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From Marseille and Aix-en-Provence, to Avignon, Saint-Remy-de-Provence, and Gordes … and the many picturesque villages in between, our Expert Host will enliven your senses. Partake in wine and olive oil tastings, gaze upon seasonal sunflowers and lavender fields, and experience unsurpassed culinary delights throughout your trip through Provence. Return to your villa to relax in the countryside and gaze upon the Luberon mountains, the experience sunsets over the hilltop village of Gordes, and wander amongst the home's gardens and olive groves as you make your way to the pool. Enjoy Chef dinners as a highlight of this exclusive Premier experience.
May 19-May 27, 2023 (departs USA May 18, 2023) with Chef Bob Waggoner
September 1-9, 2023 (departs USA August 31, 2023) Chef Bob Waggoner
October 13-21, 2023 (departs USA October 12, 2023) Local Culinary Artisan
From $7599 Per Person; Double Occupancy; Single Supplement $1,800; Limited to 20 passengers
May 17-25, 2024 (departs USA May 16, 2024) with Chef Bob Waggoner
September 20-28, 2024 (departs USA September 5, 2024) with Chef Bob Waggoner
October 11-19, 2024 (departs USA October 10, 2024) with Chef Bob Waggoner
$7899 Per Person; Double Occupancy; Single Supplement $1,800; Limited to 20 Passengers
Optional: Paris 2-Night Extension Post Tour Available
DAY-BY-DAY IN PROVENCE
Depart United States for Marseille, France*
Day 1 — Marseille — Aix-en-Provence
Arrive Marseille airport in the morning, followed by private transfer to your hotel in Aix-en-Provence, Hotel Le Pigonnet, (or similar). Enjoy time at leisure until you connect to get acquainted with the group and Aix-en-Provence with a highlights walking tour followed by a Welcome Dinner.
Day 2 —Aix-en-Provence
Following your final breakfast, enjoy a guided tour of the old town and market in Aix-en-Provence, founded by the Romans in 103 BC. Aix-en-Provence is called the city of a thousand fountains and is known for its colorful market, which will be in full swing. Discover the vegetables and fruits, cheeses, herbs, olive oil, and all the flavors of Provence in the center near Cours Mirabeau. Following your guided tour, enjoy lunch with the group before spending the balance of your day at leisure exploring this beautiful city.*
Day 3 — Gordes
Following breakfast, depart for your authentic Provençal Villa Fontblanche set in the valley below the hilltop village of Gordes. Enroute, stop in the charming village of Loumarin for an introduction to the Luberon Valley. Enjoy a guided tour of one of the “Most Beautiful Villages in France” followed by time at leisure. Embark on your final stretch to the villa where you will have some time to refresh and relax before enjoying lunch on the terrace. Before this evening’s first Chef’s dinner — for which you can help with preparing as much (or as little) as you wish — experience a wine tasting with a Sommelier to introduce you to the wines of Provence.
Day 4 — Gordes
Spend the morning in beautiful, medieval Gordes. On a guided tour, walk through the vaulted, arcaded lanes that reveal the town’s many charms. Visit the Caves du Palais Saint-Firmin a Gordes, which boasts a variety of artistic features, provide evidence of life in Gordes (listed as one of France’s most beautiful villages) from the Middle Ages onwards, and offer visitors a wonderful opportunity to immerse themselves in the history of this mysterious, semi-troglodyte world. Moving from room to room, visitors will learn all about the history of the place and the know-how associated with the oil production process. Late morning, enjoy an aperitif (Rosé, white or red wine, still and sparkling water, fruit juices, savory bites) served in the gardens (privatized for the occasion). Lunch will be at leisure prior to transferring to the Abbaye de Senanque, a Cistercian abbey renowned for its spectacular lavender fields, for a guided visit. Chef’s dinner.
Day 5 — Gordes — At Leisure
Enjoy time this morning in Gordes with our Expert Host shopping the Tuesday Provençal market for local ingredients for the Chef's dinners. Then enjoy the balance of the time shopping, lunching, and just meandering at leisure. Return to the villa to relax before this evening’s Chef’s dinner.
Day 6 — St. Remy de Provence
Today, enjoy St. Remy de Provence, a beautiful village forever entwined with the legacy of Vincent van Gogh. Bask in Provençal living as you stroll through the local market place, brimming with fresh produce, fragrant herbs, and seasonal specialties as part of a guided walking tour. Meander the narrow streets, discovering what makes this village so vibrant. Enjoy time at leisure for lunch. Depart for a nearby olive farm at which you will learn about making and enjoy tasting olive oil. Return to the villa for time at leisure before this evening’s Chef’s dinner.
Day 7 — Avignon
Visit Avignon, a city in southeastern France’s Provence region that is set on the Rhône River. From 1309 to 1377, it was the seat of the Catholic popes. It remained under papal rule until becoming part of France in 1791. This legacy can be seen in the massive Palais des Papes (Popes' Palace) in the city center, which is surrounded by medieval stone ramparts. Enjoy a guided trolley panoramic tour of Avignon followed by a guided visit to the Palais des Papes. Depart for Châteauneuf du Pape. In the 14th century, Pope Jean XXII chose Châteauneuf as the location for the summer residence, and then decided to plant vines on the stony land that surrounded their landholdings. Today, the Châteauneuf du Pape appellation has strict controls to ensure that the 55 vineyards produce extremely fine wine. Enjoy a private wine tasting and light lunch at a vineyard in the heart Châteauneuf du Pape before returning to the villa. Enjoy your final Chef’s dinner this evening.
Day 8 — Bonnieux — Menerbes
Relax this morning at the villa. Depart this afternoon for a guided visit to the hilltop villages of Menerbes and Bonnieux. Enjoy a Farewell Diner in Bonnieux before returning to the villa.
Day 9 — Gordes
Say au revoir to Provence this morning. Group transfer to Marseille Airport for your flight home.
**IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Itinerary subject to change. Premier Tours & Travel reserves the right to modify programs and itineraries (including arranged sightseeing, accommodations, dining experiences, aircraft, trains, vessels, and so forth) at any time due to unforeseen circumstances or circumstances beyond Premier Tours & Travel’s control, including force majeures. In the instance our Expert host cancels due to unforeseen circumstances, Premier Tours & Travel has the right to substitute another Expert host, such as a chef, in such an emergency (timing allowed) and/or the tour will continue in its entirety. Every effort is made to operate our itineraries as planned but alterations may need to be made after the final itinerary has been issued. Airfare is not included. Deposits are utilized to secure services on your behalf and are nonrefundable. Deposits are transferrable to a future Expertly Done Culinary & Wine Travel tour. Wine is included as noted otherwise alcoholic beverages are the responsibility of each adult guest. Two glasses of wine will be provided with Chef's dinners at the villa; additional wine is your responsibility. Guests are limited to one carry on and one checked baggage and will be responsible for any additional fees charged for additional luggage. Please see Key Items to Know Before You Leave Home in Terms & Conditions.
Premier Experiences, Premier Advantages
English-speaking director and local Premier representatives
Airport meet and greet
Private group transfers
Curated 4-star superior hotels and a high-end country estate
Full breakfast included daily; Lunches and Dinners as noted
Curated tours and experiences, such as guided city tours, winery tours and tastings, Caves du Palais Saint-Firmin, and Palais des Papes (including entrance fees, taxes, and gratuities)
Internet (where available)
24/7 Premier support
ABOUT CHEF BOB WAGGONER
Chef Bob Waggoner Bob received his formal training with Michael Roberts at Trumps in Los Angeles from 1981 to 1983, and later in France at a constellation of Michelin-rated restaurants with chefs Jacques Lameloise, Charles Barrier, Pierre Gagnaire, Gerard Boyer and Mark Meneau. At 23, he took on his first chef position at the private club “Members” in Caracas, Venezuela. Chef Bob Waggoner returned to France at age 24 to become chef of the Hotel de la Poste in Avallon for three years. Then, in 1988 at age 26, in the town of Moneteau in Burgundy, he became the first American chef to own his own restaurant in France, the much acclaimed Le Monte Cristo. He is one of the few Americans to be Knighted with the “l’Odre du Mérite Agricole” from the Government of France. In 1991, Waggoner was offered the opportunity of Chef de Cuisine with Chef Jean-Pierre Silva, the two-star Michelin, at Le Vieux Moulin in Beaune, France. After 11 years in France, he returned to the States in 1993 to cook at the award-winning Turnberry Isle in Florida, before joining The Wild Boar in Nashville, where he earned the restaurant a coveted AAA Five-Diamond Award and the Grand Award from Wine Spectator.
He finally found his way to Charleston where he was Executive Chef of Charleston Grill at Charleston Place for a dozen years. Every year, Chef Bob was at the Charleston Grill, it was awarded AAA Four-Diamond and the Mobile Four-Star award, and in 2001-2005 he was nominated four times for The Beard Foundation "Best Chef Southeast" award. He is author of the Charleston Grill at Charleston Place: French Influenced Lowcountry Cuisine cookbook. Always well regarded as a media-savvy chef, he has won an Emmy for his television show “Off the Menu” with Turner South. He also hosted 2 cooking shows with PBS, U Cook with Chef Bob and Sing for Your Supper with Chef Bob. Currently, he is the owner of “In the Kitchen with Chef Bob Waggoner” where he hosts cooking classes in a relaxed, casual, and sophisticated atmosphere. With his easygoing nature, he can teach anyone the culinary tips and techniques for "how it's done" in the finest restaurants.