Press release

Saga Holidays hits the high notes with Opera trips

Wednesday 4 July 2007

  • Verdi, Puccini or Rossini at the Verona Opera Festival
  • Listen to Bryn Terfel or Luis Rodriguez at Welsh National Opera
  • For further information call 0800 056 5880 or visit saga.co.uk/travelshop

This summer and autumn Opera lovers are spoilt for choice with Saga's holidays to Italy and Wales offering the chance to experience the operas of Puccini, Verdi and Rossini – three of opera's greats. With prices starting from just 369 per person* and departures throughout July, August and into October this is the ideal way for opera fans to immerse themselves in some of Europe's finest performances and for opera beginners to gain a true insight into the world of this engaging music.

Verona Opera Festival

The unique Roman amphitheatre at the heart of Verona is famous for its open-air opera festival, which is the highlight of Verona's summer calendar and one of the most famous Italian cultural must-sees. This year's festival comprises three Verdi productions - Nabucco, Aida and La Traviata - Puccini's La Bohme and Rossini's Il Barbiere di Siviglia

Saga is offering opera fans a last chance to book a visit to this beautiful city and take in two opera performances with three departures throughout August.

Five night breaks at the Hotel Campo Marzio in nearby Vicenza, the city of 'Italian High Renaissance', cost from 754 per person on a half board basis. The price includes two opera performances, services of an expert music host, guided sightseeing tour of Verona, panoramic guided tour of Vicenza, insurance, cancellation cover, return flights, airport taxes, fees and charges. Departures are available on August 12,17,22.

Alternatively those wanting to be close to the action can stay at the Hotel San Luca in Verona from 999 per person for five nights on a bed and breakfast basis.

Price includes two opera performances, services of an expert music host, guided sightseeing tour of Verona, guided tour of Vicenza, insurance, cancellation cover, return flights, airport taxes, fees and charges. Departures are available on August 7,17,22.

Puccini Opera Festival

Located just a short distance from the charming Tuscan town of Lucca, the Puccini Opera Festival is just the place to hear the timeless melodies of one of Italy's greatest musical masters. 2007's season presents Madame Butterfly, Tosca, La Bohme and La Rondine and again Saga is offering a last chance for fans of one of Italy's most famous composers to experience this year's festival.

Saga has five night breaks at the Hotel Nizza et Suisse in the spa town of Montecatini Terme starting from 799 per person on a half board basis. The price includes two opera performances, services of an expert music host, half-day excursion to the village of Lucca and a visit to Puccini’s residence the Villa Puccini, plus insurance, cancellation cover, return flights, airport taxes, fees and charges. Departures are available on July 24, August 14.

Those looking for a quieter, Tuscan experience will relish the opportunity to discover Barga with its cobbled lanes and impressive duomo. Five night trips on a half board basis staying at Il Ciocco Hotel, start from 874 per person. The hotel is located 6kms from Barga and is set in very extensive parkland and overlooks a beautiful valley. The price includes two opera performances, services of an expert music host, half-day excursion to Lucca and a visit to the Villa Puccini, plus insurance, cancellation cover, return flights, airport taxes, fees and charges. Departures are available on July 25, August 15.

Welsh National Opera

For an opera experience closer to home Saga is offering four night breaks to enjoy performances by Welsh National Opera from Caernarfon departing 29 October 2007. The trip includes four nights, half board at the Celtic Royal Hotel starting from 389 per person and includes two performances by Welsh National Opera in Llandudno, including Il trovatore by Verdi and La Cenerentola (Cinderella), by Rossini. The illustrious cast for the Verdi classic includes such names as Luis Rodriguez and Anne-Marie Owens, while the Cinderella production is created by Welsh national opera amd the renowned Barcelona based Comediants.

Those looking ahead to 2008 can book the 16 March departure, which will include a performance of Falstaff by Verdi and Eugene Onegin by Tchaikovsky, where the Falstaff cast will include Welsh favourite Bryn Terfel. Excursions on both holidays include a visit to the charming and colourful village of Portmeirion and a chance to explore Snowdonia National Park. Prices are from 369 on a half board basis, including two opera performances, the services of an expert music host as well as excursions described above.

For further details contact Saga Holidays 0800 056 5880 or visit www.saga.co.uk/travelshop.

-ENDS-

*Price is per person on a half board basis at the Celtic Royal Hotel departing October 29.

Editors Notes:

* Saga holidays are exclusively for people aged 50 and over, a travelling companion may be aged 40 or over.

* Saga holidays are only available direct and not through travel agents.

For further press information please contact the Saga Press Office on: 01303 771118.

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