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Spring Benefit Event May 26, 2016

AIFIC held its Spring Benefit Event on May 26, 2016 at Dumbarton House, the  Museum & Headquarters of the National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in 2715 Q St NW, in Washington, DC. 

About 100 guests enjoyed the historical place in the heart of Georgetown while visiting with new and old friends.

The Host Committee included Merribel Ayers, David Carey, Mrs. Alexandra de Borchgrave, Al Diaz and Angela Phillips Diaz, Chris Griner, Bruce and Shelley Ross-Larson, Powell and Pamla Moore, Peggy Parsons, Tony Podesta and Dario Zucchi, Joanna Brignolo and Barbara Hawthorn.

Founders and Directors Maria Gliozzi, Elisabetta Ullmann and Pamla Moore welcomed the guests and introduced Luca Franchetti Pardo, Deputy Chief of Mission for the Italian Embassy who celebrated the AIFIC mission  to sustain cultural activities able to connect Italy and the United States. 

Through the energy and passion of the  Directors of AIFIC, he pointed out, we expand the relationship between the two countries. It is a great opportunity for the Italian and American community. He confirmed the continuous endorsement and encouraging support from the Italian Embassy especially in this moment when Italy is focused on the preservation and conservation of the Italian cultural heritage. A crucial moment where each organization should dedicate any effort  to Italian cultural and therefore becoming an important player on this matter. 

During the evening a very exciting live auction were held with grand prizes for the winners. Auctioneer Tom Strike encouraged the crowd to raise their paddles in support of AIFIC.

The Items offered as very unique cultural experiences in some of the most beautiful destinations in Italy, were very appreciated by the guests, and they included:

1 .Discovering Southeast Sicily and the unique World Heritage of Sicilian Baroque

2.Trip to Venice sleeping in the private rooms of the Giorgio Cini Foundation and enjoying its secret masterpiece collection

3 One week in the medieval village, Castagneto Carducci, on the Etruscan Coast, the best kept secret of Tuscany, with a tour of the surrounding wineries.

4) One week In Vail, Colorado spending the Thanksgiving 2016

5) One week in Cortina, the Queen of the Dolomites experiencing its spectacular scenery, lifestyle, culture and gastronomy.

Souteast Sicily

Experiencing the unforgettable history, crystal clear waters and culinary journey in the unique World Heritage of Sicilian Baroque. Joining the emotional ancient Greek Classical Representations in Syracuse Greek amphitheater or visiting the traditional event “Infiorata”, the Flower Festival celebrated in Noto.

The Package includes:

  • Accommodation for 5 nights for 4 people in a private house in the historical center of Noto, Sicily
  • 4 Bedrooms with 5 private bathrooms, two living rooms, 1 kitchen, 1 dining room, 1 fireplace, a cozy terrace to eat outdoors with a panoramic view of Noto and beyond.
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Private English speaking guide
  • Private English speaking driver
  • Breakfast included at the property for the entire stay
  • Tours at the historical places of: Syracuse, Ragusa, Modica
  • Visiting the natural reserve of Vendicari with its beaches.
  • Show cooking and 1 breakfast for four at Caffe Sicilia in Noto, founded in 1892 and well known as the best traditional dessert and patisserie shop of the entire area.
  • Experiencing the traditional event “Infiorata” the Flower Festival celebrated in Noto where almost a thousand people work incessantly to create carpets and pictures made of flowers along the narrow town’s streets (May 2017).
  • Wine testing at Mazzei winery
  • 1 Dinner at a Michelin starred restaurant for 4 people.

Options Available at Guest's Expense

  • Private cook available for dinners at the property
  • Attending one of the Ancient Greek Classical Representations in Syracuse Greek amphitheater (May – June 2017) 

Best Period

September 15, 2016 to December 15, 2016

April to June 30, 2017

Value of the package: $6,000

Bidding starting point: $2,500


 Venice - Cini Foundation

Sleeping in the exclusive private rooms of the Foresteria of the Giorgio Cini Foundation Monastery not open to the public on the Island of San Giorgio Maggiore. Enjoying its hidden treasure and secret masterpiece collections. Choosing to listen to The Quartetto di Venezia, The Complete Beethoven String Quartets in the new Auditorium “Lo Squero” or to visit the Architecture Biennale exhibitions. Discover the beauty of the Laguna!

The Package Includes:

  • 3 nights for 4 people at Cini Foundation Foresteria in the exclusive residence not open to the public, in the original 9th century cloister
  • 2 Bedrooms with private Bathrooms
  • Breakfast included for the entire stay
  • Private English speaking guide for visiting the exhibitions
  • Cini Foundation private tour at Le Stanze del Vetro, Palazzo Cini Gallery with its private collections, the ancient Benedictine dormitory, recently transformed into a modern library called Manica Lunga, the Palladian Cloister, designed by Andrea Palladio and completed in the early 17th century; and more.
  • Visiting the Architecture Biennale (until November 2016)
  • The Quartetto di Venezia Concert Beethoven at the new Auditorium Lo Squero (until November 2016)
  • Dinner at a Michelin starred restaurant – Osteria Da Fiore in a private balcony for 4 people.
  • Transportation with speed boat from / to airport / station only


Options Available at Guest's Expense

  • Transportation tickets with Vaporettos for the entire stay
  • Transportation with speed boat for the stay

Best Period

September to November 2016

March to June 2017

Value of the package: $10,000

Bidding starting point: $3,000


Ski Vail, Colorado – Thanksgiving, 2016

Spending the Thanksgiving week 2016 in a top floor condo at the base of Vail Mountain. Views of the slopes and the Lionshead Eagle Bahn gondola. Walking along Gore Creek to the Lionshead lifts, the famous Vail ski school, restaurants and bars.

The Package Includes:

  • 7 nights in a top floor condo at the base of Vail mountain
  • Easily accommodation for six adults
  • Cozy two-bedrooms, two-lofts, and three bathrooms
  • The condo building includes a friendly, helpful front desk, a heated outdoor pool and Jacuzzi, saunas, a small workout room and parking.
  • The condo is located within walking distance of the Eagle Bahn gondola in Lionshead, the Vail ski school and next to the ice rink and the Four Seasons for après-ski.


Options Available at Guest's Expense:

  • Daily maid service is available at $44.00 per day


Week Available

Saturday, November 19 – Saturday, November 26, 2016

Value of the Package: $2,800

Bidding starting point: $2,250


Castagneto Carducci - Tuscany 

One unforgettable week in the medieval village of Castagneto Carducci on the Etruscan Coast, the best kept secret of Tuscany, staying in a cozy one-bedroom apartment, a few steps from the Gherardesca Castle, visiting the sprawling wine estates including the famous Tenuta Biserno.

The Package Includes:

  • 7 nights for 2 people
  • One – Bedroom apartment
  • Linen/towels change and maid service midweek
  • A basket of local food products of Tuscany, a gastronomical and cultural journey of tastes and flavors to be discovered at your arrival.
  • Wine Testing and 1 lunch or 1 dinner for two at Tenuta Biserno


Options Available at Guest's Expense:

  • Wine testing at Sassicaia winery and other super Tuscan wine estates
  • Bike tours ( Le Vie del Vino) with English speaking guide
  • Rental car service


Best Period:

July 1 – July 30, 2016

September 1 – September 30, 2016

April 15 to June 30, 2017

September 1 – 30, 2017

Value of the Package: $3,500

Bidding starting point: $1,250


Cortina D'Ampezzo, Dolomites, Italy

Queen of the Dolomites, Cortina has all the credentials to be crowned the all seasons paradise par excellence with its spectacular scenery, lifestyle, culture and gastronomy. Spending one week in the 4 stars Cristallino Hotel, Cortina is the perfect place for holiday to savour the winter mountain with or without skis, or simply spend some time relaxing in slow mode

The Package Includes:

  • 7 nights for 4 people (ideal for a family or group of friends)
  • Accommodation in the 4 stars Hotel Cristallino (
  • Spacious rooms, with lofts and balconies with panoramic views of the Dolomites. Two Double bedrooms plus one set of bunk bedrooms for 2 children, one bathroom available with lighting of the interior, spacious comfort, and the warm wooden decor.
  • The hotel’s rich breakfast buffet with sweet and savory foods such asbread, biscuits and homemade jams, is served in the two dining rooms of the restaurant, “La Terrazza”, or by room service.
  • The hotel is located in the center of Cortina, just a few meters from thebus stop and the ski bus stop for getting to the ski lifts, and a 5 minutes walk from the highly renowned shopping street, Corso Italia, allowing easy access to all the attractions in Cortina d’Ampezzo.

Week Available:

Saturday, March 25, 2017 to Saturday, April 1, 2017

Value of the Package: $2,500

Bidding starting point: $1,200