ANDREA DEGASPERI - DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Hotel expert. With a meticulous attention to logistics and details, Andrea has an eye for matching each traveler’s personality with the perfect “sense of place.” After quitting a stable office job for a travel gap year, he never looked back. While not hunting for another “wow” restaurant or villa in Italy, he likes to read and go for a run (he has been gaining weight after knowing Paul!).
Expertise: hotel, arts and culture, lakes, northern and central Italy
PAUL LEWIS - MANAGING DIRECTOR
Restaurant expert. Wine connoisseur. Known for his honesty and ruthless standard.
Born to an Italian mother and an English father, Paul grew his passion for travel from his own multicultural household. At the age of 8, he officially caught the “travel bug” on a road trip to the USA. Since then, he “flies more than he walks”, as his grandma commented. Having grown up along the coast of Genoa, Paul particularly loves the sea and everything around it. While not planning the next delicious adventure for travelers, he enjoys cooking and sharpening his skill as a sommelier.
Expertise: gastronomy, wine, spa, beach, quality shopping, southern Italy
JIAQI LUO – DIRECTOR OF MARKETING & SALES
Travel writer. Historian of Italian art. As a blogger, she is passionate about writing and sharing trips that have touched her heart. During an exchange semester in Milan, she immediately knew that she belonged. Before Italy, she has lived in China, United States, and Chile. She is fluent in Chinese, English, Italian, Spanish and now perfecting Portuguese.
Expertise: Arts and Culture, hidden gems, authentic dining, Milan, islands in Italy
Paul and Andrea were your typical food-savvy, quality-obsessed Italian guys who simply loved eating and living well. Back then, they started a blog about fine dining around the world ( www.thefinedining.net ), inspiring others to discover the world through flavors and smells. From sampling Michelin-level molecular cuisine in New York to devouring a noodle bowl on the street of Vietnam, they developed the ultra-sensitive palate and the worldly knowledge that qualified them as real connoisseurs. Yet the further they went on exploring, the more they realized the uniqueness of their own Italian cuisine and the territory inseparable to the deliciousness.
“Fresh ingredients and the genuine passion for food are the two things that make Italian cuisine stand out,” said the connoisseur duo. Behind every heavenly plate of pasta and pizza, there are the Mediterranean sun, the breathtaking landscapes, and the people honoring culinary traditions that nurture the flavors. Even though they have eaten their way around the world, they are always impressed by the consistently superb food quality everywhere in Italy, and how people take living well seriously. Here in Italy, eating well goes hand in hand with the Italian way of living, the way of treating everyday life as art. It is this endless appetite for life that makes Italy itself a fascination.
“Often times, foreigners only see the obvious cultural labels and ignore the many other treasures Italy has to offer,” said Paul, who is half-British. Just as Italian cuisine has so much diversity, each region in Italy has its own charm. Apart from designing private tours to experience Rome’s cultural grandeur and Florence’s artistic heritage, they have been encouraged travelers to go beyond the Italian classics. From skiing among the virtually untouched snow mountains of Dolomite, foraging truffles with a local chef in the countryside of Piedmont, to having a candlelit dinner inside a medieval castle in Tuscany, travelers are invited to explore Italy’s secret pleasures only known to the insiders.
Travel in Italy with Luxo Italia means you are traveling with discerning locals that live in this country and love it. We are travelers in Italy ourselves, and we are constantly scouting new places to update our destination knowledge and surprise travelers. Whether you are clear of what you want or simply in need of ideas, Luxo Italia is here to help you create a well-rounded trip that truly captures the essence of Italy.