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Captivating Cities

5th April 2019

Authentic experiences make a city programme with Dream Escape far from the ordinary ‘city break’.

Discover the excitement and buzz of city life with uncompromised locations and luxury balanced with local insider knowledge and off the beaten track experiences delivered by the best guides and experts.

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Experience the best of retail with a unique and very special behind the scenes pre-opening tour of one of London’s most iconic department stores. Learn about it’s fascinating history, visit VIP Shopping Areas and see where the royals come to shop. Accompanied by an expert guide, explore the luxury stores that inhabit Bond Street and beyond. A highlight will perhaps be gaining access to one of London’s most illustrious hatters! You can even indulge in a design themed afternoon tea with Lock and Co, celebrating 340 years of hat making, at a London hotel.

Board a private, luxury boat charter to Greenwich to see the Painted Hall at the Old Royal Naval College, re-opened after 2 years of restoration work at a cost of £8.5million. Described as “Britain’s Sistine Chapel”, it is the largest painted interior in Europe. Stand on the historic Meridian Line at the home of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT), visit the vibrant and colourful Greenwich Market and enjoy a traditional English pub lunch

Take in London’s thriving art scene with a specialist Art Guide to accompany you on the ‘Tate to Tate’ Boat, from Van Gogh at the Tate Britain to the Bonnard Exhibition at the Tate Modern. Discover how Mary Quant launched a fashion revolution on the British High Street, including unseen pieces from the designer’s personal archive, in the new exhibition at the V&A museum

Outside London, visit Bath and the historic University City of Oxford. For a very special private visit, venture in to the Christ Church College private gardens. See the grave of Charles Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll) as well as the rather unusual sundial and listen to great stories from the Custodian about College life. Perhaps see the first Real Tennis Court in a fascinating visit or climb the 127 steps to the top of University Church of St Mary the Virgin for a bird’s eye view of Radcliffe Camera, All Souls College and the rest of Oxford.

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For pure decadence, indulge in the services of a Cashmere Butler in one of the most sought-after suites in Scotland. One of Scotland’s leading cashmere specialists will be at your service having curated a special collection of cashmere gifts which can be couriered to your suite – the ultimate private shopping experience.

Continuing the textile theme, take a quite unique and fascinating tour around the weaving studios of one of Scotland’s most creative hand loom weavers whose inspiring designs reflect the Scottish nature and heritage.

Meet with one of Scotland’s best known independent kiltmakers, who has tailor-made kilts for many famous faces. Learn a little of the history of this iconic piece of traditional Highland dress and how this craftsman has been working with original textiles, ranging from leather, gold and purple denim, camouflage and pinstripe to offer a modern twist on this age-old item.

A current ‘must see’ is “Dippy”, the Natural History Museum’s iconic Diplodocus dinosaur skeleton cast, which has ventured out of London for the first time since 1905. He is resident at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum until 6th May to inspire natural history enthusiasts. Dippy was commissioned by Scots-born industrialist Andrew Carnegie who owned the original fossilised skeleton and had the copy made from plaster. Whatever your interest we will source the perfect expert for a private tour of the museum.

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Go back in time and see historical Dublin through the eyes of its past citizens. Visit a fascinating street which has been carefully conserved to provide a history of tenement living in the city and how the occupant’s lives have changed over time.

A privately reserved in-house guide will take you on a tour of the award-winning GPO Witness History Visitor Centre, an immersive tour of life in Ireland during the Easter Rising in 1916. See original artefacts and multi-media displays which allow you to watch live footage and hear stories straight from those who lived through the era. To follow, drinks can be served in the courtyard and you may like to go up the steeple to enjoy panoramic views of Dublin.

Discover the city through the Irish tradition of story-telling. Listen as your guide sings some of the songs that capture the spirit of the Emerald Isle. Explore the origins of Irish dancing and visit some of the landmarks of Irish cultural history in the city. Visit underground Gaelic bars, see where people from across the Emerald Isle took over the mayor’s residence to dance and sing, and listen to some live traditional music. Learn a few dance steps along the way from your Irish dancing guide.

 

 

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    Jill Jergel, Frontiers International Travel

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    Yvonne Malka, Signature Travel Network, April 2018