A Winter's Tale

WELCOME

Rudy

Welcome to your Winter's Tale. A journey celebrating Europe's festive experiences made more special by Rocco Forte Hotels.

After your whirlwind tour is complete, enter our competition to win three incredible two-night stays at the Rocco Forte Hotels of your choice.

Click the big red button to start your adventure.

Let's Go!

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INTRODUCE YOURSELF

This is your Winter’s Tale so, to give it that personal touch, please tell us your name.

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BRING A COMPANION ALONG

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There’s room for a friend to accompany you on your Winter’s Tale. Who would you like to bring along? What is your favourite travelling companion’s name?

Tip: If you're interested in family activities then bring one of your younger relatives along...

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YOUR DESTINY

Choose your destiny {{$storage.user}} and {{$storage.companion}}.

Where will your path lead you both this winter?

Shape your journey by choosing your favourite pastime or passion.

Culture
Good Food
My Family
Wellbeing
Winter Palace

Where better to start a Winter’s Tale than in a Winter Palace? Once home to the Russian Tsars, this Baroque-style masterpiece is one of St Petersburg’s most impressive cultural attractions. It looks incredible in the snow. It’s main building houses the Hermitage Museum, the most splendid art gallery in Russia.

{{$storage.companion}} is staring up at the elaborate ceilings, mesmerised by the opulent interior. Room after room is decorated in gold leaf. Works by legendary artists hang in each one. Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian, Rembrandt, Ruben, Renoir, Cezanne, Manet, Monet and Pissarro, Van Gogh, Matisse, Gaugin, Rodin. They’re all here. People say that it would take eleven years to view them all. But there is still so much to see in St Petersburg. Let’s move on.

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Faberge

Where are you now? The Fabergé Museum, home to Karl Fabergé’s astonishing creations, including nine Imperial Easter Eggs? The Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, known for its colourful enamel domes, spectacular mosaics and as the site where Tsar Alexander II was assassinated? No.

{{$storage.companion}} has always loved a spot of drama, so you take your seats at the Mariinsky Theatre to see the Kirov Ballet performing the first Nutcracker of the season. You have a private box, courtesy of Hotel Astoria. It’s an incredible performance. The first scene starts with a live, dancing reindeer. Or is it an elk? Incredible.

You’re invited to the after-show party in the Lichfield Bar, at Hotel Astoria. This hotel is a favourite with the art crowd. You quickly make your way from the Mariinsky, eager to join in the festivities.

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St Petersburg

The reindeer is holding court at the bar. In fact, he’s just finishing a heated discussion with another guest about elks. About how cultured, and well travelled they are. Perhaps he’s an elk after all. “Have you visited Berlin or Rome?” he bellows in your direction. “If you love culture you simply must go. Take these and tell them I sent you. They’ll look after you. The name’s Rudy. Rudy the elk.” Rudy hands you two rather smart-looking cards.

On the first ‘Hotel De Rome, Berlin’ is printed and on the second ‘Hotel De Russie, Rome’. How very odd. You decide to leave for Berlin immediately.

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Berlin map

Rudy was right. There really is a Hotel De Rome in Berlin. It’s right at the heart of Berlin, on the historic Bebelplatz, overlooking the fashionable Mitte district and close to Museum Island. Everything that’s great about Berlin is within easy reach.

The Concierge confirms that yes, he had met Rudy. But he remained tight-lipped about the circumstances. The team at Hotel De Rome pride themselves on being discreet.

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Berlin

The Concierge certainly had much to say about the cultural attractions of the city. “Berlin is famous for its restaurants, bars, nightclubs and theatres. Then, of course, there are the boutiques of Friedrichstraße. Nearby historical landmarks include Museum Island, the Reichstag, Brandenburg Gate, Checkpoint Charlie and the Jewish Museum.

“Have you looked around The Corner yet?”

“What’s around the corner?” said {{$storage.companion}}.

“It’s a shop,” said the Concierge.

“What’s it called?” said {{$storage.companion}}.

They, both looked puzzled. The Corner is, in fact, Berlin’s most stylish concept store.

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Berlin map

After a light lunch – the best spaghetti al pomodoro in all of Berlin – at La Banca, the hotel’s Italian restaurant, you sample a few Violet Royal champagne cocktails and consider what to see in this culturally rich city. You decide that the Berlin Wall Memorial is a must to visit. So is the Charlottenburg Palace. And the Reichstag and Brandenburg Gate. {{$storage.companion}} wants to visit the Kurfürstendamm.

However, this little slice of Italy in the heart of Berlin has given you a taste for the real thing. It’s time to travel to Rome.

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Rome shopping

Rome, the Eternal City. The weather is glorious. Blue skies, a slight chill in the air, but it feels much warmer than St Petersburg or Berlin. Even in the depths of winter the weather can be perfect for viewing the city’s ancient sites. Fewer tourists too. Staying at the Hotel De Russie is a real treat. The hotel is right in the centre of Rome, situated between the Spanish Steps and Piazza del Popolo.

Rudy is here too. You’ve spotted him in the fashionable boutiques of Via Condotti, a short stroll away from the hotel. Bags slung over his antlers he’s been buying outfits for upcoming Winter Balls. With its Secret Garden, Hotel De Russie is a green oasis at the heart of an otherwise bustling city. It's a fascinating mix of old and new, with modern design that respects the classical architecture of the building. The De Russie Spa, a Rocco Forte Spa, is the perfect place to relax too. There's a salt water hydro pool, and a team of therapists on hand with a host of rejuvenating treatments including an amazing Swiss Perfection Facial.

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Rome map

Which site do you fancy visiting today?

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Rome map

Excellent choice! It’s incredible to think how people lived back in those days. The artistry, the craftsmanship and the scale of construction. What did you think of those incredible statues?

You’ve only scratched the surface of what you can find in this amazing city. See some of the world's greatest art collections in the Borghese Gallery, the Doria Pamphilj Gallery, the Vatican Museums, the Capitoline Museums and the MAXXI museum. Visit ancient Roman sites and monuments, such as the Colosseum, the Appian Way and Catacombs, the Ara Pacis, the Baths of Caracalla and the Palatine Hill.

Let’s go back to Hotel De Russie, order an espresso in the Secret Garden and reminisce about your Winter’s Tale. Why not plan more adventures in these three remarkable cities of culture?

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Hotel Map

Your Travel Diary

We hope you had a marvellous adventure, visiting some of the finest cultural sites in Europe. Scroll down to read an account of your journey. Read more about Rudy here, or why not make real memories by staying with us this winter?

St Petersburg

You began your Winter’s Tale at Hotel Astoria, St Petersburg with {{$storage.companion}}.

St Petersburg lozenge

{{$storage.companion}}’s love of drama had you witness an incredible performance of The Nutcracker at the historic Mariinsky Theatre. Never before had you seen an elk dance.

St Petersburg lozenge

Your stay in St Petersburg was completed with a vibrant night at the Lichfield Bar in Hotel Astoria. Rubbing shoulders with the art crowd, you were right at home.

Berlin

Berlin

Berlin was certainly an impressive city and your stay at Hotel De Rome made the experience all the more special. Situated on the magnificent Bebelplatz, you had all the wonders of the city on your doorstep.

From the amazing Museum Island to the sobering realities of the Jewish Museum, Berlin captured your heart with its elegance and history.

Rome

Rome was a treasure trove of cultural experiences waiting to be discovered. Your visit to {{$storage.cultureForm1}} with {{$storage.companion}} confirmed this as you both marvelled at the construction of such a magnificent structure.

Your stay at Hotel De Russie was as an oasis of calm in an otherwise bustling city.

Your exploration of the Eternal City certainly left you culturally enriched.

St Petersburg lozenge

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Balmoral Hotel

Brr! It’s a cold, but clear, winter’s evening in Edinburgh. The stars are out tonight, as the festive lights illuminate the shoppers strolling down Princes Street.

Looking up at the night’s sky, The Balmoral’s majestic clock dominates the scene. It’s later than you thought. Why does {{$storage.companion}} always take so long to get ready for an evening out?

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Edinburgh

It’s time for your dinner reservation at Number One, The Balmoral’s Michelin Starred restaurant. Welcomed by a kilt-attired Doorman, you are both whisked through the hotel, to reach your table in time.

But, looking at your watch you realise that you are now three minutes early. An astute waiter informs you that the clock of the Balmoral always runs three minutes fast, perfect!

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Images of Rudy

But bewilderment returns as what looks like a stuffed reindeer trophy introduces himself to you as Rudy, an elk visiting from Lapland. Never mind. The menu now holds your attention. An innovative blend of Scottish and French flavours beckons. What will you choose for your First Course? Click on an option to choose...

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Map of Florence

Good choice! The perfect combination of seasonal ingredients bursting with flavour.

Now for your main course and {{$storage.companion}} fancies something Florentine!

Ciao! You’re in Florence. In Hotel Savoy to be precise, sitting in restaurant Irene. A truly authentic Tuscan dining experience, inspired by Rocco Forte’s mother Irene. There’s so much to see surrounding this exquisite hotel. You’re sitting on Piazza della Repubblica, just metres from the Duomo, and within walking distance of the Ponte Vecchio, Boboli Gardens and Pitti Palace, as well as the local streets brimming with designer boutiques.

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Florence Opera

But, you are here for the food, for the dishes created by Fulvio Pierangelini, inspired by Irene’s recipes. Fulvio is the master of simplicity with two Michelin stars to his name.

Across the room, the atmosphere in Irene bar is vibrant. It seems that Rudy the elk is here, celebrating a successful performance at the Opera di Firenze with a good number of Negroni cocktails. While surrounded by a large circle of admirers, all wanting autographs, mixologists are lining up more of his favourite cocktails.

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Map of Florence

But your attention soon drifts away from the ensuing clamour as the unmistakable aroma of Tuscan cuisine captivates you. Upon inspecting the menu, you can’t decide between four of Fulvio’s fantastic dishes. What do you choose?

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Map of Brussels

An excellent choice. That was a genuinely fulfilling meal!

But, your companion has disappeared. {{$storage.companion}} has left a note propped up against a wine glass for you.

{{$storage.user}}, I need my chocolate fix. Meet me in Brussels. There’s a charming little place I know called Hotel Amigo. See you there.
{{$storage.companion}}.

Rudy is now attempting to sing Verdi’s Rigoletto. It’s not going well. All of a sudden, chocolate in Brussels sounds rather appealing doesn’t it?

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Rudy on cobbles

Turn 360 degrees. You find yourself in the Grand Place, Brussels, one of the most beautiful squares in the world. Suddenly, the sound of hooves clattering against the cobbles breaks the silent night air. It’s Rudy. Again.

This time he’s trying to keep a low profile, but the sound of his polished hooves slipping against the cobbled stones gives him away. Red-faced, he’s muttering under his breath about triple toe-loops and the unpredictability of inferior Belgian ice. You follow him just off the square, down the picturesque Rue De L'Amigo to where {{$storage.companion}} is waiting.

"Hi {{$storage.user}}”, says {{$storage.companion}}. “Let’s go in and see what they are serving up for dessert. Hopefully, there will be Belgian chocolate!”

There’s a warm glow from the entrance of Hotel Amigo. Time to go inside.

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Map of Brussels

Once inside the quirky Hotel Amigo you both head straight for Bar Amigo, hoping it’s not too late to have its celebrated ‘Chocolate Afternoon Tea’. An unforgettable selection of hot chocolate, chocolate infusions, pralines and sweets, all created by the famous Belgian Maître Chocolatier Pierre Marcolini.

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Map of Brussels

Sadly, it’s now well past tea-time. Never mind, there are other treats in store at Bocconi, the hotel’s award-winning restaurant. Here, Italy meets Belgium in a fusion of cuisines that is like no other. You order Chocolate Fondant and Passion Fruit Sorbet, while {{$storage.companion}} cannot resist the Dark Chocolate Dome with Pistachio Mousse and Chocolate Ice Cream. Mmm! Soon you’re in chocolate heaven.

What a strange but beguiling evening it has been. Let’s take a look back at your Winter’s Tale.

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Hotel Map

Your Travel Diary

We hope you had a marvellous adventure, eating some of the finest cuisine in Europe. Scroll down to read an account of your journey. Read more about Rudy here, or why not make real memories by staying with us this winter?

Edinburgh

Your Winter’s Tale began under festive lights on the chilly streets of Edinburgh. You stayed at The Balmoral, in the heart of the city.

The Balmoral Hotel

{{$storage.companion}} almost had you miss dinner at the Number One! But an astute waiter provided you with some inside knowledge regarding the hotel’s clock.

Your short chat with an elk had you bewildered, but your choice of {{$storage.foodForm1}} as a starter had your taste buds dancing.

Florence

{{$storage.companion}} fancied something Florentine for a main course. So you both headed to Hotel Savoy in Florence. To the hotel’s Irene restaurant.

Once again Rudy was there, this time basking in the limelight…

The Balmoral Hotel

Your choice of {{$storage.foodForm2}} showed that head chef Fulvio Pierangelini had considered every aspect of the Tuscan classic. Rudy's Tip: Add Irene restaurant to your must visit list of 2016 and start planning your trip.

Brussels

{{$storage.companion}} left you a note letting you know they were headed to Hotel Amigo, in Brussels, for dessert, you quickly followed.

You spotted Rudy for a third time, this time he was red-faced and not as jovial as before…

At Ristorante Bocconi you and {{$storage.companion}} found yourself in chocolate heaven with chocolate fondants, chocolate ice cream and chocolate domes. Rudy's Tip: If you would like to explore Brussels and source the finest Belgian chocolate for your family celebrations, the team at Hotel Amigo will be here to assist you.

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Map of London

Let’s begin our Winter’s Tale in grand old London, at Brown’s Hotel. Brown's is a hotel with a tale of its own. It was the first hotel ever to open in London. Alexander Graham Bell made the first phone call in Europe here, and Rudyard Kipling penned the timeless classic The Jungle Book within its walls.

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Ice Skating

You enjoy a sumptuous afternoon tea in The English Tea Room. After a delicious tea you decide to take {{$storage.companion}} to see some sights. The Concierge gives you a list of his city favourites. Which one do you choose?

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Teddy Monkey

Wow, {{$storage.companion}} was dazzled by the winter spectacles that London has to offer! But now the sun has set and the cold has started to bite, best get back to Brown's.

{{$storage.companion}} looks sleepy, so maybe it’s time for a spot of relaxing reading. After finding a bedtime story in the Kids Library you walk through the luxurious hallway to your interconnecting rooms. There are Families R Forte robes and slippers, a Families R Forte bespoke in–room bar and something waiting for {{$storage.companion}} on the bed. It’s small, fluffy and adorable. It’s Albemarle, a Monkey Teddy.

{{$storage.companion}} soon nods off, clutching a new friend.

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Map of London

Great news! {{$storage.companion}} hasn’t slept that well for a while! Next morning, you think it’s time to see the rest of London. On your route you are both dazzled by the Christmas lights of Oxford Street and Regent Street. You spot Hamleys, one of the finest toyshops in the world. {{$storage.companion}}’s eyes light up as you step into the store. Albemarle feels right at home here among all of the other teddies, as you seek out a companion for him. What companion does {{$storage.companion}} choose for Albemarle?

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Map of London

A great choice by {{$storage.companion}}, Albemarle now has his own companion! The four of you enjoy all the busy winter festivities in London – ice-skating at Winterville in Victoria Park, the Christmas Market at Tate Modern. London really is the most magical place at this time of year.

But, the time has come to leave. Where to next? You both ponder. Perhaps Berlin would be the place to go…

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Map of Berlin

Flights can be stressful when travelling with little companions, but {{$storage.companion}} has been excellent, with a little furry duo to keep each other company.

Berlin is home to Hotel de Rome. It’s right on Bebelplatz, in the heart of Berlin and close to everything that’s great about the city.

Like all Rocco Forte Hotels there are special Families R Forte menus in the restaurants for {{$storage.companion}} to choose from. {{$storage.companion}} gets given their very own Eugen (the Berlin) bear — a gift from the hotel — at turn-down. The menagerie really is growing now. The next morning the Concierge chats with {{$storage.companion}} about what you both enjoy most and puts together a special programme of activities to help you both get the best out of your visit.

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Map of Berlin

But where do you go? There's so much for you both to discover you wonder where would be best to start.

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Reindeer enclosure

By the smiles on your faces it looks as if both you and your companion have had a good day! To bring an end to the day you pay a visit to Berlin zoo with {{$storage.companion}} and Eugen the bear. In a festive mood you decide to look out for reindeer. There’s a Forest Reindeer enclosure, but you are surprised to see an elk outside the enclosure. He appears to be visiting the zoo too. How strange.

When you return to the hotel you are looking forward to a relaxing evening. So you can head out to do some adult things, the Concierge organises a wonderful babysitter through the Families R Forte programme. {{$storage.companion}} is well looked after. But the time has come to move on, and where better to finish off your trip than on the Mediterranean island of Sicily?

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Map of Sicily

Sicily is simply wonderful at this time of year. You’re picked up from the airport and travel past the Verdura railway station and the incredible Torre built in the 1500s.

You can smell the sea and feel the warming rays of winter sunshine on your face. You’re guided to Reception.

Upon Check–in {{$storage.companion}} is greeted by a hedgehog. Not a real one of course, but something fluffier. It’s yet another new cuddly companion. {{$storage.companion}} will have a complete zoo soon. And this isn’t all they receive. Check-in cards, colouring books, comment cards, newspapers and a Families R Forte passport too. Rocco Forte Hotels truly is child-friendly.

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Map of Sicily

With all this travelling you deserve a rest. Take a trip to the spa. We have plenty of childcare available. Feeling refreshed? There’s an impressive range of activities for {{$storage.companion}} to choose from. What will they choose first?

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Gym

The scenery here is breathtaking, your day has been well spent and {{$storage.companion}} is sure to tell everyone about today when you return home!

After a relaxing few days in the Verdura Spa you decide to book into every fitness class Verdura offers. Maybe it’s your imagination, but you think you spot that elk again, being put through his paces by Marcello the Fitness Manager. It is Rudy. He appears to be lifting weights with his antlers at the gym. How bizarre.

Meanwhile {{$storage.companion}} has spent a week making new friends and enjoying a range of activities in the Kids' Club. They've even experienced their very own first spa treatment too. With the sea breeze, Mediterranean diet and exercise regime you feel great. {{$storage.companion}} has had an experience of a lifetime and will struggle to say goodbye to Verdura!

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Hotel Map

Your Travel Diary

We hope you had an enchanting family adventure with {{$storage.companion}}. Scroll down to read an account of your journey. Read more about Rudy here, or why not make real memories by staying with us this winter?

London

Your Winter’s Tale found you and {{$storage.companion}} in the historic Brown’s Hotel, London, following the likes of innovators and literary greats.

Afternoon tea was a delicious experience. And the following afternoon you both went to {{$storage.familiesForm1}}.

Teddy Monkey

{{$storage.companion}} found a new friend in Albemarle the teddy monkey. He was soon joined by {{$storage.familiesForm2}} for companionship!

Ice Skating

You ended your festive experience in London with ice skating.

Berlin

Hotel de Rome was wonderful for {{$storage.companion}}. It was very child- friendly and {{$storage.companion}} received yet another furry companion, Eugen the bear.

Reindeer enclosure

Taking suggestions from the Concierge, {{$storage.companion}}, the animals and you headed to the zoo and {{$storage.familiesForm3}}. It was a fantastic day out.

The 24-hour Families R Forte babysitting service allowed you to get some time to yourself, as you knew that {{$storage.companion}} was under expert supervision.

Sicily

After a well-deserved trip to the Verdura Spa you decided that you should take {{$storage.companion}} out. {{$storage.familiesForm4}} had you both amazed. The scenery was like no other.

Seeing Rudy in the gym with Marcello was a strange sight to behold.

Gym in Sicily

{{$storage.companion}} certainly fell in love with the Mediterranean way of life at Verdura Resort. As did you.

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Frankfurt map

You start your Winter’s Tale in Frankfurt. Winter is a wonderful time to explore a new city. Frankfurt’s frosty streets are filled with merry-makers enjoying the seasonal festivities. And, after a long day exploring the oldest Christmas Markets in Germany, {{$storage.companion}} decides that the best course of action is to relax, rejuvenate and indulge.

Luckily you’re staying at the beautifully restored and historic Villa Kennedy. Not only is it a short stroll from the Museum Embankment and the city centre, but it's also a haven for those looking to relax and unwind. Its Villa Spa, a Rocco Forte Spa, has an indoor pool, eight treatment rooms, Jacuzzi, a gym and yoga studio. Here you find yourselves truly spoilt for choice.

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Frankfurt map

With so many restorative revitalizing treatments to consider, which will you choose first? It’s been a long day, so {{$storage.companion}} chooses a headache relief massage. This soothing massage uses a combination of trigger point therapy and Swedish massage techniques on your shoulders, neck, head and face. But what will you opt for?

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Frankfurt map

An excellent choice, you immediately look rejuvenated to all those around you including, rather strangely, an elk with immaculately polished hooves. Peering through a frost-tinted window, you see that the earlier flurry of snow has now become a blizzard, covering the streets in a thick sparkling white blanket. The weather soon drifts from your mind as the massaging Jacuzzi jets give you a feeling of complete harmony.

The next morning, after a delicious healthy breakfast from the Rocco Forte Nourish Corner, {{$storage.companion}} suddenly has the urge to discover another city. Munich seems like a good choice. Your bags packed, you depart from Frankfurt station, excited about your next adventure.

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Winter warming

Munich is quite the spectacle to behold at Christmas. Traditional market stalls adorn the streets and the aromatic scent of gluhwëin drifts through the cold winter’s air. It truly is magical. But even with the warming cup of wine between your hands, the cold eventually has your mind wanting for the warm embrace of The Charles Hotel.

Having trudged through the deepening snow, the ever-astute Concierge suggests that perhaps you both take advantage of the hotel’s wide range of spa treatments. An excellent proposition.

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Munich map

But once again, you find yourself spoilt for choice, with so many exclusive treatments available to you. {{$storage.companion}} chooses a Detox Body Ritual. This body treatment stimulates the lymphatic system and detoxifies the body. It is incorporated with the Forte Organics Thermoactive Lavender Compress Cream as something extra to help melt away their aches and pains. But which treatment will you choose?

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Munich map

Refreshed and revitalised, you certainly feel a lot better after being in such professional hands. It’s been a long time since you've slept so well, and it’s all thanks to your wonderful treatment. Early next morning you go the Charles Spa again and take a swim in the city's largest hotel pool.

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Munich map

After breakfast the hotel Concierge makes some perfect suggestions to help you discover the fascinating city around you. The hotel is located on the edge of the famous museum quarter, close to historic attractions such as Königsplatz and a short stroll from the designer stores around Maximilianstrasse.

Here you mingle with the locals in one of the hundreds of traditional beer gardens. For lunch you dine on Bavarian cuisine in the Maxvorstadt artists’ district. And after, you visit the bohemian Schwabing quarter.

This trip is turning out to be quite the journey. But where to go next? You embark onto the night train and drift off to the clatter of the locomotive bound for Rome.

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Rome map

Rome. You’ve arrived! The Eternal City has been one of the most beautiful settings in the world for thousands of years. Your forays reveal iconic Classical and Renaissance architecture such as St. Peter’s Basilica, the Trevi Fountain and the Colosseum.

However, Rome is not particularly well-known as a city that exudes an aura of tranquility. Fortunately, Hotel De Russie, where you are staying, is a standout exception. The Secret Garden is a green oasis of peace nestled in the heart of the city. And the De Russie Spa, a Rocco Forte Spa, has equally impressive credentials for providing a sense of wellbeing fit for an Emperor. There's a salt water hydro pool, and a team of therapists on hand with a host of rejuvenating treatments including an amazing Swiss Perfection Facial.

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Rome

The great city of Rome has so many hidden gems and cultural wonders that it would be a shame to miss out on discovering some of them. Through the efforts of the Concierge, a list of tailor made tours is handed to you. Do you decide to:

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Rome map

What a way to see the sights. Although it's impossible to experience everything in this vast city, your knowledge of the history and culture of Rome has been buoyed by this adventure.

Now it’s time to relax a little and recover from all that sightseeing. {{$storage.companion}} opts for an Antico Rituale Romano treatment. This Ancient Roman Ritual is recommended for soothing tired and sore feet after a day of sightseeing and it has its desired effects! The therapist explained that the products used are all natural and hand–picked at their sister property, Verdura Resort, where they have their own vegetable garden, lemon trees, olive trees, almond trees and many more. The therapist said that some of her favourite products are the Almond Cleansing Milk, Opuntia Day Cream, Hibiscus Serum, Apricot Body Scrub and White Wine Body Emulsion, all so deliciously natural that you could eat them! That inspires you to go to Verdura to try their zero mileage dishes and experience more of the Forte Organics beauty line.

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Sicily map

The next day, as swiftly as you arrived, you're back on the train on the second-leg of your journey, heading to Sicily.

The journey from Rome to Sicily is one to remember. Travelling through regions including Campania and Calabria provides you with stunning views of the Mediterranean, juxtaposed against the spectacular Campanian mountain range. The route even includes your train boarding a ferry! Quite an experience.

When you reach Verdura Resort on the southern side of Sicily you enjoy a health-enhancing meal from the Rocco Forte Nourish menu. Then you relax with a Sicilian–themed Rocco Forte ritual, using the Forte Organics beauty line, that pampers you from head to toe. Forte Organics is created with ingredients hand–picked from Verdura's very own vegetable garden, and the base of the creams is Verdura's organic olive oil. After you both sip on delicious zero–mile Forte Organics smoothies.

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Golf

By morning you are refreshed and revitalised, ready for a day of activity. With its pools, tennis courts and impressive location Rocco Forte’s Verdura Resort is perfect for your desire to get moving. There are four outdoor thalassotherapy pools and outdoor fitness classes by the sea. There’s a five-star golfing experience to be had too as Verdura has three world-class links championship courses. The Concierge also suggests sightseeing trekking around the resort to discover its rich history. Or trekking in the Valle del Lupo. {{$storage.companion}} picks one for your first day’s activities.

In the evening you relax and enjoy a delicious Mediterranean meal in one of the hotel’s candlelit restaurants, Zagara. You both order mozzarella with tomato and basil, followed by red prawn tartar. Then there’s tagliolini with squid and sage, followed by traditional tiramisu. Delicious. All accompanied with a fine selection of Sicilian wines.

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Sicily yoga

You both wake refreshed and, before breakfast, do some yoga by the sea and discover a delightful running track through the olive groves that leaves your regular jogging routes standing. There’s so much to do the next day, you need to make a decision together. Do you:

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Sicily map

From the look in your eyes it’s obvious that you’ve both had an exhilarating time! Leaving Verdura is going to be difficult! This whistle-stop tour of Rocco Forte Hotels has proved both relaxing and invigorating, with new stories to tell and memories that will never be forgotten.

From Frankfurt to Sicily, each destination has provided a unique experience found only in Rocco Forte Hotels.

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Hotel Map

Your Travel Diary

We hope you had an invigorating wellbeing sojourn in the finest spas in Europe. Scroll down to read an account of your journey. Read more about Rudy here, or why not make real memories by staying with us this winter?

Frankfurt

Your Winter’s Tale began among the Christmas stalls of Frankfurt, with yourself and {{$storage.companion}} looking for some relaxation after a long, but successful, day's shopping.

Nail Polishing

Staying at Villa Kennedy meant that you were in the right place for relaxation, with facilities ranging from treatment rooms to a yoga studio.

{{$storage.companion}} opted for a Headache Relief Massage, and you felt {{$storage.wellbeingForm1}} was necessary luxury. Afterwards even an elk complimented you on how relaxed you looked.

Munich

Mulled Wine

Munich was the next stop on your journey. After more shopping in the traditional Christmas markets, and a glass or two of gluhwëin, the Charles Spa, a Rocco Forte Spa at The Charles Hotel, was calling.

{{$storage.companion}} chose the Detox Body Ritual, while you went for {{$storage.wellbeingForm2}}, which revitalised you completely.

Of course, no trip to a city of such magnitude would have been complete without investigating the surrounding areas. Maximillianstrasse and Königsplatz were fantastic. Rudy's Tip: Enjoy Munich's wonderfully festive atmosphere this season, with some of the finest, restorative treatments available at The Charles Hotel.

Your next step was to board a train bound for Rome.

Rome

Rome

After exploring the Eternal City’s famous sites your attention turned to the Hotel De Russie and the tranquillity it provided.

At the efforts of the Concierge you both enjoyed {{$storage.wellbeingForm3}}, a truly unique way to see Rome.

After the sightseeing another trip to a spa proved too enticing as both you and {{$storage.companion}} were treated to the Antico Rituale Romano. Rudy's Tip: To experience this treatment and others using the Forte Organics range, visit Hotel de Russie.

But the time soon came to board a locomotive once more. This time you headed further south, toward Sicily.

Sicily

Golf Bag

Nothing could quite prepare you for the beautiful scenes that you witnessed as you travelled to Verdura Resort. The Italian countryside was astounding. Good news! Your golf was much improved on the world-class links championship course.

The Mediterranean way of life appealed to you in every way. And Verdura Resort certainly knew how to embrace it. Organic meals created using local ingredients were bountiful and delicious.

Yoga

After indulging in the local cuisine for a few days you and {{$storage.companion}} decided to get active and {{$storage.wellbeingForm4}}. Never have you had so much fun. Rudy's Tip: Feeling adventurous? Experience a stay at Verdura Resort this winter.

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