Europe & Britain | Inspiration

Be My Guest host Giada, on welcoming back our Trafalgar guests in 2022

While we’ve been dreaming of exploring the world, our Be My Guest hosts have been itching to welcome Trafalgar guests into their homes again.

In 2022, we’re just now getting back on the road… And that means we’re also getting back into the homes of our wonderful Be My Guest hosts. For many hosts, the last two years have been an incredibly difficult time – and they’re so excited to be meeting guests again. We talked to Giada Landi, the host of one of our most popular Be My Guest experiences in Italy, about what it means to be welcoming Trafalgar guests again in 2022. 

WATCH: The best Tuscan family recipes, from Tuscan chicken to Chianti wine: Trafalgar Be My Guest host, Giada Landi, unlocks her Tuscan home to show you how to cook her favourite family recipes, including Tuscan chicken in Chianti wine.

When was your last Be My Guest hosting experience pre-Covid?

Our last experience pre-Covid was on New Year’s Eve, on 31 December 2019.

GET INSPIRED BY: Great Italian Cities

When did you start welcoming back Trafalgar guests after Covid?

Our first group was on 10 August 2021. I can’t forget this date, it was like coming back to life. I still remember the telephone call from the Travel Director, Giuseppe Cillepi, and we both were almost crying, we were so happy to restart.  When the groups came I was so happy to see them again in my Villa… Seriously, it was a big emotion. 

RELATED CONTENT: Make it at home – Be My Guest host Giada’s Pollo al Chianti

What have you missed the most about not being able to host Trafalgar guests?

I realised how much I love my job during the tough Covid times. I’ve missed everything about them… Their curiosity, the wonder in their eyes when they hear the story of my tradition, their joyful confusion at the table, and their gratitude when I greet them. After one and a half years with no business and no guests, we were about to put our house up for sale. I always explain to the Trafalgar guests that we cannot keep this house simply for us, as maintaining such an old and big building is very hard and expensive.

GET INSPIRED BY: Italian Holiday

What are you most looking forward to about welcoming back Trafalgar guests in 2022?

As it happened for the few groups of last season, I awaited the new Trafalgar guests with a lot of hope, but above all with a great fear that everything could be cancelled in a moment. I am very happy and grateful to have them every time.

RELATED CONTENT: La Dolce Vita in the Tuscan Countryside

Has anything changed about your Be My Guest experience?

Just that the passion and awareness of how important they are for me and for my family has only grown. We put even more love into it. And as I always say to them: You can’t imagine how happy I am to spend long hours cooking … I will never complain about being tired again. Never again!

GET INSPIRED BY: European Whirl

Giada Landi and her mother cooking in the kitchen

Meet Giada Landi at her Tuscan villa

For nine generations, since the 18th century, the Landi family has lived at Villa Il Leccio, a stunning wine and olive oil estate in Tuscany. Giada Landi and her family now run the villa and they’re keeping ancient traditions alive while running a successful agriturismo business. The family farms almost 90 acres of beautiful Tuscan countryside, handpicking olives for their olive oil, harvesting the grapes used in their divine Chianti wine, and growing fruit and vegetables.

It’s a real family affair, with Giada’s brother running the vineyards, her cousin working as a waiter, and her mother’s cousin producing the wine on the next hill over. Meanwhile, Giada is the head of the household and a talented chef, hosting guests and preparing delicious Tuscan meals with fresh ingredients from their garden. 

RELATED CONTENT: 9 lives you change by travelling with Trafalgar

Giada Landi at her Tuscan villa

Giada’s Be My Guest experience

Every guest that enters Giada’s home is made to feel like family and you’ll sit down to a four-course feast, the traditional Italian way. Tuck into handmade pasta, mouthwatering chicken, bubbling sauces, and fresh herbs grown just outside, and wash it all down with a glass of Chianti. You’ll also get to explore the spectacular estate and medieval buildings like the Old Tower dating back to 1200. Every room has a story and Giada loves to share the history and traditions of her beautiful home.

Your Be My Guest experience not only helps to preserve the heritage of local wine and olive oil production, but also helps Giada and her family preserve this historic villa and continue welcoming guests for years to come. 

Giada loves to share her passion for her country, family, and food with all those who visit, and it’s only going to be even more special in 2022. 

RELATED CONTENT: 8 locals you’ll connect with when you travel to Europe with Trafalgar

What is your favourite Be My Guest experience? Let us know in the comments below!

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