Dreaming in the Tuscan Countryside: Living an Experience in the Vineyards with doitwell

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In the world’s imagination, Italy is the perfect destination. Whenever Italy is mentioned over dinner conversations, it’s often followed with a collective, dreamy sigh about “next year’s vacation.” Some talk about Italy’s breathtaking art or their intricate architecture, whereas others discuss Italy’s trending fashion and savory meals with local ingredients. However, what always seems to come to mind when talking about Italy the most its wine

For those who travel to Italy – Venice, Florence and Rome are always the three most popular cities to visit. When it comes to the wine, a trip to Tuscany is at the heart of it all. It is here that the “made in Italy” reputation comes alive. 

In recent years, Tuscany has been an essential holiday destination for visitors from all around the globe. Known as the best region for wine production, Tuscany is one place where ordering a glass of wine alongside your plate of antipasto seems less like an option and more like a requirement.

The Tuscan countryside developed its reputation over time, but the universally recognized “made in Italy” distinction is one that we, at doitwell, find captivating.

In today’s society, consumers learn more about a company online than in-person. Most companies nowadays wear their hearts’ on their sleeves when it comes to the web. Whether on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or more, today’s companies put themselves out there more than ever to connect, engage, and foster new relationships with their customers. Here at doitwell, we’re taking note of this business-to-customer change and putting ourselves at the front of its innovation when it comes to working with other businesses.

For us, our work is personal. We look towards the best to find inspiration on the how, why, and what behind building great reputations. 

As J.W. Goethe says, “life is too short to drink bad wine,” and we couldn’t agree more. 

We at doitwell, decided to head to the source of the “made in Italy” phrase to learn more about how these kinds of reputations are built.  If we think of the whole process of creating a bottle of wine, we realize that is a very delicate way. It takes a long time to grow and care for a vineyard. We must hope for a perfect weather season to have the best vintage and selection. How many times a sudden change of weather and heavy rain can damage the whole job and the reputation of a good wine?

As a company doitwell works hard on supporting tourist operators in enhancing their guest experience – one of the most overlooked facets of the experience is “reputation.”

However, this journey, to the Italian countryside is a special one. Instead of having our doitwell consultants travel abroad, we had our CEO and Founder, Nicole Cutrufo, experience this trip.

Upon her return, I had the pleasure to learn about her “Italian countryside” experience, firsthand – food, wine, and all. Since I met her years ago, it was an easy and exciting conversation.

Selenia: How was Montalcino? Tell me more about your overall experience. 

Nicole: 

“ I traveled with my husband, our toddler, and a couple of friends from Chicago. We decided to start in Rome, where I live, and drive to Montalcino to immerse ourselves in full experience Italy has to offer over the course of a weekend. We wanted to experience the food tours, wines, and overall knowledge of the region.

The trip had its ups and downs. From the beginning, we had difficulty getting accurate tourist information — individually which attractions we should visit, how to reach different famous destinations, and so forth. We were always thinking about our friends and how we wanted to make this experience memorable for them as well. 

We tried discussing this with the Concierge of our hotel, but he didn’t have much information. He did inform us about the locations of several different wine cellars despite being skeptical about their availability during the weekend. 

Since I couldn’t book anything online, we decided to drive around and immerse ourselves in the surrounding area. We spent most of our time talking to local people and looking through Google for things to do. Eventually, we started asking ourselves, how can we best experience Tuscany? Which food tours and wines did we most want to discover?

We soon came across a place called Castiglione del Bosco. Immediately after hearing about its “Tasting Experience,” we called to book a reservation for lunch. 

The lunch was amazing. It was a sensory, culinary experience that was incredible from beginning to end. We found it fascinating to watch the entire culinary  production in front of us while learning about how wine complements and accents different dishes. It went far beyond our expectations. ”

Selenia: What is like to visit attractions for you? Do you take inspiration for the work you are doing with Team at doitwell?

Nicole:

“ As the founder of doitwell, I’m always looking for ways to simplify the visit for Guests. I’m very passionate about making memorable Guest experiences that are intuitive, exciting, and unforgettable.

I always travel intending to look for those kinds of experiences — especially the ones where your emotions and your presence remain etched forever. When I enter an attraction I like wearing Guest’s shoes at all times and talking with the frontline. One thing I notice whenever I travel is the difficulty in finding information that’s relatable and accessible. I always try to understand what’s around me. It doesn’t matter if I’m at the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, or even my office in Orlando. I have a mission, to help the client at all steps of the journey. I would like to give them one tool that allows them to experience an unforgettable vacation.

Selenia: What part of Montalcino experience did you particularly like, and what do you think could’ve been enhanced? 

Nicole:“One of the things I loved was the Brunello Montalcino. When you’re backstage, viewing the production of one of the most famous, international wines, it’s quite breathtaking. The only possible comment I have to say about that is “Wow.” It was amazing to see the gorgeous vineyards and get close and personal with the steps it takes to create a perfect bottle of wine.

When it comes to what could’ve been enhanced, I like to think of it as “using a magic wand.” If I could, I would use that wand to allow all attractions to be found and experienced firsthand by customers in a simplified, yet informed manner.  I would try to explain to them the full experience at the beginning of their journey so they’d be informed of exactly where to go, how to get there, and so forth. 

Most importantly, I’d also stress that traveling isn’t a sprint; it’s a marathon. Taking pauses and moments to reflect on where you’ve visited is essential. Looking at your travels as places you’ve explored, rather than places you’ve merely “passed through” is something I’d also want to stress.

When I think of it, it would be amazing to simplify different stages of the journey with a tool that explains the essence of each attraction a visitor plans to explore. Such a device would contain clearly expressed filters that are suited to their needs (like price, timing, accessibility, and the purpose of the trip.). 

I’m often reminded of how organized Napa Valley is in comparison to Italy. So much is offered in California, with its incredible diversity in tours and attractions. It would be enough to simply take inspiration, starting for something existing and obviously try to modify by the way according to our needs.

Selenia: Can you tell us more about your role as the founder of doitwell? What’s it like to collaborate with others on the team?

Nicole: 

“ As the founder of doitwell, my role centers on creating and bringing together a team of professionals passionate about the 360-degree experience. They’re mainly digital professionals who try to help our customers: museums, and tour operators around the world. Our digital professionals manage their relationships with their clients well and are always looking for ways to improve their experiences and engagement with their Guest.

I like to think of it as a journey as one that consists of an initial phase (pre-contact), the journey itself, and then back home to baseline. Everything in that journey should always be an unforgettable, dream experience. Doitwell comes into play for the brand’s reputation. We focus primarily on boosting that standing and growing better opportunities for customers to leave highly recommended reviews. ”

Selenia:

What would you recommend to a tourist business owner when visiting an attraction, museum, or other landmarks?

Nicole:

“ First and foremost, I’d recommend that they go into this with the customer’s point of view. Wear the customer’s shoes, travel, and know different parts of the world through the customer’s eyes. A journey is always an act of growth and learning, but that’s only possible if we put ourselves in the role of our customer’s. It’s there that we learn about our client’s customs, habits, and goals and better understand what their goals are.

At doitwell, our mission is to create a digital sensory experience for everyone involved. Observing guests, while also being a guest, remains a top priority for us. 

My biggest wish for anyone owning a tourist business is to lose yourself in the journey. Lose yourself in the escape, in the travel at least once in the guise of a foreigner. You learn so much about the business that way. ”

Selenia: What do you like most about being a part of the international team at doitwell?

Nicole:

“Being a part of an international team is very important and central to what we do. At doitwell, we’re always in touch with different cultures, different ways of life, and different experiences. 

Different lives always inspire me, and I try to improve on that day by day. 

For this reason, we are all over the world. Our consultants are located on different continents, and we collaborate diligently by keeping the time zone under control. ”

All in all, Nicole’s experience and words revolve around one central concept: globality! 

That’s the keyword! Globality

We at doitwell work with “globality” to our advantage. We work on being humble while traveling to different wonders of the world. It’s by visiting places through the eyes of a local that the guest experience becomes central to what we do. We work from the ground up. We travel with the intention of a local/neophyte who wouldn’t be able to recognize the difference between the Sistine Chapel and a Chapel designed by Giotto (for example, in Padua the Scrovegni Chapel).

It’s necessary to take the client’s experience, and emotions to heart to succeed in the hospitality sector, and Nicole did just that. 

Nicole looked at everything in Italy with watchful, attentive eyes. As Mimmo Jodice says, “you have to lose yourself [while] watching.” As Nicole and her husband drove down the Tuscan countryside in a  Fiat 500 living the Italian dream, it’s easy to see that they did just that. They lost themselves in the grandeur of everything Italy had to offer. They had a memorable experience they can live through again and again. Even while leafing through their smartphones like a book, looking upon all of their memories crystalized on the screen.

Selenia Morgillo

Selenia Morgillo

Selenia Morgillo is an Attractions Expert at doitwell. Her specialty centers around providing doitwell’s Clients with the best experience. She focuses on understanding Attractions and how guests interact with them. Selenia is also an Art Historian, Tour Director, and Tour Guide in Europe. With her extensive studies in both the Arts and Tourism Management, Selenia’s unique background (especially behind the camera ) is what gives her such a curious eye for essential details and a passionate and soulful edge. On top of the formal arts, she has a passion for archeology, architecture, traveling, food, and photography. Born in a small town near Naples, Selenia currently lives and works in the “Eternal City” of Rome.

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