Opera Tours


Glyndebourne, London & Garsington 2014

June 18 - 29, 2014

Der Rosenkavalier, Don Giovanni and Eugene Onegin at Glyndebourne; Manon Lescaut (Kaufmann), Tosca (Domingo; Radvanovsky, Terfel) and Ariadne auf Naxos (Mattila) at Covent Garden; Fidelio and The Cunning Little Vixen
at Garsington Opera.

Our annual trek to the UK is one of our most popular tours, always sold out, and always a success. 2014 marks the 80th anniversary of the inimitable Glyndebourne Festival, and we will combine that experience with another of England’s finest “Garden Opera” festivals at Garsington as well as a stay in London with three visits to the Royal Opera House.

We begin with a stay at the luxurious “Old World” Grand Hotel Eastbourne, our base for the Glyndebourne Festival. Robin Ticciati conducts Richard Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier and Andrés Orozco-Estrada debuts with Mozart’s Don Giovanni. Our third opera here will be Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, conducted by Omer Meir Wellber in his Festival debut.

In London we stay at the superb Covent Garden Hotel, universally beloved by all of our clients who have stayed there. In addition to exploring London’s literary past and its great art and architecture, we will attend three performances at the Royal Opera House: Manon Lescaut featuring Jonas Kaufmann, Ariadne auf Naxos with Karita Mattila in the title role, and Tosca, with Plácido Domingo conducting a cast that includes Sondra Radvanovsky and Bryn Terfel.

We end in Garsington, always the surprise highlight of the tour, and this year we stay at one of England’s finest hotels, Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, with its Michelin 2-starred Restaurant. At Garsington Opera we hear Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen and Beethoven’s Fidelio.

Touring and cuisine throughout our stay will be the finest that England has to offer.

Join us as one of only fifteen members for this very special tour.

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Wednesday, June 18

Departures from North America.

Thursday, June 19

Upon arrival at Heathrow, you will be met and transferred to the luxurious Grand Hotel Eastbourne (90 minutes). Once settled in your ocean-view room, we meet in the lounge for a Welcoming Reception and then dinner at the hotel.

Friday, June 20

Following breakfast, included each day, we meet for a brief orientation tour of Eastbourne and Brighton. Following lunch at leisure we depart for Glyndebourne for a performance of Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin. Andrei Bondarenko, winner of the 2011 Cardiff Singer of the World, sings the title role. We enjoy a refined Picnic dinner at the long interval.

Saturday, June 21

This morning we include a relaxed tour to Hastings where we survey the site of the Norman Conquest of the English army on October 14, 1066. Tonight we attend our second performance of the festival: A Jonathan Kent production of Don Giovanni, with Elliot Madore in the title role. Conductor Andrés Orozco-Estrada makes his Glyndebourne debut. Buffet dinner at Nether Wallop during the interval.

Sunday, June 22

Late morning we gather and depart for a guided tour to Sissinghurst Castle, with its garden created in the 1930s by poet/writer Vita Sackville-West and her husband Harold Nicolson, author and diplomat. In the evening, we make our final trek to the Christie Estate at Glyndebourne for a new Richard Jones production of Der Rosenkavalier. Glyndebourne’s new Music Director Robin Ticciati conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra and a cast that includes Kate Royal and Teodora Gheorghiu. During the interval, we enjoy an elegant dinner at Middle & Over Wallop.

Monday, June 23

In the morning, we check out and depart for London, stopping at Nymans, a National Trust site with an outstanding 20th-century garden, set around a romantic house and ruins in beautiful woodland. Upon arrival in London, we check-in to the elegant Covent Garden Hotel, ideally located near the opera house. Once settled, we make the short stroll for dinner at The Ivy, a renowned supper club just around the corner.

Tuesday, June 24

In the morning we meet for a private highlights tour of London, with special focus on its literary past as well as the architecture of Christopher Wren. Early evening we walk to the Royal Opera for dinner at the stunning Balconies Restaurant before Manon Lescaut, directed by Jonathan Kent, with Antonio Pappano conducting a cast featuring the incomparable Jonas Kaufmann.

Wednesday, June 25

Today we concentrate touring on the Banqueting House, a jewel of neo-classical architecture by Inigo Jones, with a ceiling painted by Rubens. We then survey the major works at the National Gallery. Tonight we return to the ROH for Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos, directed by Christof Loy, with Antonio Pappano conducting a cast featuring Karita Mattila, Roberto Sacca and Jane Archibald.

Thursday, June 26

Enjoy the entire day at leisure before returning to the ROH for dinner in the Amphitheatre Restaurant prior to Puccini’s Tosca directed by Jonathan Kent. Plácido Domingo conducts a cast that includes Sondra Radvanovsky and Bryn Terfel.

Friday, June 27

After breakfast we depart by private, luxury coach for Oxford where we spend the final nights of our trip at the sublime Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, where the restaurant has been voted best in England. Tonight we attend a performance of Janáček’s The Cunning Little Vixen at the Garsington Festival. Directed by Daniel Slater and conducted by Garry Walker, the cast features Claire Booth and Grant Doyle. Dinner by Jamie Oliver is included during the long interval.

Saturday, June 28

In the morning, we depart for a private walking tour of Oxford and some of its most famous colleges. We return to the hotel for an unforgettable lunch before our final performance at Garsington, Beethoven’s Fidelio. Directed by John Cox and conducted by Douglas Boyd, the cast features Rebecca von Lipinski and Peter Wedd. A Farewell Reception is included during the long interval.

Sunday, June 29

Airport transfers included today.

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Flight Arrangements

We are happy to partner with several excellent flight booking providers for any flight arrangements you may require. We always book the best itineraries, based on your preferences, with the lowest available fares and the most direct flights. We regret that we are not able to make points bookings or points upgrades on your behalf.

Travel Insurance Partner

We offer comprehensive travel insurance, including medical and cancellation policies, with Travel Insurance Services in San Francisco. We partner with them because their product is excellent and their customer service is second to none. It may not be the cheapest product available, but we prefer not to take chances with inferior products and services.
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Tour Includes

  • Premium seating for 8 operas
  • 10 nights deluxe accommodations (Glyndebourne: Grand Hotel Eastbourne; London: Covent Garden Hotel; Garsington: Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons)
  • Full breakfast daily, 8 dinners, 1 lunch at the Michelin 2-star Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons and 2 Receptions
  • Private guided tours as listed
  • Luxury coach transfers between cities
  • Airport-hotel transfers
  • On site Tour Direction
  • Comprehensive Tour  Guidebook/Itinerary

Cost: $12,495 USD
Single supplement: $2000 USD
Deposit: $3000 US
Balance due: March 18, 2014

Tour Flights:

We can assist with arrangements, offering low fares and the most direct flights, for $75 per person. Flights should be booked to arrive at London Heathrow on June 19, with return flights from London on June 29.

Transfers:

We provide airport-hotel transfers on published arrival and departure days only. For arrivals/ departures on days other than published tour dates, we can arrange transfers at cost.

Mobility:

Minimal walking with some stairs during the London tours. Seven minute walk to London performances.

Insurance:

We strongly recommend that all tour members purchase cancellation insurance upon registration. We can assist you with this, though you are welcome to purchase a policy at your own discretion.