Monday, April 7, 2014

Chianti tour with Jim and Stacy, Florence by Bike clients.

Yesterday I took a tour out for Florence by Bike, their "Chianti tour", with two new guides that I was to train, and two clients, Jim and Stacy, from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.  We did the standard route up to Monteoriolo, with stops at Piazzale Michaelangelo, Galuzzo (cafe and pastries), and a few stops on the climb.  They were pretty fit, but the climbs were difficult for Jim in particular, as he is a runner, but does not ride.  Stacy is a spinning enthusiast, and was pretty much fine on the hills once she understood how to change the gears.

At Monteoriolo, I checked in with Eleonora at Villa Monteoriolo, where we had a wonderful lunch.  She gave us a tour of the beautiful, old Villa, with history back 600 years or more.  The villa had been the home of the family that the woman who is immortalized as Mona Lisa lived in.  So, Mona Lisa grew up in the house, pretty cool.  The villa is spectacular, and a working olive fattoria.  They also rent out a couple of apartments for tourists and do cooking classes.  The oil was fantastic, as was the lunch and company.  Having a long lunch stop like this is something that the Florence by Bike tours offers that is really special.  Eleonaro could not have been nicer or more gracious.  Both the clients were super happy with the lunch.

The climbing to the location was a little much, in particular for Jim, but the lunch made them both very happy again.  We returned to Florence by a slightly different route, going through San Gersole, Vacciano, Cinque  Vie, and Galluzzo to the Centro.  We stopped for pictures in Piazza de Duomo, and then returned to the shop.  Jim and Stacy were very happy clients and at the end of the day said this was easily the best thing they had done on their European vacation so far.  What is a week in Paris compared to a cycling tour in Chianti?  Good to be getting busy with work again, although my fitness may suffer, as I go quite a bit slower and shorter distances.  It is really nice to give people a fun experience though, and I ride enough as fast as I want anyway.  Ciao, a dopo!

Florence by Bike Chianti Tour with Jim and Stacy by ridingwithcosimo at Garmin Connect - Details

Here are a few pictures of Jim and Stacy, clients that I guided on
a Florence by Bike Chianti tour.  It was a very nice day for a ride
in the close in Chianti hills.  

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