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Raves

Frank Family Vineyards~ Seabourn, 2016

Phil and I wanted to send a follow up thank you and appreciation note for a fantastic special vacation your team orchestrated both for us personally and the great integration with the other guests of the Frank Family Wine Club.

Candace – you really hit a home room with our pre-cruise recommendations and arrangements and our post cruise fun in Barcelona.  Le Saint Paul Hotel was really special and the day tours and the drivers were just the right combination of culture and fun.  The Alma in Barcelona had a great zen like garden in back which we enjoyed after racing around all day. And speaking of racing around – loved loved the “drunks” and tapas.  Our motor cycle side car driver, Alexandre, was over the top exceptional.  Twenty-seven years old with an MBA in cultural education; great personality and language skills.  Our whole group had a blast and you were so correct – we did not need dinner. Thanks for the detailed personal agenda – it really helped us with a wonderfully coordinated trip.

Renee – we appreciate all of your efforts to get us organized and informed and make sure everything went smoothly, and to navigate the technology and other questions we had with Seabourn.

Michael – what a pleasure to have you on this Frank Family Seabourn trip.  You have a great team and the professionalism is unbeatable.  The combination of all that you all do is why we come back to Mastrocola.  You have such a charismatic style and  made everyone feel included. Your attention to detail and inclusiveness, while still having fun is wonderful skill.  How  special for you to arrange and share your family with our group for a fun and unique dining experience that could not be replicated at any public venue.

Leslie and Rich Frank were wonderful hosts.  In addition to enjoying great wines with dinners and receptions, we valued the fun and camaraderie we had with all of our new friends.   Truly it was a case of my favorite saying “if it weren’t for a good time we would have no time.” Phil and I look forward to future cruise and vacation opportunities.   ~Julia and Phil E. – Arlington, VA

A Taste of Truffles with Chef Pisto~ Crystal Esprit, 2016

I wanted to make sure you knew how very much Ed and I appreciated the attention to detail and organization that resulted in a flawless cruise experience to Venice and Croatia We met great people and became acquainted with out new favorite cruise line, Crystal. We will surely be contacting you in the future! ~Gail Q. – Carmel Valley, CA

JUSTIN Vineyards~ AMAWaterways, 2016

Just a short note to thank you for the arrangements you made for Lynne and I to drive around Switzerland for 5 days after our Justin Wine Cruise ended in Bordeaux.   We enjoyed very much the wine cruise but the Switzerland portion of our trip was a blast.    The accommodations you chose for us in Lausanne, Zermatt, Interlaken and Zurich were all exceptional and the food and service was wonderful. Thanks again. ~Ron A. – Phoenix, AZ

Domaine Carneros~ Silversea, 2016

Well Michael – you’ve done it now. You’ve spoiled us for any other cruise line or cruise agent travels. MmMmTravel is simply the BEST!!!!! Richard and I had the best cruise we’ve ever experienced. To appreciate this, we’ve been on approx. 30 cruises. We received the best in service, exquisite food and wines, a very relaxed atmosphere, a happy crew, and met incredible people that we will be staying in contact with for years to come. Eileen Crane is an amazing host and the entire group became close friends within days. We can’t wait to sign up for more good times. While our trip home was suspenseful for us – we truly appreciated knowing you were on top of the Air France strike and instilled confidence that regardless if our flight was cancelled we would be in good hands. We will be watching your mailings and plan to join in on more trips when time allows. You’ve made it impossible to travel any other way. ~Richard and Diane M. – Sacramento, CA

Hall~ Silversea, 2015

Yes, Candace did step up and help out a lot.  That may come as no surprise to you, but she certainly impressed us by going beyond the call of duty during an emergency situation that was more than we could handle at the time. ~Jeff J. – Magnolia, TX

Talley Vineyards & Ancient Peaks Winery, and DAOU Vineyards ~ Crystal, 2015

Elaine and I would like to convey to you our profound thanks for all you did to make our recent travels perfect. The air flights, the Hotel Monaco, all connections by boat and car in both Venice and Barcelona, the two cruises, excursions, all were timed and executed to perfection. In addition to all this, we truly enjoyed getting to know you and Bonne a little better and spending some time with you. One of the highlights of our trip was the lunch in Dubrovnik. It was a once in a lifetime experience. Also, a big thank you for all you did behind the scenes on both cruises to make all the wine events so enjoyable and so smooth running. Thank you again for all your expert help. We look forward to a continuing relationship with MmMmTravel. ~Jim & Elaine P. – Grover Beach, CA

Hall ~ Silversea, 2015

Candace and Renee from MmMmTravel provide excellent customer service. I feel like I’ve gotten to know both them. I have sent many many emails to them both together and individually, and I ALWAYS get a speedy and to the point response. I’m very impressed, and I don’t think I’ve said that before about a company or two people I only know through email. For example, Candace recommended a hike in Portofino for me to try, and gave me a firsthand detailed experience of what to expect. I plan to do the hike the day we are in Portofino. I was in touch with them when I was in Bhutan and Katmandu in March and Candnce has put me in touch with a nonprofit working in Kathmandu now helping out after the quake. My five friends and I who went want to make a difference to some of the people over there who are suffering. Experiencing excellent customer service is special. I get that at MmMmTravel. What I’m learning from Candace and Renee is that we can actually build a relationship just with email. Their responses go far beyond a typical answer to a travel question. ~ Ellen B. – Oakland, CA

Grasing’s ~ Crystal, 2015

Our Grasings Food & Wine Fall Foliage cruise aboard Crystal was a memorable trip. Lots of laughs,  good company, wonderful food and terrific opportunities that you made happen Michael. It was fabulous to have you and Bonne on the trip with us. Look forward to our next trip.  ~Charleen W. – Redwood City, CA

Lail Vineyards ~ Silversea, 2015

It was a great trip and, of course, it never could have happened without all the details of constructing magic which came from you and your great team. We are all adoring Sintra and the Tivolli Palace and delighting in the exquisite beauty that surrounds us and the friendships that bind us
together. There is a wedding on the front lawn this afternoon accompanied by a saxophone and a guitar. Before the guests were
anywhere in sight, the saxophone player “sang” a haunting song which poured out of his instrument like honey in the air. At the end of the day, the fact is that I am blessed to call you my friend and have the infusions of your Michaelness sparkle, good will, can do attitude, and enthusiasm for life. You are a gem in my small ring of sparkling jewels.. ~Robin Lail, Founder of Lail Vineyards – St. Helena, CA

Lail Vineyards ~ Silversea, 2015

It was a great trip aboard Silversea from Britain to Normandy, Bordeaux, Santiago della Compostella, Porto, Lisbon and Sintra. Of course, it never could have happened without all the details of constructing magic which came from you and your great team. ~Robin Lail, Founder of Lail Vineyards – St. Helena, CA

Frank Family Vineyards ~ Silversea, 2015

Rich and I want to express our sincere thanks and appreciation to all of you for making the inaugural Frank Family Vineyards Wine Cruise a huge success.   We could not have asked for a better group of people to travel and drink wine together with us in the Baltic.  We hope your trip was as memorable and special as ours, and that you made some new and lasting friendships along the way.    We look forward to seeing you all again soon either in Napa or on the next Frank Family wine cruise.   We’re looking at fall 2016 or early 2017 to sail again with our fantastic wine club members and of course our awesome travel guy, Michael at Millennium Travel.   We’ll keep you posted. Rich & Leslie Frank, Owners of Frank Family Vineyards – Calistoga, CA

 Frank Family Vineyards ~ Silversea, 2015

With family in mind (nice lead in for an Irishman…heh?) thank you for a simply incredible time.We  know that it will take weeks if not months to put our arms around everything that happened, new friendships found, outstanding foods and wines, beautiful scenery, genuine conversations with folks who really do have an interest in others, many many laughs, etc. Simply WOW! As for you my friend thank you for being you and showing the concern you have for others. It shows many time over. Also please thank Stephen for helping me “come out of my shell” on the dance floor… :). He is a good man! We will stay in touch and are looking forward in some way to get together again. Our door is always open to you.

DAOU Vineyards & Winery ~ Crystal, 2015

To the Daou Family, I want to thank each one of you for the wonderful cruise together this past week.   I had a great time to meet all of you and share life experiences as part of the Daou Med cruise….The memories will carry me far and away!   Not so “far and away”, however,  that I will not be ready for the next cherished time of visiting at the winery to say hello again. Thank you for making my inclusion so inviting and special. My mantra will continue to be…Love Life and toast a glass of Daou wine with my new friends…Yes, that’s each of you!

Relais & Chateaux ~ Silversea, 2015

“I would like to thank you again, on behalf of all of our Relais & Chateaux members, for you and the staff at Millennium’s tireless efforts to ensure that our trip was a memorable one. It was truly a special experience which everyone will long remember.” – Brenda Homick, Director, Member Services North America RELAIS & CHATEAUX

Lail Vineyards ~ Silversea, 2012

“We had a brilliant time, and you could not have been kinder and more generous to us personally and in the way you promoted Lail Vineyards.  Best of all, of course, is our friendship.  Mille grazie!” –Robin Daniel Lail, Founder Lail Vineyards

Grasing’s ~ AMA Waterways, 2012

“The trip was fabulous! The only way to see France! AMA was very good and I would recommend them. We had more than a great time, we had a wonderful time!”  –Mark, D. Carmel

Plumpjack & CADE Wineries ~ Silversea, February 2012

“Hi Michael! We had a great trip. We loved the group . . . we kept having other guests come up to us saying they wished they were part of our group as we always seemed to be having so much fun! So, we wound-up with an extended circle. I would say the service was the best ever on this cruise…kudos to Silversea. In the end, it’s really about the people. Their attention to detail when it comes to hospitality is fabulous. Both the staff and our wine-loving cruise mates made it a memorable trip. Several people in the group mentioned something aboutGreece next year so maybe we’ll have to think about that! Thank you for organizing, Michael. Best…”  ~ Ann Marie &  John Conover, Partner, GM; PlumpJack and CADE Wineries.

Independent ~ Silversea Cruise, NY to Barbados, 2011

Michael –Thanks for helping us  put together a first class trip – This was the best vacation event.  All the best, Dave & Jane S.  San Diego

Independent ~ Viking River Cruise, 2011

“Michael, You and Candace did well by us.  Viking Cruises was well organized, expertly staffed, able to anticipate every curve in the journey, whether on land or waterway, effecting seamless transfers every step of the way.  We made friends we will keep in touch with.  Our tour escort, “Jimmy” Liu, is a keeper who continuously reinvented the meaning of “beyond the call of duty” and brought a sense of humor and attention to linguistic nuance that we all appreciated.  The balance of time on land and the Yangtze was ideal.  The hotel accommodations made us feel nurtured.  The choice of destinations at every stop made for informative experiences.  We would recommend that future travelers bring a good supply ($75-100 worth of yuan/RMB) for tipping at different points along the way.  We would also recommend that any Bay Area clients of yours taking this trip attend the class, “Art and Archeological History of China”, given by Professor Patrick Hunt in the Stanford University Continuing Education program.  No need to worry about our wanting to river travel with Viking Cruises again.  Be assured, we will not be reluctant to recommend you and your team to others.”  –Matt L., Los Altos, CA

Lail Vineyards & Domaine Serene ~ Silversea, September 2011

“You are a prince!  It was a brilliant trip and I cannot thank you enough for all you did personally to make it unforgettable!  What a prince!  Many hugs to you -”   …..  “So much of the delight adds pleasure of what has happened on this voyage is due to your kindness, your planning, your watchfulness, your warm graciousness.  Thanks to you we have converted Jon.  Brilliant!  We have loved our time, and have grown extremely fond of you.  So glad you will join us next year!  Our warmest thanks and regards”  –Jon & Robin Lail, Owner Lail Vineyards

“Michael, We can’t thank you enough for joining us aboard the Silver Cloud for our first ever wine cruise. It was truly a special voyage, made all the more memorable by you. And we are ever grateful that you were able to take the time to be there.  There were so many great moments that it would be impossible to pick a favorite but we have many photos to commemorate the occasions.  We sincerely hope that you had a great time with old and new friends alike, and we look forward to seeing you again on our next cruise”  —Grace & Ken Evenstad, Owners Domaine Serene Winery, Willamette Valley, OR

“Michael:  Thank you so much for all that you did to make our trip one of the best experiences ever!! We had a most enjoyable time.  Lifelong friendships were made by all.  We look forward to working with you again.  You and your wife were most gracious.  When you come east, please let us know so we can connect. Let’s stay in touch.”  –Ricardo

“Michael, what a wonderful vacation!! We had a terrific time. Meeting new friends and seeing new places, what could be better?  We hope to do another vacation with you in 2013. Thanks again for making the trip more enjoyable by being there and sharing the fun.”  –Ed & Linda B., Ellicot City, MD

“Hey Michael, Thank you sooooo much! Sintra was beautiful, just like you said, and wow! Cascais was great.  You will be pleased to know how much we enjoyed the extra sightseeing that you planned. well done!!! was a pleasure to finally meet and spend time with you and your lovely wife.”

–Howard S. & Tillie K., Eden Prairie, MN


Grasing’s ~ Silversea, 2010

“I want to thank you for all your efforts in making our trip a success. We both had a wonderful time, and have returned home with lots of wonderful memories of people, places, history, culture, food & wine.  Our thanks to Michael for everything, especially the visit with all your cousins!  What a wonderful experience.  My first true Italian gnocchi and lasagna, both homemade.  All your cousins are so warm and wonderful.”  –Jan B., Newport Beach

“Thank you for the note, poem and recipe most of all, thank you for arranging such a memorable trip with so many very nice people.  The ship was lovely, and each port had so much to offer.  We were able to see a great deal in a very short period of time.  While we were in Rome, I thought of you and your family.  They were wonderfully hospitable and gracious people.  I can see you retiring in Italy, Michael!  By the way, I was able to see the Pope!  I can honestly say, it was a trip of a lifetime….. with warm thoughts and gratitude.”  –Joan L. , Carmel CA

Independent ~ May 2011 London & Paris

“We had a wonderful trip.  The hotels were great as well as the drivers and our tours.  We especially liked Eric and Frank in Paris.  They were very knowledgeable and helpful.  The Chunnel was fantastic!  Our trip was sensational, the accommodations were top notch and we have lots of great photos and memories!  We can’t thank you enough.  Thank You.”  –Rhonda B. – San Diego, Dorothy D. – London, OH, Tara S. – London, OH

Justin Vineyards ~ Silversea, August 2010

“Michael, I don’t believe I’ve given you the courtesy of a HUGE THANK-YOU for the opportunity to work with you again on the JUSTIN Wine Society cruise last month.  The destinations were fantastic, the weather unbelievable, and the guests wonderful.  Everyone on the ship was fabulous and helpful, and of course Silversea is awesome at hospitality!  I hope we can continue our excellent relationship and thank you and your team again for all the arrangements.  Cheers.  –-Joe S., Master Sommellier

PlumpJack CADE Silversea Wine cruise, July 2009

“Silverseas is everything we expected and more. Impeccable service and a very friendly staff meeting all our needs. We’re sold on cruise travel now and weren’t before.  Just wanted to tell you how FABULOUS the Ferrari ride was today and how much FUN Mike had. He rated this right up there with riding on Air Force One. He just can’t quit grinning and talking about it and emailing photos and calling friends and he’s a man of few words.  Thanks so much for making it happen and for such a great trip. We’re both having a great trip and are hating to be on the downward side of the trip.”  –Mike & Beth C., Little Rock AR

Justin Vineyards, Bordeaux ~ Porto ~ St Tropez, Sept. 2008

“Bill and I just wanted to send our “thanks” for arranging such a wonderful trip on the Silver Seas with the Justins.  It was above our expectations and left us anxious to schedule another trip like this in the future.  The Justins were such wonderful hosts, the tours, tastings and dinners were excellent and we meet alot of new friends.    As I mentioned, there were a couple of food tours that Bill and I took in New York that were well worth the time and money and I would highly recommend them for anyone visiting NY in the future.  Your New York trip looks wonderful, although it isn’t in our budget this year.  The tour is called Foods of New York, web site is www.foodsofny.com..  I think I mentioned that I would send you the information on this when we were on the trip.   Please keep us on the mailing list for future tours.  Thanks again for arranging a wonderful cruise.”  –Paulette S.

Justin Wine Cruise Bordeaux, Sept 2008

“Michael, Thank you so much for all of your assistance. Your efforts have made the planning phase almost anxiety-free.  Thank you.”  –R. R. Rodgers, Burbank CA

Shafer Silversea to Alaska, June 2008

“Dear Michael, I wanted to write and thank you so much for all your contributions to making our Alaska cruise the voyage of a lifetime. This was the first time Nancy has travelled since my grandfather became ill, after a lifetime of relishing adventures around the world together. It was so touching to see her radiant with happiness and the pleasure of being a part of such a charming group on our journey. I was particularly moved by the kind attention and affection you and Michelle showed us both. What a brilliant birthday gift! The trip truly would not have been possible for either of us without your assistance. Thank you so much for your graciousness, and for organizing a wonderful schedule of events with the Shafers. Best regards to you and Michelle in your upcoming travels, and I hope to see you again soon on the Silver Shadow!”  –Kristin F.

“Overall, I’m impressed with your attention to detail and the great hotels! I had no idea how much arranging you had to do, and I really appreciate all the hard work!  Thanks again!”  –Deb w. /Ireland – Webster Family Reunion 2008

“I wanted to tell you what a success the Alaska cruise turned out to be and also thank you for your cooperation in accommodating our leaving the ship a few days early. We had a fun group – many of whom knew our wines – that made the cruise just that much better. Having Michael Mastrocola join us was great. He made everything work so much better and took care of so many details.  The ship. Food, service, etc was – as usual – excellent. And I was pleased that quite a few of the passengers – in addition to the Shafer group – came to the tastings and lecture. And they seemed to like the wines. That always helps.  My thanks again for a memorable experience.”  —John Shafer – Owner, Shafer Winery – Napa, CA

Grasings AIWF Silversea 2008 Turkey – Sicily – Spain

“Dear Michael, A home run…I cannot tell you how much Sheri and I enjoyed this wonderful experience.   The best part was meeting and sharing time with our “Group”.  We couldn’t have assembled a nicer bunch… everyone seemed well versed in eating and drinking but of course how could we miss being under the direction of Kurt Grasing, the master.   The itinerary was perfect and after we found our luggage, Sheri and I were pleasantly surprised at the ship accommodations.  The memories of the sights will be with us for many moons but the friends we made will last I am sure for a very long time.  Thank you for opening this door!  Ciao!”  –Tony

“YOU ARE THE MAN!!!!!  That’s why they call you the ROCKSTAR!!!  Go Michael, Go Michael, Go…………………..”  –Carolyn M.

“Thanks very much Michael.  Your professionalism is so totally appreciated!  You just don’t know how much I delight in excellent service.  All the best in the new year.”  –Carolyn F, Idaho (Independent trip)

London to Lisbon, Sept 23-Oct 3, 2006

“Dear Michael, As we approach the end of our wonderful journey, we wish to extend many thanks to you for all the special events you organized and the marvelous escoffier book. We truly appreciate your generosity and thoughtfulness! Each of the evens were enjoyable and fun, while the book will be a marvelous addition to our library. It was delightful meeting you and Bonné, With warm regards,”  –M. + A. Heck, Owing Mills, MD.

New York Theatre ~ Art ~ Shopping Tour 2007

“Dear Michael, On behalf of both José and myself, I would like to say how much you added to our New York vacation.  Your input, direction and willingness to share your family and friends with us made our vacation so very memorable. ~Our best to you this Christmas season.”   –Tracy & José

Oceania Cruise 2007

“Hi Michael, Now safely arrived back home to wet and windy Auckland. Many thanks for all your organisation, which worked like clockwork. The Rome excursion to Hadrian’s Palace and the Villa d’Est was great and after a lunch en route got us to the Airport in good time for the flight to London. Oceania Cruises are hard to fault.  The staff are very friendly and make an effort to call you by name. Despite the larger number of pax, they seem to handle embarking and disembarking and shore excursions efficiently. Because of the larger ship (but not overly so) the onboard facilities, restaurants and bars provide more selection and, in our view, a higher standard of food presentation.  Lot of fun this year. Hope to make it to Carmel soon. It has been a pleasure doing business with you.”  –-B Hopkins,  Auckland, New Zealand

Tudor Wine Cruise, Venice-Croatia 2007

“Hi Michael, Silversea was fabulous. Our group is that they had a lovely time. They were a really fun group. I am currently in London and will be here until the end of the month– I just wanted to check in with you and let you know that we had a fantastic time.  The level of service and luxury on the boat, as well as the places we visited exceeded all of my expectations. It was a real treat! Best,”  –M. Thomas, Carmel CA

Berlin to Prague River Cruise group, Sept 2007 on Peter Deilmann

“Michael, Thank you again for all of your efforts behind the scenes. We will do our very best to carry on the Mastrocola tradition on board the Kathrina von Bora. Your energy, personality and expertise are something that is very hard to replicate. All our best,”  –Chef Kurt and Christine Grasing, Oceania Cruise Line – Europe

“Thanks so much for great organization as usual, Greetings and Perrien Jouet on embarkation, Further greetings and Pouilly Fuisse yesterday, and arranging flat calm from Le Havre to Cadiz.  Nelson would never have won Travalgar in this gorgeous weather.  If you ever want an endorsement for Oceania and/or your efficiency in making everything so enjoyable don’t hesitate to call.  Best regards,”  –-Barrie & Joy H, New Zealand, Oceania  2007

Heitz Wine Cruise Norwegian Fjords, July 2007

“Thank you Michael! We thoroughly enjoyed the experience! While it is hard to set aside one experience that stands out among so many outstanding experiences. The sight of the Midnight Sun was probably the most spectacular! We lucked out with the weather; it was a beautiful evening! We stayed up until 1 a.m. on 8/1 to see the sun start to rise again from the horizon line!  The food and service on the ship were superb! The whole staff has such a great attitude! And the freedom from having to dole out a gratuity every time we turned a corner is a real plus. Having experienced Silversea twice now, I doubt that we will ever do a cruise any other way.  It was really great to be with Kathleen, George & Alice! What wonderful people! As you know, Alice uses the walker now (which they call the Ferrari!) after her surgery. She is a dear person! Believe me, we had plenty of Heitz wine, along with much more food than we are accustomed to at home!  The DHL shipment, expedited by Frank Sansone at Silversea, was really great. We embarked early, had lunch, and upon return our bags were at our suite door waiting to be unpacked! I will, of course, give you a report on how the process worked in reverse when we receive the bags in a few days. All I can say now is that it was so great not to have to wrestle two bags each going over or coming home! Coming home was especially nice since we could just sail through Customs and be on our way while everyone else was huddled around the baggage carousel.  Reporting back… Just a quick note to let you know that the last bag arrived in good shape @ 1100 hours today. Thank you for all your help in arranging and instructing me in the Silversea Airport Ease program! My wife and I are pleased with the program, and your quality of follow-up was top-notch – typical of what we’ve come to expect and admire from Silversea!  You should also know that I very much appreciate your attention to the detail of planning the trip. Your promptness in getting back to me with specific answers to my questions is a big plus! Your follow-up is precise! That knowledge puts my mind at ease and prepares me to really enjoy the trip! It is obvious to me that you love doing what you do!  All the best,”  –Bruce (and Ruth Anne, too!)

Family Celebrity Cruise to Alaska 2007

“Hi Michael,  First let me say thank you . . . we enjoyed and savored everything. Thank you for your generosity. You made us feel very special. The cruise was everything we hoped for and dreamt about! 18 related people and no “words” or arguments! Unbelievable! Everyone came home looking forward to our next family vacation. Thank you so very much for helping with all our arrangements.  Our suite was perfect! Boy are we spoiled now! We’ll never want to go back to a simple balcony cabin. Our butler was fantastic … we wanted to bring him home with us. He arranged an in – suite caviar cocktail party for us . . . Thank you again, Michael. Your attention to detail is incredible. Even the poetry in this note! We look forward to working with you again … Please keep us on your mailing list and keep us in mind.  XOXO,”  –Patty B, Belmont

Tudor – rm Seafood Silversea Cruise July 2007

Y”ou are the MOST efficient Travel person we have ever worked with. I appreciated that very much. My thanks again for your follow through.  Sincerely,  –Donna I.

Silversea Spain-Portugal 2006

“We are having a glorious time! The suite is great, and we are hosting a cocktail party in your honor tomorrow night. This has been a wonderful cruise, and we have enjoyed every minute. John Pisto’s Tapas parties have been fun and successful. Everyone has made great friendships, and we will do this again. The suite has exceeded our expectations, and the perks that go along with it are very enjoyable and special. I will print out your best wishes to everyone, and we will toast to your honor tomorrow night. Again, thanks from myself, Kathy, and Marissa.  Best regards,”  –Dixon, Kathy, Marissa

And a follow up after their return:

“We had a wonderful time! Silversea cruise line was wonderful, the itinerary was great, being with Marissa was so special for us as parents, and the Pisto group was a lot of fun. It’s unusual when you get a group that large and every single person is fun and compatible! The cocktail party in your honor went well and the ship was extremely efficient everyone had a great time. That “Owners Suite” was the best; we are definitely spoiled now and it will be hard to cruise again without going for the suite again. There were so many perks that came with it, including our own manservant named “Manu” who became our friend and we enjoyed him very much. All of the credits were posted, and we brought home our bottle of Champagne that AMEX bought us. Everything was handled completely and professionally. Wow, what a trip; and so much of our pleasure was directly due to the efforts of you and your staff. Thank you!  Regards,”  –Dixon, Kathy, Marisa

Independent Italy Travel 2007

“We had a great trip to Italy, your services were most appreciated! The hotels were perfect and we had very good rooms  At all other hotels we often had what I would consider one of the best rooms in our class! You must have pulled some strings!   The drivers were fantastico!  We enjoyed all of them and they made a HUGE difference in our ability to see and learn a lot more in a stress-free way.  If not for them, Natalie and I would have been divorced before we got to Florence!   Our itinerary was perfect, allowing us time to relax in Bellagio, Cortona and Positano between hectic days in Venice, Florence and Rome.  The food and wine was superb, the people were very friendly, the scenery was spectacular and the history fascinating!  We will definitely be returning.  Grazie for all your excellent help and guidance!”  –Larry and Natalie

Silversea Top Producers Awards event, April 2006

“Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to attend the Silversea Awards Gala. It is my privilege that you are among an elite group of travel professionals who are the movers and shakers of the industry. I know you are in good hands with Sheila but at anytime if I can assist you please do not hesitate to contact me.  Warmest Regards,”  –Christine A

April, 2006 – Chef Jill van Cleave author ~ Bill Rice, former editor-in-chief Food & Wine magazine and journalist Chicago Tribune + Chef John Pisto Silversea Cruise

“We want to take a moment before swimming back into our work to thank you for your efforts in launching the Millennium cruise on the Silversea Wind. The staff and crew of the ship were very helpful, our fellow passengers extremely congenial and your advice and suggestions were most useful. Chef John Pisto, of course, was a charismatic and concerned team leader. As for us, we were well pleased with the food and lodging and hope we contributed to the overall conviviality with our presentations and informal conversations with our fellow passengers.  All the best,”  –Bill and Jill , Chicago

27th Annual New York Theatre 2006

“Hi Michael, We had a fabulous time in New York. Am amazed at how quickly the days passed. It was a wonderful opportunity for me to take a “walk down memory lane!” I enjoyed it all! Thank you so much for making it possible and for doing such a fantastic job!  All of your restaurant recommendations were informed and excellent. We found some new favorites and look forward to trying others. Your packing suggestions were very helpful and travel savvy! I’m passing them on to other traveling friends. Your attention to detail, hints and recommendations really go above and beyond. You are excellent! (Never got a chance to say all this to you in person … wanted to … meant to .. but seems like when we were all together there were more fascinating distractions.) Still am amazed that the week passed so quickly and we’re home already.  I would love to join your New York group next year. Meanwhile will be encouraging some other friends.  XOXOXOXOXO”  — P. Broocker

SVCC Silversea Cruises 2005 + 2006:

“We have some great memories thanks to your travel genius.  Cheers!”  –Eric and Barbara M., Domaine Carneros Caribbean – Dec 2006

“Dear Michael:  We are still on Cloud 9 after our first cruise ever. How can we ever go on another line than Silversea. The ship was beautiful and the perfect size at around 300. We never waited for anything or felt like we were crowded and we got to know many news friends among the passengers. The food was fabulous, the wine flowed non-stop and the service was beyond our wildest expectations. I don’t have enough superlatives to compliment ever aspect of this 9 day experience!!!!  I read many reviews on cruises and the Silverseas Line as well as the Silver Shadow before our departure, anyone who did not find this a fabulous experience must truly be a miserable human being!!!! There are some of those out there.  If I could make any recommendation, for first time visitors to the various islands I would like a little more input on things to do and things not to do. There were several trips offered on each island and you really had to guess at what would work for you and that was an imperfect science. For example I now know that renting a scooter on St. Kitts is not the thing to do while everyone should rent a scooter on Isle de Saints. I think cruising and stopping at a number of ports is a learning process. I now know why many seasoned vets stayed by the pool and relaxed while us first timers ran all over the place.  The best of all was traveling with a group of friends. Everyone did their own thing in the day time but we always had dinner together and we always invited another couple to join us which was a wonderful experience.  Happy Holidays,”  –Ward

Duckhorn Wine Scandinavia/Russia Silversea, August 2006

“Michael: Thanks – It was a great trip and the weather couldn’t have been better – just beautiful! It was fun to re-connect with some of the participants from our first Duckhorn wine cruise trip and those that were on our Alaska trip last year. The new couples were also very nice and our events went smoothly – the two receptions and the wine dinner. The chef from Silver Shadow was aboard and he did a masterful job with the food. The wine captain, Jerome, was also very helpful. Service as always on Silverseas was outstanding – especially the ladies at the front desk who had to write all the invitations to the various events.”  –Margaret Duckhorn, Duckhorn Wine Company, St. Helena, Napa Valley, CA

Independent trip in Italy, Oct., 2006

“Dear Michael, – Home from Italia with our minds, hearts and tummies full of the rich, artistic gifts of Italy. The trip was superbly planned with days nicely blended between cities and country. We made all the scheduled trips in Tuscany and more. We experienced the best of Italia as your guide took us to little family restaurants and wineries. We even have his spaghetti sauce recipe.  Ciao and grazie.”  –R. Brusati, Palo Alto, CA

Heitz Silversea Wine Cruise, Russia, 2005

“Dear Michael: Thank you for your perseverance, patience and professionalism. We look forward to a wonderful vacation, thanks to you.  Warm regards,”  –Dr. S. Modi

Venice to Monte Carlo, escorted by Kurt Grasing and Michel Escoffier, Oct 8-18, 2005

“The trip was wonderful!!!!! Chef Annie came home with so many ideas she was making lists of to do’s all the way across the Atlantic.  I finished reading Auguste Escoffier and while I was reading I could hear Michel’s voice telling the stories.  He made the trip come alive.  We definitely will do some more adventures and will contact our clients that would enjoy these types of trips. Silverseas is over the top, taking care of every detail, but Michael you were the best, a wonderful host, making everyone feel comfortable and well taken care of.  Thanks for everything.  Look forward to keeping in touch.”  –N. Neighbors, Kansas

Michel Escoffier AIWF Silversea, Monte Carlo to Athens Oct 20-30, 2005

“Thanks for arranging such a great trip.  From start to finish,  it couldn’t have been nicer.  I know that you did an extraordinary amount of planning in order for it to have flowed so smoothly.  In addition to meeting you and Michel, we met some other very interesting people.  How could people who appreciate fine wine and food not be interesting?  Arrivederci and ciao…  –R Konstantin, Connecticut

AIWF – Italy – Malta – Turkey – Greece, Oct 2005

“Dear Michael,  Thank you again for arranging such a wonderful trip. The cruise was absolutely fantastic!  What a great group of people.  Of course with food and wine lovers how could you go wrong?  Ron and I had a really wonderful time.  We look forward to traveling with you again.  Until next time, take care. Love,”  –O. and R. Samter , Miami, FL

AIWF Escoffier, Silver Shadow Rome to Athens, Oct 20-30, 2005

“Hi Michael,  So nice to hear from you.  We did indeed have a wonderful time.  Thank you for making it so great.  You did a wonderful job picking such nice people plus a great ship and accommodations.  You were on top of it and made it seem easy.   We know that good things don’t just happen.  It takes organization and planning.  Thank you for that. We were [and are] very favorably impressed with everything about the entire adventure.  The food, the company, the ship, the hotel, etc. Thank you also for the emails and addresses.  We have talked with our new friends so far and hope to correspond with others in the future as well.  Ciao,”  –R and T Anderson, Scottsdale AZ

“Bonne,  Just wanted to let you know that my life is solo much richer for having met you! I truly feel privileged to have shared this journey of self-discovery with you.  Many blessings,”  –Val  3-9-05, Family Tuscany 2006

“Gotta tell ya, I am so impressed with the level of communication from you and the Via Travel folks.  Thanks!!”  –L James , San Jose, CA

Domaine Carneros, Med Silversea Monte Carlo to Rome, 2005

“Michael: Thanks for introducing us to cruising in such a magnificently beautiful manner. Roma and I had a wonderful time.   The people we met were all so graciously friendly, (even the ones who weren’t part of the Domaine group).  A great itinerary, wonderful cuisine and wines and such attentive service.  We will definitely consider Silverseas the next time we want to cruise.” –Dr. P & R Green, San Jose, CA

“Hi Michael –I think you are part wizard or something!  Thank you so much for all of your efforts on our behalf.  Best….”  –S & R Gustafson, San Jose, CA

AIWF Silversea London to Lisbon, Oct 2006

“Michael,  You do such a great job it doesn’t seem like your working. I miss everyone so much, it’s like moving away from home. Especially R & O, I miss getting together with them at the end of the day for Champagne & Caviar and  long talks. Some nights we stayed up late after dinner to talk some more.  Kiss Kiss”  –T Anderson, Scottsdale, AZ

Silversea Byington Genoa to Venice, Aug 2006

“Hi Michael – We had an absolutely fabulous trip with Silversea.  It was everything we expected and more.  It was wonderful to interact with our group from the Capital Club.  Thanks for everything. Tell me more about the Danube River Cruise in May.  Thanks, again!”  –R Zlatunich, San Jose, CA

Alaska Heitz Silversea, June 2006

“It was delightful getting to know you personally and your family and the Heitz family. We know we will want to do this again – Tony, who would never THINK to even take a cruise is an avid “cruiser” now. He even speaks of taking our entire family – 9 and 11 year old boy grandchildren even. This cruise has changed his life. As for me, it was the most delightful 60th birthday present I could ever imagine and will always remember. Heitz and Clark and everyone made it memorable. And my King Salmon out of Wrangell is a “Hallmark” moment. We will be in touch.  C. Citko, Nevada  Just a brief note to thank you for all you did to make the Alaska cruise extra special! It was a real pleasure to meet you, George, Kathleen and Alice Heitz! We got the wine bottles through customs with no hassle whatever and will be serving the wines for some special occasions in the near future. When you know where you’re going in ’07, we’d certainly like to know about it; and, hopefully, we’ll be able to join in another great experience!  Thanks again,”  –B and R Bengtson, The Pennsylvania people!

SVCC Byington Wine Cruise Med on Silversea, 2005

“Michael –  It was a wonderful trip. I thank you for your planning and dedication.  We had a great trip and I would recommend you any time, for the great work you do. Looking forward to sharing a glass with and your wife in Carmel.  Best regards,”  –E. Milledge, Saratoga, CA

“Michael, Thank you so much for your help.  It’s nice to know we’re working with someone who has such great connections!  Sincerely,”  –B Gros,  Houston, TX

Duckhorn Wine Cruise to Russia on Silversea, Aug 2006

“Mr. Mastrocola, We thoroughly enjoyed the cruise so much, we decided to go on another cruise – and booked one aboard.”  –Dr. K. Venkatesh, Scottsdale, AZ