This has been a very fun time for us!
We’ve been highly focused writing a travel guide with one purpose: to make your trip to Italy outrageously good.
We’ve been listening to readers and our tour clients for years, and we hear the same things:
Help! My trip is so overwhelming to plan! Can I ask you a few questions?
For people who are coming to Italy for the first or fifth time, planning a trip can be hugely stressful. And coming to a country where you don’t speak the language just adds another layer of complexity.
Trip planning is like a full-time job — there are so many moving parts. I plan trips for a living, and I know how much time and effort it can take. Even if I have an advantage (cause I do it a lot, have connections and read Italian language content), it still takes an immense amount of time, and there’s an art to doing it well! Given that, I really feel for the “first timer.”
Our new guide will give you “before you go” trip planning strategies, plus city guides for Rome, Florence, Venice and the Cinque Terre.
It’s full of step-by-step directions, must-know resources, lists of favorite hotels and rad food. We deliver it in a very personalized, “avoid that and do this” advice.
You know, things we would tell our clients who travel with us, or our friends. Just straight-up stuff.
We also wanted something that makes travel planning FUN and EASY. (Duh!)
Our BRAND NEW travel guide is the world’s first, “read, watch and listen” system.
Introducing … Gigi.
We call this new travel friend Gigi Guides.
(Pronounced with a soft “J”, like the word “Jeep.” It sounds like Jee Jee Guides.)
Gigi crushes the limitations of a paper guidebook (hello updates!) and gives you 24/7 access on any device. Watch videos on your laptop, listen to audio on your phone or just print the text guides.
Release date: April 2016.
Why did you write a travel guide, Bianca?
Over the years, we’ve been publishing free blog posts and by reading comments we get daily, we knew people struggled with trip planning.
Our most popular blog post “The Beginner’s Guide to the Cinque Terre” has over 600 comments and over 800 Facebook shares. (Huge, right?) I knew something had to be done. Which is why we wrote this Italy travel guide with “all in one” planning advice.
The best part about owning a travel company isn’t traveling.
You know, for me, owning a travel company isn’t just about traveling. In fact, the best part of my work is hanging out with great people each year. Both clients and collaborators.
I want to introduce you to a few folks who know me. Really well!
They’ve seen me in the trenches, taking care of travelers.
My homie Justina Blakeney is a New York Times best-selling author and design blogger. We host a workshop in Italy and last year our husbands and daughters played while we worked (but we all had a nice beach day together too!). Here’s what Justina says:
When I met Bianca on our first trip to the Cinque Terre, she immediately made me feel both at home and like I was on this incredible adventure. Traveling with Bianca is like traveling with a really good friend — a really good friend that also happens to be really fun, incredibly knowledgeable, generous, easy-going and full of good vibes–and did I mention that she has great taste, too?? She’s that rare combination of super high-energy and totally mellow — the perfect person to guide you through one of my favorite places in the world.
Justina Blakeney | LA, California
Meet Tim. I’ve been besties with this gal since I was 19 (translation: we’ve watched each other go through a LOT of boyfriends. Especially in our 20’s!) Boys aside (plus my husband reads this), she’s been working with me in Italy since “Day 1” on our tours and knows I am obsessed with finding the good stuff.
Bianca is the best there is. Her style and taste are impeccable, and she makes sure you get to share in her years of knowledge and experience of Italy, as if you yourself spend those years there. She takes your comfort, fun & peace of mind seriously!
Tim McDiarmid | San Antonio, Texas
I’ve worked with Leela Cyd in Italy for four years. Leela is a photographer and cookbook author (you MUST check out Food with Friends). We’ve shared hotel rooms, heatstrokes, ocean swims, and late night grappa sessions. Leela says:
Bianca brings you into the fold like family and leads you to explore the inner world of the Italy. Instead of the tourist traps, you are swiftly whisked away to homes for a glass of wine, a tiny cabana-covered beach of pretty pebbles, tranquil waters & only a handful of Italian families and her fave outdoor shopping markets. The restaurants Bianca shares are another adventure entirely — from the first sip of welcoming Prosecco served with aperitivo to last crumb of chocolatey cantuccini, we are hosted, lavished upon and generously taken care of in the old-world sense, where every ingredient is grown and prepared to the utmost refined simplicity and left to linger with each other. Never rushed, always enchanting, Bianca helps us find the most crucial commodity of our harried, digitized era: connection and time. Time for you to be awakened to the good life of Italy, and to the possibilities and beauty of living slower.
Leela Cyd | Santa Barbara, California
Stalk these photos.
Here are shots from people I’ve helped have rocking vacations in Italia and I can do the same for you with Gigi Guides.
Stalk Instagram posts from Anthony, Nikki, Deepa, Lauren, Jessica and Anuschka.
To celebrate Gigi Guides coming in April, enter our contest!
If I gave you a FREE plane ticket to Italy tomorrow — where would you go and why?
I’ll be picking one random winner to get a free 30-minute phone consult from me (ask me anything: travel, business, where I bought my latest hot dress).
Answer 2 questions to be eligible:
- Where would you go in Italy.
I look forward to reading your comments below! **Random draw on Tuesday March 15th @ 2 pm PST.**
Thanks for checking out our blog!
Are you interested in travelling to the Cinque Terre with us on a current trip?
(We’ve also got tours in Florence)
We’d love to see you in Italy!