour guide and she knows the best places to go for food and wine. The food that we had was amazing and the wine was good.

Make this trip with Bethany and you will not be disappointed. 

Evangelina, Goodyear AZ

I can't say enough about this wonderful trip!
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I am an experienced traveler and have traveled this area of Italy before but still found that there were more new things to see and do. Bethany knows how to do things up first-class...from the lodging to the food, to the wines, to the experiences. What a joy it was to be part of this group from the guides to the other tour members. I will always treasure the experience and will do it again.

Kathy, Albany OR

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Outstanding - Superbly Organized!

Seamless organization from beginning to end. We benefited from Bethany's years of travel in Italy. She created a fabulous adventure and trip with great food, wine, sights and friendship in a small group. Just the right balance of travel, relaxation and art. She is talented as a painter, teacher and host. I highly recommend your next Italy travel and painting adventure with Appassionata Me lead by Bethany.

Lisa, Stillwater MN

 

Opened up a whole creative world!

Who would have known that attending one of Bethany's finger painting classes would open up a whole new creative world for me. I never considered myself that creative and certainly not a painter but I attended anyway. I was pleasantly surprised as Bethany drew out of me skills I never knew I had. Her techniques are very helpful and she is a wonderful, caring teacher who is masterful at getting your hidden creative juices flowing. I loved my experience and my painting so much that I had it professionally framed and I went back to attend another session.  I would highly recommend Bethany's class to anyone looking for a very rewarding experience that you won't regret.

Virginia, Eagan MN

 

Highly Recommended!

ABSOLUTLEY recommend!!! Beth is amazing and fun! You will enjoy this trip so much....this is my third trip with Beth and Heather.

This was a fantastic trip!

Pat, Bloomington MN

What an incredible experience! The art of the masters was amazing and I feel blessed to have had the opportunity to view it. The churches were amazing; each one different and all intriguing. History just flowed from everywhere. The food was beyond delicious. Bethany knows where to find the best. The wine tastings paired with courses of food were fantastic. The wine paired with conversation while relaxing was always great. The accommodations were delightful. Our driver is “the best in Tuscany” and his Mercedes van was very comfortable with plenty of leg room. This was a fantastic trip. Bethany and Heather are wonderful and committed to creating a great experience for their guests. The creative process in San Leo was fun and Bethany taps into the creativity in all of us. I love Florence, Tuscany and Appassionata Me.

Mary Margaret, Jackson  MS

 

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What a blast!

I couldn't have dreamed of a better trip. I was able to travel with 5 great friends to a foreign country and not worry about a thing. We had organized things to see and also plenty of time for unplanned wandering. It was terrific. My favorite part - other than the food and wine and sights - was the fact that I didn't have to worry about all the details of travel. Bethany had everything in place. We just showed up and had fun - lots of fun. Bethany is also a great art instructor. I'd say she's more of a guide - she shows you her ideas and suggestions but gives you the freedom to create your own art. So much fun. Who knew we all have an "inner artist". I don't now why I'd travel any other way. 

Heather, Kingfisher OK

 

Thanks to Bethany for showing me we all have an artist within us.

Bethany has an amazing way of mixing her love of art with humor, making everyone feel at ease. Having the opportunity to travel with her was a stress free, beautiful, as well as educational experience.

Linda, Sullivan MO

 

Bethany is simply awesome!

She is funny, loves to laugh and loves to drink wine! From the beginning to the end, she handled all of the details with ease and grace. All I had to do was write the check! I trusted her with all of the small details that made for an awesome vacation experience. Always thoughtful and kind, she made sure we were having a good time. Choose Bethany for your next Italian art vacation. You will be happy you did!

Commander Patsy Dillon, USN (Retired), Bloomington MN

It was a great vacation with a lot of laughs & learning.

Bethany took care of all the details and shared her love for Italy with us, including the art, wine, food and history. She has visited the country many times and showed us the best of the best. Not only is she a great artist but a great person who is fun to travel with!

Kathy, Edina MN

 

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