We were on a two-family rugby trip to Rome in Feb 2014, partly to watch the Scotland-Italy rugby match, and partly to visit beautiful Rome. We were 8 people, ranging from 5 to 65 age-wise. Wanting to visit the Vatican, and not wanting to queue for hours, we thought that a private guide would be the best option. Looking on the internet we found many agencies with very varying prices.
Finally I came upon Apetitours, and Katia Cutrone, which seemed to be very reasonable in terms of price and well-noted on the web. I phoned Katia, and she told me that on the Saturday morning she herself was busy but that her sister, also a guide, Cinzia Cutrone, was available.
Cinzia wrote to me giving in detail the costs, meeting places, and enquiring about our group in order to tailor the tour to our needs. In order to make it more difficult for her, we threw in a five-year old boy, and at the last minute we added another adult to the tour. She managed to book us an extra ticket late on the Friday evening and sent a mail to confirm, which was impressive.
Meeting up for the 3-hour tour, she then spoke with perfect English (in addition she is maried to an American) and true passion about the objects and architecture in the Vatican and its museum. We were the first in, avoiding the very long queue. She taught us a lot about the Vatican and about Catholicism that we did not know, and she managed to keep the teenagers and even the five-year-old interested by pointing out some gory or funny themes that they were to look for on buildings and in paintings. This amused the smallest one a lot, so he did not become bored or difficult. Quite a feat !
Cinzia obviously loves and knows Rome inside out. She can apparently do tours to many unusual places in Rome as well as the classics. I will definitely call on her the next time we go to Rome, as she brings history alive, is very friendly and helpful, and very reasonable on cost.
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