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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2811722 02/07/19 01:52 AM
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Replying to British Jim’s request to update interest.
2020 feels a long ways away but I/we are still interested to join in.
St Goar was wonderful and even more so the following week exploring Vienna. I don’t need much excuse back! Please Keep me informed of plans.


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2811763 02/07/19 06:20 AM
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Replying to Jim’s request to confirm interest.
Definitely would not do the whole tour.
Possibly might hook up for a weekend but we really can’t be sure at this point so best not to count us in.


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2811769 02/07/19 06:47 AM
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My feedback is that nearly $400/day for hotel, breakfast, bus and tours seems steep. Is this a five star type trip?

Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2811876 02/07/19 11:55 AM
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I remain interested. Keep me posted.


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2811891 02/07/19 12:23 PM
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I remain interested as well. Please keep me in the loop


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2812425 02/08/19 04:21 PM
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Unfortunately, I really can’t commit to join my PianoWold friends on the European Tour in 2020.
j&j


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
oldMH #2812817 02/09/19 06:52 PM
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Originally Posted by oldMH
My feedback is that nearly $400/day for hotel, breakfast, bus and tours seems steep. Is this a five star type trip?


The whole tour proposal seems really odd in some regards.

It's supposed to be a piano focused tour for enthusiasts and yet all there is in terms of piano are two factory tours, one of which has already been done on the previous tour. Shouldn't it be the other way round and plan around piano events and activities? What will you be doing in Vienna or in Prague? Without an attractive itinerary it sounds a lot more like sightseeing in a very general sense.

I agree that 400 USD for travel and accommodation is rather steep. This has obviously not been planned with a professional travel agency or at least with a local who knows his way around. For the hotels it's easy to arrange for a group discount, especially at an early planning stage. For around 100 USD you'll get really luxurious hotels including a huge breakfast buffet.

The travel arrangements to get from place to place also do not make sense. By the time you have reached a reasonable airport from Sacile that has flights to Vienna, you can have a convenient train ride to Villach in Austria and change to the luxurious Railjet line of the Austrian Railway for a train that brings you to Vienna in a little over 4 hours. There are freshly prepared meals on board, drinks, comfortable seats and it's really quiet. Discounted tickets are no more than 60-70 USD for a First Class seat, probably less with a group and booking in advance.

Same with the trip to Prague: Instead of a rumbling, noisy and unsociable bus you can take a direct Railjet connection from Vienna to Prague and it's a lot faster than by bus. But what do you do in Prague anyway? There is no piano manufacturer there or anything else that would sound attractive to a pianophile. Also, as a hub to Bayreuth it's geographically just wrong.

I believe it would make sense to hear from potential participants about their expectations and plan around that and leave travel details to a professional travel agency.

Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
OE1FEU #2816797 02/18/19 01:40 AM
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Originally Posted by OE1FEU
Originally Posted by oldMH
My feedback is that nearly $400/day for hotel, breakfast, bus and tours seems steep. Is this a five star type trip?


The whole tour proposal seems really odd in some regards.

It's supposed to be a piano focused tour for enthusiasts and yet all there is in terms of piano are two factory tours, one of which has already been done on the previous tour. Shouldn't it be the other way round and plan around piano events and activities? What will you be doing in Vienna or in Prague? Without an attractive itinerary it sounds a lot more like sightseeing in a very general sense.

I agree that 400 USD for travel and accommodation is rather steep. This has obviously not been planned with a professional travel agency or at least with a local who knows his way around. For the hotels it's easy to arrange for a group discount, especially at an early planning stage. For around 100 USD you'll get really luxurious hotels including a huge breakfast buffet.

The travel arrangements to get from place to place also do not make sense. By the time you have reached a reasonable airport from Sacile that has flights to Vienna, you can have a convenient train ride to Villach in Austria and change to the luxurious Railjet line of the Austrian Railway for a train that brings you to Vienna in a little over 4 hours. There are freshly prepared meals on board, drinks, comfortable seats and it's really quiet. Discounted tickets are no more than 60-70 USD for a First Class seat, probably less with a group and booking in advance.

Same with the trip to Prague: Instead of a rumbling, noisy and unsociable bus you can take a direct Railjet connection from Vienna to Prague and it's a lot faster than by bus. But what do you do in Prague anyway? There is no piano manufacturer there or anything else that would sound attractive to a pianophile. Also, as a hub to Bayreuth it's geographically just wrong.

I believe it would make sense to hear from potential participants about their expectations and plan around that and leave travel details to a professional travel agency.



I'm from the US, but I would agree. I was just over in Europe this past October and we didn't spend nearly that much on accommodations. 100 meters from Notre Dame for about $120 for 2. Yes, it was Airbnb, but that illustrates the opposite end of the price range. We also got excellent food from the many restaurants and boulangerie/patisserie for reasonable prices. Again, we're more interested in the experience than the accommodations and maybe our approach would be more adventurous than some would want, but again, the point of that kind of travel for us is the quality of the experience -- not the price of the accommodations.

We were based near The Hague and we found our trip on high-speed train to Paris and return to be quite satisfactory and less hassle than chasing to the airport.

So, for us, the nature of the trip is the most significant aspect with a focus on pianos in particular and music in general and less of an emphasis on premium accommodation.


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2817162 02/19/19 01:23 AM
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Thank you oldMH & Keith Akins for your query about the cost. We learned a lot about travel, accommodations and what those who were part of the 2011 tour wanted.

Two of the top issues were lack of air-conditioning and the less than desirable location of some of the hotels we stayed at.

Continuing on, most of the group having seen a piano factory, which was Steinway in Hamburg, commented the next 3 factories were 3 too many. The majority of the group enjoyed visiting locations of composers, famous locations of musical events and simply attending an evening musical performance, not necessarily purely piano.

Another was the time spent on a bus in the 2011 tour.

To address those issues, we will be limiting the total number of participants of the 2020 tour to 18. This allows us to be much more flexible, nimble and accommodating to changes.

Next, we will be staying at quality hotels (with air-conditioning) in desirable locations. We are working on securing a piano at each of these hotels for the evening piano party!

Finally, we are intermixing tourist locations with our music/piano tour.

Keith, your point is well taken about being adventurous and remain totally piano focused. We put together this tour based on the feedback from the 2011 tour which will differ from what you might desire in a group tour. Then again, if we made this 100% piano focused, others would not be interested.

This is not the budget piano tour of Europe but then again it is not the Abercrombie & Kent price either. We are putting together a fun romp through parts of Europe for 18 music loving piano people who would like to see some of the sights of Europe as well.

We have engaged a professional agency to organize this, please take the opportunity to view their website, Euro Focus

We are close to getting our first update on the itinerary posted which will have a lot more detail. It will not be final as we continue to evolve based on input we’re receiving. To date, we have 15 people that have expressed interest in joining the tour.

Jim Fariss, RPT
Black Forest, Colorado


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2817348 02/19/19 12:22 PM
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I am interested. I haven't been to Vienna since the mid-80s, when I was 15, so that would definitely be a highlight.

Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
casinitaly #2833321 03/31/19 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by casinitaly
Replying to Jim’s request to confirm interest.
Definitely would not do the whole tour.
Possibly might hook up for a weekend but we really can’t be sure at this point so best not to count us in.
Seconded.
I also might not want to do the whole tour, due to lack of time or money.
But meeting for a weekend, especially if I can meet some people from past European Piano Parties, is something I might want to do.


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2854172 05/31/19 10:12 AM
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Any further updates on this tour? Is it still being planned?

Rich


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Re: Piano & Music Lovers European Tour - Join Us?
Piano World #2916540 11/26/19 09:57 AM
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I'm also wondering if there are any further updates on the 2020 tour?


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