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New Year’s in Southern Italy

Buon Anno Nuovo 2018 at Palazzo Margherita!

Six marvelous days to enjoy your New Year’s holidays in Southern Italy!

Time: 7 days (6 night stay).
Transfer: Provided for all destinations listed in the package.
Cost: Euro 3750 per room (New Year’s package as below included, based on double occupancy. Room rates begin at an additional Euro 2700 for our Garden Room for six nights).

Our tradition suggests that if you spend your New Year’s Day together with your loved ones, this will set the pace for the entire year ahead of you – ‘insieme a Capodanno, insieme tutto l’anno!’). So take this opportunity to ring in the Anno Nuovo (the New Year) together at Palazzo Margherita in 2018!

Basilicata, one of Italy’s most unspoiled regions, is where culture, food and wine remain authentic and untouched by the world, and is the perfect place to experience the live tradition of the Italian Capodanno.

New Year's Eve is La Festa di San Silvestro, celebrated December 31. Fireworks, music, and dancing are part of the celebrations and, as usual, food is one of the stars of New Year's Eve.

Set in the charming town of Bernalda, where Francis Ford Coppola’s grandfather was born, Palazzo Margherita delights guests with palatial rooms and suites, delicious authentic cuisine, endless amenities, and hospitality so heartwarming that some visitors choose never to venture beyond the Palazzo walls.

Rossella and her team will welcome you into the unique family atmosphere of this special house. Just as she does at home, she dresses the Palazzo with handmade and elegant holiday decorations. You will experience traditional festive recipes in our cozy kitchen where Chef Tommaso will share the secrets of our ancestral cuisine. Sitting next to the wood oven, with a good glass of wine in hand, you will be swept away by the CAPODANNO Italiano!

Day 1) December 29th, 2016 – Welcome

  • Arrival at Palazzo Margherita;
  • Welcome drink and first taste of a typical aperitivo;
  • Relaxation time;
  • Dinner at Palazzo Margherita in our cozy Family Kitchen.

Day 2) December 30th  - Special Day at a Winery

Transfer: 1 hour and 15 minutes each way

  • After a leisurely breakfast at Palazzo Margherita…
  • Deapart for Lizzano;
  • Arrive in Lizzano, where you will stop in a winery located in an ancient masseria, a typical farm house. In the heart of the DOC Primitivo di Manduria wine region (the same variety as the Californian Zinfandel Grape), the breathtaking beauty of this vineyard just a stones throw away from the Mediterranean, will capture your attention as you take a passeggiata, a walk, through the vineyards, not least for the ancient Casino Nitti, the old masseria which once belonged to the first Council President of the Kingdom of Italy after the war, Francesco Saverio Nitti (1919-20).
  • Enjoy an aperitivo, tasting some of the finest local Primitivo wine, for centuries made by the people of Puglia and Basilicata following the first harvests;
  • Experience a traditional country-style lunch in the courtyard of the main masseria, immersed in the bucolic setting of these fertile vineyards, livened up by traditional folk music played for you by a live band;
  • Return to Palazzo Margherita and enjoy a moment of relaxation;
  • Dinner at Palazzo Margherita.

Day 3) December 31st – La Notte di San Silvestro (New Year’s Eve)

  • After breakfast, at 9:30 AM – Nearby the Palazzo, at a typical cheese factory and shop, special appointment with the “casaro”* who will invite you to experience the production of typical mozzarella and ricotta cheese.
  • Back to Palazzo and Relaxation time;
  • Light Lunch at Palazzo Margherita;
  • Relaxation time, while you wait for…
  • Traditional “Cenone della Vigilia di Capodanno”, the New Year’s Eve Dinner in our beautiful Salon, including selected local wines, livened up with traditional, local music.

*The “casaro” will produce cheese with traditional and artisanal methods used for centuries on farms (“masseria”).

Day 4) January 1st, 2018 – Discover Matera and Make Traditional Pettole

Transfer: 45 minutes each way

  • After breakfast at Palazzo Margherita…
  • Departure for Matera;
  • Enjoy a guided tour of the Palomba Sculpture Park on the outskirts of Matera.*
  • Proceed to visit Matera’s famous Sassi.**
  • Spare time to tour the Art&Craft studios in town (map and list provided by us);
  • Lunch in Matera in a typical trattoria, sampling traditional local food;
  • Return to Palazzo Margherita and relaxation time;
  • Before dinner, join our cooks in the kitchen in preparing the traditional ‘pettole’, a staple of Italian feast days;
  • Enjoy dinner and a classic film screening in our Salone, tasting the various types of pettole you crafted, accompanied by an assortment of local cheeses, mulled wine and roasted chestnuts.

 * Set in a century-old tufa stone mine, where traces of Paleolithic and Neolithic settlements have been found, the privately-owned park boasts a permanent exhibition of metal sculptures by the local artist Antonio Paradiso. One of them is the “Global Last Supper” made with iron bars and steel girders from New York City’s WTC Twin Towers destroyed on 9/11. Twisted metal comprises the “Global Last Supper”.

In 2009, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey authorized the transfer of the World Trade Center’s rubble for free to foundations, cities or artists who submitted a proposal for its use. Nine thousand requests from all over the world were submitted but from these, only about forty were selected. Antonio Paradiso, an Apulian artist, was the only Italian allowed to use a portion of the remains of Ground Zero, based on the merit of the artistic project he presented.

** The Sassi originated from a prehistoric settlement, and consist of houses dug into the limestone rock. The Sassi and the Park of the Cave Churches of Matera are the most outstanding, intact example of a prehistoric settlement in the Mediterranean region, perfectly adapted to its terrain and ecosystem. The first inhabited zone dates from the Paleolithic, while later settlements illustrate a number of significant stages in human history, and in 1992 the site was inscribed on the World Heritage List;

Our Suggestion: Wear sturdy rubber-soled shoes or bring a pair with you.

Day 5) January 2nd – Craco and Tursi 

Transfer: 1.5 hours each way

  • Breakfast at Palazzo Margherita;
  • A short drive to Craco to discover this atmospheric Ghost Town*.
  • Visit Tursi and its Rabatana - the original quarter from which the town of Tursi had developed, occupied by the Saracens in ancient times;
  • Lunch in the old and Arab town center of Tursi;
  • Return to Palazzo Margherita;
  • Relaxation time;
  • Dinner at Palazzo Margherita:
  • Join the staff in a ‘Tombolata’, the Italian Bingo, a classic event in every Italian household during the festive period!

The abandonment of the old houses transformed the area into a ghost town often used as a film set for historical films and as a tourist destination through guided tours. The village of Craco can be reached via a road that climbs from the valley up the hill. The grooves are deep and steep offering a picturesque and suggestive landscape. Surrounded by pictoreque fields and olive groves, the town is a single sculptural composition of the closely aligned houses nested on the limestone cliff. Above the vaulted alleys and steep stairwais rise the Norman Tower and the 13th century castle;

Our Suggestion: Wear sturdy rubber-soled shoes or bring a pair with you.

 Day 6) January 3rd – The Valle d’Itria

 Transfer: 1 hour each way

  • After a leisurely breakfast in the dine-in kitchen or courtyard of Palazzo Margherita…
  • Departure for Grottaglie and visit its amazing ceramics district;*
  • Guided visit of the little Ceramics Museum in Grottaglie, and discover the history and significance of the traditional presepi, the nativity scenes.**
  • Depart for Locorotondo and lunch in a typical trattoria;
  • Guided tour of Locorotondo, one of Puglia's prettiest towns with a proudly conserved, easily-walkable center and a calm, laid-back atmosphere;
  • Visit the “Valle d’Itria”, the valley of the well known “Trulli” (cylindrical homes with cone roofs), here there is the highest concentration of Trulli scattered: a fabulous and enchanting scenery, a unique and fantastic landscape;
  • Return to Palazzo Margherita and enjoy a moment of relaxation;
  • Dinner at Palazzo Margherita.

Grottaglie is placed in an area really rich in clay and since the 18th century has been very active in the ceramics production.

** This exhibition was born to give evidence of the rich artistic and cultural tradition of the nativity scenes in the local tradition, and the collection has grown since its origins in 1980 to host both local and international artifacts.

Day 7) January 4th - Departure

  • Breakfast at Palazzo Margherita;
  • Check out.