When Mikael Audebert founded Art In Voyage, in 2011, he meant for it to be a conventional travel agency – putting together vacations, booking flights and securing hotels – albeit an agency that specialized in upscale experiences and luxury properties.
AIV still does that, and business has been so good that the company now has headquarters in Orlando and Cape Town, South Africa, which Audebert calls home base.
But over the last several years, Art In Voyage has expanded to feature curated journeys that focus on food and wine as major components of the destination.
“Everybody loves to eat and everybody loves to discover what other people eat.” said Audebert. “No matter what theme journey we do there’s always a way to bring a culinary element to it.”
More often than not, Audebert has tapped the chef Kevin Fonzo to host these journeys. Fonzo is known to many Central Floridians as the former chef and owner of K restaurant. A multiple James Beard Foundation Award nominee, Fonzo sold the popular College Park restaurant in 2017 to focus on teaching and travel. Serving as host for Art In Voyage’s food-centric curated journeys allows him to do both. Most of the tours he leads will include a visit to a local market to buy provisions followed by a cooking class with all participants lending a hand at making a local delicacy.
This year, Fonzo will lead journeys to Portugal, Umbria, Piedmont, Provence, Spain, Paris, Mykonos, New York and South Africa. One especially interesting trip is inspired by Julia Child’s time in Paris and will include a cooking class at Le Cordon Bleu, where Child learned the art of French cooking, and visits to several of her favorite restaurants, including the fabled Les Deux Magots and Cafe de Flore and Le Grand Véfour, the regular rendezvous restaurant of Child and her husband.
Audebert has also tapped Tim Varan, owner of Central Florida’s popular Tim’s Wine Markets, to lead wine-focused journeys to the Beaujolais and Burgundy wine regions this year and to Tuscany in 2024.
And I’ll be leading some tours, too. (More on that below.) In the past I’ve hosted tours to Paris and Lyon as well as a whirlwind wintertime trip to New York. You can read about those trips at these links: Paris Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4; Lyon Day 1, Day 2; and New York.
Having been part of some Art In Voyage journeys, I can tell you that they are distinguished by the attention to details and the high quality of the accommodations and restaurants.
Also, in most cases the groups are kept to no more than 10 guests – these are not the tours you’ve seen led by someone holding a flag or umbrella aloft waiting for the masses to catch up. That keeps things intimate and manageable, which is why I’m looking forward to again hosting curated journeys for Art In Voyage.
And where will those journeys lead? You tell us.
Below are some tours we’re considering for this year and next. Vote for any that sound intriguing to you and we’ll prioritize those most popular. (Don’t worry; by voting you aren’t committing to anything, we just want to know what you think.)
Proposed Art In Voyage destinations that Scott Joseph will host. Notice that there are four separate journeys each with a proposed date. Vote for as many as you like (click the box next to your choice(s) then click the Vote button. And if you'd like to propose another tour, leave a comment below.
And read about all the scheduled curated journeys at Art In Voyage.