My family and I recently visited Spain and our travel agent, Marie Anne Diamond (Diamond Luxury travel), made the arrangements through your company. We traveled from June 29 to July 9.
I hope you don't mind me writing you directly. I asked Mrs. Diamond to provide me with your email address so that I could give you my feedback directly.
I want to say THANK YOU to you and your excellent staff for making our vacation a truly memorable experience. And KUDOS and thank you to Mrs. Diamond for arranging and planning this most excellent trip. I am glad that she suggested your company to our family. We are very very pleased overall.
Everything was well organized, the hotels were excellent and located in the best areas, and the guides were fun, interesting and helpful.
I would like to commend especially our guide in Barcelona, Carles Roig. He was knowledgeable, helpful, friendly and accommodating. We are two adults and two kids, and he made sure that our guided tour included information that would keep our kids interested and engaged. Our kids are 9 and 11 years old. Carles made very helpful suggestions, told us information in a way that was both funny and interesting, He was very prompt and professional. He is great! Our kids are big fans of Carles.
Our guide in Cordoba, Carmen Flores Mengual was also excellent, as were Fernando Vazquez in Toledo and Pablo Romero Kupfer in Granada.
Our driver from Granada to Cordoba (his name was Gamal) was also great. He told us the history and scenery of the areas we were driving in. He was professional and prompt. He was very friendly and we liked him a great deal. He was very safe driver and overall gave us a wonderful driving experience.
The tile painting class with Esperanza Romero was unforgettable. She is very patient!
Our guide in Madrid, Pablo Lopez Navarro was especially helpful. Our 9 year old son twisted his ankle and Pablo had suggestions about how we could revise our tour so we could be indoors with limited walking and use of a wheelchair. He took us to the Royal Palace, helped us secure a wheelchair; and then suggested that we take a tour of the Prado instead of the old town walking tour. This was brilliant. We enjoyed hearing about all the paintings, and our son was able to join us (in a wheelchair) despite his ankle being hurt. Pablo is a gem.
Our favorite hotel was the Hotel Bagues in Barcelona - best location, attentive staff!
Again, thank you for helping us to have an unforgettable vacation with lifetime memories.
We will highly recommend Made for Spain and Mrs. Diamond to our family and friends!!
Mr. Jeffrey and Jo Ann Yaross
California, USA, 2015
We truly appreciate the time, effort and details you've put in to make our Italy trip truly a wonderful, once in a lifetime experience. The hotels you booked us in were all outstanding, including their respective services, and the proximity to the city centers of Rome, Tuscany, Florence and Venice. Thank you for the extra amenities at the hotels - complimentary sparkling champagne/wine and dinner - knowing that you were instrumental in making all these happen.
Angelo D'Alessio, our guide for two days in Rome, was the best, and respected our physical limitations during the tour. We highly recommend him.
We thank you and we look forward to future trips with you.
Celia & Rod Sarthou
Our trip was full of surprises thanks to Marie Anne! Our seating on the Lufthansa Air Bus was a two seater section with extra leg room , perfect for the long flight!
In our state room on the Viking River Cruise , Marie Anne had arranged for a lovely plate of fresh fruit, cheese and chocolates which was a delicious treat. The Aria Hotel in Budapest , recently opened in March, was special in every way. Marie Anne was right. It was elegant, very friendly, and so well located for all of our sightseeing needs! When we checked in, we were upgraded to a beautiful spacious suite complete once again with a plate of fruit assorted cheeses and truffles. All of these surprises made our River Cruise vacation on the Danube even more memorable!
Working with Marie Anne Diamond when planning your special vacation is a real pleasure! From beginning to end, Marie Anne is dedicated to create the most memorable trip possible. She involves you in the process all along the way sharing your interest and excitement. Marie Anne's attention to detail is apparent in her planning air travel, hotel accomodations , tours, and special events .Her knowledge and expertise are invaluable! Also, the personal travel portfolio that Marie Anne presents to you right before you leave is so complete and professionally prepared! Contact Marie Anne to create a wonderful adventure for you!
Newport Beach, CA
Most recent trip Dec 2015
It is always a pleasure to work with Marie Anne Diamond when planning our trips to Europe. She was originally a referral from another travel agent who said if you are planning an extensive trip she is your agent. He could not have been more right. Marie Anne planned our three week trip to Italy that was wonderful. The hotels selected were comfortable, convenient, and well located to all of our venues. Her attention to detail is unsurpassed. This goes to our recent Danube Romantic River Cruise. She went out of her way to get us the airline passages and connections, hotel reservations including the new Aria Hotel in Budapest in which our room was an upgrade at no extra cost. The Viking Cruise was wonderful and so much fun going to the cities of Regensburg, Vienna, and Budapest. She made arrangements for all of our transfers from the cruise to the Aria hotel and then the next day to the airport. Did I mention our cruise cabin had a wonderful welcoming fruit plate as well as the Aria too.
I would not go anywhere outside of the US without first consulting with Marie Anne. She is more than a travel agent. She is your friend and like a companion on the trip.
Newport Beach CA
Most recent trip Dec 2015
Thank you so much Marie Anne for planning such a wonderful trip to Thailand and Cambodia. On my two week trip I stayed in lovely hotels, and had informed guides and drivers. Your knowledge helped me to experience these countries in a fun, fact filled way to make the most of my time from visiting the Angkor Watt temple, to riding elephants and bicycles!
I keep telling everyone who asks that I had a great time on my trip - many, many thanks to you especially since you helped us put trip together.
Regarding Siem Reap, Angkor Wat did not disappoint - it is an amazing place. Our guide, whose Western name was Bob, was very well informed - he helped us get the right pictures - was flexible during our time with him - and helped Molly get and try durian (Molly is very brave). Our experience with Mr. Sau, the
man who was the landmine survivor, as you and Trails of Indonesia described was not a typical tourist experience. We enjoyed meeting the villagers and seeing how they live. While he is a landmine survivor he also shared that he was a child soldier for the Khmer Rouge which was a surprise to us - the experiences he shared were both troubling and heartbreaking. I appreciated this experience because it helped me get a better understanding of Cambodia and some of it's people. I would only recommend this experience to visitors who want to learn first hand how individuals like Mr. Sau survived one of Cambodia's darkest times and how he and other Camobian's continue to survive.
Dear Marie Anne,
I have had a wonderful time on this journey. The guides and drivers have been superb and I have appreciated their expertise and welcoming spirits. Venice was wonderful and Giovanna, my guide, and Enrico, my guardian angel, were terrific. Giovanna is a fount of knowledge and took me some places not exactly on the itinerary because we had time (for example, to Torcello, which I loved). The visit to Nicolao Atelier was a high point of the entire trip so far: it was beyond fascinating and Nicolao was so kind and enthusiastic, partly because he saw that I was so interested in his work. As I was leaving he gave me a classic tri-corner hat with big feather and a mask! I have to find a place in Florence where I can have it boxed and shipped home because I don't want to try to carry it on the planes.
I like the Villa Marsili very much. The staff is great and the views are spectacular. Yesterday I was in Perugia and Assisi and loved both towns. My guide, Maura Badolini, was incredible. I just loved her. We enjoyed our time together and I learned so much. My driver, Giuliano, is fun. His mother is American and he is bilingual. He is studying to be a sommelier so we have been talking about wine and food and the states. He is taking me to Val d'Orcia today. He is from Florence and has been giving me some ideas on things to do there.
I'm sure you can take care of whatever problem arises with the hotel. I'm not concerned. My Italian 'guardian angel,' Paola, phoned from Milan yesterday to check on me. She is such a delight. I have to say that A&K has a very high reputation here and I am treated royally everywhere I go! I'm being chauffeured in an S-Class Mercedes!! I could get accustomed to this luxury -- but I had better not! Ha! Back to reality when I return home.
All the very best,
November 1, 2016
Dear Marie Anne,
I arrived home last Thursday afternoon after an uneventful flight (those are the best kinds!). My time in London was enjoyable with my many friends from recent theatre tours and the plays we saw were full of surprises and thought provoking, as good theatre should be. London was wonderful but the traffic is worse than ever: the city is in perpetual gridlock. Except for the bus trips to and from the theatres, I walked everywhere.
I am writing to given you a boisterous 'thank you' for the Italian portion of my journey. The trip exceeded all my expectations and I could not have asked for more. I am so grateful that our discussions not only produced spot-on tours of interest, but the best possible company for the travel. A&K was worth the price; no quibbles about cost will come from me. (I have to admit that I saw my financial adviser on Friday and told him that it is a good thing I have two arms and two legs because the trip cost me one of each! Ha!) I am happy to have spent the money on a life-affirming trip.
I wrote to Paola in Milano thanking her and the company for their outstanding services. She was so kind and thoughtful, calling me in Venice, Cortona, and Florence to make certain that everything was as planned and that I was having a good time. My time with her in Milano was so much fun. All the drivers and guides were outstanding. I cannot say enough about how they enriched my visit with their knowledge of art and history and food and wine. You were absolutely right that I could never have seen so much in such a brief time without the guides and the drivers. I didn't have to worry about finding my way, parking, getting to the sites of interest, getting tickets, finding tour guides, etc. I saw more than I could ever have hoped to experience on my own.
My three days with Giuliano Nesti, who served as my driver and guide in Umbria and Tuscany, were among the most satisfying and rewarding. He was so thoughtful and interesting and he gave me so much companionship during a difficult time for me. My partner Ron's birthday was November 4th and that was the time I arrived in Florence, a dream destination for both of us. Giuliano shared my experience of seeing Florence for the first time and provided the perfect vantage point for the introduction: Piazzale Michelangelo. I was brought to tears by the sight.
Your expertise and experience in Italy made it all possible and I want to thank you again for you insight and suggestions. One of the highlights of the trip for me was the visit to the Nicolao Atelier in Venice. Nicolao could see my unbridled enthusiasm for his work and he was enthusiastic in return, giving me a classic tricorner Venetian hat and carnival mask as I was leaving. I was stunned by his generosity. Of course the backstage tours of La Scala, La Fenice, La Pergola also were dreams come true. The olive oil tasting was quite an eye-opening experience as well. I loved Carlo and his Mozart vineyard. Giovanna's adding the trip to Torcello was wonderful. I have so many memories to share and recall until I return to Italy. This trip only whetted my appetite!
Thank you again for your invaluable service.
All the very best for a very Happy Thanksgiving.
November 21, 2016
Sorry, I think you were interested in my feedback regarding the hotels and activities. The following paragraphs are from my recent memory. I'm not using any notes or I would be writing for hours!
My day in Milano with Paola was packed and unforgettable. I saw "The Last Supper," of course, but also the Ambrosiana, the monumental cemetery where I visited Toscanini's tomb (Vladimir Horowitz also is buried there and Paola knew I was very interested in these musicians), the Duomo, the La Scala Opera House where I received a backstage, onstage, under-the-stage, royal box tour. I visited the off-site workshops where I saw scenery being constructed, costumes being made, the historical costumes of Maria Callas, Renata Tebaldi, Franco Corelli, Carlo Bergonzi and others. I was awestruck by the sight. Paola was an encyclopedia and she provided me with such insights into the history of Milano and the art and architecture of the city. I could not have asked for more. As my guardian angel for Italy, she telephoned me in Venice, Cortona, and Florence to ensure that my trip was going as planned and that I was comfortable and happy. Who wouldn't be? I was chauffeured around Italy in an S-Class Mercedes!
My hours in Verona and Padova were remarkable because of the guides. I was in the church where Mozart played the organ as a youngster in 1770, in the Arena, walking the ancient streets, visiting the markets, and having Katia describe the history of the city. Padova was an incredible place because of Donatella and the history that she gave me as we walked everywhere. The Scrovegni Chapel was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. The frescoes by Giotto merit UNESCO protection. It was a treat to visit the university where Galileo taught.
The Palazzo Bonvecchiati in Venice was very fine, luxurious in fact. The room was comfortable, large, and quiet. I required nothing that was not provided. I arrived to a warm welcome and found Prosecco on ice in my room. The breakfasts were remarkable: from the usual breakfast fare to glorious tortes and pastries. I only regretted that I had insufficient time to enjoy everything. However, I would never have been able to tour Venice with my outstanding guides if I had been eating all morning.
My guardian angel, Enrico, was great. He took me to the Bacari one evening and let me experience the snacks and spritzers that are traditional in Venice. Giovanna was a wonderful guide, taking me to Murano, Burano, and Torcello as well as numerous churches with glorious paintings and frescoes. The visit to Nicolao Atelier was a highlight for me that I would recommend to any lover of theatre, opera, and film costumes.
My stop in Ravenna was as awe-inspiring as any I have ever experienced. Lucrezia took me to see the mosaics from the 5th and 6th centuries, as well as Dante's tomb and other incredible churches where one stands in awe of paintings by Veronese, Titian, Tintoretto, and others.
Villa Marsili in Cortona was delightful, both in location and in services. Marina, the manager, was charming and her staff was helpful in guiding me to restaurants and making reservations. They were solicitous without being unctuous. A lovely place to stay overlooking the Tuscan hills and vineyards. Breakfasts also were magnificent. My day trips to Perugia, Assisi, Siena, Pienza, and the Val d'Orcia were unforgettable. The visit to Meleto for the olive oil tasting was educational in the best sense and I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the Mozart Vineyard and Ciacci Picolomini d'Aragona winery. Giuliano drove me through Montalcino and we had a wonderful lunch overlooking the Tuscan hills.
The Hotel Santa Maria Novella in Florence was a dream. The assistant manager, Manuela, was so kind and helpful. I found a huge basket of fresh fruit in my room upon arrival. Manuela asked me to join her in the bar on my first night to visit about what I would like to see or do in Florence. She offered many suggestions for musical performances. The staff at the hotel never failed to help me with directions and good advice. My guide in Florence, Daniela, was terrific and showed me so many places that are not in the guidebooks. She knew my interests and gave me so much to think about and to appreciate. We had such a great time together. I will never forget her insights into the art in the Palazzo Vecchio, seeing the Michelangelo paintings, the Botticelli, the Leonardo. We visited Santo Spirito, Trinity Church, and Santa Felicita with the Caponni Chapel. I'll never forget them and Daniela.
I cannot say enough about Abercrombie & Kent's superlative service and personnel. Everything went off like clockwork. I never waited for any driver or guide: they were always on time at the appointed location. The trip was a lifelong dream come true seeing the magnificent art and architecture, hearing the music, and visiting the artisans and winemakers. Marie Anne, you listened during our long conversations and made note of my interests perfectly. Everything that was promised was delivered, and then some. I look forward to more travel using your expertise and care.
All the best,
P.S. Marie Anne, I still don't know why I merited such a major discount! I am grateful, of course, and appreciate your thoughtfulness.
November 21, 2016 at 12:02 PM
Hi Marie Anne,
We said goodbye to Edwin, completed flight check-in and we will soon be home. What a fantastic trip!!
Everything was amazing. Thank you so much for all your hard work in planning this adventure.
Talk to you soon,
Sheldon & Nelda
August 23 – September 23 , 2017
Budapest – Croatia – Greece - Netherlands
Autumn trip to Iceland
Thanks to Marie Anne, she gave us several companies to choose from, that are not the typical big bus tours. I got to see Iceland’s ruggedness.
Without Marie Anne, I would have not have known about this tour company. This trip was an experience of a lifetime. A truly unique experience. Cost was reasonable and was totally worth it.
Marie Anne's services exceeded expectations.
Woodland Hills, CA October 2017
Our first experiance with Marie Anne was our trip to Italy in September of 2011. Marie Anne was recommended by another travel agent who had helped him with clients who needed a different kind of trip overseas.
Let me say, our trip was one of a lifetime. My wife and I married in Germany 44 years ago and had our honeymoon in Florence and Venice. We had not returned there since. Marie Anne master planned our trip to perfection. We were given all of her expertise in flight, hotels, car, and tours. She even arranged for our personal tour of Rome with a private guide whom she personally knows and trusts and frequently uses for all her clients. We gave her a budget and she worked within that budget. The hotels she offered were all 4 stars or better with the most convenient locations to get around to all of the sites. She surprised us with a special gift at each city and hotel we stayed and that was a delight.
We traveled three weeks from Rome, Tuscany, Florence, Pisa, Cinque Terra, Lake Como, and ended in Paris.We drove most of the way in Italy and flew from Milan to Paris. There she arranged for a land tour of Normandy which was a highlight of our trip. The guide was amazing. Marrie Anne attended to our every need and detailed every stop with a booklet of sites and driving tips. She was always available in case we ran into trouble which we did not because of her organization and planning. We could not have had such a wonderful trip without her.
She has since planned our trip to Germany and Prague
Newport Beach, CA
Marie Anne has been a delight to work with. We’ve taken several trips with her and been just delighted. Marie Anne is very patient with us, has lots of really great suggestions for each destination and puts together really unique trips. It helps a lot that she has actually been to most of the places that we want to go, so she speaks from personal experience. She always has great advice, knows hidden “gems” and helps us preorder as much as possible so that we can get to a city and relax – everything being taken care of in advance. If there is a change of plans, she is always available via email or phone, taking care of things from her end so we don’t have to!
I’ve recommended Marie Anne to several friends and will continue to do so!
Recent travels: Washington DC (group planning, Oct 2012) and Spain & France (2013)
Sherman Oaks, CA
Marie Anne has helped us put together several trips. I really like working with her because she takes an extraordinary amount of time to figure out what it really is that you are looking for in a trip experience and then she tailors your trip, rather than just putting together a stock trip that everyone is taking.
Marie Anne is also very conscious of budgets and asks right up front how much you can spend so that she doesn’t come up with the wrong trip. She has such great contacts, though, that every trip has a few extra bonuses that she finds. And, she will let you know, since she knows the cities well, where you can cut corners and where you can’t.
We’ve been very pleased with Marie Anne and hope to use her for our next trip!
Sherman Oaks, CA
We attended Marie Anne’s 1st Valley Travel show at Porter Valley Country Club 3 years ago. We are extremely happy we found Marie Anne. We continue to work with her for the many trips we plan each year. HAVING MARIE ANNE AS OUR TRAVEL AGENT IS LIKE HAVING A GOOD DOCTOR. CALLS ARE RETURNED,PROBLEMS SOLVED, SOLUTIONS FOUND. THE RESULTS ARE ALWAYS A WORRY FREE VACATION.
Traveled 4 times to Club Med resorts, 14-day Hawaii cruise, Alaska cruise, Mexico,
JUDITH & BORIS
MARYANN IS AN INCREDIBLE TRAVEL AGENT. I AM ONLY 13 AND I HAVE BEEN ALL OVER. BECAUSE OF MARIE ANNE AND MY GRANDMA. MARIE ANNE IS A VERY SWEET, INTELIGENT WOMAN. SHE HAS MADE EVERY EXPERIENCE A BLAST. I COULD NOT WISH FOR A BETTER TRAVEL AGENT SHE IS THE BEST. I CAN'T WAIT FOR MY NEXT TRIP. LOVE YOU MARYANN AND THANK YOUFOR EVERYTHING.
Marie Anne Diamond has helped us with two of our cruises and a Hawaiian vacation. She went the "extra mile" for my wife and me in dealing with the all the tour companies, hotels, and cruise lines involved, making sure we had the best services and accommodations. Marie Anne is very knowledgeable about a wide variety of vacation options and I can enthusiastically recommend her for all your travel arrangements.
Our family is a firm believer in the saying "you get what you pay for" .....
With two sons going off to college, we thought this was the perfect time to take a trip to Europe. As tennis players, we had to include Wimbledon as a MUST. I tried tried tried to plan this trip for my family by myself and spent countless hours calling the Auto Club, American Express, Costco and the various online sites. NEVER AGAIN WILL I EVEN ATTEMPT TO DO THAT ….
On Friday, May 31, I attended a party and ran into Marie Anne. We chatted and I mentioned that we wanted to take a European Vacation. WOW …. In a day and a half, Marie Anne secured all our flights for my family of five. The following days, she composed the most perfect vacation for us and on June 30, we flew to LONDON and then PARIS for a two week grand European vacation. I must say, ALL THE T’s were crossed and all the I’s were dotted …..All details were specified …. SOOOOOOO IMPRESSIVE, SOOOOOOO ACCURATELY PLANNED, SOOOOOOO WELL-TAILORED TO OUR NEEDS, SOOOOOOO COMPLETE ……. As the BRITS would say …. “absolutely BRILLIANT” !
Marie Anne is a “NORDSTOM”-grade travel planner/designer. She goes way above and way beyond the norm….
Mardie & Bernie