Book In May for a 29% Discount

10 to 15 August 2017

$2,450 (reduced from $3,470 – 29% OFF in May)

A tour inspired by the lives of Diana Princess of Wales and Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire – the 18th century’s “Empress of Fashion”.

Linked across three centuries by blood and by the shared home of Althorp, we explore these two women’s stories – their fame, their glamour and their wonderful wardrobes.

You will visit royal palaces, parks and country houses in London, and in the glorious Peak District of Derbyshire.

A unique opportunity to enjoy a trio of wonderful exhibitions – the sell-out ‘Diana Her Fashion Story’, Mario Testino’s Vanity Fair photographs, and ‘House Style: Five centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth’.

Plus a visit to the iconic John Smedley, holder of the Royal Warrant of Appointment as “Manufacturer of Fine Knitwear”.

To find out more click on the tabs below and / or download our illustrated Tour Brochure

 

Our journey takes us into the worlds of two of England’s most glamorous women – in the 18th century Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire (think Keira Knightly in the movie “The Duchess”) and from recent times, Diana, Princess of Wales.

Weaving our tale around the lives of these two renowned beauties, our carefully crafted tour combines the grandeur of palaces and the excitement of London with bespoke guided tours, visits to stunning exhibitions, and two glorious days in the wild beauty of the Derbyshire Peak District.

We visit Althorp, the childhood home of both women (Georgiana was Princess Diana’s great, great, great, great aunt). This beautiful hall is now home to Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer. Our visit coincides with a very rare chance to see Mario Testino’s Vanity Fair series of photographs of Diana.

A tour of the exhibition Diana: Her Fashion Story at Kensington Palace, and guided tour of House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth will bring you up close to iconic evening dresses, jewellery and other clothes from the wardrobes of our heroines. The dazzling Fashion galleries at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum offer an essential backdrop to their worlds.

In Kensington Palace and Chatsworth, you will walk through the corridors, rooms and gardens of our heroines’ homes. A visit to Buckingham Palace will recall memorable scenes from Diana’s life as Princess of Wales. In Derbyshire, we visit the iconic knitwear company John Smedley, where you can buy timeless or cutting edge designs from a company that clothes today’s Royal Family.

Throughout our tour, we follow the golden thread of our two heroine’s lives, the places they knew and the clothes they wore so beautifully.

Download a copy of our illlustrated Tour Brochure

Dates: Thursday 10 to Tuesday 15 August 2017. Six days / five nights

Price per person
Double / twin: Special May discounted price US$2,450 or £1,899
Single person: Special May discounted price US $2,900 or £2,249

(Flights not included)

What’s included
Airport transfers to and from London Gatwick or Heathrow. Private coach travel, four-star hotel accommodation (see below), breakfasts, three lunches and three dinners, entrance and tour costs, the services of your tour leader and local guides.

Special features

  • Unique chance to enjoy in one trip three remarkable exhibitions: Diana: Her Fashion Story, Mario Testino’s Portraits of Diana, and House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth.
  • Visits to two royal palaces, and two of England’s most beautiful country houses.
  • Lunch in Queen Anne’s Orangery and afternoon tea in the V&A’s elegant café.
  • An evening meal at one of England’s most elegant country inns.

Hotels
In London you’ll stay for three nights at the Grange Strathmore Hotel. Close to Harrods this fully-restored Victorian mansion in fashionable Kensington is the former residence of the Earl of Strathmore – the late Queen Mother’s father. In Derbyshire, the Peak Edge Hotel and Red Lion is our luxury, boutique base for two nights in the glorious setting of Britain’s first National Park.

Group Size Between 15 and 25 people

Tour leader
Stuart Gillis is a historian, museum curator and Derbyshire specialist. He will look after the group and help shape our story.

Getting about
There will be a reasonable amount of walking and this will include steps and some uneven surfaces. Our longest coach journey will last around three hours.

Entry and departure points London Gatwick or Heathrow

Day 1
On arrival at London airports, a private transfer will take you to our selected 4-star hotel, your central London location for the first three nights. In the evening, we invite you for a welcome drink followed by our dinner together. This is the perfect opportunity for our group to get to know each other.
Lunch N | dinner Y

Day 2
After breakfast, we travel the short journey to Kensington Palace, which was once home to Princess Diana. The palace has been a royal residence since the 17th century and is now the official London residence of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Our visit includes a tour of the State Rooms and the sell-out exhibition, Diana: Her Fashion Story.

Lunch is in Kensington’s elegant Orangery, which was originally built for Queen Anne. In the afternoon, there’s time to explore the palace gardens and to go on if you wish to Hyde Park, where you’ll find boating on the serpentine, fountains and statues including the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain. The rest of the afternoon and evening are yours to spend at your leisure.
Breakfast Y | Lunch Y | Dinner N

Day 3
In the morning, we visit the State Rooms of the Queen’s principal London residence, Buckingham Palace. The Garden Café offers light lunches and views across Buckingham Palace’s famous lake and lawn – scene of many a garden party.

In the afternoon, we move on to the Victoria & Albert Museum, one of the world’s great centres for art and design. Here, the fabulous Fashion galleries give us further glimpses of our two muses – Georgiana and Diana. You’ll take afternoon tea in the V&A’s elegant café and there’ll be free time to explore the treasures of this stunning museum.

Returning to our hotel, the final night of your London stay will be free time to explore this great city.
Breakfast Y | Lunch N | Afternoon tea Y | Dinner N

Day 4
After breakfast, we leave London and head north to Althorp, home of the Spencer family since 1508. Today Althorp is the family home of Diana’s brother Charles, 9th Earl Spencer. In the past, it was childhood home to both Georgiana and Diana. Our guided tour takes us through beautiful rooms and past exquisite furniture and paintings that they both would have known.

There’s then the rare chance to see an exhibition of Mario Testino’s Vanity Fair series of photographs of Princess Diana, followed by lunch on the Portico, overlooking Althorp’s deer park.

In the afternoon, we continue north for the upland beauty of the Derbyshire Peak District, Britain’s first National Park. Checking in at the Peak Edge Hotel there’s time to freshen up before we meet for drinks in the bar, and then dinner, when we are joined by our guest speaker who will help bring our story to life.
Breakfast | Lunch Y | Dinner Y

Day 5
We start the day with a beautiful journey skirting moorlands, limestone cliffs and the River Derwent as we head for glorious Chatsworth House, once home to Georgiana Cavendish. One of the most renowned stately homes in England, Chatsworth is today home to the present Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.

Our visit includes a guided tour of the exhibition House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth. Curated by American Vogue’s international editor-at-large Hamish Bowles – the exhibition showcases the history of fashion through the Devonshire Collection. Rich displays of clothes and accessories give a glimpse into the lives of Georgiana and other remarkable women.

We’ll encounter two of the famed ‘Mitford sisters’; Stella Tennant, who was photographed for Vogue at Chatsworth with her grandmother, the 11th Duchess; and the Americans Adele Astaire, sister and dance partner of Fred, and John F Kennedy’s sister Kathleen “Kick” Kennedy, both of whom married into the Cavendish family.

We’ll take lunch at Chatsworth and there’ll be free time to explore the garden and grounds. Travelling through Chatsworth’s parkland (designed by Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown) we’ll then follow the River Derwent as we head for the John Smedley knitwear shop and factory.

This iconic company dates back to the beginning of the Industrial Revolution. In the 1950s John Smedley was brand of choice for Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn and the Beatles. In the ‘80s their luxury knitwear was championed by Dame Vivienne Westwood and Sir Paul Smith. The brand is still at the forefront of fashion today.

We then take the scenic route back to our hotel for a refreshing rest. Our last dinner together will be in one of Derbyshire’s beautiful country inns.
Breakfast Y | Lunch N | Dinner Y

Day 6
We return you to your London airport for your flight home. If you wish to extend your vacation we will be pleased to help with suggestions or arrangements.
Breakfast Y

Discover more about the various destinations of your tour

Buckingham Palace www.royal.uk

Derbyshire Peak District www.peakdistrict.gov.uk

Grange Strathmore Hotel www.grangehotels.com

House Style at Chatsworth House www.chatsworth.org

John Smedley www.johnsmedley.com

Kensington Palace www.hrp.org.uk

Mario Testino’s Vanity Fair at Althorp www.spencerofalthorp.com

Peak Edge Hotel and Red Lion www.peakedgehotel.co.uk

Victoria & Albert Museum www.vam.ac.uk

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