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ITALY - Art Immersion Italian Lakes Area 
An Independent Artist* Retreat

Dates: September 17 - 23, 2023

Medium: Acrylics, pastel, sketching, watercolor, photography 

Price: $ 3,340 after Early Bird Discount



Bring your art supplies, travel sketchbook, your pens, pencils, paints, and/or camera for this week of creativity in the beautiful Italian Lakes area. The region will provide a colorful palette, inspiring you to create in the moment.

Our INDEPENDENT ARTIST retreats are geared towards the intermediate and advanced artist who likes to work independently, but who wants to benefit from the structure  and organization of a group trip. 

No art instruction is given on this tour, but experienced art teacher, Sarah Bracco, will join us during the retreat, please read more below.


SARAH BRACCO will be facilitating our afternoon get togethers, when we gather to share our work of the day. Sarah has been an art teacher for more than 30 years, teaching in public schools (nominated twice for Teacher of the Year) and teaching art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, MO.  


Along with teaching a variety of workshops, this will be her 3rd trip with Alpine Creative Tours.  


As a watercolor artist and Urban Sketcher, Sarah is passionate about art and is always ready for new art adventures. She carries her sketchbook at all times, capturing “visual memories”. She is excited to be spending a week with other artists, drawing and painting on location each day, and to be leading the daily discussions during this creative retreat in the Italian Lakes area!


During the week, the tour is designed to guide you to the finest spots along the shores of the picturesque Lake Como with its charming lakeside towns, its Renaissance architecture, Italian villas and terraced gardens. Daily, you will be working independently on your own art; to draw, sketch, paint, and/or photograph.


In the afternoons, for those who so want,  we will gather to share, show and discuss the work that has been done during the day.

The region is considered one of the most beautiful areas in Europe and is a haven for artists of all kinds. This retreat is a wonderful opportunity to rejuvenate and explore / escape for a week, grow as an artist and share experiences with other artists.  



Tour: Art Immersion Retreat, Bellagio, Lake Como, Italy 

Dates: September 17-23, 2023

Lodging: Hotel Bellagio, Bellagio 

Closest airport: Milan

Meeting Point: Como train station in the town of Como 

Price: $ 3,340 after Early Bird Discount

Price includes:

6 night lodging in shared double room

6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners

5 days of excursions to various parts of the region

All excursions, museum entrances and other programs during the week.

All local transportation including pick up at the train station in Como.

Single supplement: $ 545

Not included:

Airline tickets

Transportation to and from your departure airport

Any pre-tour hotel costs

Travel insurance

Meals not listed above

Early Bird Discount $200 when booking by 1/31/2023.


Widely considered one of the prettiest areas of Europe, the Italian Lakes area was once a playground for nobility and royals, visible in the many palaces and castles dotting the lake shores. There are five major lakes in the Italian Lakes district: Lake Maggiore, Lake Lugano, Lake Como, Lake Iseo and Lake Garda – and each has its own particular character.

Our retreat will be placed in Lake Como, an upscale resort area with many lakeside historic towns, and with a scenic setting by the foothills of the Swiss and Italian Alps. We will be staying in the beautiful town of Bellagio, one of the most famous villages in the area, often called "the Pearl of Lake Como". Bellagio is known for its Italian villas, terraced gardens and cobblestone streets, and is an ideal setting for exploring the many towns, villas, and gardens in the area.

The Italian Lakes region has a mesmerizing, timeless beauty where we will find endless inspiration to design, generate and create art. 

Itinerary for our week in Bellagio, Lake Como 


Arrival Day 

  • ·       We will meet you at the train station in Como Town to travel to our hotel in Bellagio

  • ·       Welcome dinner

  • ·       Meet fellow students and staff

  • ·       Presentation of the week


Painting Days

  • ·       Breakfast

  • ·       Excursions by boat or bus to our paint out locations, among them:

·                   Bellagio, our home for the week, named the most beautiful town in north Italy

·                   Varenna, where we will sketch/paint/photograph the small village

                    Villa Carlotta, with its beautiful gardens including the citrus tunnel, the rose garden, the                        monumental trees, and the ferns garden

                    Menaggio, with its pretty lakeside promenade

                    Villa Monastero, with its terraced botanical garden 

                    Lenno, where we will sketch/paint/photograph the charming, small port area

  • ·       In the afternoons, we will gather to share our work of the day. 

  • ·       Three dinners are included. (And three lunches are included as well)


Departure day 

  • ·       After breakfast we will say our farewells and coordinate transfers to the Como train station 


                                                      We reserve the right to change the itinerary if needed.

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