This is world’s most wonderful Mediterranean cruise. In the company of Sir James Galway, the most
renowned classical flautist alive today, set sail out from Venice’s Grand Canal to charming and magnificent locales in the Mediterranean – including the Dalmatian Coast, Sicily, Tunisia, and coastal Spain. In historic concert halls and aristocratic palaces throughout our route, as well as aboard ship, we will enjoy private recitals from our exclusive chamber ensemble featuring not only Sir James, but also some of the finest classical music talents the world over. It will be a truly unique and transcendent experience.
We hope we may have thepleasure of your company. Our itinerary comprises a cultural symphony of the Mediterranean during the gorgeous month of May. It begins in a distinctive key: Macerata, a classic medieval Italian hill town famed for its opera festivals. (Our concert that night is in the grand 18th-century Teatro Lauro Rossi – reserved exclusively for our intimate group.) From there, we will sail to Diocletian’s Palace in Split, the Renaissance lanes of Dubrovnik, and the great fjord of Kotor. Onward, we will discover Norman-Arab-Sicilian harmonies in Palermo’s monuments, then hear echoes of the most ancient melodies among the ruins of Carthage. And then, the grand finale: the vibrant, resplendent cities of Barcelona, Valencia, and Seville.
Our hand-picked chamber ensemble features James Galway, “The Man with the Golden Flute.” He will be performing alongside pianist William Hobbs; three alumni/ae of the internationally acclaimed Rosamunde Quartet; and the composer Lowell Liebermann, the most commissioned composer in America today. Together, they surely comprise one of the most intriguing ensembles to grace a concert hall anywhere. We will hear them in a 12th-century Montenegrin church and glittering 18th-century palaces in Sicily and Spain, among other places.
We will also be joined aboard the elegant 114-guest, all-suite Corinthian II by Professor Lester K. Little, Dwight W. Morrow professor emeritus at Smith College and a former director of the American Academy in Rome, and UC-Berkeley Professor Emeritus Frederick M. Dolan, whose lectures will illuminate our voyage. Is this heaven? It’s certainly close.
Mediterranean Music Cruise itinerary:
Day 1 - EMBARK IN VENICE
Arrive in Venice and board Corinthian II. Quite possibly the world’s most unusual and romantic city, lovely canalled Venice is a feast for the senses. At the height of its prosperity, this incomparable city of water and light possessed an empire that stretched throughout the eastern Mediterranean. Spend the night docked aboard ship. (D)
Day 2 - ANCONA
From Ancona, drive inland to Macerata, a quaint, hilltop medieval town. Explore the town and view its historic buildings, including the 16th-century Loggia dei Mercanti and the 17th-century Palazzo del Comune, with its splendid atrium decorated with sculptures. Visit the City Museum, housed in an old Jesuit college, and the Palazzo Ricci Gallery, with its excellent collection of works by modern Italian artists. Our musical performance will take place at Teatro Lauro Rossi in Macerata. (B, L, D)
Day 3 - SPLIT
Arrive in Split, an ancient city entered around the formidable Palace of Diocletian, built in a.d. 295. An extensive structure, much of which is well-preserved, the palace contains within its walls Split’s old town, making it the only palace continuously inhabited since Roman times. After touring the Palace, reboard Corinthian II and spend the afternoon at sea. (B, L, D)
Day 4 - DUBROVNIK & KOTOR
For hundreds of years, Dubrovnik (the “Pearl of the Adriatic”) was an independent city-state competing with Venice for Constantinople’s trade routes. Discover the Franciscan Monastery, Dominican Monastery, and Baroque Cathedral, containing works by Titian and Andrea del Sarto. Also view the wonderful courtyard of the Rector’s Palace. In the afternoon, explore Kotor, located at the head of a bay beneath towering mountains. One of the quaintest and best-preserved medieval towns along the Dalmatian coast, Kotor is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Its fortifications and most of its monuments, which we will visit on a walking tour, date from the time of Venetian rule. Enjoy a musical performance at Kotor’s St. Tryphon Cathedral, a fine example of Romanesque architecture. (B, L, D)
Day 6 - PALERMO
Palermo is one of the Mediterranean’s most enchanting cities. Founded by the Phoenicians in 827 b.c. and conquered by the Saracens in the 9th century, it became one of Europe’s greatest cities by the 12th century, when the Normans took control. Seek out the Cappella Palatina, the royal chapel built by Roger II between 1132 and 1143. A wonder of Byzantine-Arab-Norman artistry, the chapel features dazzling mosaics, an exquisitely carved wooden ceiling, and magnificent inlaid marble floors and walls. Then
drive to Monreale to visit its famed Norman cathedral. In the afternoon, tour and enjoy a concert at the private Palazzo Raffadali, a Gothic palace with 17th-century interiors. (B, L, D)
Day 7 - TUNIS & CARTHAGE
From Tunis, travel to storied Carthage, founded by Phoenicians in the 9th century b.c. Explore the ruins at the archaeological site. Also tour the Bardo Museum, world-renowned for its spectacular collection of Roman mosaics, and enjoy time at leisure visiting the medina and souks of Tunis. (B, L, D)
Day 9 - BARCELONA
The exuberant capital of Catalonia, Barcelona is rich in exceptional works of art and architecture.
Tour the narrow alleyways of the Barrio Gotico, the original site of the Carthaginian city, and the extraordinary Templo de la Sagrada Familia, begun in the 19th century by the architect Antonio Gaudí and still famously unfinished. Also visit the National Art Museum of Catalonia before a musical performance at Palau Moxo, dating from 1770 and the only residential palace in Barcelona. Its lovely interiors, art, and furnishings offer an authentic period experience. (B, L, D)
Day 10 - VALENCIA
Founded by the Greeks in the 2nd century b.c. and later occupied by Romans, Visigoths, and Moors, Valencia prospered during the 15th century, as attested to by its palaces, churches, and mansions. Explore the Old Town and its maze of narrow streets, visiting the 13th-century Cathedral, with paintings by Goya and other treasures in its museum. In the afternoon, experience the remarkable City of Arts and
Sciences, a cultural complex of futuristic buildings designed by native architect Santiago Calatrava. (B, L, D)
Day 11 - AT SEA
Listen to lectures and a musical performance. (B, L, D)
Day 12 - SEVILLE
Occupied by the Romans, conquered by the Moors, and ruled by a succession of Catholic monarchs, Seville is one of Europe’s most important and affluent maritime cites. Visit the Alcazar, with its charming Murillo Gardens, and the Gothic Cathedral. Enjoy the last musical performance of the voyage tonight. (B, L, D)
Day 13 - DISEMBARK IN SEVILLE
Disembark after breakfast
The deluxe Corinthian II is an all-suite yacht accommodating up to 114 guests. Built in 1992 and refurbished and redecorated in 2005, it has 57 suites, each with:
• Sea view
• Queen-sized bed separable into two twin-sized beds
• Sitting area
• Satellite TV, DVD/CD player
• Marble-appointed bathroom with fine toiletries
• 225 square feet or more
• Plush terry robes and slippers
• Fresh flowers and fruit basket
• 24-hour room service
The Penthouse Suites and Veranda Suites (400 and 300 square feet, respectively) feature private balconies accessed via sliding-glass doors, as well as white glove butler service.
Corinthian II’s superb Continental cuisine is created by master chefs who select fresh local ingredients at many ports of call. Meals are served either in the stately restaurant or al fresco on the umbrella-studded sun deck. Fine regional wines are complimentary with lunch and dinner, and beginning in 2008 open bar service will be available throughout the day.
BESPOKE SMALL-SHIP AMENITIES
Returning from excursions, guests enjoy complimentary refreshments, afternoon tea and all-day coffee in The Club, a gracious space for relaxation, surrounded by panoramic windows. Before or after dinner, cocktails are served to live music performed by the ship’s pianist.
Other Corinthian II features include:
• Library with Internet access
• Lounge with audiovisual facilities
• Dining room
• Wraparound sun deck with Jacuzzi
• Exercise Room
• Beauty salon
• Medical facilities with available doctor
• Elevator serving all passenger decks
• Swimming platform
Corinthian II complies with the latest international safety regulations and is outfitted with the most current navigational and communications technology as well as with retractable fin stabilizers for smooth sailing, an ice-strengthened hull, and a fleet of Zodiacs. Corinthian II’s 75 officers and crew ensure gracious personalized service and a convivial atmosphere akin to a private club.