Over the past three years of "La Dolce Vita" it has been a blessing to meet kindred spirits who have chosen to invest their hard earned money attending this Retreat. I am so pleased to share some of their testimonials with you:
Dear Carolyn, I can't thank you enough for La Dolce Vita. Although I came with an idea of how wonderful it might be, I was still blown away. From the moment I drove up to the gorgeous 17th century Tuscan estate, I knew it was going to be an event of a lifetime. Each building on the property is rich with history and beauty, obviously lovingly restored and kept. Looking out my window each morning to see the rolling hills, the horses, smelling the roses and jasmine, made me feel rejuvenated and excited for the events of the day. Our hostess Paola is a rare gem. I immediately felt welcomed and cared for in her home. And the food!!!! Oh, the food was positively luscious! So many delicious choices, each made with skill and love. Despite my best efforts, I could rarely get through all of the courses. The way that you paced the week was intuitively perfect. Our cooking classes and trip to Sienna were extremely enjoyable and interesting as well as our very personal and restfully paced artistic classes. I'm in awe of how you and your team made each and every woman on the trip feel so cared for. I left feeling relaxed, inspired, cared for, and full! I cannot wait to come back to my second home in Tuscany.
• VALERIE JONES FROM CALIFORNIA •
La Dolce Vita - an amazing experience! A dream of mine was to visit and relax in the Tuscany area of Italy! I had such an awesome experience in the beautiful countryside at the Bichi Borghese Villa! We had crafting days and market days and just relaxing days!! I met some lovely ladies from all over the world and learned about many cultures. We experienced delish meals in the estate kitchen - country style meals! Paola, estate manager and her staff of Loretta and Antonella made each meal an amazing experience. Every meal was cooked and presented in Loving detail!!! For me, this was a trip of a lifetime that I will treasure always! I would highly recommend this trip to anyone--go ahead treat yourself to a lifetime of beautiful memories. If time allowed I would attend every year!!
• NANCY GOLDSTON FROM TEXAS •
Incredible - that would be the defining word for the La Dolce Vita experience, also known as a "retreat". (As in: treat, treat, and RE-treat.) And that's exactly how Carolyn, Terri, Tiffany, Paola and others involved in the details, gifted us with an incredibly organized week!
La Dolce Vita catered to the varied interests of creative women of all ages, with the option of as much or as little participation as desired. I'm grateful for a most excellent experience, and the many delightful surprises that were added to our days! Photographs, friendships and a head full of memories: yet another RE-treat! I absolutely recommend taking advantage of this opportunity for yourself!
Avanti! ("Charge ahead!)
• ELIZABETH CECCHETTINI FROM NORTH CAROLINA •
La Dolce Vita was much more than I ever imagined. Carolyn and Terri have thought of everything when planning for one of the most amazing weeks in the beautiful Tuscan country side. The estate manager, Paola, goes out of her way to make sure all your needs are met and that you have a wonderful experience at Bichi Borghesi. Exciting art classes, shopping, delicious food, wine tasting, photo shoot with the talented Tiffany Kirchner-Dixon, making new friends. What more could you ask for? I can't wait to return in 2016.
• ILONA RUBIN FROM ISRAEL •
So many special days and things about La Dolce Vita! And then there is Paola and her vivacious/loving care of her home, staff and guests. And then there's Anqua, & then Tuscany in general and top all of it off with Gelato in San Gimignano. Oh-swoon. Not to mention the 3 women who pull this together & off! One really is fortunate when they get to experience this treasure!
• MICHELLE HEAPS FROM CALIFORNIA •
It's hard to put into words how amazing and special the "La Dolce Vita" retreat was, you just have to experience it to understand, but it will be one of my treasured memory for life!
It was like the estate was taken out of the most romantic movie sets I've ever seen, the food was a culinary dream, the activities were so thoughtfully put together, well planned and perfectly executed. The hostesses complemented each other perfectly and contributed in every way to make this the experience of a lifetime. And the new friends I made in just one week, from such a wonderful shared experience, is beyond comprehension.
I know the memory of the "La Dolce Vita" retreat is going to stay with me forever. And every time I look at a photo or think back to that incredible week, I can still hear the sounds, feel the sun, smell the smells, taste the wine and hear the laughter, and it gives me a warm feeling in my heart and a smile on my face.
This may sound like it's too good to be true, but honestly; there aren't enough words in the dictionary to properly describe how it was. It was just truly and utterly magical.
• CECILIA GJORDING JOHANSSON FROM NORWAY •
I can't rave enough about the amazingness of "La Dolce Vita"! Everything was 'more' than I could possibly have imagined - the beauty, the creativity, the flourishes, the food, the setting, the estate, the side trips, - the attention to every single possible detail - Carolyn, Terri (and Tiffany) were so over-the-top wonderful in every conceivable way. Their generosity with their time, their supplies, their support and help, and their warmth and ideas - all was just boundless. Just when you thought it couldn't possibly get any better, it would! I hope to go every year for the rest of my life!
• LORRAINE ROSE FROM WASHINGTON D.C. •
I must admit, I was a little hesitant to sign up for La Dolce Vita because I had attended several art retreats both in the States and out of the country and could not imagine how La Dolce Vita could possibly compare to those trips. I was in for such a pleasant surprise!
Being in the art/class/retreat business, I am familiar with the amount of time and never ending details it takes to plan an event. Carolyn, Terri and Tiffany did not leave out one detail for the entire week. They made sure we had everything we needed to make us comfortable in our new home and country and planed each day so we could have the full Tuscan experience.
The estate was gorgeous and relaxing. Plenty of places to explore or just to sit and take in the Italian countryside and history. Paola and her staff were so very welcoming and helpful that they quickly became friends. The meals at the retreat were my favorite from all my travels throughout Italy. What I wouldn't give right now for the Panzanella salad we were served at the estate! The classes with Carolyn and Terri were fresh and a meaningful reminders of an amazing trip and held in the most beautiful stable. You could not help but be inspired! The excursions to the smaller markets were a perfect way to experience Italy "off the beaten path" and have become some of my favorite Italian towns. The cooking class was one of my favorite days. We all worked together to prepare a fabulous meal and then to enjoy it at a table with new friends. It was perfect and there were tears of joy shed at that meal.
As wonderful as all of that, my very favorite part of the trip was the many new friendships I gained. I arrived really not knowing anyone well but after a week of shared experiences, a lot of gelato, and some wonderful Chianti, we all became lifelong friends! I love having met friends from all over the world and although we are separated by many thousands of miles and life experiences, we are connected by a magical shared week.
La Dolce Vita was a dream trip. I truly feel blessed to have been a part of it and especially to share it with my group of ladies- the first group. I think our entire group looks forward to meeting again and again- I know I certainly do. It's the perfect girl's trip that will recharge your creative spirit, relax your mind and gain friendships for life!
Did I mention you get to eat gelato almost everyday - some days more than once. You also might gain a nickname that makes you smile every time to you see or hear it.
• CINDY WINTER AKA "VINTER CINDY" FROM OKLAHOMA •
La Dolce Vita is the stuff of dreams. Never before have I felt so well cared for at an event. We ate unbelievably delicious meals, crafted incredible projects, formed lasting friendships, all the while surrounded by the beauty of the age old estate. Carolyn and Terri carefully crafted La Dolce Vita to be a once in a lifetime experience...unless, of course, you are lucky enough to book it again! If you are at all intrigued, do yourself a huge favor and go. You will never regret it.
• AMY POWERS FROM VIRGINIA •
I was so blessed to attend the first Creative Lifestyle Retreat in Tuscany with Carolyn and Terri this year. It was all I had dreamed of it being - from the beauty and the magic of the estate, to their perfect attention to detail, to the fun activities that we did, and the most delicious food - it was just what I needed. I was ready to relax and just let my cup - spiritually and creatively - get refilled! From the minute we arrived and passed through the gates we knew we were in a very special place. The main buildings, where we would eat and sleep and create and share so much laughter and so many tears, are amazing - the color changes with the sun and the clouds. I wish I could transport you there... to the sounds of the doves and the swallows and the roosters and donkeys in the distance, the smell of the roses and the jasmine, the utter peace of the place. Every inch is photogenic! We came mostly as strangers and left with a very special group of new friends!
• DEBBY SCHUH FROM NEW YORK •
I am here to say, it was a trip of a lifetime, don't think about it, do it! It was first class all the way. It was like a dream. The relationships you will make, the workshops you do, the sight seeing, the love of the family, staying at the villa that seems like a movie, Terri, Carolyn and Tiffany are awesome!! All wrapped up with a giant bow.
• JANIS PETERSON FROM WASHINGTON •
The "La Dolce Vita" retreat was so amazing and well planned that one would have thought that Carolyn and Terri have been hosting it forever! They thought of every detail and each detail was over the top! It changed my life! I feel like I have a new family with memories I will aways treasure. I cannot imagine all the time and work it took to pull this event off. Our hostesses all have unique gifts that meshed together for a wonderful purpose. I am so glad I was pushed to try things I had never done before and I recommend this retreat to any woman who wants to find her creative side ...because it is in there.... just waiting to be welcomed.
• JOYCE COLLINS FROM INDIANA •