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Discovering Spain September 5 - September 15, 2012

San Sebastian, La Rioja Wine Region, Ribero Del Duero, Madrid
A 10-Night/11-Day Cultural Wine Tour


Explore Spain’s rich culinary and cultural history as you taste some of the world’s most extraordinary wines. Our journey takes us to the vineyards of La Rioja and Ribera del Duero, where we will interact with world-renowned chefs and winemakers.

We will visit the famous Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, experience the magical city of Madrid and indulge in the coastal beauty of San Sebastian.

Renowned wine expert and Florida-based restaurateur Michael Klauber escorts this exclusive Connoisseur Club tour with VIP access to experience Spain's most amazing wines.
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New Zealand and Australia January 5 - January 20, 2012

A Food and Wine Experience in New Zealand and Australia
15 Night Cruise Aboard The Silver Shadow


Wander from wonder to wonder, while cruising around New Zealand and Australia with the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club. Discover the amazing geysers and glaciers, a sub-tropical rain forest, spectacular “Lord of the Rings” landscapes, Sydney’s stunning harbor, and much more!

Along the way you’ll experience the best food and wine, as we tap a wealth of wine and food connections through Michael’s on East co-proprietor and wine expert Michael Klauber.

“I can’t tell you how many requests I’ve received from world-class vintners in Australia and New Zealand over the years. I expect narrowing down our winemaker experiences to just the top producers will be a challenge!”

Travelers will have the opportunity to explore local markets and experience fabulous on-shore dining excursions in addition to exclusive onboard events.

Pre-trip options will be offered in Auckland as well as Post-trip options that will include Sydney and the Great Barrier Reef.
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France's Famous Wine Regions and Northern Spain September 5 - September

“Basque” in the Glow of a Wine & Food Lover’s Dream

Join Restaurateur and Wine Expert Michael Klauber for an odyssey into the delicious! Three different segments of our journey make it easy to join us at different destinations…but, why choose? Enjoy the entire exploration of the main wine-growing regions of France– Champagne, the Loire Valley and Bordeaux. Experience France’s most famous winemakers, as well as France’s most beautiful hotels and restaurants. Top chefs will meet us along the way to share their culinary expertise, and we will visit top-shelf wineries, attend amazing winemaker dinners and chef-driven luncheons.

As a fabulous post-trip option, we will discover Northern Spain with a special culinary trip to the heart of the Basque region - San Sebastian. We will also visit the most famous winegrowing regions of Spain –the Rioja and Ribera del Duero. Our finale will take us to the stunning city of Madrid!

Our odyssey begins September 2nd, 2010, with options and destinations taking us through September 23, 2010.

This fun, balanced itinerary lends an extraordinary opportunity to experience some of France’s most beautiful hotels and restaurants. Top chefs will meet us along the way to share their knowledge.

There will be ample time to relax and enjoy the beautiful sights and pleasures of the extraordinary properties balanced with top-shelf winery visits as well as winemaker dinners and chef-driven luncheons.

Space is limited to 15 couples, who will be accompanied by host Michael Klauber.

Begin in the Chateau country of the Loire Valley to visit legendary chateaux such as Chateau Chambord and Chenonceaux as well as prestigious boutique wine producers.

Dine in fabulous chateaux of the Loire Valley, hosted by world-famous winemakers, and enjoy time at leisure to plan your own activities: biking, hot air balloon rides, and more.

Travel by train to explore the most famous wine-growing region in the world, Bordeaux. Shop, bike, see the sights and soak up the atmosphere while you experience the exquisite wines.

Specific areas we visit will include the Medoc (left bank), Graves/Pessac-Leognan, Sauternes, and St. Emilion and its surrounding satellite regions.

Wine expert Bill Blatch, one of the most famous and respected Bordeaux experts in the world, will accompany us for special chateau visits to taste wines you have only dreamed about.
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A Taste of South Africa

Join us on an 11-Day Tour and Safari Escorted by Ryan Hilton and Michael & Terri Klauber
 
Johannesburg, Londolozi Private Game Reserve, Paarl, Cape Winelands and Cape Town
 
Explore and indulge the world class Cape Winelands from your base at the Grande Roche Hotel. Nestled at the foot of the magnificent Paarl Rock is a small, luxury hotel like no other. It is a place where history interacts with modern comforts...where the atmosphere of a bygone era brings a sense of gracious, unhurried living.
 
Dive into the endless beauty of Cape Town, one of the most vibrant and diverse cities on the continent. Immerse yourself in the local culture and cuisine while following the dramatic coastline from the V&A Waterfront to the Cape of Good Hope; from the Top of Table Mountain to the shores of Boulders Beach and its unique Penguin Colony.
 
Experience the world renowned One&Only brand at South Africa's premiere urban chic property bringing an unprecedented level of luxury and style to one of the world's most fascinating cities.
 As a Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club departure, food and wine will be front and center throughout the experience with surprises and special events around every corner.
 
Conde Nast Traveler–recommended Safari Specialist and former Londolozi guide, Ryan Hilton will escort and photograph the tour for guests, and prepare each traveler for the adventure of a lifetime.

Your escorts, wine expert and restaurateur Michael Klauber & Terri Klauber, will introduce some of South Africa’s most prized wines and dining experiences.

Price: $7,995.00 per person based upon double occupancy. Add $600 per person to your deposit amount to upgrade to a Varty Camp Superior Chalet or to Founders Camp at Londolozi (please see accommodations tab).

Price Details: 25% deposit required to secure space, refundable through 21 Sep 2012 less the $25 per person nonrefundable booking fee charged at time of reservation.

Inclusions: 1 night Deluxe room at the Intercontinental OR Tambo; 2 nights in a Terrace Suite at Grande Roche; 3 nights Marina Mountain Facing Room at the One&Only; 4 nights Varty Camp Suite at Londolozi; light aircraft flights to/from Johannesburg & Londolozi on 25 & 29 Jul; ground transfers, touring and special events per itinerary, breakfast daily and all meals, local brand beverages + spirits and all game viewing activities while on safari.

Exclusions: International air, internal flight from Johannesburg to Cape Town on 29 Jul, gratuities and items of a personal nature (long telephone calls, spa services, etc.).
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French Connection: A River Cruise to Burgundy and Provence August 23 - September 1, 2009

Say “Oui!” to an exclusive, scenic journey along the Saône and Rhône Rivers in the heart of France with culinary masters Michael Klauber and Chef Tommy Klauber of the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club.

Explore the gastronomic landscape of regional French cuisine and delight your tastebuds with some of the world’s finest wines that the region has to offer.

We begin our adventure in Paris, "The City of Light," cruising along the Saône and Rhône Rivers on the intimate Avalon Scenery.

Discover sumptuous wines and regional cuisine as we sail to the azure Mediterranean shores of Nice. Explore the medieval towns and cobbled courtyards of historic Burgundy, a region famous for fabulous wines and pastoral countryside.

Savor the gastronomic heritage of Lyon, renowned for the most Michelin-starred restaurants in the world. Witness Van Gogh's inspiration for "Starry Night Over the Rhone in Arles," the capital of Provence.

Throughout our journey, enjoy exclusive private tastings and culinary events hosted by the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club. C’est magnifique!
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Past Trips Overview

The World at Your Feet

Since 2003, the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club travelers have visited some amazing destinations, with exclusive access to world-famous chefs, dining venues and “back stage passes” to the world's finest wineries, all personally selected by our local experts, Michael and Tommy Klauber.

Here is a sample of some of the events and places that Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club has taken our guests:

  • Lunch at the picker's table at Châteaux Margaux, France
  • Lantern-lit dinner in the twilight South African savannah
  • Cocktails & dinner overlooking Portofino
  • Chef-guided market tours in Santiago and Barcelona
  • Game dinner in the cellar of Meerlust in South Africa
  • Clam bake on the beautiful shores of Bar Harbor, Maine
  • Sumptuous lunch at the Guggenheim in Bilbao, Spain


There is so much more to a journey with the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club than can be described! In addition to the exclusive access to outstanding chefs, dining and venues, you are traveling among friends, not a stuffy tour group. The days are remarkable and the nights are magic! Don't be the one whose friends can't stop gushing about the fabulous Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club trip YOU should have taken, too!

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Cuisine, Czars and Caviar August 22 - September 2, 2008

Michael and Terri Klauber led an epicurean exploration of the capitals of Scandinavia. Beginning with a special Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club kickoff in Stockholm, members delighted in the elegance and vitality of Europe's most intriguing ports, visiting the cultural capital of Helsinki, three splendid days in St. Petersburg, touring the parks and plazas of Copenhagen and the Viking ships of Oslo. The voyage finished with a phenomenal culinary finale in London!

Here are some highlights from our trip:

       

     

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Connoisseur Club Cuisines and Cultures of Southeast Asia: Hong Kong to Bangkok October 9 - October 22, 2007



Every lover of Asian cuisine, from foodie to star chef, would appreciate this journey into the spice markets and frying pans of Southest Asia - tailored for our members by Tommy and Michael Klauber for the Gulf Coast Connoisseur Club.



The Cuisines and Cultures of Southeast Asia featured each region's main cultural attractions, as well as culinary-focused touring, shopping for distinctive local goods and artisan food products, a variety of exclusive dining experiences and cooking demonstrations & classes. Travelers enjoyed twelve nights aboard the Regent Seven Seas Mariner, visiting ports in China, Vietnam and Thailand with cultural highlights of Hanoi, Nha Trang, Saigon, Ko Samui and Bangkok.



Here are some of the spectacular activities from our trip:

  • A fabulous night's stay at the world famous Peninsula Hotel
  • Exclusive tour in Hue, Vietnam, with a dragon boat cruise up the serene Perfume River to the Heavenly Lady Pagoda
  • Private tour of Forbidden City in Hue, Vietnam, and Imperial Citadel, with an emperor's ten course lunch created by Vietnamese star chef Thi Mai at the Royal Theater
  • Pre-trip optional excursions included a visit to The Great Wall of China and to the Excavation site of the Terra Cotta Warriors and Horses in Xiang
  • Visit to Tianenmen Square and the Forbidden City with access to closed halls
  • Post-trip optional excursions included a three-day trip to Angkor Wat, Cambodia, to visit sacred temples and to enjoy regional cuisine in exclusive dining experiences in the area's finest restaurants



 

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