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You are invited to join the Illinois Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museums (IPAVM) as we continue our journey of “Faith, Art and Architecture” in the Eternal City of Rome this Spring of 2018.  The dates of the trip are April 24 through May 1, 2018.  Reverend Ed Grace and Donna Nelson Stride will lead our group along with board members and fellow travelers.  Although Anne Shea will not be traveling with us in the Spring, she has been involved in the planning and groundwork for this exciting adventure.

Using both art and architecture as organizing principles of focus, highlights of the journey include the following:

  • Exclusive Patrons’ behind the scenes visits throughout the Vatican, including a private tour of the Sistine Chapel, followed by a private, gala dinner. Also, exclusive private dining in areas not open to the general public.
  • A day trip to the Apostolic Palace and Gardens at the Holy Fatherʼs Summer Residence in Castel Gandolfo, followed by lunch at the Papal Farm.
  • Visit an organic farm in Umbria for wine and olive oil sampling along with a delectable dinner.
  • Explore 14th century Palazzo Colonna, the oldest and largest private palace in Rome boasting some of the finest art collections spanning 17th-19th
  • Seven night accommodation at the five-star Grand Hotel De La Minerve located behind the Pantheon in the heart of medieval Rome.

The cost of the trip is $6,500 per person based on single occupancy and $5,450 per person based on double occupancy ($10,900 total).  The price is inclusive of hotel accommodations, local transportation, airport transfers, guides and one meal per day in addition to the daily breakfast.  In order to reserve space on this trip, a $1,500 non-refundable deposit per person is required by November 15, 2017The final payment will be due on February 27, 2018.  In order to maintain our costs, we are unable to accept online or credit card payments for this trip.  Space is limited, and we will honor reservations as they are received in our office.  Please click the two links below and sign and return the forms (one for each traveler) along with your deposit.

Spring is a lovely time to travel in Italy.  The climate should be moderate with a chance of rain.  The trip may include activities that require standing for long periods of time and a great deal of walking on cobblestones and slippery stone pavements.  There is a minimum of handicapped accessibility in Rome.  We strong encourage all travelers to purchase traveler’s insurance.

All of our Rome trips are designed exclusively for members.  If you are not yet a member and are considering traveling with us this Spring of 2018, your membership dues are required and should be paid by February 1, 2018.  If you are a current member and your dues are in arrears, please make sure your membership is up to date by February 1, 2018.

If you should have any questions regarding this trip, please do not hesitate to contact Donna Stride Nelson by phone, (312) 510-2135, or email,; or Denise Molitsky by phone, (312) 534-5351, or email,

We hope you consider traveling with the Illinois Patrons to create memories of a lifetime and to support the Patrons’ mission and commitment to the arts.



April 24, 2018
May 1, 2018
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Rome, Italy + Google Map