Son of an American military man with northern Spanish roots and an Italian mother… Ariel has lived and traveled in Spain & Italy for over 25 years. His Iberia friends include artist, hotelier, chefs, musicians and impresarios. Among Ariel’s favorite places are Lisbon, Seville, Porto, Madrid, Rioja, Segovia + Andalusia, especially the EVO extra-virgin olive oil. Ariel enjoys vino from emerging wine regions like the Bierzo, Rueda, Toro and Portugal’s Duero Valley + Rioja Reservas. Ariel spits time between Europe and the USA.
Ariel’s Ideal Iberia Day: A quick workout and then something active and outdoors with friends. This might be surfing or sailing excursion in Northern Spain or a hike to visit winemaker friends in the Rias Biaxas or Rioja wine region. Then enjoy the best available regional meal and meet the chef.
After working for a major USA Health Care Group, Dan’s family roots via New Orleans from Ireland and Spain, led him to Europe. A bilingual foodie, Dan enjoys passionate people + great food & beautiful places. medieval villages, innovative luxury hotels, gourmet olive oils, history, and reading (but not at the same time). Dan has been listed by PBS TV travel show host Rick Steve’s in his Spain travel books. He is a lifelong NFL New Orleans Saints fan and was an undersized middle-linebacker decades ago.
Dan has assisted the TRAVEL CHANNEL and MTV on location in Spain. He has traveled all over the North and South America as well as to most of Europe, China and Korea. Next up?…. Scandinavia and Sicily.
Dan´s dream, along with growing Magical Spain, is develop a Fit Productive Family Community for discerning entrepreneurial families to live and connect twice a year. This might include olive groves, organic gardens, hiking, water, coworking space and conference, cooking and arts center.
Dan’s Ideal Iberia Day: After his Metabolic Morning routine, he enjoys a few hours working to check in with our team and customers, around Spain & Portugal. Then meeting his Spanish wife, son and her family for a delicious meal al fresco. Dan enjoys minimalist fitness, fun outdoor sports, chess, reading, HIIT, and Health science innovations. His favourite dinner party is a cook off: Spanish Paella vs. New Orleans Jambalaya.
Born in Europe to a American father and Italian mother, she is Ariel’s sister. Rachel’s worldview combines working hard + enjoying life with family and friends whenever possible. She grew up in a family of “foodies” so traveling for her was often in search of a perfect meal. Then in the 1980’s, she studied abroad in Spain and her host family were great cooks and loved to travel. They showed her the BIG difference between ”tourist trap Spain” vs. the top local places of savvy Spaniards
Travel memories: exploring Maine on the hunt for the best lobster and blueberries, to discovering the best Pho and cuisine in Thailand and Vietnam. Another trip included the finest grass-fed organic beef and wines in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She currently lives outside of Madrid and always looks forward to weekend escapes to stay on top of new hotels and renovations all over Spain, Portugal and Italy of course! Rachel also stays active daily with a mix of yoga, spinning, walking and kettle-bells.
Rachel’s Ideal Iberia Day: Early morning exercise in a beautiful place, great music with friends, cooking and enjoying a memorable al fresco dinner with family. She loves savvy conversation, humor and discovering meaningful new experiences, people and places to share with others.
Japan, India, Ireland, France, Morocco and Turkey are a few of the places this athletic Barcelona native and former English teacher has visited. Inés who enjoys food, wine, art, design, theater, nature hikes, reading and her grandmother exquisite seafood paella. She spent a year in Dublin and another in California and speaks Spanish, Catalan, English and a bit of Japanese.
Inés assist with cultural fun, food & wine things, special projects and events. Scuba diving, yoga and mountain biking are sports she enjoys. Inés likes films of the Cohen brothers, Woody Allen, Almodovar and Vim Venders as well as the music of Tom Waits, Diego Cigala, Marlango, B.B. King and El Barrio among others.
Ideal Iberia Day: Exploring fresh food markets on weekends with amigos in Porto, Seville, Madrid or Lisbon on foot, before a relaxed restaurant meal with a view and cool ambiance. She also loves watching the sunset any day after work with a great red wine and artisan cheese of Spain or Portugal.
After working in Ireland to develop her English, she began to help us with event planning and reviewing luxury hotels. This vivacious and stylish Española has family roots in Andalucia but grew up further north between the Roman capital of western Hispania and Templar knights castles. Nuria enjoys the Mediterranean lifestyle, European capitals, traditional festivals, La Liga, wine and cheese tastings, country walks and flamenco dance to name a few things.
Nuria loves creating unique special events like destination weddings so our guest experience the best of Spanish music culture, tapas cuisine, wine and people and enjoys putting her special stylish touches on everything. She also arranges Sevillana dance lessons for our guest, make’s one of the best Tortilla Españolas in the universe and is a big fan of Spain’s gourmet Jamon Iberico de Bellota and the 100+ cheeses of Spain including the Torta de Casar, Ibores and Torta de la Serrena.
Ideal Iberia Day: Hiking between Andalucia’s whitewashed hill towns (los Pueblos Blancos) and later getting a bit fashionable to enjoy a tasty Mediterranean seafood meal with family or friends. She also enjoys the Malaga and San Sebastian Film Festival with her American husband and son.
A confession…. since 1998, we have KISSED many frogs to find the top Spain & Portugal experiences + top local specialist guides. Truth is we hate boring tours where the guide just drones on with endless dates and no interaction nor real communication nor connection with you.
You see, we believe our upscale travelers deserve the best. That amigos means more than knowing the history or culture… it is about a can-do attitudes, heart, good communication skills, clear English and LOVING people.
Suffice it to say that MANY did not make our A team. Generally our select guides are fascinating people, world travelers, curious, well read and with a diverse set of interest. All love to share their favorite corners and tables in Spain or Portugal with our select world travelers, like you perhaps?
Ideal Iberia Day: Wow so many unique Spain or Portugal experiences you might choose from VIP walking tour, architecture and art of Madrid, helicopter touring of Barcelona or Lisbon, private cycling tours of Sevilla or Granada or excursions to walk ancient trails, Roman archeology, Mediterranean sailing or even visit a medieval monastery…. where monks are chanting. To finish the day a celebration over a delicious dinner of gourmet regional specialties and a bit of world class vino….maybe try an Albarino, Douro, Priorat, Ribera del Duero or Rioja Spanish or Portuguese wines.
Our Spain & Portugal network and living in Iberia for 15+ years is our advantage + we know Americans better.
Accepting only 5 private trips / week means our guest get optimal service.
Our clients are typically like us…. busy, successful, demanding travellers who desire exclusives experience, cultural fun, seamless
planning and luxury. without hassles, hurry or worry.
You enjoy privileged access to our network in Spain….. people, places and experiences, often not on the beaten path of the tourism industry
+ the “can’t miss” sights + 24 / 7 care you deserve. Contact us today to get started on your dream trip of a lifetime, You Deserve It!