The Music, Art & Architecture of

Historic Venice

Peter Medhurst with Tom Abbott

7 days from £3,099 departing 27 January 2025

To book, either download the brochure from here or talk to Sandy Cornish at Tailored Travel on 01227 830624, or Tel: 020 7064 4970.



I would like to give a Venetian flavour to Dr Johnson’s famous throw away remark about London that ‘when a man is tired of Venice, he is tired of life’. No matter how many times one crosses the waters of the Adriatic to this City of Water, Venice will always hold a few precious, cultural cards up its sleeve to engage and astonish the visitor. This, our latest Venice itinerary, combines the familiar with the new, to create a programme that should delight newcomers and cognoscenti alike.

Peter Medhurst


Day 1

Following our morning flight from London Heathrow to Venice, water taxis convey us over the lagoon to the Hotel Saturnia for our seven day stay in the famous island city. After check in, we walk to the Rialto in the sestiere of San Polo district (the original settlement of the city) which rose to prominence in 1097 when the famous market was positioned there. Our perambulations take in the famous bridge, as well as the Fondaco dei Tedeschi, founded in 1228 as a trading post for German merchants. Today, the building has been transformed into a conglomerate of luxury shops selling quality Italian brands, ranging from Gucci to Armani. High tea has been arranged for us in the atrium of the Tedeschi, after which we take lifts to the roof terrace to enjoy great views over the city. Dinner will be in the Caravella Restaurant in our hotel.

Day 2

A lecture entitled ‘Venice and its Music’ begins the day, and is followed by a visit to St Mark’s Basilica to explore the treasury museum. Here may be viewed Byzantine, Islamic, and Western artefacts dating back to the 10th century, as well as the original, bronze life size horses which once beautified the Western façade of the Basilica. Later, we walk to the adjacent bell tower of St Mark’s to enjoy further views over Venice and the lagoon. Lunch will be in a nearby restaurant. In the afternoon we take a leisurely tour – by private boat – of the waterways of Venice, alighting – if time permits – for an exterior viewing of the Accademia di belle Arti di Venezia. This was formerly the Ospedale degli Incurabili – one of the four orphanages in the city, famous for its music making in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. The evening is at leisure.

Day 3

Today’s lecture continues the theme of Venice’s four Ospedali and their musical associations, a theme that is further explored by our private, morning visit to the Ospedale San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti, the orphanage where Vivaldi’s father Giovanni Battista taught music in the 1780s. After time spent in the glorious 17th century Baroque chapel – the venue in the past for the renowned children’s concerts – we walk to the Gothic Basilica of Santi Giovanni e Paolo to hear Peter play the organ in the rich acoustics of the interior. We continue to the Ospedale Santa Maria dei Derelitti for another private viewing, not only of the chapel, but also of the foundation’s recently restored music room. After lunch we visit the last and most famous of all the Ospedali in Venice – La Pietà – where over a 35 year period, Vivaldi taught and supplied the institution with a steady stream of compositions. After we have explored the orphanage’s museum, we relax and listen to Peter play the splendid Pietro Narcchini organ. There is an optional evening visit to the opera or concert hall.

Day 4

This morning’s lecture tells the story of Benedetto Marcello (1686-1739), the prominent Venetian composer, after whom the Music Academy of Venice is named. This prepares us for our morning visit to the Academy, housed in the early 17th century Palazzo Pisani a Santo Stefano. During our exclusive tour of the palace, we are shown period copies of Vivaldi’s compositions, as well as a priceless manuscript of a soprano aria in Vivaldi’s own hand. We then ascend to the upper levels of the building to enjoy the views of the Grand Canal, which flows adjacent to the building. The tour concludes with a private recital in one of the palace’s historic rooms. Lunch is in a nearby restaurant. By contrast, the afternoon is spent exploring the magnificent art collection housed in the Ca Rezzonico Museum, on the Grand Canal. The evening is at leisure.

Day 5

Following our morning lecture, we take an exclusive ‘behind the scenes’ tour of the Doge’s Palace. This is a specially designed visit that takes in rooms and areas of the famous palace that are not usually viewed by the public. After lunch in a nearby restaurant, we journey down the Grand Canal to the 15th century church of Madonna dell’Orte, which today is one of Venice’s art galleries. It is here that the painter Tintoretto’s tomb is located, along with a number of his important paintings. In the evening we are treated to a private tour of St Mark’s Basilica to see the interior and its mosaics illuminated by arc lights.

Day 6

Following our morning lecture, we take a walking tour of the Giudecca Island, taking in as we go, the glorious churches of Il Redentore and Sant’Eufemia, as well as the marvellous views over to Venice. After lunch, we visit the Frari, to see the tomb of the composer Claudio Monteverdi, as well as the sculptor Antonio Canova’s huge pyramidical monument, erected in his memory by five of his students. Also, here on the 18th century Gaetano Callido organ, Peter gives the last of his organ recitals. The remainder of the afternoon is at leisure. A private drinks reception and a farewell dinner, round off the day.

Day 7

This morning we visit the magnificent Scuola Grande (Great School) di San Rocco, a charitable confraternity established in 1478 and named after the saint who is the traditional protector against plague. Through its patronage, the Scuola – along with others in Venice – had a huge impact on the music of the city, employing at one stage the great Giovanni Gabrieli as its organist. At the scuola, we also have a chance to admire the 39 paintings by Tintoretto that adorn the walls. A final lunch at the Correr Museum will set us up for our water taxis to the airport for our flight back to London.

The Hotel

We stay six nights at the 4* Hotel Saturnia ( which has a wonderful old world grandeur about it. The hotel, dating from the 14th century, is one of the great palazzos of Venice and is located in the heart of the city and is just a short stroll from St Mark’s Square and La Fenice. The hotel has a restaurant and bar and all rooms are en suite. Dinner is included at the hotel’s La Caravella Restaurant on the first evening and at a restaurant close to our hotel on the last evening. The remaining four nights are on bed and breakfast basis.


Tour limited to 24 passengers
Lectures by Peter Medhurst each morning
Four private music recitals by Peter
Thomas Abbott – professional tour manager
& art historian
All excursions, entrance fees, guided tours included
Centrally located 4* hotel
Welcome & farewell dinners included
Included high tea on Day 1
Light lunches on Days 2 to 7
Direct scheduled flights from
London Heathrow to Venice
Return water taxi transfers in Venice
between the airport & hotel
Included Vaporetta ticket for the whole tour
Gratuities for hotel & restaurant staff included


Rialto Bridge & Fondaco dei Tedeschi
Treasury & bell tower of St Mark’s Basilica
Private boat tour of the waterways of Venice
Ospedale San Lazzaro dei Mendicanti –
private viewing
Basilica of Santi Giovanni e Paolo – recital by Peter
Ospedale Santa Maria dei Derelitti – private viewing
Ospedale della Pietà – recital by Peter
Academy at Palazzo Pisani a Santo Stefano –
guided tour & private recital
Ca Rezzonico Museum
Doge’s Palace – private ‘behind the scenes’ tour
Church of Madonna dell’Orte
Private evening tour of St Mark’s Basilica
Walking tour of the Giudecca Island
Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari –
recital by Peter
Scuola Grande di San Rocco
Correr Museum

Extras to the tour

Insurance (including Covid cover) £79
Single room supplement £199
Double room for single use £299
Optional concert or opera visit on Day 3
Local accommodation tax to be paid directly to the
hotel (approximately €4.50 per person per night)
Flight details may be subject to change. Price based on twin share.
Normal booking conditions apply.

To book, either download the brochure from here or talk to Sandy Cornish at Tailored Travel on 01227 830624, or Tel: 020 7064 4970.