Who we are, what we believe:
Our goal is to offer you a personal, unique experience.
In 1998, when we started, we were the first cooking class offered in Florence. Now there are plenty. To stay unique, we stir away from mass, and we shy away from luxury. We choose “experiential”.
We created a cultural association, to welcome fellow members into our private home in Chianti.
Before you look into what we do, please take a moment to read what we believe in:
- There is a difference between a tourist and a traveler; if you belong to the latter category,
we like you already…
- Every visitor is different and deserves to be accepted and respected because of that: your religion, your political inclinations, your ethnic group, your country of origin, your gender, are an opportunity of growth for us and the people around you;
- Even a fellow traveler can be a great source of information!
- Food, wine and real people are paramount cultural elements, as important as the largest art museum, or the most awe-inspiring cathedral;
- Seasons are important: enjoying roasted chestnuts and a glass of hot spiced wine in the winter by the fire and looking forward to the first fresh strawberries means accepting and enjoying the passing of time, which is essential to a good life;
- Money shouldn’t be but a byproduct of a job well done.
- THE ACCIDENTAL TOURIST FAMILY GROWS…
We are proud to announce, after searching high and low, that the Accidental Tourist family has grown!
To accommodate the growing number of requests and still keep the group sizes to a quaint and intimate maximum of 8 people, our cooking class is now available EVERY WEEK END too! Thanks to our neighbors Gabriela and Leone opening their gorgeous historical home to the Accidental Tourist:
90 olive trees, a chicken coop, an impressive antique collection, an old farmhouse that would trigger kitchen-envy in Martha Stewart, and a warm welcoming philosophy that is right up the Accidental Tourist alley.
Gabriela has lived most of her full life in Italy, but has french, dutch and Argentinian in her.
Together with her husband Leone – a prominent historical paintings restorer – she lives in a beautiful 17th century farmhouse in the Chianti countryside, only a few minutes away from us.
We have known them for 17 years…. why didn’t it occur to us to ask them sooner!
- THE ACCIDENTAL TOURIST REACHES OUT to lower case:
You and we are the “upper case Accidental Tourists”, the lucky ones who can choose the destination and duration of their wandering, and can set the date of their return home.
Lower case accidental tourists are those less fortunate, who leave without luggage, itinerary, a return ticket, or a home to return to.
After 20 years of making a privileged living by offering healthy food and cozy accommodations to curious travelers, we have decided it is about time to extend some of that warmth to those who can’t afford it,
by supporting PROGETTO ARCA onlus, a foundation which offers clean shelter and hearty meals to homeless people.
Here is how we will contribute:
- For every paying guest that will sit at our table, we will donate a meal to PROGETTO ARCA onlus. If 2018 goes as 2017, we should provide for 2000 meals!
- Many guests have been asking about the art in our home, so we have decided to make it available. – Here are some examples (more professional pictures coming soon…)
Hence, if a piece you like during your stay here has a hanging price tag, you can take it home!
We sell it at the artist’s price with no mark-up, and we turn our commission (variable from piece to piece) to PROGETTO ARCA onlus.
So when buying a piece of art, you are also providing safe sleep, healthy food and a chance for change, for someone in need.
3. When paying for your cooking and eating experience, or for a sojourn, you have the option of adding one or more warm meals or safe night sleep, or sanitary kits, for someone who needs it.
If you can relate to our philosophy, you are officially invited to join our club and become an Accidental Tourist
Become an Accidental Tourist!
Majla, I hope this note finds you well. As I look through old photos & reflect on this year, I realize that our day with you may have been our best. It was beyond doubt the most meaningful to our daughter, Helen, about to leave for university. In a summer of tumult, she was so calm in your kitchen. So present, so taken by the kindness. She loved working with her hands. I think something shifted in her brain, or maybe her heart. When we left, she said to me on the walk home, “Steve is the happiest person I’ve ever met – She realized – he had designed his life. Lived as he wanted to live: fully, with richness, beauty, and kindness.” She saw a carpet of options unrolling before her. Her life would no longer be a box.
Finally, thank you for all you do to make this world a more beautiful place. If you ever feel it goes unnoticed, it does not. Your fingerprints are all over my child.